Finding Laurel and dropping anchor was a good thing. We got to meet Larry and Richard who had sailed down to meet Tyler and us. They came and brought us over to their boat via the little dingy that you could see in the photo trailing behind Laurel. With Dani in the bow, Richard rowing, and myself at the stern we made it across with around 3 inches of freeboard. It was quite an experience. We had a good time on their boat before returning in the dark and with some wine in us. I really thought someone was going in the drink, but somehow we all stayed pretty dry.

The next day we sailed quite a ways to a quaint little town called Edenton. As we arrived we saw other boats also heading into the little docks they had there.

As it turned out the little town had nice facilities for us and charged very little to stay there and use their water and power. They even had a guy out there to lend a hand while tying up at the docks. Dani and I showered and then escaped away to do our own thing in the town for a while.

Apparently Edenton is a pretty historic place. The first thing you see when you pull in is the Barker House (home of one of the original tea partiers!)

Read about it here:

We wandered around to check out the cannons that pointed out over the water and to stroll the streets looking at the houses. A lot of the houses had little signs out in front of them proudly displaying the dates of their being built. Many were in the 1700s. It was a very cool little town.

Near the town jail/courthouse I discovered the old stocks….

Of course…. You wouldn’t have been able to resist either!

After getting our fill of the local sights… Or basically when Dani escaped and ran screaming down main street…. We ended up meeting back up with Larry, Richard, and Tyler at a seafood joint there and had a nice dinner which Richard generously paid for. We made our way back to the boats just as it was getting dark.

Dani and I walked out on the pier and sat out there in the dark listening to the water lap against the breakwater and playing chess. It was windy and cool. So cold that she snuggled up to me again even after the stockade incident.

The next day right after we left Edenton Tyler or Dani (can’t remember who) decided we should have given Larry and Richard the camera so they could photograph Roannon under sail. It would have been easy if we’d remembered at the dock but since it was too late for that we made handoff. Sounds easy but its pretty scary being out in open water with a 20,000 lb boat and a 30,000 lb boat at arms length. I made the pass in a fish net. Score!

The effort was handsomely rewarded with some really nice shots of Roannon under sail. We also got some of Laurel.

Anyway, here is one for the postcards:

We had some nice sailing but the wind was very light so this forced us to hoist a sail known as a spinnaker. Spinnakers are really big light sails that act almost like kites to pull the boat along. Tyler warned us of the impending debacle… Not because it was difficult, oh no, but instead the look of the thing. Turned out his spinnaker was in his words, “The ugliest damn sail I’ve ever seen.” Dani and I there after began calling him Tyler-klaus on account of his Xmas colors.

Spinnaker up, check. Easy sailing, check. Tate checked out, check.

On our way to Manteo, we also crossed a midweek sailboat race that was going on in the middle of a weekday. Kind of strange!

And one of the boats from the big regatta came out to have a look at us.

But we finally made it to our anchorage for the night, up in a river or channel. I can’t really remember exactly where we stopped but it was well sheltered from the northern winds. We anchored in the open, only Laurel and Roannon. No one else to be seen.

Knowing what was coming this time, Dani was bound and determined to get photos of our crossing in the “Dangerous Dinghy” or as I like to refer to it in the hopes of being super melodramatic, the Dingy OF DEATH.

Doesn’t look so scary in the daylight does it? Well I assure you after two bottles of wine in 50 degree weather in the dark its quite terrifying…

Once again Laurel didn’t disappoint. It was cheese and wine on deck as we watched the sun go down. This is what its all about.

That night we were later treated to some sort of ham chowder that was really good and then music in the saloon along with drinks. It was a fun night and I’m happy to report that despite losing an oarlock, we all made the transit between boats once more with no one going in the drink. This time I’d like to thank God because its certainly a miracle. Look Tyler, you’ve only got two more to perform and you’ll be eligible for sainthood.

I was shamefully late to get up the next morning.

Onward we trudged through the Abermarle sound until we reached Manteo.

This was an important part of the trip for Tyler as the harbor we were pulling into is where his boat is to go in a few weeks. So we paid close attention to the navigation. Laurel was VERY cautious about making her way in. It was quite shallow in the water approaching. We made it in though. Later as we sat on the dock we watched some big 50ft boats come in and one got stuck so that her sister ship had to pull her out of the slip she tried to get into. But all was well. Free dockage! We paid a modest fee to use their laundry/shower facilities which were really nice and then got down to the business of exploring.

Manteo was home to a fellow Westsail32. (That is our boat.) We couldn’t help but snap a photo.

We wandered around this cool little town for a while until it poured rain on us and we retreated to a Mexican joint to eat with the gang again. It was a nice dinner and that night Dani and I went on a walk together alone until we heard rain coming and had to literally run and still we got rather wet. We also saw some poor souls from the previously stuck 50ft boat making their way in on a dingy getting totally drenched. They were laughing in the darkness though.

It was a great night.