Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Parties and Concerts, Oh My!!!

It's been a fast and furious several days on Gypsies so today has been deemed a day of rest - we're anchored back up in the Chickahominy River with no one in sight other than the wildlife and we don't plan on dropping the dink, exploring or doing much of anything today other than sunning and relaxing. Tomorrow we hook back up with September Song who is still at Kingsmill enjoying their last day with Bob's daughter Patti and her kids Brianne and Austin. We will pick them up on our way out the James when we head up into the Chesapeake Bay!

But let me catch you up - Saturday Bob and his daughters and grandchildren all headed out to Busch Gardens for the day while Doug, Stephanie and I went shopping for Bob's birthday party and then cooked for the rest of the day in anticipation of a great night full of surprises. At this point we think Bob just thought they were having a small family bday party that night - when he got back from an exhausting day of amusement park rides, he was greeted by Trudy and Steen of Shenanigans (cruising friends we had seen earlier that week in the Chick) who had driven over from Norfolk to help him celebrate complete with a cooler full of champagne!!!
Trudy and Steen with Bob, Stephanie and Doug
September Song was filled with balloons trumpeting Bob's how shall we say "advancing age..." - "over the hill," a balloon with lots of candles saying "I demand a recount" and a grim reaper balloon saying that he was only there for the cake...well you get the idea. We of course had to give him an "Old Guys Rule" tee-shirt as a gag along with a bottle of his favorite adult libation!!

Bob with The Captain
But the surprises just kept coming - before long Vicki and Norm of TideHiker
Norm and Vicki From Tidehiker
and Lynnie and Rick of Rickshaw (great friends from boats we had cruised with in the Bahamas) arrived to share in the day's festivities!!!!
Lynnie and Rick from Rickshaw
TideHiker had driven down from Solomons Island, Maryland where they had left the boat (more on that later) and Rickshaw had driven up from their home in North Carolina. It was great to see all those guys and I think Bob was genuinely shocked (see the pictures!!!) Too kewl!! We had an amazing night catching up, laughing and just enjoying being surrounded by great friends and Bob's family who I think really got a kick out of seeing all us cruising buddies reliving some of the more memorable Bahamas moments!!
Lynnie, I Bet They Have Wine Glasses!
Stephanie's engraved M&M's saying "Big Bob's Big 60th" were quite the hit as was the cake with its multi-colored lights.
Lots and Lots of Candles
After grazing on the flybridge for much of the afternoon/evening (and taking a few pictures....) everyone gravitated to the back cockpit (aka the smoking section) for more stories and fun under the stars.
The Gang Enjoy Food on September Song's FlybridgeThe Gang
Friends Forever
Stephanie pulled off not only the surprise of the century but a great party to boot - great job!!!!

The next morning we were a little slow to motivate but when we did it suddenly dawned on us that our musician friends from Key West, Scott Kirby and Dave Edmisten, were playing in Solomons Island that afternoon - Norm and Vicki had reminded us of this the night before. Well it finally dawned on us that if TideHiker had driven down from there for Bob's party, it couldn't be that far away (did I say we were a little slow that morning?) so Doug and I looked at each other and realized there was really only one thing to do - ROADTRIP!!! We quickly got ready, fed the cats, said our goodbyes to all the September Song gang, jumped in the car (which we still had from Doug's sister Dale - thanks again Dale!) and headed north - but not before I grabbed my contact case just on the way off chance that we would wind up having too much fun to drive back that night (good call as it turned out). Three hours later we were enjoying a coldie on the outside deck of Catamarans one of our favorite happy hour hotspots in Solomons Island!!! Scott and Dave were playing at the Southern Maryland Sailing Association which didn't open until 3:00 pm so we bided our time enjoying a beautiful day at Solomons (where we have spent a fair amount of time so know our way around - the bars anyways!)

We got to the bar at 3:01 since we didn't want anyone to think we were anxious to see those guys - a bunch of other people had already beaten us there but we were still able to grab a table close to the front.
Tammy and Doug at the Concert
Scott had put our names on a guest list so we were treated like royalty and given raffle tickets and plastic leis - a couple minutes later we had cold beers in our hands so we were good to go! Scott and Dave finally got there and it was as always a blast to see them - we got caught up quickly on the new CD (it comes out on September 18th and sounds absolutely amazing - we heard a bootleg copy and not only are the songs dynamite but the sound quality absolutely rocks - go to www.scottkirby.com when it comes out for ordering info!!!!). We've already got our order in!!! Right before the show was about to start I came back from the bar to find Diane, Tom and Dan Lombardo walking in the door - for those of you who follow the blog, you may remember that Dan wrote and sang an amazing song for us at our bon voyage party and Tom and Diane met us on Gypsies and took us out for dinner when we were in Solomons on our trip down the coast last Fall. It was just too cool to run into those guys!!!

Dave, Diane and Tom Lombardo Watch the Concert
Next in the door was Kathy Jones who we had met at one of Scott's concerts at the Big Owl Tiki Bar in Kent Narrows last October - she had taken some great pictures of Doug and I and had been wonderful enough to send them on to us. When I say it's a small world - believe it!!!

The concert as always was wonderful - for those of you that don't know Scott and Dave's music, I really suggest you check them out - not only are they amazingly talented musicians, but they are just about the nicest and most fun guys you'll ever meet.
Dave and Scott on Stage
When we heard Scott open up the concert with the fact that he had some drinking buddies attending the concert so it would be his twin brother and not him misbehaving after the concert, Doug and I basically knew we weren't driving back to Williamsburg that night! Oh well....we had kind of figured that anyways! During the 3 hour concert we heard most of the new tunes on the CD and some very funny stories behind them - and man can Dave play that guitar!!! At the intermission the raffle winners were picked and I came back from a nature break to find Doug loaded down with booty - in the short time I was gone he had won 3 (out of the 10) prizes - a golf umbrella, a really kewl cooler which is always great on a boat and a gift certificate to Catamarans restaurant (which we obviously frequent!!!!) Next time we're in Solomons we're going to have a really fun happy hour!!!! After the show we hung out with the Lombardos waiting for Scott and Dave to get rid of their adoring public so we could get down to some serious fun at the Tiki Bar - no lie, that's what it is called - you just can't make this up. We were preceded to the Tiki Bar by some other friends of Scott's so when we got there it was a real party which lasted well into the night! Shots of tequila (which I do not partake in due to an unfortunate early life tequila incident) and cups of orange crush, the drink of the day, got the party rolling - of course for those of us who hadn't had to play the gig, the party had started around 2:00 that afternoon!!! We caught up with the Lombardos
Doug and Dave Edmisten with Tom and Diane Lombardo
Dave, Tom and Diane Lombardo With Doug
and Kathy and met some really cool folks, two of whom were hardcore sailors (can you say over 30 cross Atlantic trips, 3 circumnavigations, 3 Americas cup races, and a 125 foot catamaran sponsored by Steve Fossett and Richard Branson to break sailing speed records - I really wasn't kidding when I said hardcore!!!) And the coolest thing about this couple is that Tom freely admitted that his wife Reegan was the better sailor - yikes!!!
Tom Talks to Scott While Kathy Jones Looks On
Reegan and Tammy With Scott
Eventually the party broke up but not before lots of exchanged information to keep in touch and promises to meet back up on October 2nd in Annapolis for another Kirby/Edmisten gig. We crashed back at Scott and Dave's hotel and since we hadn't eaten since about noon, raided what meager vending machines they had. Over cheetos and poptarts, we had more fun with the guys before finally calling it a night - after all we did have a 5:00 AM wake-up call to get back to Williamsburg and head out for the Chickahominy River!!!

We slunk back to the boat in the same clothes as we had set off in the day before feeling a little guilty as we had forgot to call September Song to let them know we were staying over until it was way too late to call (we did try and send an email though!) and knowing the boat kitties would not be amused (they had plenty of food and water but couldn't believe we had stayed out all night)!!! OOPS!! We told them it was Uncle Scotty's fault which they pretty readily believed - it may have happened once or twice before I guess!!! A little worse for the wear after just a couple hours sleep, we got the boat ready to head out, said a tearful goodbye to September Song (only kidding - after all we really haven't been separated from them for about 4 months, we'll be seeing them again tomorrow and we promised to talk today!) and then headed back up to the Chickahominy River to anchor in peace. We figure if no one is around, we can relax - right? Wrong!!! Last night we had Doug's family out to the boat for dinner - they all arrived in Luke's boat around 7:00 pm
Captain Luke With the Gang Aboard His Boat Arrive for Dinner Aboard Gypsies
and we had a great evening - we played some Scotty on our ipod for them, had apps and dinner under the stars up on the flybridge under a gentle breeze and then found them a big flashlight so they could find their way back up the river in the dark!! It has been great to spend time with Doug's family during our couple week stay around this area so last night was a fun way to say goodbye at least for a little while. We'll probably be back down this way in the late fall (after the October concert up in Annapolis at least) so we'll see them then!

Now you can understand why today is a day of rest - we are fairly sun driven on Gypsies meaning we're up early especially with the boat rooster and early to call it a night once the sun has set. Four nights in a row of staying up past midnight has taken a slight toll - we and the boat kitties want to just hang out and chill today!! We have declared it pizza night tonight and plan on an early evening before we head out in the morning down the James to pick up September Song to head off to points still unknown - maybe later I'll get out a chart and check out where looks interesting....

Click here to see our anchorage in the Chickahominy River

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