Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Live Fire

Camp Lejeune, NC
34 33.08 N 077 19.44 w

Last week while visiting Hancock Marina we heard a distant booming. At first I thought it was thunder, but there were no thunderstorms around. We learned that it was bombing practice.

Today, we heard the whump whump of explosions most of the day as we approached Camp Lejeune. It is a very unselling sound. All I could think of was the Germans in Berlin listening as Russian artillery approached the city in 1945.

At one point, we had to stop. There was a sign with blinking lights that said "Do not proceed if blinking. Live fire in progress." Well, we certainly didn't want to ignore that, so we dropped anchor. Soon though, our friend Calypso came along and they heard on the radio that the marines were done with live fire for the day and departed, but they forgot to turn off the blinking lights. With trepidation, we proceeded -- it was OK.

Surprise. We departed Moorhead City at 0700 this morning. At 0800, as we passed a side creek we saw a Westsail 32 coming out of the creek toward us. It was Jeff and Wendy on Calypso. What a nice surprise. We cruised together all day.

After anchoring here, I rowed the dinghy over to borrow Jeff for some assistance. Jeff and Libby hauled me up the mast and I reattached the side stays properly. We have been cruising (but not sailing) with Amsteel ropes temporarily doing what the side stays do. We feel much better with things up properly. However, we couldn't use the tangs that came in the package that came yesterday. They were the wrong kind. Instead, I straightened the old tangs and reused them. When we get the right kind of new tangs, I'll replace them.

p.s. We're right next to a landing spot where the Marines practice with the monsterous CH-53 helicopters and the new V22 Osprey. It's like a free air show.

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