November 2020: Haul Out, Sail to the USVI, and Thanksgiving in NC

November was a very busy and unique month for us after the past 5 months. We had big projects to complete, and they had to be done on a schedule. Cruising life does not require so much of this anymore.

The month started with hauling the boat out at Clarkes Court Boatyard in south Grenada. This is the third time we have seen Aventis out of the water and we are still amazed by the process of how they get her out and move her around. Remember, she is 46 feet long and 26 feet wide.

She needed new bottom paint, the rudder repaired, a cleaning of the sail drive, anchor chain scrubbed, as well as a few other things.

We were in good company as Maeva and Wind Ensemble also hauled their boats out during this time at Clarkes Court, and even Dream Catcher came over to visit us.

With Aventis out of the water, we needed a place to stay for the week. Having the dogs limited our choices, but luckily we found a house overlooking Egmont Bay that worked great for us and our friend’s Kent and Kathy from Wind Ensemble. An added benefit is it had a pool. It had been about a year since any of us had slept off the boat. The dogs made themselves right at home. We had a fun week swimming in the pool, going on walks and making dinners in a real kitchen.

Addie had a very special music lesson.

Addie enjoyed being close to La Phare Bleu resort where a number of her friends meet up on Friday afternoons for a hangout. They had great times jumping off the light ship!

After a fun week being in a house, it was time for Aventis to splash back in the water. Look at her new bottom paint! Hopefully we won’t have to scrub the bottom for at least a year.

With work at the boatyard coming to completion, our next big project was getting to the USVI. But we had a few goodbyes first. We spent more time than we had planned at Port Louis Marina. At first a week or so in June was just recovering from our passage and quarantine, then another week or so a month later to be safe during Tropical Storm Gonzola, and at last about a month in September to get repaired from the lightening. It was an important part of our time in Grenada.

With Bella on the hard and Patrick and Rita in Texas, and Maeva on the hard, and Shirley and David in Canada, and Dream Catcher on the move to the USVI, that just left us and Wind Ensemble. It was an amazing 5 months but it was time for us to get on the move too. We had our negative COVID tests in hand and only 5 days to get to the USVI. With tears in our eyes we said goodbye to Wind Ensemble – until we meet again!

We left early in the morning in hopes that our trip to St. Croix would be between 60-72 hours. Thanks to fair winds and calm-ish seas, we had an uneventful passage to St. Croix that took about 60 hours.

We did have a few unwanted passengers along the way but Caper helped to rid the boat of them, by eating them… Dead fish make for pretty GROSS dog breath!

Addie passed the time by watching movies and listening to music, Shannon read and watched videos, and Ashley crafted. The dogs slept!

We were all smiles when we dropped the anchor and were officially cleared into the USVI. We were even in time for a sun-downer!

Finally, we were back to where draft beer is worth drinking! That is one thing we will not miss about Grenada – no good beer! Super excited to be back where there are good beer choices!

With Aventis secure at Crown Bay Marina in St. Thomas, and Jesse watching out for her, and the dogs safe at Paradise Paws, we boarded a plane and flew to NC for 10 days to see family and friends.

It was awesome (and cold!) to be in Boone. We were so excited to get to see Makenzie and Ella! We have not seen them since May!

Our three beautiful girls!

For Ella’s 18th birthday (back in June) she had requested a tattoo when we came back, so we decided to make it a family affair.

We celebrated our 25 year anniversary in May of 2020. With any luck we will continue to ride this wave of life together for another 25 years!

During our week we had a blast hanging out with friends (Jeff and Tamara, Lenny and Lisa, Don and Mel, and the Tageson’s)! We got to hang out at River Street Alehouse, the Lamont’s house, Lost Province Brewery, Booneshine Brewery, and Brendan’s house. We even had a fun day of brewery and cidery hopping in Asheville, afterwhich we finished the adventure with a sunset ride on the Marlett’s boat on Lake James in Marion.

We spent a couple great days at Booneshine. Ella works at Booneshine also!
Did we mention that it was cold?

Addie had a good time hanging out with her sisters and doing what she loves best!

Ashley saw her siblings for an afternoon in Greensboro.

We then spent a fun afternoon and evening hanging out and eating with Max and Julia (Grandad and Nana) in Charlotte before we left NC for Fort Lauderdale, FL.

It was a wonderful trip. It was so great seeing a lot of our friends and a good bit of our family. Fingers crossed we will be able to get the vaccine this spring, which will allow us to see the rest of our family.

Coming up next month: Fun Times in Florida and Christmas in the USVI

8 thoughts on “November 2020: Haul Out, Sail to the USVI, and Thanksgiving in NC

  1. Your post brought a smile to my face and happiness to my heart. I continue to live vicariously through your advntures. I’m reminded of the Irish Sailor’s Blessing – “May the seas lie smooth before you. May a gentle breeze forever fill your sails. May sunshine warm your face and kindness warm your soul, and until we meet again may God bless you and keep you safe.”

  2. I love reading about all of the things that happen out there. Like the flying fish!! Had a great time seeing you last week and can’t wait to get back. Miss you guys!!

    • I guess that is not your typical Saturday afternoon family activity…..
      Love and miss you guys! Hopeful we will get to see you soon!

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