Saturday, October 31, 2015

Still Stationary

We are still stuck in Wilmington. We planned to leave this morning and head south. Mark did a routine check of the engine room at 8:30 last night and discovered diesel leaking from the port engine-- ugh! So we will see what Monday brings. 

Meanwhile we used the extra time here to further organize the interior of Mata Beel after our summer hiatus. Andy and Julie from Fruitcakes were in town visiting friends Bob and Sharon, so the 4 of them joined us for docktails. Julie's yummy tomato pie vanished before I thought to snap a photo!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Still Waiting But Having Fun

There is not much new from Wilmington since our boatyard friends don't work on weekends. Our Looper friends Julie and Andy (Fruitcakes), invited us to stay with them at their home in Little River, SC, for the weekend. Little River is an hour's drive from Wilmington, and we were more than happy to accept their generous invitation. We arrived at their place Friday afternoon and then went to a house-warming party at Dave's and Di's (Phat Cat) lovely new condo.

On Saturday Julie and Andy drove us around nearby Cherry Grove, North Myrtle Beach, and Myrtle Beach to show us the sights. Luckily the main tourist season is over. We had a delicious dinner at Flying Fish at Barefoot Landing- a restaurant we loved when we were here in the spring.

Today we were treated to a cruise on Fruitcakes along with 2 other couples. The 8 of us nosed out of Little River inlet into the open sea to check out a shrimper and a few dolphins before eating a picnic lunch while anchored off Bird Island. It was a great afternoon!

If all goes as promised, our pump will arrive from Raleigh tomorrow morning and be installed in the afternoon, and Mara Beel will go into the water on Tuesday. We will then need a  couple of days to clean and re-provision before getting underway. Keeping our fingers crossed!

Kids playing

Dinghy on Bird Island

Shrimp boat 

North Myrtle Beach

Casting a seine net to catch bait

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Waiting (not so) Patiently

We are back in Wilmington, almost reunited with Mara Beel. After 5 months, work on her is still not finished. It's a long story, that shouldn't have happened, but here we are. We might be waiting another week- hopefully we will know more about our fuel injection pump tomorrow.

Meanwhile, we are taking advantage of this time to explore Wilmington. Today we visited Airlie Gardens, a beautiful collection of gardens featuring 100,000 azaleas, Bradley Creek, butterflies, sculptures, and more. It was almost deserted, which made for a delightful 2-hour stroll.

Monday, October 5, 2015

So Much Rain!

We are concerned about our friends in Charleston, Southport, and Little River, SC, and thankfully all are safe and relatively dry today. Mara Beel is on the hard in Wilmington, NC, wet on the outside, but safe. We are planning to start the drive back to NC on October 12, unless something changes. We have mixed feelings about leaving friends and family, but we have come to realize that dirt dwelling is much more complicated than living on our boat!

We've been busy here winterizing the pontoon boat, jet ski, runabout, lawn mower and golf cart; pulling the dock; cleaning up the yard; packing, etc. The weather turned much cooler and windier the last few days, so it's time....

The pontoon boat is tucked away for the winter- the dock is next!

Watching the various passenger ships cruise up and down the river this summer has been a treat.

Queen of the Mississippi headed upriver. Darn those trees!