We’re on our homeward trek south, currently docked in Plymouth, MA.  We left Maine without any bashing, bumping or wrapping–no bashing into rocks, no bumping into anything in the fog and no wrapping lobster pot lines around our prop!  I think we passed the Maine test!!

We said goodbye to all of our new Corinthian friends on Sunday although we stayed an extra day due to rainy/foggy weather (and just because we can.)  Ariel and Onward also spent an extra night which meant another great meal in Camden.  This time we tried 40 Paper.  All of our meals were awesome especially Joe’s mussel appetizer.  We praised it so much that the chef came out and shared his recipe!  I think the secret ingredient was a dousing of Pernod.

We made it to Boothbay harbor on Monday and Portland on Tuesday.  Miles recommended that we stay at Peaks Island and take the ferry over.  What a good idea!  The moorings weren’t cheap ($45 for us) but it was nice and protected over there and away from the bustle of Portland’s busy harbor.  We enjoyed walking around town and had a nice dinner at a Mexican restaurant before heading back on the ferry.
View of Portland from Peaks Island

Portland light
Portland Lighthouse

Our next stop was the Isle of Shoals just off the Maine/New Hampshire border.  It was a lumpy ride with wind and seas on the nose.  The clump of islands just 5 miles offshore are an interesting place.  There are just a few moorings available provided by various nearby yacht clubs.  You just take one and hope that you don’t get bumped by a member.   Star Island has a large old hotel that’s now owned by a corporation that hosts religious and educational groups.  Although the cruising guide says that you can’t tie up and go ashore, we did and everyone was very friendly.  They told us we couldn’t bring Bailey ashore unless he was a seeing-eye dog.  We said that he was and they said ‘okay!’

Star Island – Isle of Shoals

There are several interesting monuments and old buildings on the island.  It was originally charted by John Smith and had many caretakers over the years.  I didn’t bring my camera along–doh…

Beautiful sunset at Isle of Shoals

Lighthouse off Isle of Shoals
Lighthouse off Isle of Shoals

The next day we motored and actually sailed for a while on our way to Gloucester–a neat little fishing town with lots of charm.  We had a great lunch at Halibut Point.  The reviews on Yelp were right on the money–most awesome clam chowder!  We also found a liquor store and stocked up on my new favorite beer – Wachusett Blueberry.

Lighthouse off Isle of Shoals
Twin lighthouses on Cape Ann (I can’t see a lighthouse without taking a picture!)

Our friends Heather and Chris (Legacy) who we met in the Bahamas spend the summer nearby in Ipswich where Chris runs a youth sailing program.  They came by and picked us up for dinner at The Franklin Cafe – Cape Ann.  We enjoyed another great meal and enjoyed catching up.

Moondance in Gloucester Harbor

The next morning Joe passed by and hollered that he was heading for Rhode Island to visit his sister.  We weren’t sure what his plans were and I don’t think he did himself until he woke up and just decided to head for a family visit!  We already made plans to stop in Plymouth.

It was another long day of motoring into current and light winds.  Arriving in Plymouth was interesting.  It’s a long way around a peninsula into town.  We were staying at a marina and wanted to get fuel first.  Well, the fuel dock was not easy to get to and the dock guy didn’t have a clue how to catch our lines and tie them off.  Oy!

Da Rock
The famous rock

Mayflower II – Built in England and sailed to Plymouth in 1957 (year I was born!)

Early navigation tool used on the Mayflower
Early navigation tool used on the Mayflower – During a 4 hour watch someone would use a peg to mark the direction and speed each hour. At the end of the watch, the information was written in the log.

Plymouth has an interesting beach town/boardwalk vibe.  We checked out the rock and other monuments in town.  Today we took the city bus to Plimouth Plantation.  I liked it more than I thought I would.  It’s very well-done with re-enactors that give both the Pilgrim and Native American perspectives.

Plimouth Plantation
Replica Pilgrim village

Plimouth Plantation
Thatched roof on Pilgrim cottage with tobacco drying in the window

Plimouth Plantation

Plimouth Plantation
Grace’s relatives munching on grass

We’re leaving here tomorrow to transit the Cape Cod canal.  Our loose plan is to tour Narragansett Bay before heading up the Long Island Sound.