Those are some of the descriptives that come to mind from our last four days, as we’ve made our way down the coast of New Jersey toward Delaware Bay. Beautiful bays, marshes and dunes – and there’s a large, often garish, “what were they thinking” house built on most of them. Or being re-built, as the reconstruction from Hurricane Sandy in 2012 is ongoing.
It must be my country childhood/Maine-based eye that sees it all as just “too much” Too many buildings too close together, too many boats (my God there are a lot of boats!) going way too fast. Faster than any reasonable human should want to go.
And flat. If you grew up here, you probably don’t notice, but the only thing higher than the houses is cell towers and water towers. And probably that’s what makes it feel vulnerable. There’s no shelter from anything meteorological that might happen, nowhere to run, nowhere to hide.
As we’re finding out this morning. Our Monday morning wake-up routine of coffee or tea, an English muffin and talk was rather rudely inturupted by the arrival of a squall from basically out of nowhere. I saw a little rain coming, went back on deck to let out a little more anchor rode “just in case”, and just made it back to the cockpit (almost) when a wall of wind hit us like a brick: 40-45 knots, the anchor chain stretched out straight and the GPS and visual reference points showing Sionna very slowly dragging back from the force of it, plowing a trench in the sand below, but slowing… slowing…
And stopping after 80 feet or so. Meanwhile we’ve started the engine in case it’s needed, and stripped down to minimal clothing in case an “all hands on deck” becomes necessary. Comes a quick break in the rain, I go back to the bow and let out a proper storm-scope of anchor rode. Then the wind begins to easy, and we begin to breathe…
We had intended to move farther south today, but this isn’t what the forecast was calling for, and now we’re glad we were a little slow getting started today – being out in these narrow canals in that wind would have been a mite tricky.
Sometimes being lazy is a good thing.