Throughout this time away, we have been very mindful of our family and friends back home in Australia, who are never far from our thoughts. Even though our time in New England was not “Bushranger time”, we hope we have provided some light entertainment through our travels and helped you to forget the loneliness of covid restrictions, if just for a short while.
And now for a few reflective thoughts:
Boats: Everyone in New Jersey owns a boat and sails them on weekends and holidays. Sailboats are out; motor boats are in – big/little, fast/super fast, loud/deafening! They drive motor boats like cars – cutting the corners, coming at you fast and swerving at the last minute, overtaking to beat you to the next channel marker or pier.
Everyone in New England has a sail boat and they are left bobbing on moorings or in marinas not being used. There is an amazing number of masts acting as sentinels in harbours.
Most places (tourist spots, cafes, marina restaurants) close after Labor Day, usually mid-September, even if the weather is still beautiful.
Road Rules: Red lights are advisory. In fact, two or three cars may proceed through a red light. If red light cameras were used in NY, the road budget would be covered. A daring pastime is the jostling for take off after a red light – the car turning across the traffic tears across the oncoming onslaught. It makes for “Oh My Gosh” moments!
Weather: I had previously told Mark he would never, ever, ever again get me back on the Chesapeake in summer… and he didn’t listen. We had really hot and humid weather right up until we reached Long Island Sound, where it was just warm without the humidity.
We had lots of wind, especially in New Jersey. Wind and Atlantic waves slowed us down and made us take shelter in Cape May. Wind usually increases in the afternoons. Likewise, wind and rain delayed us in the Chesapeake. The long term effects of Hurricanes Ida and Larry frustrated us a little and meant we had to alter our sail plan.
Covid: The effects of covid – far reaching. Several places researched and on the sail plan, were affected by covid and closed, which meant a superficial visit or in some cases, abandonment. In the states of Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey mask wearing was almost non-existent. We were given the eye on a number of occasions when entering businesses. In New York and the New England region, masks were mandatory when entering shops and restaurants. We even had to show proof of vaccination in one instance.
Coffee: The pursuit of coffee is forever on the agenda.
People: The people we met along the way are the true delight and best resources of our travels. From the occasional crusty greeting to a deep and abiding friendship, from a casual or urgent need for help resulting in a selfless and all-giving response… the people we have met are salt of the earth.
Distance travelled – 363 miles
Hours underway – 55
Weather affected days – 10
Road substitute miles – 400
Road substitute days – 6
States visited – 7
And now? We are off to Tennessee to spend time with grandkids (and their parents) whom we have not been with for over two years.
Such is Life!