Danny spent two and a half days in the engine while we were stuck in Solomon’s Island and was finally able to diagnose and fix the problem with our port engine. Apparently the transmission cooler broke; he was able to repair vs. replace it since it was Memorial Day Weekend and nothing was open.
While we were frustrated to be stuck for so long, we were excited when one of our first buddy boats texted to say they’d like to come and visit. We traveled with Kris and Rick on Eagle One when we first started our loop last spring and said goodbye to them when they finished in Virginia, so we were thrilled to see them. They drove the 90 minutes from their home and brought a delicious take out lunch. It was great fun to reminisce, it was like no time had gone by at all.
So, on Tuesday morning we pulled out of the marina and made our way out to the Chesapeake Bay. As we got closer it got more and more foggy; by the time we were fully in the bay we probably only had about 100 feet of visibility in any direction – at the most. It was the densest fog we have ever traveled in and we were both pretty nervous, though neither one of us wanted to turn around and return to the dock – again – so we forged ahead VERY, VERY SLOWLY. We have radar and AIS which allow us to see other boats on our Garmin when we can’t physically see them, and we had our running lights on and hoped like hell others could see us! We kept thinking the fog would lift; we’d left the dock at 7am and we were sure the sun would burn it off. Well, it never lifted until 12 noon. So we had 5 nail biting hours of dense, dense fog. That was a first. And I hope we never have to do it again!
We traveled to Rock Hall, MD that day and stayed in a very small, very sweet marina called Swan Creek. We awoke to fog the next morning as well, but waited in the marina until it had pretty much lifted and got back out on The Chesapeake. As pretty as the Chesapeake is, I was happy to leave it behind us and keep moving closer to home. Our next stop was Delaware City, Delaware where we ended up staying for three nights because of – you guessed it – WINDS!! From Delaware City we needed to go down the Delaware Bay to cross over to Cape May, NJ and it’s really important to do that on a good weather day. The marina hosted a nightly Captains Meeting (virtually, of course) to look at the charts and the forecast which was very helpful. While we waited, Danny worked with a mechanic there to order a new transmission cooler which we were able to have shipped overnight and he replaced his temporary fix with the new part. I didn’t know that he was nervous we wouldn’t make it home without the new part and I’m just as glad he didn’t tell me.
Our trip this morning from Delaware City, DE to Cape May, NJ was sunny and uneventful, just the way I like it and gets us one day closer to home!
So, tonight we are at South Jersey Marina in Cape May, NJ. It’s a pretty sea-side town we’ve visited a few times before, and we hope we’re just here one night. We’ve looked at the forecast and made a reservation for a marina in Atlantic City tomorrow, about 40 miles north, but we will look at that forecast again in the morning. The rest of the trip is all ocean – so we have to pick our days! I keep reminding Danny about an older Looper couple we met while we were still in the planning stages saying that their rule was “it takes two yes’s and one no” when making a go no/go decision. Let’s just say, Danny has never been that “one no”! We’ll get there. As another Looper friend once said “I can practically smell home from here”! Soon….