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I started writing this blog two days ago when the only issue was a minor engine issue (replacing a small elbow in the cooling system) and rain. Since then we have been additionally delayed due to 1) a stalling engine – there was a small crack in a hose and air in the line, and the alignment of shaft and engine was all out-of-whack which required another afternoon with the mechanic and 2) wind –today the winds are at 20 with gusts even higher. With whitecaps in the marina, we decided to once again put our departure on hold. We have to leave tomorrow in order to get through the Alligator Bridge before it closes for 5 days. The weather does look better albeit much colder.

Sunday, we went to Norfolk by ferry across the Elizabeth River to the Nauticus Museum which includes the battleship Wisconsin. This is a huge ship that served in World War II, The Korean war and Gulf War.

Sheila on the bow of the Wisconsin - note the cruise ship in the background

The ship was originally built for 2000 servicemen but was staffed with 2700 during WWII. The crew’s living quarters make our boat look spacious. We celebrated Hugh’s birthday with a delicious dinner out and then took the ferry across the Elizabeth River and back to the boat.

Hugh with a birthday beer.

Norfolk at night by the river.

The mermaid is the symbol for Norfolk. This is in a park near the Wisconsin.

We knew we had to wait at least until Monday afternoon for the mechanic, but Karen and Hugh cast off on Monday with the thought that we would quickly catch up. He didn’t make it Monday OR Tuesday due to a back-up in his schedule. We were then rained-in in Portsmouth Tuesday and Wednesday and he finally showed up Wednesday and changed the o-ring on the raw water outlet elbow on top of the heat exchanger on the engine. This was a relatively minor job that took about an hour. It was pouring almost the entire day and although we wanted to enter the ICW once he finished it was too late to leave.

So, since patience is not my strongest trait, I am going a bit crazy. We originally couldn’t leave the boat because we didn’t know when the mechanic was coming. We got various boat projects done; (oiled the cockpit table, finished the aft section of the cockpit enclosure, started the hand hold covers, hung the radar reflector, rigged the jack lines, adjust the throttle lever, tested the depth sounder, replaced chaffed reefing line, changed engine oil, tested the alternator and updated electronic charts) but even that is getting old. I am reading –always love that. We are binge watching The Newsroom – which we are really enjoying. We had happy hour with a couple on Vanasana – (Patrick and Stacey) 38 catamaran that is docked near us – enjoyed that.

My handy work - Thank you Karen for the coloring book. It has help these idle hands stay busy.

Thursday we moved to the gas dock, fueled up, emptied the holding tank and were all ready to leave and the engine stalled (mentioned above) keeping us occupied with the mechanic until 5:00, again too late to leave. Now it is Friday and the wind is howling and we have agreed that with lighter winds tomorrow and perfect albeit cold weather for crossing Albemarle Sound on Sunday we are waiting one more day. One more day seems to be the description I will always keep in my head for Portsmouth. We are getting calls from Cleveland about the snow that is falling…………..

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