October 27, 2012 by Last Star blog
OK, 24 hours here at Hancock and things are looking up; as in the storm surge is pushing us up the pilings and not sure when we are going to stop going up. Yesterday recall we laid up against the T-head with the wind coming across the starboard side and the pilings on the port side. Well nothing’s changed except that we’ve risen about 4 feet and the pilings on the port side are becoming a bit “short”. I hope that these winds and rising waters will soon reach their limit and that we’ll have enough piling to still keep us in place. Our options are rather limited if the water continues to rise. We’ll have to struggle to back off the T-head and in the process could sustain some damage to the port side–not a promising proposition. Like many things it is all about timing. The Pamlico is such a large body of water it doesn’t have huge tide differentials even with the full moon nearly upon us so that is in our favor.
What else happened today? Well we had a late breakfast as there was little reason to get up as we were a bit captive to our situation here. I was also up 2-3 times last night so appreciated sleeping in a bit. Last night our friends here Mike and D.D. were kind enough to lend us a spare car of theirs for our unanticipated stay here. We told them we were good to go but they insisted so we accepted–there are no two kinder or more generous souls in North Carolina. So after lunch today Patricia and I thought we’d go to the local Wal-Mart for a printer cable, a serrated knife and some other odds and ends that would be nice to have but not requirements. We figured today would be a better day than what the forecast calls for tomorrow We set out in Mike’s 1973 bright yellow VW bug; he owns 3 of them, one of which is a show car. It took me a few minutes to sort through the VW keys on the key chain but soon we were off. Now Mike indicated that the car had a sketchy speedometer but he had taken it on the road to Western NC last week for a VW auto-show and it had behaved fine in both directions. So as we are cruising out of Hancock Marina the moisture in the air, our breathing, the wetness in our rain-coats is turning the VW into a little micro lemon colored sauna. I’m wearing my bright yellow raincoat so I look like a wet canary in a rolling little lemon. Patricia was laughing hysterically. So we are cruising along at an undetermined speed across the base, no one on the road but us and are battling with the unusual switches in the beetle. Wipers on-check, headlights on-maybe, defrost on-unknown, some odd handles on the floorboard that say Temp, defrost, air? OK, let’s try those. White smoke and funny smell from dashboard? Not good. I find a road to pull over and shut off the car, some fuse jumps from its buss an lands on Patricia’s foot. We call Mike and D.D. and find D.D. at home and Mike out and about without her car and no phone. We pass details to her and set out on foot back to the boat–Wal-Mart trip aborted. We had a nice little 30 minute hike back to the boat in the rain; thank goodness for the jackets.
The morning was equally fun though a bit more productive. Today was “arts and crafts” with Patricia. The debacle with the mast was not enough. We still had 150′ of sisal left and Patricia had an idea to turn that into some macrame to create a climbing rope at the back of the boat that would hang into the water so the cats could climb it in case they ever fell overboard. The idea is that while anchored the wind or current would carry them to the aft end and they would “glove save” the line with their claws and scamper up the line back onto the deck. I’m ok with all that even with the low odds of that all happening but I know that without the ladder it will definitely NOT happen so we begin. Patricia did the early work of finding a suitable approach and then configured the necessary ropes and then we began the knotting; went pretty smoothly and quickly compared to the other day. We created a 10′ writhing sisal anaconda or possibly some weird hemp vertebrae from a bizarre animal–either one pretty scary.
So that was our day in a nutshell, the wind is picking up. Dinner is shortly and then another night of listening to the wind howl in the rigging and hoping the water stops rising. Should be fun.