Beaufort (pronounced bew-fort).
It's really quite nice to pass by major metropolitan areas, without seeing them. The Intra-Coastal Waterway passes to the east of most eastern cities in it's path. We've gone past Jacksonville, Florida and Savanna Georgia, without more than a highway bridge. The average day, since St. Augustine, Florida has been 10-12 hours of motoring through marsh grass in the blazing sun. There seems to be a large population of horse flies down here, waiting in ambush for anything passing by. At one time, there were ten or twelve of them resting on the underside of my dodger; and they're too fast to hit with my hat, so we drew a truce.
Shelly (ex-girlfriend) called me yesterday to inform me her father had passed away after a six-month bout with cancer. Howard and I went to Ireland together many years ago, after watching "The Quiet Man" with John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara (swoon); and returned there three years in a row together; those will be some of my best memories and the time we spent together was both fun and fulfilling. I can't watch the movie without him, but I will tonight; with a cold Guiness and a toast to him at sunset. He was a wonderful man and I will miss him very much.
I ran aground hard yesterday; not hard really, because the ICW is mostly a mud bottom. It took me 45 minutes and the sacrificial fish zinc (as a lead line) to determine where the channel was. Much revving of the engine and swinging of the rudder later, we were again on our way. We were shadowed all day yesterday by a small tug (Eudora Lee) making is way up to Charleston, and a Grand Banks trawler (Fair Lady) heading back to Maine via the Chesapeake. They would both pass me, make a wrong turn, then have to catch up and follow me up narrow channels for half a day; what is it about the hare and the tortoise?
With laundry done, food replenished and Joey reacquainted with grass and soft earth, tomorrow we'll continue North; probably making Charleston, or a bit further. Soon after that, we'll be in Myrtle Beach, where we may stop for two nights again. Fond memories with my brother David on my first ICW trip, and a miraculous discovery of Barefoot Landing.
More as the adventure continues ... still looking for an affordable slip in/around Annapolis...