Joanna’s Blog:

Saturday, 20 January 2018


A very gentle splash

Finally we have our boat back. After being damaged by another boat during Hurricane Irma in September 2017, delivering her to a boatyard for repairs and launch deadlines constantly being stretched out, she finally splashed in on Thursday at Hinckley Yachts, Thunderbolt near Savannah GA.

We left Pittsburgh to its snow and really cold temperatures only to be greeted with cold temps in Savannah. The water in the drainage ditches was frozen; not what we had expected even though the weather forecast was warning of freezing temps. Fortunately we were booked into a hotel for the first two nights and as it turned out, a third.

The hotel was 5.5 miles from the boatyard so each morning Paul would take the truck down to the boat and the dogs and I would walk down, via the dog park and Starbucks. This worked quite well. The dogs got really good at walking on the leash and their reward was to run loose in the reeds next to the yard once we arrived. This is OK when the tide is in because the water washes off the mud. But when the tide is out, like today, the mud clings and stinks. Still, happy dogs are good dogs.


Bella on watch for Paul’s return (from inside the cabin and warmth)

I made an unfortunate mistake yesterday though. I took them to a new area for a walk (had been recommended by another dog owner). However, I suppose his dog doesn’t ‘explore’ quite as extensively as ours. I was told there was access to the river, which there was but what I didn’t realize was that there was a bed of oyster shells which are like razor blades to the dogs’ feet. As we started our walk back to the boat, I saw a trail of red. My initial thought was that there were a lot of squashed berries but very quickly realized my error. Poor dogs. They were still bleeding when we got back to the boat so I had to bandage their feet and cover them with my little workout socks; they were not happy campers. Today they are fine; no blood trails.

I found CrossFit Hyperformance during one of the walks down to the boat and went on Friday and again on Saturday, this time with Paul.

We saw three dolphins swim passed the boat. Ebba got very excited. Bella barked and backed away. Tomorrow, am going to start working on the dogs peeing on the boat. A couple more days here and then we are planning on moving a little more north. Hope the weather cooperates.


Paul’s blog:

Ursa Major;


Ebba watching from the aft deck, ready to get a jump on Bella for Paul’s return

Now that we are back on board and the boat is back in her elements life is good!  The week got off to a hurry up and wait routine. The drive to Savannah from Pittsburgh was snowy however it was nice to watch the outside temperature move up a few degrees.  We managed to amass sufficient ‘stuff’ to warrant another UHaul trailer rental and spent the better half of Wednesday loading the boat with the goodies, winter clothes and alike.  We finally launched the boat Thursday (either one day late or 59 depending on who you believe). Friday and Saturday were spent rerigging the masts and adding the sails etc.  There are still some lines to run and I will be going up the mast tomorrow to do that now we have 60 degree weather.

We have probably another 3 or 4 days more preparation work before leaving Savannah.  We have added the new Chartplotter and it is networked into the other new instruments.  We have our own internet network working on board and Sonos is now working too.

Joanna has walked the legs off the dogs the last two days.  Late yesterday the dogs were playing in the water near the tidal river.  After they had finished Joanna noticed bloody footprints- both Ebba and Bella had badly cut back feet from an Oyster bed they had been running on.  We spent Friday night bandaging and rebandaging their feet and eventually Joanna used several pairs of socks and several yards of tape to contain the pads.  The dogs were not impressed but eventually settled down. On Saturday  Ebba and Bella did little more than eat and sleep and feel sorry for themselves but by evening were back in the game. Their feet have stopped bleeding at last so within a few days they will be back to ‘normal’.


Paul will be coming down this gangway anytime soon. 🤗

Friday night was our first night back on board.  We were both concerned how cold it might be.  Although in the south the water temperature is only 42 F. The heat pumps work but do little at this temperature.  We changed the AC pump to ensure smooth running but electrical heating is also necessary.  It was not cold enough to wear my Carthartt’s however it was below freezing. We ended up having a great nights sleep and celebrated by going to the local CrossFit box for the Saturday class and had a great time.