Burkes Beach

12/7, 59/46, sunny, NE5-10 - The bed felt soooo good this morning, it was hard to tear myself free. The lure of dark coffee is ultimately what gets me going. After breakfast (cereal on Tuesdays and Thursdays), Dobbs and I did office work until 10am. Then we borrowed the car and drove to the park to play tennis.

 A friend from the Wilmington, DE area let us know that free public INDOOR courts have just opened up there, courtesy of a retired local semi-pro.

Today we had time for a full set and I won 6-4! Afterward we walked over to Burkes Beach.

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I’m pretty sure this is the first time this trip that we’ve walked along an Atlantic beach. With the light breeze, the ocean rolled gently into shore.

We took off our shoes and socks, rolled up our pant legs, and waded into the surf.

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 It was bone-achingly cold!

It was bone-achingly cold!

Yet as we walked farther on, we spied children splashing thigh-deep and in nothing but swim trunks (boys, obviously…). We walked south on the beach to where the marsh separating land and shore joins the ocean. The outflow running up against the incoming surf made for interesting waves. I thought about the irony of inlets - that typically going out to- or coming in from- the ocean is the roughest part of coastal sailing - the transition. The rest is relatively steady sailing on a sea of accepting what comes along. I think there’s a metaphor for life in there somewhere.

The sand was a pale cream color and fine and dry. We saw few shells, though we found a starfish stranded beyond the edge of a tide pool - Dobbs moved it back into the water.

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 Dobbs marked the sand so we could come back later and check on the starfish but…we forgot.

Dobbs marked the sand so we could come back later and check on the starfish but…we forgot.

We arrived back at Grace in time for lunch. We used the afternoon hours to start an Advanced Rigging Inspection on Grace. It kept us outside and visible to potential clients, and I’d like to use it as a sample report on our website. Plus, it’s good for us to carefully review our rigging from an unbiased professional perspective, instead of two sailors who adore their 52-year-old yacht.

As we surveyed, dolphins swam and frolicked nearby and we paused to watch.

At 3:30pm, we put away our tools and went about walking the docks advertising.

 This weathered Morgan could use a rigging inspection - and a new port forward lower shroud chainplate! See the crack at the top bolt?

This weathered Morgan could use a rigging inspection - and a new port forward lower shroud chainplate! See the crack at the top bolt?

Two cruising yachts had come in during the afternoon, so we started our stroll by introducing ourselves to them. They were the only new people we met today.

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Murphy got his afternoon walk and then we celebrated the start of the weekend with glasses of wine. It’s not quite warm enough to enjoy sitting outside in the cockpit at sunset, so we retire below and put on some music (jazz, classical, big band, and folk).

For dinner I made 16 bean soup with tomatoes and okra paired with grilled ham and cheese. The tomatoes and okra I canned over the summer; okra works lovely well as a thickening agent for soup. Cooking beans in the pressure cooker, it’s important to rinse them after soaking, add plenty of water, and also add oil to prevent them from foaming up. The foam can clog the steam vent and quickly over-pressurize the cooker. SCARY! Occasionally I’m not as precise as I should be and the pot reminds me, with a furious rush of foam spray, to respect its power. The lid has a safety release built into it, and I hope I never get to experience it blowing out, but I’m glad it’s there.