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The travels of the "Leah Gent"


6/13/04   We are tied up at Ocean Marine Yacht harbor across from the Norfolk waterfront with high speed internet. YES! This is a busy place. Lots of really big boat traffic with barges and tug going in all directions. Went back to Waterside for the last day of Harborfest and got sunburnt. Came back to our boat and our next door neighbor had a big feast laid out on the dock. We had already eaten but they gave us 18 big crabs that we sat and picked for crab soup tomorrow. Coming out of the peaceful Dismal Swamp canal you hit the industrial sprawl of Norfolk in less than a mile. Talk about a shock! I'm ready to get out of the city and back into the peaceful pace we have had until today. We head to Hampton tomorrow.

Can you say "Navy"

6/14/04  We made it to Hampton and had a good time there. We went to the Air and Space Museum to see the IMAX movie there. We ended up seeing the Harry Potter movie that they had filmed in IMAX. It was really BIG! Hampton has a great downtown and it was just a short walk from the marina. We ate at Marker 20 resturant on the advice of the dockmaster and it was nice. A small pub like atmostphere.
6/15/04  We went back to the IMAX to see the NASCAR movie in 3D. It gave me a chance to show Debbie what I use to see when I raced at Daytona with some of the in car, over the dash footage. In 3D it's just like being back there again.
6/16/04  We anchored out just a few hundred yards from the city dock to save some money last night. The cities are bright at night and it takes some getting use to the sun not really going down. We were up at the crack of dawn, ugh, to head up the Bay towards Deltaville, VA. The ride was nice (terrible if you as Debbie) with the wind at our back most of the time. We averaged about 10 knots with the boat surfing off the waves from time to time. The waves got a little (huge if you ask Debbie) big at one point in the trip and it's strange being out of sight of land again. We made Jackson Creek before a big storm set in and threw out the anchor and slept for most of the afternoon.
6/17/04  We slept in again and then decided to get a slip at Deltaville Marina for the night. The folks here are really nice and the marina has excellent bathroom and pool facilities. And a Captian's lounge that was chilled to about 65 degrees. We thought about sleeping in there tonight but thought better of it. It's really hot with 90% (Debbie says 96%) humidity. Rode our bikes to a resturant and then to the Boat US store. Another hundred bucks later (I thought we had bought everything ever made for a boat before we left) we went back to figure out were to put everything. The same resturant that we ate lunch at picked us up at the Marina and drove us back for dinner. We liked that!!
6/18/04   We left Deltaville for Urbanna, about a 25 miles jaunt. Saw a fleet of huge, as in oil tanker type huge, menhadden ships fishing in the Rappahanock River. It's seems that with a few sets of their nets they should have all the fish in the river. Oh well.  Got into Urbanna Creek (thank goodness for GPS) and it's a nice small town. We were looking for a dock to tie up to and asked a fellow standing on the end of one if we could tie up. He hollared to tie and he would come over and talk with us. The dock is a private marina with no real transient slips. We talked to him more and found out that his sister, Elaine Crisp, lives in Lenoir and taught with Debbie for 6 years. One of the last homes I sold as a Realtor was for Elaine and Steve. Small world.....................  The owner of the dock is a charter captian and we got him on the cell and will stay here tonight for $20 I hope. We leave tomorrow for Reedsville if the weather will let us. Today was one of those dream days on the Bay with 5 knot winds and blue skies. I hope we get more.
6/19/04  We ended up with a $20 slip for the night and it looks like the weather is going to keep us in Urbanna for another day or two. This is a nice town so it's not too bad getting stuck here. We stuck our head out the entrance to Urbanna Creek and it was blowing 15 with a forcast for small craft warnings tonight so the better part of valor was to admit defeat and go back to the dock. The library here has internet connections so I'm able to get the web page updated. We washed the boat this morning and I hope to get some varnish on the wood in the back cockpit later today. A cold front is coming through so we should sleep well tonight.                            
6/20/04  We left Urbanna on a fair wind bound for Reedville. Got there in time to tie up at the resturant for dinner and then anchored out for the night. While we were looking for a place to drop the hook a nice lady came running out  in her yard and startedt taking pictures of the boat. I tried to give her every angle possible. A while later she and a friend came paddleing over in a small boat and we found out she was from Winchester,VA and this was their second home. She was also there with her girlfriends for a quilting weekend. Of corse Debbie had to show her our quilt she is working on and it went downhill from there. The last I heard was one of the ladies say something about 40,000 pieces in her latest quilt. Heck, I could build another boat with less pieces. Oh well.........we had a good chat and then it was bedtime.
6/21/04  We had a downwind run to Solomons from Reedville. Got a slip at the Comfort Inn and Marina for the night. A dollar a foot. Not bad. The slips were not great.


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Welcome to Norfolk, Virginia. Big boats and Bays

Free crabs, courtesy of the boat next door.

Sidebar thoughts:  I was thinking about the weather the other day and how it really pertains to boating, or at least living on a boat. As land based people I didn't often think about the weather. Oh sure, we watched the forcast every  morning before work but only to see if we needed an umbrella or not. If it's hot going to work you know it's just a short walk from an air conditioned car to an air conditioned office. Reverse the order to go home. On a power boat, it's different. I could work in the yard any time and the more wind the better. On a boat the wind is not your friend unless you are tied to a dock or the bottom and then only to keep the bugs away. 20 knots of wind in a car is not even noticable. On a boat it's a wild ride for sure. We are finding ourselves becoming amature (soon to be expert) weather forcasters. All our actions are now weather dependent. So when you see the next weather forcast, think of us and pray for "Sunny with light and variable winds".

A passing ship on the Chesapeke Bay