Wednesday, October 7, 2009

School Is In Session

Well the party on Gypsies the day after Scott's gig in Annapolis with the Lombardos turned out to be a grand bar scheme (you know one of those things that sounds so good in the middle of the night when you are hanging at a bar partially inebriated but that in the light of day doesn't really work - come on, admit it - we've all had them!), so we left our slip at Petrini's Boatyard in Annapolis (which was kind of a cluster f___ anyways given the approaching boat show) and made for the peace and quiet of an anchorage in Weems Creek just around the corner up the Severn River. Of course not before doing battle with numerous yahoo snailbotters who for some reason decided they wanted to play chicken in the channel with a much bigger and heavier boat - hello, are you really that stupid? Toss in a couple cigarette go fasts to make our day and we just wanted to get the heck out of there!!!

When we arrived in picturesque Weems Creek we were in search of one of the free Navy moorings but since we didn't get there until about 3:00 in the afternoon (we had to make sure the party on Gypsies was in fact a grand bar scheme before we felt comfortable leaving the dock), the moorings were all taken so we decided to just drop the hook. The houses lining that stretch of the Severn River and Weems Creek were spectacular and made for some wonderful scenery for the short trip from Annapolis.

We were pretty psyched to not have to go out into the Bay that afternoon as it was blowing snot out there and we gladly tucked into our little protected anchorage where we were blocked from the majority of the wind and waves!!!
Weems Creek Anchorage
Weems Creek Anchorage
For the life of me we couldn't understand the handful of sailboats that chose to anchor out by the Naval Academy seawall open to all the Bay had to throw at them - things that make you go hmmmm I guess.

For several days we stayed put in Weems Creek doing absolutely nothing but enjoying the peace and quiet and the increasingly rare glimpse of sun and warmth - it is after all October in the Chesapeake so we'll take what sun we can get. Doug and I sat out on the front deck reading for much of our lazy couple days (I had the pleasure of reading Chesapeake by James Michener - which was so much more enjoyable given that we now know and have steamed on the waters he writes about!!!)
Tammy Reading Chesapeake Out on the Bow
with our key decision being what delectable cocktail to indulge in! I made a big jug of rum punches (I am in search of the perfect I must keep practicing!!) which carried the day often!! We had several unbelievable sunsets or really I should say moonrises as the sun set behind us and seemed to just disappear behind the trees yet lit up the houses on the opposing shore as the moon rose majestically beside the blazing houses - really a very kewl sight!!!
Tuesday morning came complete with a killer sunrise (the first we were up to see since appearing in Weems Creek)

and we had to break out of our sloth-like existence and head up to Baltimore - as I've said before, all good things have to come to an end and what you need to make sure is that there's something even better waiting for you. In our case, Tuesday night was the first class in our Emergency First Responder course at the Red Cross. So after a beautiful steam up the Bay where we passed gorgeous old lighthouses
Sandy Point Light
Baltimore Light
and an absolutely spectacular 150 foot sailboat named the Arabella which we had last seen in Newport, RI on on trip south last September,
S/V Arabella
at about 4:15 pm we set off from our slip in Hendersons Wharf Marina in Fells Point armed with our Google Earth map and directions on how to get to the Red Cross Center via public transportation - it went something like this - walk 15 minutes, take a bus, walk to the metro, take the metro and then walk 15 minutes to the Red Cross - nothing is ever real easy when you live on a boat and don't have access to a car - oh the things we used to take for granted!!! But that's OK, Doug and I figure not only are we going to learn lots and lots but we'll hopefully jump start getting back into shape as well!!

Well our first night we were introduced to our instructor - he is a really, really HARD core former marine field medic (so Vicki I'm sure we'll learn some really cool tricks to show you later) who still very much looks and acts the part - think he has about 5 different knifes that he carries on his belt along with his tactical stun baton, semi, several hand grenades and misc night vision paraphernalia (OK maybe I'm exaggerating but not by much). Oh Boy is this going to be interesting - plus there are only 5 of us in the course and I'm the only female. As he mentioned, I have my pick of partners - think I'll take Doug although he warned me that I am going to have to learn to carry Doug in a fireman's carry....what???? Seriously though it looks like an amazing course - the book alone which he has called our bible for the next three weeks weighs a ton and we have homework for Thursday's class - the first 8 chapters!!! WOW - it's been a long time since I've had homework!!! On the way home from class via planes, trains, buses and cobblestones, we wound up at Koopers Tavern in Fells Point for burger day - $3.50 burgers every Tuesday - Doug and I have a standing know all work and no play....

On top of that, I just got the materials for my captain's course which are even more voluminous than our first aid book. Suffice it to say, the next three weeks are going to fly by - I'll try to do a blog as often as I can or as often as we get our nose out of our books long enough to do stuff that is cool enough to report. Just a quick note in the "you can't make this crap up book" - Doug submitted all the materials for his captains license before we left Baltimore several weeks ago thinking he was all set - NOT!!! Turns out that the doctor who signed off on his drug test (which was the second he took since it turns out they are only valid for 6 months and not the year we had thought - his old one expired a day before he filed - ugh!) was not certified - huh??? As we found out, the doctor's 6 year certification had expired without him even knowing it the prior month - unbelievable!!! So now we are scurrying around trying to find another doctor that actually has a certification that the coast guard will accept so Doug can take yet another drug many times can you pay someone to pee in a cup for you....just kidding. I'm just glad he's working out all the kinks for me so that when I get all this stuff done, we'll know it's good to go!!!

This weekend we have class all day on Saturday (T and Th evenings and all day on Sat) but then we have lots of visitors coming on Sunday - Doug's daughter Lisa and her three girls are coming for the day and our wonderful friend Mary Ouellette from Rhode Island is coming on Sunday and staying until Tuesday. Can't wait to see all of them and you can be sure that we'll cut loose and have some fun!!! I know that's hard to believe but we'll do our best!!

Click here to see our location at Henderson's Wharf Marina in Baltimore

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