We started saying our good byes early on Sunday because we knew it was going to be very difficult. And we were right, it was VERY difficult. We were both very sad as we pulled out of our slip at Kingston. We have been working up to that day for a few weeks now and here it finally was.
It all started when the Port finally found someone to take over for Jan in the office. They worked out the schedule and Jan knew what her final day was going to be. Then the counting of "wake ups" before the end of work and re-beginning of retirement started.
Next was the "changing of our sign". At the end of each slip is an "open/reserved" sign. When a guest boat comes in the harbor they look for an open sign unless they have made a reservation. After we tied our boat up last fall they changed our entire sign post for a "Winter Moorage" sign. A week and a half ago I heard a bunch of noise out the back of the boat. When I went to investigate I found Dutch taking down our Winter Moorage sign and replacing it with the "Reserved" signed. It was another very sad day...
Sunday morning I was finishing the packing on the boat and heard a noise again. This time it turned out to be Awesome Austin flipping our sign to "Open". OUCH, that one really hurt!
We pulled out of our slip right on time - 2:00PM. We had originally planned to depart at noon but the tides (current) had other plans. So we waited for slack to ebb which was at 2:00 and were on our way.
Jan and I were both very tearful when we pulled out of our slip. There are many reasons why we have chosen this cruising experience (sailing, the challenge of the whole thing, getting close to nature, etc...) but the main reason was to get to know new people and cultures. And that is exactly how the experience has begun. Little did we know last October when time ran out and we could not head out "as planned" that we were really starting our adventure out on the right foot after all. Jan and I are not big tourist/sightseers - we are out here to experience the Lord through his creation - people! We don't have plans to see all of the big places and sights. We have plans to find the small communities where God's plan is being played out and immerse ourselves in these lives and cultures. So I just want to give a huge shout out to our Lord and say "Thank You for changing "our" plans so that we could have the wonderful experience of Kingston!
We had a most wonderful sail to Port Ludlow - our "home away from home". The wind was 10 to 15... ON OUR NOSE, but a good steady breeze none the less. We had plenty of time to go the short distance from Kingston to Port Ludlow and our boat sails upwind really well, so we just spent the day in the sun beating to weather. We arrived and anchored up at 7:30PM - just in time for a quick dinner (we were starving!), a sundowner, and off to our favorite bedtime - on the hook!
Port Ludlow was our favorite destination when we were dirt dwellers. It is a nice day sail from Everett and has a good protected harbor with a mud bottom and great holding. We spent 3 days here over a New Year holiday in 25 to 30 knots of wind and didn't drag our anchor an inch. We had only owned this boat for a couple of months at that time so we were not too sure about what we were doing. We knew the wind was blowing every time we felt the rig shudder with a gust. I still remember looking out the window one night while watching a movie and seeing the moon streak past as the boat swung wildly from one side to the other. But in the end, everything was good and we had a great time.
We plan to spend a week here enjoying NOT being tied to a dock. Jan and I have both had 2 nights of the best sleep in a long time already. We sleep so much better on the hook and not tied to a dock. Then it is off to Port Townsend to pick up some new sails for our friend Carol Hasse.