Thursday, September 24, 2015

Charleston, South Carolina: And Just Like That, It's Over

After a fun overnight sail we docked in Charleston, one of my favorite stops.  In my mind, the city is synonymous with wrought iron and great food. The marina was friendly and withing walking distance of downtown. The visitor load was exactly right: enough people to be profitable, but not too many for us to be able to actually connect with those who wanted a deeper understanding of the ship. And I couldn't wait to show our chef the wonderful farmers market on Saturday, with everything from handmade spice blends to break dancing, and our traditional dinner out at Hyman's Seafood for salmon croquettes and cheesy grits, and another dinner somewhere for blackened fish.

In between, I was loving the slip where we were, and viewing the world going by.  We had a great view of passing shipping traffic and the Ravenal bridge. My geeky engineer side comes out, I love these modern cable-stayed styles, all diamonds and triangles.

The bridge, viewed from the water (image from here)

"What's on your mind?" Facebook asked.  Erika, I replied.  Hurricane Erika is on my mind. The forecast map that day looked like this, predicting the storm to be waaaaay to close to St Augustine for comfort.

We had left Cinderella in the care of friends and prepared for some wind. We had taken the headsail down and removed the bimini, but the slip we were in wasn't sheltered enough for a big storm. And moving our boat to the boatyard where we had a contract to haul us out for just such an emergency as this was more than we could ask of Jon and Katherine -- they had their own boat to prepare. 

And just like that, it was over.  We had to leave the Galeon and go back to take care of our boat.  Two of the senior people aboard were driving to St Augustine anyway for a series of meetings, leaving before dawn in two days. A single 4.5-hour drive erased the past two months of sailing travel, and jolted us from the 17th century back to the 21st. 

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