Last night we lifted the dingy. A few moments ago I switched off the anchor light and turned on the solenoid switch. I have been doing that every morning for months now. Outside I can hear a sea gull cawing, the sounds of the early ferry, land birds chirping and in the distance a cricket singing. I suspect that this is the last time that I will use the anchor light. It is possible that we will anchor out one more night, but not likely. I am reasonably certain that we have lifted the dinghy for the last time.
I feel some sadness that this is the end. My daughter has pointed out that this is just the end of one adventure and the beginning of another. I think that my sadness has a lot to do with how wonderful this adventure has been. I am in the middle of going through the 40,000+ pictures that we have taken in 5 years. When we were doing all the things in the pictures it all happened so easily. Looking back it seems that we did so much in a short time.
There have been challenges. Things have broken, but we fixed them. There have been unpleasant passages, followed by beautiful beaches. The challenges have molded us into better people. The beautiful beaches and the wonderful people along the way are the things that I will remember.
I plan on taking all of the unpublished blog entries that I have been accumulating for the past 5 years and filling in the blog. I have the pictures partially organized. Perhaps it will make a story that Corwin and Chantelle will tell to their children. Perhaps it will just cement our journey in my own mind.
In any case…
This is our 7th time in Ocracoke, but it isn’t until this trip that I feel like I got to know the place. The first time we came it was in the middle of the extremely busy tourist season. I felt like I was in the way of cars and pedistrians. This time we are here at the beginning of the season.
In the five days that we have spent here, Chantelle has gone to her favorite bead store 3 times. She made me a lovely necklace and earrings.
We’ve walked the half a mile to the local grocery store. This is the first store that’s been easy for us to get to in the U.S. Then we had to make all the choices we haven’t been able to have in five months. What kind of chips? Cheese? Meat?
Now that we are back in the U.S. we are running our refrigerator. Our diet is still pretty much the same, except now we can have leftovers. That means we can have more variety at our meals. Before this if we didn’t eat everything it got thrown away. Of course we all had our cravings of things to eat. Chantelle wanted a grocery store Rotessire Chicken. Philip and Corwin wanted steak. I wanted cheesecake.
At Manteo we rented a car and revisited the Hattaras Lighthouse. When we were here two years ago, it was closed and we were unable to climb it. We made the climb and looked out to where our boat has been offshore. It was stunning. Next we went shelling and found smooth, flat sea shells. Then we had our culture shoke by visiting a Harris Teeters grocery store. it was bigger than all of the grocery stores that we visited in the Bahamas combined.
We spent two days at the kid’s favorite museum on the East Coast, the Roanoke Island Festival Park Museum. It’s very close to where our boat is docked.
We’ve been very luck with the weather temperature wise. This has been a cool spring for us. So we haven’t suffered from the heat to much.
We are now in the wind down phase of five years of cruising. It’s always good to have a dream of something to look forward to. After having lived on board a boat for five years, that’s a tough act to follow. Looking forward, Corwin, Chantelle and Philip hope to pursue hang gliding out West
So we found a perfect place to find out if this is a sport we want to be involved with. They have lovely, big, soft sand dunes to launch yourself off of with a hang glider. It makes for much better landings than hard dirt. For four hours we spent 65 seconds soaring through the air!! Needless to say, flying is in my family’s future.