June 21, 2014 After a final farewell dinner with John and Sue from Uno Mas and Jimmy from Serenity, we were ready to depart from Portsmouth, VA en route to Portsmouth, RI. The weather was good – not perfect – but we were comfortable and made good time, arriving as scheduled at the Nordhavn dock on the Sakonnet River. The trip was about 380 miles and took us 48 hours. On the last part of the trip we encountered heavy fog, allowing us a good test of our new Kahlenberg horn controller, which allows us to use our big, loud air horn as an automatic fog horn, sounding one blast every two minutes. It worked well and we kept a close eye on the radar as visibility was very restricted.
Upon arriving in Portsmouth, we rented a car for a quick trip to New York for a memorial service for another of Bradley’s uncles and a visit with family. Then it was back to Portsmouth where we changed the oil in both main engines, did a repair to our fuel transfer pump, and shopped around for a good price on diesel fuel. It seems the price of fuel has gone up nearly 20 cents a gallon in the past month, but at least we were able to get a reasonable price for 2849 gallons delivered by tanker. One last problem was our searchlight which was not working. This bright light, mounted on our roof, is a necessity for navigating into harbors at night or in limited visibility (like fog), which we expect plenty of further north. Unable to get the light to work, we called an electrician, who helped us to diagnose the problem – the system was not getting power and there is a power supply box which is supposed to have a fuse inside. The only problem was figuring out where that power supply box might be. It was finally located in a cabinet in the flybridge and it seems it has an on/off switch which had somehow been turned off – most likely when the Air conditioner guy was crawling around in the cabinet installing a part. Fortunately, we were back up and running quickly.
Before departing, we had a chance to catch up with our good friend and yacht broker Jeff Merrill, visiting from California as well as Ben, Dave, and the young and beautiful Champagne, at the Nordhavn offices. They were, as always, very helpful and friendly. We visited family friends Jack and Mary and also traveled to nearby Exeter for a wonderful dinner with our friends Rob and Tish from Kittiwake, who we had met last year in Nova Scotia. Finally, we had a chance to meet Brad and Lorraine, new owners of a Nordhavn 55. We enjoyed a very nice dinner out with them. So for now, all the repairs are done, we have our bear spray, immersion suits, and cruising guides, and we are underway en route to Shelburne, Nova Scotia. From there, we will meet up with our friends George and Marci and begin our adventures to Newfoundland, Labrador, and possibly Greenland. How far we get will depend on the weather and especially the ice.
Gotta go for now – hoping to start spotting some whales very soon!