Rock Hall, MD, A Little Town but a Lot of Fun (July 13 – July 18, 2017)

Rock Hall, MD, A Little Town but a Lot of Fun (July 13 – July 18, 2017)

Just a short trip away from Baltimore’s busy Inner Harbor is a small town by the name of Rock Hall. Established in 1707, Rock Hall is a quaint fishing town that caters to boaters and visitors. In fact, there are only about 1300 residents in Rock Hall, and boat slips outnumber the population. We looked forward to arriving in port here as we had arranged to meet our dear friends, Ned and Anne, who we hadn’t seen for a year and a half. They were on their way from Florida to Connecticut and we couldn’t have been more excited about seeing them as they passed through.

IMG_9677Spending time with Ned and Anne.  It had been far too long.

Ned and Anne picked us up at the Harbor Haven Marina and we traveled to the nearby town of Chestertown for lunch, an afternoon of looking around town, a visit back at their hotel, and then a lovely dinner back in Rock Hall. We had so much catching up to do that our time with them just flew by. When we lived in Florida we saw Ned and Anne every week or two, so we have really missed them. As with all good friends, though, the time apart just vanished, and it was just like old times: laughing, joking, and thoroughly enjoying each other’s company.

IMG_4162Waiting on the porch of the Haven Harbor Marina for the trolley to pick us up to go to town.IMG_4163Scenes around the town of Rock Hall, MDIMG_4164IMG_4165IMG_4166IMG_4169IMG_4171IMG_4172IMG_4173IMG_4177IMG_4180IMG_4183

The next day was a day of questionable weather. Storms were predicted and thunder was in the distance. We stayed at our dock in Haven Harbor and I was able to use the pool there. The water in the Chesapeake just isn’t like the water in the Caribbean, so I am always happy to have pool time to soak and swim. We didn’t want to miss the town here, though, so on Saturday, June 15th, we got up early and caught the trolley that takes visitors to town from the marina. It is a tiny town and we enjoyed strolling around and getting an iced coffee at the local coffee shop.

IMG_9659Toboggan coming to meet us.IMG_9666On board Tangent coming to AfterMathIMG_9692Sarah, Walt, and FordIMG_9732Ford is a happy little guy!IMG_9749-EditRush loved laying in the pilothouse berth.IMG_9756Happy boys on the trolley.IMG_9765Here’s Jeff.  Everyone enjoyed eating ice cream on a hot day.IMG_9770IMG_9771IMG_9778IMG_9789Hanging out at the marinaIMG_9779IMG_9799A little cuddle and relaxing time for Walt and Bop.

Back at the marina, we decided to move to a mooring and work on some projects that needed our attention. I had some sewing to do and John had a list that needed attacking. We let Jeff and Sarah know where we were as we were just a short distance away from their house and they said they would come visit us on their boat, Toboggan, the next day. Sunday turned out to be a wonderful day with Jeff, Sarah, and the boys. We took the dinghy in to shore so the boys could ride the trolley and so we all could get some ice cream to cool us off on the hot summer day. Time was spent swimming and visiting aboard AfterMath before they had to leave to return to Annapolis. All in all it was one of those days we will remember always. The boys were so cute and so excited to come visit and we loved having family close enough by that it was possible.

When Monday came knew we really needed to get some projects done, so we remained on the mooring for one more night.  I was busy again with sewing projects and John was busy with working on his never ending list of chores.  It was a good day to get work done and we realized that we probably need to take days like this more often.  Although it must seem to many that our life is one of leisure, and it certainly is wonderful, there are still chores to be done, just as in a land based home!

Today we move along, but we will leave with fond memories of friends, fun, and family.  The five days here flew by; maybe we will be back someday to once again enjoy the quaint and lovely town of Rock Hall.

Here is where you will find Rock Hall, MD:





Spending Time with Friends and Visiting New Places  (July 10th – July 13th, 2017)

Spending Time with Friends and Visiting New Places (July 10th – July 13th, 2017)

What is this trip about? It is about the people we meet and the places we go. As we continued up the Chesapeake Bay, we were lucky enough to be able to visit with some good friends and to discover the Inner Harbor of Baltimore. What a wonderful few days!

IMG_9584A happy reunion for Kirby.  He loves Noi!IMG_9585It was so good to be reunited!  Here are John and Scott.IMG_9592Saying goodbye to good friends, Scott and Noi.

After leaving Galesville on Monday the 10th, we made the short trip up the bay to the Magothy River. The goal in this excursion was to find our friends from S/V Symbiosis. We met Scott and Noi about a year ago in Grenada and we traveled with them and with Larry and Debbie, on M/V Tropical Blend, for about six months before we parted in St. Maarten. Scott and Noi have since sold their boat and are now living on land near Annapolis, and we were so anxious to see them and spend time together. Our visit was perfect. Noi works at the Magothy River Marina and was there to greet us as we pulled into our dock. Kirby was absolutely beside himself with excitement to see Noi, as she is probably his favorite person in the world. In the Caribbean, it was common for Noi to stop by AfterMath with a piece of chicken bought just for Kirby from the local store. His tail could not have wagged any harder to hear her voice. We had dinner together on Monday night and then, Tuesday morning, they came to see us off after we shared a breakfast of the bagels they brought. Kirby even got doggie bagels to join us in our meal!

IMG_9594From our dock at Harbor East Marina in Baltimore’s Inner HarborIMG_9599That’s John as we were taking a stroll to see the sightsIMG_9602We wondered what this strange looking boat was.IMG_9620Soon we found out it is a solar powered garbage collector!  Trash makes its way down the river, but never makes it to the Inner Harbor.IMG_9606IMG_9605Sights around townIMG_9609USCGC Taney, the last surviving floating ship that fought in the attack on Pearl HarborIMG_9613IMG_9617IMG_9622IMG_9628The view from our bow at night.  Gorgeous.IMG_9634Domino has a processing plant on the harbor.IMG_9639Baltimore’s World Trade Center with a beam from the NYC World Trade Center on display.IMG_9646IMG_9642IMG_9648IMG_9651IMG_9654IMG_9656One stop with the Water Taxi was Fels Point, a pretty neighborhood of watermen of the past.  We got off and had lunch here.IMG_9657IMG_9659A strange looking vehicle!!IMG_9663Inside the Museum of Industry.  IMG_9664IMG_9669

Our next stop was Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Baltimore has taken what was once a run down, seedy area and changed it into a vibrant and beautiful destination. It was a short, easy walk from the Harbor East Marina to the center of activity. There are also water taxis that transport visitors to most of the attractions. Here we found museums, the Baltimore Aquarium, historic ships, paddleboats, a lighthouse, and so much more, all in lovely settings and all beautifully maintained. We spent two nights there, enjoying everything. We especially loved sitting on the bow of our boat at night, listening to the sounds and viewing the city lights. This area is a pleasure to visit and we would highly recommend it to anyone passing by.

So, in these few days of our journey, we reunited with friends and our eyes were opened to a wonderful harbor. We find along the way, that the people we have met have become part of us, our history, our family. We are sad when we say goodbye, we treasure our time together, and look forward to meeting again. The places we visit blend in a marvelous way. We need to think to sort out, in our minds, which destination carried which feature or sight, but the experience as a whole is wondrous. This vagabond life we are leading is priceless to us. We know that our travels will always be part of our fabric now. And the people we have met and the places we have gone are truly joys that we would have never wanted to miss.

Wonderful Times with Family (June 22 – July 9, 2017)

Wonderful Times with Family (June 22 – July 9, 2017)

Slowly we progress through the Chesapeake Bay, taking in the sights and scenery. Rivers, creeks, and inlets beg to be explored aboard our dinghy, Tangent. We stop where we like, and stay as long as we like; it’s a joy to be the only boat in an anchorage where we are surrounded by nothing by trees, water, and birds swooping in to pick up their evening meal. But even more wonderful this time was a visit to Annapolis where we docked just two houses away from Jeff’s house and spent priceless time with Jeff, Sarah, Walt, Rush, and Ford, and Kelly, Craig, Michaela, Carter, and Madison. It was a holiday weekend get together that will long be remembered in all of our minds.

IMG_9265Passing the dock where crab boats offload on Tilghman IslandIMG_9269Beautiful lighthouses abound in the Chesapeake BayIMG_9377A serene anchorage on the Wye RiverIMG_9352We love seeing the next generation of boaters at work.IMG_9446A tall ship at work on the bay.IMG_9286Skipjack races.IMG_9311The Chesapeake is filled with sailors.

We left Tilghman Island, Maryland on June 22nd and motored to up the Wye River. The anchorage on the Wye River is a rural as you can get. There are no buildings anywhere, WiFi and cell service are nonexistent, and the only sounds you can hear are birds calling and fish jumping. We spent two nights there before we decided we would move on to Long Hall Creek, an anchorage near St. Michaels. The following day we traveled to Galesville and we spent two nights enjoying dinghy rides and lovely scenery.
Finally, on June 27th, we arrived at Mill Creek, where Jeff and Sarah live. Jeff’s dock is full, but his neighbor, Steve Ormsbee, graciously offered us the use of his dock; we stayed for almost a month in October of 2015. It is such a pleasure to be able to walk up a flight of stairs, go two houses down the road, and be at our son’s house. This time, as we approached our destination, we stopped AfterMath in front of Jeff’s dock and heard joyful calls of “Hi Nana! Hi Bop!” to us from Walt and Rush. John tooted the very loud horn, to the delight of the two little boys, and to the dismay of Kirby, who really dislikes that horn, before we tied the boat up for a week and a half.

madison and fordThis was Madison’s first meeting with her new cousin, Ford, and she was happy to hold him!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACraig, Michaela and Carter at the beach.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARush looking like a surfer dude!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMichaela after a good swim.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe boys working on a construction site.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWalt absolutely loved the waves at the beach.

Kelly and family arrived from Florida on Thursday and soon the activity really began. Jeff had to work and John was busy with tasks on AfterMath, but everyone else enjoyed a picnic trip to Sandy Point Beach in Annapolis on Friday. The waves were bigger and the water was colder than what I have been used to, but the kids had a blast and Craig was the hero of the day, taking the kids out to play in the waves and to ride on the surfboards they brought along. Little baby Ford managed to sleep through his beach day while the others played in the sand, ate sandwiches and snacks, and drank countless glasses of lemonade.

IMG_9401The piper that greeted us at Mount VernonIMG_9404Holding hands with George Washington and family.IMG_9405IMG_9463Michaela aboard Tangent.IMG_9465It’s fun hanging on Toboggan’s anchor chain!IMG_9469That’s Jeff, Rush, and Kelly, with Madison in front.IMG_9474An after-boating snuggle for the boys.IMG_9481And an after-boating snuggle for the Kirk kids and their mom.

Saturday’s excursion took us all to Mount Vernon to see the home of George Washington. We caravanned to the beautiful park and met up with our niece, Sarah, her husband, Jason, and their daughter, Annie. Michaela and Carter are very interested in history and they loved seeing the home of our first president. We all enjoyed walking the grounds, seeing the bed George Washington died in, and just being together. After arriving home from Mount Vernon the children all decided it was time to go boating. Jeff piled most of the group into Toboggan, his lobster type boat, and we took a few more on Tangent. Everyone had a great time swimming, driving the dinghy, and cooling off from the walk around the park. Soon everyone was exhausted and ready for a nice rest back at the house.

IMG_9485Madison really loved that turtle!IMG_9497Madison, Kelly and CarterIMG_9501MichaelaIMG_9503Jeff, Walt and MichaelaIMG_9506CraigIMG_9507Carter started out at the cockpit levelIMG_9510IMG_9519Jeff and Walt floating around.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACraig jumping from the top.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACarter loved jumping from his high position.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMichaela hesitated, but she did it!!IMG_4096Ford taking it easy.IMG_4104We thought we would try to catch crabs in Jeff’s crab traps that had been laying in some poison ivy.  Kelly was brave enough to say she would clean them out.IMG_4107IMG_4114Checking for crabs, but no luck!IMG_4123John and Ford having a conversation.IMG_4125Walt showing Madison how to use chopsticks for kids.IMG_4127Carter loves corn on the cob.IMG_4132Rush seems to love it too!sarah and madisonSarah planned a Moana birthday party for Madison.  She thought Aunt Sarah was the best ever!sarah party


IMG_9524We also celebrated the 4th of July with hats, sunglasses, beads, flags, and glow sticks for all of the kids.IMG_9525IMG_9528IMG_9530A tropical piñata was next on the agenda.

On Sunday, after some excitement playing with a turtle Jeff found in his yard, everyone boarded AfterMath for a short ride and some fun in the water at an anchorage not too far away from Jeff’s house. There the kids swam, again took dinghy rides, floated around in our swim floats, and a few brave souls, Jeff, Craig, Michaela, and Carter, tried their skills jumping from AfterMath’s upper level. The fun continued that evening with a cookout and a celebration of Madison’s fourth birthday. It certainly was a weekend to remember.

IMG_9546Rush, Jeff and Walt on their dinghy.IMG_9552

IMG_9564Rush driving Tangent with Bop

Kelly and Craig left for Florida early Monday morning, but we stayed in Mill Creek a little longer. We continued to do dinghy explorations, this time with Jeff and the bigger boys, trading off kids throughout the trip. Walt and Rush have their sea legs and think nothing of hopping off one boat and onto another. As always, when we are near family, we take advantage of time to borrow a car to re-provision for groceries and anything else we need, too. We enjoyed our time in Annapolis so much, but just wish Jason, Lisa, Ashley and Jace could have joined us too.

IMG_9656This osprey was nesting not more than 10 feet from our fly bridge.  Here she is with her babies the day we left Annapolis.  I’m sure she was more than happy to see us go.

Saturday, July 8th, Jeff and family climbed aboard Prerequisite, and together with AfterMath, we all went back to Galesville for a weekend of fun. We all ate dinner together aboard AfterMath on Saturday night and then I made a pancake breakfast on Sunday. Jeff and Sarah’s friends Chris and Regan Blomshield came from DC to spend the day too, and John and I loved having them come to tour AfterMath; apparently they like to follow this blog and were anxious to see the boat in person.

Finally it was time to say goodbye, but we know we will be seeing everyone again soon. Time with family is so precious, and it never seems to be long enough. There is much to see and much to explore, but we know that our hearts lie with those we love so much.