Friday, January 30, 2009

We're Gypsies, Not Gamblers!

John posting here.

You want gamblers? Go elsewhere. The irony of it is that our overriding interest in safety -- as a counter-point to our lack of interest in gambling -- kept us tied up in Atlantic City for four nights.

Our actual port of call was the Atlantic City Aquarium in Absecon Inlet, where we got a great price on a slip at a buck and a half a foot. Little did we know we would pay for that later on. Anyway, having spent three really rocking days and nights at anchor and on the water, the chance to set foot on terra firma was too much for Colleen to resist when we tied up on Thursday afternoon, so she and I set off on a long walk. Coincidentally, before we set out, Colleen actually said, "Maybe I just need some Chinese food."

When Colleen says she needs to walk, she needs to walk. So we did. Two or three miles, anyway, all the way to the Boardwalk,'jc-on-the-boardwalk.jpg' and we were on it for all of two minutes before a woman walked up to me and said, "Are you John Clayton?" She was a devoted reader of mine, so I confessed and we chatted about her New Hampshire roots -- my Red Sox hat is what caught her eye at first -- and when we made our way back to the boat, we passed a small Chinese take-out called "Goodies."

Colleen's original wish came to mind, but we had already taken out food to cook on the grill. Then came one of those moments where you realize that the four of us are spending WAY too much time together. As soon as we stepped aboard, Tammy said she was really craving Chinese food, so naturally, we went back and purchased a (reasonably priced) Chinese feast at Goodies.

All was not good, however.

We were docked alongside one of those ubiquitous party boats, and when we were retiring about 10 p.m., we were curious because there were lights on the boat but no one was around.

Until about midnight.

All of a sudden, our shared dock was a loud and rowdy place. There was a booze cruise heading out, and the passengers -- already well lubricated -- were raising a ruckus right outside of our portholes.

Tammy was up in her PJs, ready to repel any boarders who tried to climb aboard Gypsies, but eventually, the boat took off and all was well. Until it returned at 4 a.m.

Not a great night for sleeping.

The next day -- too rough to go to sea -- we traipsed back up to the Boardwalk for some people watching.
Colleen is convinced that the ugliest people in the world live in AC, and the proof was all around us. Fortunately, we found a -- how shall I put this? -- a modest tavern called the Pic-A-Lilli Pub, where we ate (chicken wings) and drank (Coors Light) and enjoyed the company of AC's few beautiful people. Teeth were optional.

Day three? Rough seas again, so it was back to basics. While Doug did work on the boat, Tammy, Colleen and I took a taxi to the Brigantine area of AC to do some re-provisioning at an ACME grocery store. Two hours (and $250 later, not counting cab fare), we were back and headed back to the Boardwalk.

Again, not being gamblers, what to do on a Saturday afternoon in Atlantic City? This time, we went to the Atlantic City Bar & Grill to watch college football and drink cheap draft beer. I was talking to a kindly couple from Jersey -- Jack and Janey -- about our journey and while they were enthralled with our plans, they were aghast at our choice of beer, so they bought us a pitcher of excellent Shock Wheat Microbrew.

People in AC were getting better looking by the moment!

Saturday night, our neighboring party boat hosted a "Sweet Sixteen" party, so imagine the horror and the music.

Sunday, same ocean conditions.

We were bored with the Boardwalk, so we stayed aboard. We listened to the Patriots -- yuck -- and got collectively itchy. Thus, when a small-but-rough window opened itself on Monday morning, Tammy powered us off at 8 a.m. -- dolphins danced for us at the mouth of the inlet -- and by 12:30, Doug was tucking us into a slip at Utsch's Marina in Cape May, NJ.

While I set off on one of our boating bicycles to find wine (in five liter boxes that were broken down, and the remaining bladders tucked into my backpack), the others crossed a bridge to West Marine for needed parts and spares.

So it's 7:48 p.m., and now we're settled. Soon we will dine and tomorrow at 9 a.m. -- iffy winds and weather notwithstanding -- we set off for the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal and the Summitt North Marina in Delaware.

No comments:

Post a Comment