|Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina|
It is glorious to be back in our community of cruisers. It is an eclectic but generous group, particularly during the holiday season. We joined the boatyard clan of strays and orphans for Christmas dinner at a local Thai restaurant and were surprised by how many people eat out for Christmas dinner. The restaurant was packed with a line up out the door.
Alberta Crewed floated again on Boxing Day and this year’s preparations were relatively minor. Engine fluid and filter changes, a couple of fuses, and applying a layer of polish on the fiberglass was all she needed. The transition from land to sea seemed easier overall. Perhaps we are finally getting used to one another although Alberta Crewed will always have the upper hand. I know that anything can happen, anytime.
Tied to the dock at Deep Point Marina in Southport, North Carolina, we are waiting for a 4-day weather window to take us to Florida. Our enclosure is up around the cockpit to stave off the winter chill and for the first time, we are using our air conditioner as a heater. The boat is toasty warm and the enclosure gives us an extra room. We continue to work through checklists, testing safety equipment and electronics, and putting sails back on.
The decision about when to cast off is complex, and about more than just weather and seas. We strive to have synchronicity as well with our physical and mental preparation. There is rarely a perfect time and while we weigh all factors, ultimately we both need to feel ready to go. Either of us may call a veto at any time. It has been wise to stay in Southport for a few extra days and we have our eyes on a north wind coming Thursday that might be just the right one to blow us to Florida.