We have spent several days anchored in this great little spot where the James River loops around Jones Neck Island - what was an idyllic little anchorage on Friday afternoon turned into quite the thoroughfare on Saturday and Sunday though for bass boats, water skiers and wake boarding boats with Gypsies and September Song holding front row seats!!! While we took a bunch of wake from the boats buzzing on either side of us, they also provided us with tons of cheap entertainment as we got to witness one spectacular wipe-out after another - one that happened right next to us we were even asked to judge (we gave it an 8 on a scale of 10)!!! The best part of the weekend though was we got to spend time with our nephews Levi and Luke. Levi showed up on Saturday afternoon after driving his jet ski about 30 miles up the James River - it was really fun to see him come bombing into the creek on that beast of a machine - man can that thing fly!! Now of course we only go 7-8 knots so 50 mph looks amazingly fast to us especially but that's fast to be traveling on the water I don't care who you are!
Yesterday we and September Song braved the 100 degree weather for a trip into Richmond to explore the heart of the Confederacy! We found a place not only steeped in history but thoroughly charming as well. We started off at the Civil War Visitor Center at the old Tredegar Iron Works - Richmond was the industrial and political capital of the Confederacy and the Iron Works, as the largest iron producer in the South and situated right on the James River with five railroads leading out from the city to various parts of the state and points south, was a large cog in the industrial engine that fueled the Confederate War machine.
Due to the heat instead of traversing the Canal Walk which winds 1.25 miles along the James River and along several of the locks which make this part of the James River unnavigable (that and the 50 million rocks that are strewn across the river at this point), we set off in our air conditioned car to see the sights (thanks again to Doug's sister for not only letting us use one of their cars but from ferrying it here from Norfolk)!! We saw what from afar looked like the capitol but upon closer inspection turned out to be a building with a single sign "Newmarket". Not having any clue what that was and given the building's splendor our curiosity was piqued - Doug jumped on his new iphone and found out that it wasn't any historical building at all but rather the headquarters for a large multinational corporation - now that's what I call a building you'd want to work in!!!
Next we drove into Hollywood Cemetery which is one of the prettiest cemeteries I've ever seen as it sits perched atop the James River with its rolling hills and views out over Richmond and the rocky river (seems this part of the James while not navigable for boats like Gypsies is good for kayakers and swimmers out for a day in the sun!!).
Many of the statues were of Confederate heroes (Lee, Stuart, Stonewall Jackson and Davis) but several were non-military - one is for Arthur Ashe, Jr. and another to Matthew Fontaine Maury, nicknamed the pathfinder of the seas and the father of oceanography. At each statue Bob and I would get out and walk around the roundabouts snapping pictures of not only the statues but the wonderful homes, churches and scenery that graced each site - we do after all have an obligation to our blog readers to capture as much of what we see on film as possible so you all can live it through our eyes (we of course also want to be able to relive our adventures in the future which pictures allow you to do)!!!!
Hot, hungry and thirsty after a morning of so much history and sightseeing sent us scurrying off to the Shockoe Slip area of the city (an area down by the water of converted old brick tobacco warehouses) in search of sustenance. We went straight for the Tobacco Company which is a really cool bar/restaurant that Doug and I had been to before a long time ago!!! We sat at the bar, sampled some local brews and had a great lunch.
While we still had a car, Doug and I made a provisioning run that afternoon and were quite a sight lugging all that "stuff" down to the dinghy and then dinghying out to Gypsies. But even with several cases of beer and a liquor store stop, Hobos kept us afloat and we are now good to go! Doug has been down in the engine room all morning trying to get our fan belt and alternator on our port engine to behave - the plan is to later today head back down the James and anchor back in the Chickahominy River which we loved. The water down there was really clean for swimming and there is a cool sand bar and beach to hang out at (especially for sun pig and of course the September Song boat dogs!) Given the 100 degree continuing temps, jumping in the water sounds really good right about now!!
Happy Birthday, Dee Dee!!!
3 days ago