The Motor Vessel "Once Around"

The Motor Vessel "Once Around"
The Motor Vessel "Once Around" in the Florida Keys

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Land Cruise and 4th of July

During our trip home to California, we spent our last day Jeeping in the Sierra Nevada Mountains near Truckee with my son Leo (and his friend Lindsay), my nephew Joey (and his daughter Emily) and his dad, Joe.  The last two have been Jeepers for years and my son and I are the newbies.  This trip had been planned for a while and even the heat wave covering the state was not going to stop us, by gosh.
Now the person most of you know as “The Admiral” has no problem becoming “The General” when we are landlocked.  It was she who informed me that despite the 109 degrees forecast for the valley, and 90’s forecast for the high country, we would be removing the Jeep’s top and doors.  Of course, this made our AC pretty much worthless.  Otherwise, the trip was a blast.  It was my first time climbing rocks, which we do not have any pictures of the hairy parts, mostly because the General and I were both white knuckled and…well…too puckered up to think much about shooting photos.  If any better photos show up in my in box, I’ll add them in later.  Meanwhile:

The easy part of the trail up...

A beautiful view from the top

Left to right:  Leo's, my, Joey's Jeeps
The next day was back on a plane for Baltimore where we had left Once Around.   Moonstruck was there when we arrived and within a short time, both boats had houseguests.  Moonstruck had some friends in from Florida and we were joined by daughter Carla and husband Evan.  During our Loop trip they had transited most of the St. Johns River in Florida with us.  Other than what turned out to be a very long and hot dinghy ride, this time we stayed in port the entire visit.

The Crew on the Water Taxi in Baltimore
The dinghy ride in question took us about six miles south along the Patapsco so they could pose in front of the Francis Scott Key buoy.  I think they saw the photo in my previous blog of the grandkids and got jealous.  Anyway, we made it there and back, although not without some minor sunburns.  Of course, if the rest of us get minor sunburns, Carla gets fried.
The dinghies in the dinghy by the buoy!
That night we had ringside seats for the 4th of July fireworks event in Baltimore harbor, literally yards off our bow.  OK, maybe a couple hundred yards, but still darned close.
A tug moves the fireworks barge into position right in front of us!

Who is this guy?

Eddie, one of Doug and Judy's guests, positions himself for the show on Moonstruck's bow

As close as you ever want to be to this kind of thing!

The grand finale.  Don't blame me for the head in the picture...Carrie took it and it's Carla's head!

The next day the Admiral, (or was that Mrs. Howell?) and Carla got pampered for several hours at a spa across the harbor at the Four Seasons Hotel.  Despite Carla’s sunburn from the dinghy ride the day before, it all went well and they both came back rejuvenated.   We finished the day off with an Italian dinner at La Tavola in Little Italy.  In the interest of full disclosure, the spa, the dinner, and some new earrings finally closed off my bride’s “birthday season”.  I was a little late, but blamed it on the timing of Carla’s visit and got away with it!
Heading for dinner in Little Italy

She cleans up pretty well, huh?
CJ and Evan left for home Sunday morning and we departed Baltimore for our next stop.  This would be our furthest foray north this trip, to Georgetown on the Sassafras River.  The river is fresh water and warm.  Today we explored much of it by dinghy and trespassed on someone’s beach for a swim. 

Looking up river as we entered

House of the day on the Sassafras River

From our slip, part of the marina and Kitty Knight House Restaurant on the hill

From the restaurant looking down on the Georgetown Yacht Basin
 Yes, we are still in Maryland.  But we promise, we are heading south soon.

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