We left Beaufort on Thursday the 10th. We originally intended to take the northwest winds and ride them all the way to Charleston. Unfortunately that damn witch Winter had other ideas and decided a freeze warning was in order. Since it was supposed to go down to the 30’s, even off shore, we thought it better to take the inland intercostal waterway (ICW).on our way we had to buck a few knots of current which made for slow going. The only event of note was that there was a power boat heading through some shallows right for us, but then he hit a submerged island. He spent the rest of the time making rooster tails but not going anywhere. Our first stop was a little anchorage near Camp Lejeune, the marine base. Real nice little anchorage, and we were the last ones there. It got cold as expected and we expended the Asphixiator 5000.

In the morning EM3 successfully pulled up the anchor, although with a great deal of whining. I recon that the batteries dun be hurten since we ain’t got no alternator. It’s hard to shake the southern accent we dun picked up. But I’ll tri. There were so many hunters out, in their boats and rather than having poles in the rod holders they had shotguns. We continued motoring, and at some point we heard Evergreen (Jon and Heather) on the radio saying they ran aground once in this part of the ICW outside Wrightsville, NC. We slowed down but with the current it was hard to get under six knots and sure enough, bump, we hit the bottom on a sand shoal and got kind of stuck. We freed our selves and immediately ran aground about 50 feet later. After awhile and some radioing of Evergreen we found our way through. About three miles up the ditch we ran aground again, softer this time as we were much more cautious. Then again and again. Mind you this was all in the alleged 12 foot deep channel. We decided it best to motor around in circles and wait for a higher tied. We were hydrolocked in about a 1.5 mile stretch of ICW. Not fun, but we did see a power boat run aground and a small sail boat too, that made us feel like we weren’t the only dummies around. We eventually found a way though and concluded that we have been lucky to not run aground more. We feel like lottery winners and anchor in Carolina Beach, NC. The things we run into are called dols, I didn’t know what these are and according to dictionary.com it is a unit of pain, in an abstract way I would agree.

We woke up early on Sunday the 13th and headed out to open ocean via the Cape Fear River. Thank god to be done with the ICW. Evergreen follows us, but the other boat, Osprey, which seems really equipped for open ocean stays in the ICW. Sissies. We were escorted out by dolphins and had a nice cruise to Charleston. We tried out the tow generator, what a shit show. He doesn’t work too hard, doesn’t swim too well, ain’t too bright and is a royal pain in the ass, so we named him Martin. After we unfucked him though he sort of got the job done. On the way we saw some sea birds that were almost as bad as flying as they were swimming. We also saw a white or grey tipped reef shark frenzying on something, oh and lots of Dolphins. At one point I awoke to no Nathan in the cockpit when he was on watch and I was worried and I found him lying on the bow trying to pet the dolphins jumping in our bow wake. There must have been 20 or more in this particular pod. They are really amazing jumping around the boat. Dolphins really love Slick. We retrieved Martin right before the unexploded mine field outside Charleston and he now sits in an organized mess on the deck. We arrived just in time for morning, dolphins, pelicans and fair current. Our first stop was the fuel dock as we were empty from motoring, I mean cruising. After fueling up we went over to the anchorage and set a Bahamian due to the fierce current. When the wind picked up lots of boats drug (but not us). This combined with the $5 dinghy docking charge and all the work we mean to complete while here made me take a weekly rate at the Maritime center since it is cheap enough.

We went out in Charleston last night to find that all our favorite places are gone and that the place is full of old people and apparently no young ones and is much more expensive than either of us remember. Not like we remember at all and that dun bother us. This mornin’ though, we got a pump out and the boat smells better since we figured out the special sauce to put in the CHT tank. While we were getting pumped out, the dock hand explained that all of the poop on the dock was from sea otters that live here and he even did a little dance and explained that this is how the otters poop. We finished some projects today like outboard repair and clean and stow and such. Our training wheels, Evergreen, continued south to make it to FL for thanksgiving. Tomorrow we are going to wake up early to watch the otter dance!