We had planned to leave Belhaven on Thursday but the drizzly cold and windy weather kept us there one more day. More relaxing PLUS we got to visit the Belhaven museum…a must see. If you can imagine a collection of anything and everything old, dusty or weird–they’ve got it! According to the curator, one of the early citizens of Belhaven started collecting stuff and pretty soon everyone just gave her all their old stuff. They had musty old clothing, magazines (Nat’l Geographics back to 1907), rattlesnake skins, war relics, farm tools and really gross stuff like one-eyed piglets in jars and a 10 lb tumor that was removed from somebody–yuck! Best of all, the ‘curator’ must have been pretty lonely because he followed us around and talked non-stop…not sure about what…
Our friends Elliott and Ina from New Bern were going to meet us in Belhaven for dinner but they were busy getting ready for travelling the next day and couldn’t make it. We joined Gray and Betty from Gray Ghost for dinner at the local oyster bar. They were on their way home to Cypress Landing in Chocowinity and knew Jim and Kay.
We left Belhaven eary Friday under cool, foggy skies. Crossing the Pamlico River was not bad since the wind was behind us. Once we got out into the Neuse River, the wind was still behind us so it was a comfortable trip–especially with our cockpit enclosure! We arrived in Oriental and tied up at the marina. Our friends Dan and Donna picked us up in the evening for dinner at their house. What a pleasant change to actually be in a house! After only 2 weeks living on the boat I forgot how nice it was! to be on solid ground. We enjoyed catching up with Dan and Donna as we drank wine and ate an excellent meal. They have a beautiful house in the woods off of a creek near Oriental and are living the good life in retirement. We recounted our old stories about our days at SSA…they seem to be getting dimmer (but not exactly rosey;-)
After breakfast at The Bean, we left Oriental (again, foggy and cool) crossed the Neuse River and entered Adam’s canal. This is where the scenery starts to change from inland waters to coastal waters. As we turned east we start seeing dolphins and greener water. We passed a tug and barge close to Beaufort and I like using our AIS to call them on the radio by name. The tug operators seem to appreciate the calls to confirm their intentions.
There are 2 ways to enter Beaufort and we decided to go around rather than wait for a bridge opening. It was a little bit longer but we avoided fighting the current while waiting for the bridge to open. Making a smooth landing into the Beaufort docks we were pleased to see a bustling town with lots of people about–civilization!! Better yet, the sun actually came out!
We walked around town to check out the shops and restaurants. Later in the afternoon, Pete and Mary Ann from MicMac came over to introduce themselves. We saw them in both Belhaven and Oriental. We invited ourselves to join them for dinner at the Blue Moon and enjoyed talking about our combined sailing experiences. They were comtemplating staying an extra day but we saw that they left this morning. It’s too cold and windy for us…we’re staying another night!