Deltaville to Solomons Island
We were due to stop just the one night at Deltaville having motored against a light head wind to get there from Hampton. The evening anchored in Jackson Creek had its moment as a thunderstorm passed almost overhead. We don't like these storms as we have a 50 foot stick of metal reaching up into the sky inviting any stray electrical current to use it in an attempt to find ground. We both jumped out of our skins when a clap of thunder with almost simultaneous lightening went off like an explosion. Fortunately it was the closest the storm came and we settled down for the night in quieter circumstances.
We tried to leave the next morning but with the passing of the front heralded by the storm the winds had now gone into the north making progress so slow and painful as to not merit the effort. After and hour slamming into the short seas we returned to anchor in Fishing Bay, just outside of Jackson Creek where Phil set about looking at the problematical wind generator which had become seized after the strong winds in the Neuse River recently. Despite rigging up a working platform to gain some access to the generator 8 feet above deck level the blade assembly refused to budge off the shaft and so access to the bearings became impossible. However, after some spray lubrication the blades now at least turn, emitting a rumbling sound which varies in pitch and volume depending on wind strength. Another problem for the faults log!
The following day we were able to motor the 65 miles to Solomon's Island where the most notable point of the voyage was passing a dead and bloated turtle with what looked like a cracked shell incurred from a fast boat. Such a shame as we love seeing these creatures appear on the surface before dissapearing into the depths again. Guess this one mistimed its surface manouvre.
In Solomons we looked forward to receiving a long overdue mail drop from home and a shopping trip to Woodburns, a 'world class gourmet market' so their literature goes, selling lots of goodies not usually available in other locations. In particular, (without wishing to bore anyone on this subject), many different flavours of sesame sticks available from those serve yourself plastic silos, complete with the little shovels. There was a slight concern here that Phil was enjoying a regression moment back to the days when he played at sweet shops as Nikki left him enthusiastically peeling lots of empty bags from the roll to shovel in a few ounces of this flavour and a few ounces of that flavour whilst she staggered round the store with a trolley load of far more important items. A visit to West Marine was also a must as Nikki wanted to return some wellies bought last year which had perished despite little wear. It proved to be a lucky stop as the store was handing out morning coffee and doughnuts to customers, and on a later solo visit to the store in the day to buy engine oil Phil succumbed to in-store offerings of potato salad and buffalo chicken wings which were greedily devoured before joining Nikki in Woodburns to weigh up the sesame sticks!
Whilst in Solomons we were invited to attend an evening meal with the Solomons Port Officer of the Ocean Cruising Club who had only just sailed back from an OCC rally themselves in the Chesapeake which unfortunately we had been unable to make after our Hampton exploits. Despite the short notice they welcomed us and two other cruising couples, also members, to a delicious fish supper making it a memorable return to the area.