Friday, 8/15/08                                                                                Day 195

Today was great.  We sailed to Vineyard Haven on Martha's Vineyard, MA with Vado Pazzo II (John & Pia's boat), but they made plans with other friends and rafted up with them.

It was a nice sail.  We came all the way down Buzzards Bay, through Wood's Hole, to Martha's Vineyard.  I did school for most of the time.  To tell the truth, it wasn't that exciting.

We got to Vineyard Haven this evening.  It took us a while to get the anchor set (Mr. John joked that the Massachusetts's bottom just isn't that hospitable to Texans and Yankee fans), but we finally did.  We dinghied over to Vado Pazzo II and Carina (the boat they rafted to w/ two girls on board), and played, talked, and hung out.  We brought guacamole, chips, venison sausage and juice and stayed for dinner.  After dinner, the kids settled down to watch Cheaper by the Dozen, a hilarious movie.  But storms started to threaten and Mom made us leave in the middle.  That got me upset because, though she says we will get it and watch it as a family, she won't even like it because of a bit of crude humor.  Whatever.  We had fun anyway.

Saturday, 8/16/08
                                                                                Day 196

We walked around Vineyard Haven, MA today.  It is a small, touristy town with a lot of shops.  We didn't do much, just walked around.

Before we went into town, we took showers by jumping off the boat.  This is something we haven't done in a long time, but used to do in Belize a lot.  We jumped over and got wet.  The water wasn't really that cold.  We shampooed up and jumped over again to rinse off.  Then we used our warm fresh water on board for a final rinse.  It was fun.

For lunch, we went to a seafood market/restaurant called The Net Result.  Dad and I shared a lobster bake.  It was ½ lb. of steamed clams, ½ lb. of steamed mussels, and a 1 ¼ lb. lobster.  It was awesome.  When we finished, there was not a bit of meat on the lobster or inside the clams or mussels.  We ate the 8 legs and all.  It was yummy!

Later in the afternoon, we stopped in at Murdick's Homemade Fudge, a Martha's Vineyard chain, and picked up some fudge and ate ice cream.  The fudge was good.

We found the office for the inner mooring field (inside the breakwater) near a park.  We talked with the Harbormaster and found out that they have a free dinghy dock and bathhouse for all boaters.  That is very convenient.  Josh and I swung and had fun for a while too.

We got home and hooked up the TV antenna during dinner.  We watched the Olympics, but the signal came in and out.  We saw the women's marathon (Romania won), Dara Torres' final two swim races (she is 41! - 2 silvers), and Michael Phelps get one last gold (#8) in his last event - a medley relay.  It was all live.  That was cool.  Josh fell asleep after the marathon and didn't see the swimming which is too bad.  I had a good time today.

Sunday, 8/17/08
                                                                                Day 197

Today was a busy day.  We started by going to church at Grace Episcopal Church.  It was a small, lively church.  I like the service.

We rented bikes at Martha's Bike Rentals.  We rode all the way to Edgartown.  That is approx. 10 miles.  We stopped in a couple of places.  First, we stopped in East Chop to see the lighthouse on Telegraph Hill and admire the view off the bluff.  Then we went to Oak Bluffs, the next stop on the road, and ate lunch at Giordano's Italian Restaurant.  Oak Bluffs is famous for its "gingerbread cottages."  They are all different colors.  They do look kind of like gingerbread houses and are pretty.

We took the beach route to Edgartown.  There is a bridge by one well-known beach that kids of all ages jump off (it's only about 10 - 15ft. high).  We're going to go there tomorrow.  We also saw water-skiers and windsurfers in the lakes.

In Edgartown, we parked our bikes and walked around.  It is a nice town, similar to Vineyard Haven.  We had ice cream at Mad Martha's, another Martha's Vineyard chain.  It was better than Murdick's.  We biked all 10 miles back home and were back by 6:00pm.  I had a lot of fun.

We are back at the boat, watching the Olympics again.  Dad is joking about having Advil encrusted haddock for dinner.  We all ache.  I still loved what we did today!

Monday, 8/18/08
                                                                                Day 198

We went to the beach today.  Dad could not come.  He decided to work instead.

We took the bus to State Beach, between Edgartown and Oak Bluffs, right on the town border.  There is a huge bridge that is 10-15ft. off the water that everybody jumps off of - from kids younger than Josh to old Grandpa's.  We got straight to jumping as soon as we got there.  We jumped off the top rail and the lower ledge doing cannonballs, twists, going backwards, and just jumping.  We must have done that for 45 minutes straight.

Afterwards, I walked down the breakwater and talked to a fisherman.  He was interested in our trip and says that we should come see him and his family in Hull, MA.  When he was done, he let me fish and I brought the rod back to him later on the beach.  I hooked something little that got away at the rocks, but that was it.   I didn't get the strippers like I was hoping, but it was fun anyway.

Other than that, we just hung out.  Dad eventually joined us.  I tried to fly my kite, but it got tangled, wet and broken in multiple places and we had to throw it away.  We got Italian ices from the cart on the beach.  They were smooth and creamy and Mom says they are real Italian ices.  They were good.  We had fun.

Trying to get home was extremely difficult.  Two buses passed us without even stopping because they were full from Edgartown.  There were about 13 of us at the bus stop.  Nine of us were about to call a taxi when an overcrowded bus pulled over and let us all on.  The bus was packed!

We got back to the dinghy and took showers.  Then we met the Dragats (John & Pia), and a friend of theirs, for dinner at the Black Dog Tavern (where they don't serve beer).  Josh and I shared a bowl of clam chowder, macadamia encrusted halibut, and a slice of chocolate cake.  It was all delicious!  After supper, we all walked around Vineyard Haven.  Julianna and I listened to her I-pod.  She was trying to show me what "good music" really is.

It's late now.  We're going to sleep.  We are going to go to South Beach tomorrow.  It is on the Atlantic Ocean side and is supposed to have huge waves.  It'll be great!

Tuesday, 8/19/08
                                                                                Day 199

Today was more fun than yesterday.  We went to multiple beaches and really got our money's worth out of a day bus pass.  And, today, we were able to catch the bus to get home.

This morning, around 10:30am, we were going to go to South Beach.  I invited Julianna, and by the time we got everything squared away between boats, it was 11:00am.  We took the bus to Oak Bluffs to ride the carousel.  It is the nation's oldest carousel.  The horses are all carved wood and don't go up and down like other carousels.  But, there are two little arms off to the side that hold rings that you grab as you go past.  The last ring is a brass ring.  It you grab it, you get a free ride.  Unfortunately, there were some older teenagers who were off their horses and could grab six rings at a time.  They got the brass ring three times in a row.

When we were done on the carousel, we grabbed some pizza and caught the bus going to Edgartown where we would connect to a bus to South Beach.  Julianna really wanted to stop and jump off the bridge, so we did.  We did flips and twists and had a lot of fun.  Once, Julianna and I swam under the bridge to the other side and snuck up on Mom & Dad.  That was fun.  We got Mom to jump twice.  That was hard to do.

We continued on to South Beach after that.  We caught the bus to Edgartown and changed to another bus that went to South Beach.  South Beach was awesome!  There were 5ft. breaking waves along the whole beach.  If that was all there was, it would have been awesome, but there was more.  The sand was fine and pretty.  There were not many rocks or shells like on State Beach.  Down by the water, the sand was perfect for building sand castles.  There were a few volleyball courts set up in the sand and there were games going on.  Last of all, we saw seals.  We couldn't see much except for their heads, but there was definitely a whole group of them hanging out in the water just off the beach.  One left the group and came closer in, but we still only saw his head.  I wonder what type they are.

We took the boogie board out and tried to play in the waves.  We had trouble getting passed the 5ft. breakers, and Josh couldn't swim.  The waves held me under more than once.  Julianna and I went out really far to get past the breakers and hung out there.

Back at the beach, Josh joined a game of volleyball and we built sandcastles.  I skim-boarded too.  We were going to go back out, but the water got freezing cold when the sun went behind some storm clouds.  Julianna almost lost her ring in the sand, but Dad found it.  That's really lucky.  South Beach was really fun and cool.

We took a bus straight to Vineyard Haven.  Then we went back to the boat and had stew for supper.  It is going to be in the upper 40's and low 50's tonight.  That's freezing!  I'm not feeling well - a bit sniffly and achy.  I'm blaming it on the flips!

Wednesday 8/20/08                                                                        Day 200

We left Vineyard Haven this afternoon.  But that was this afternoon.  This morning, while it was really cold, I convinced Dad that we should bake something for breakfast which would warm up the boat.  We made a coffee cake with streusel and all.  It was pretty good.  We hung out and did school and let Dad work until lunchtime.  At lunchtime, we met the Dragat's at a bagel shop for lunch.  We said goodbye to them.  They live in Boston, MA.  We may see them again, but there's a good chance we won't.  Julianna and I are going to keep in touch via e-mail.

At 2:40pm, I pulled the anchor off the bottom and we sailed out of Vineyard Haven harbor.  We sailed all the way up Buzzard's Bay to, once again, Onset, MA.  From Vineyard Haven to Wood's Hole, we sailed with Vado Pazzo II, but they stopped at Wood's Hole and we continued on.

We pulled into Onset this evening and anchored.  I helped Mom pick up free wi-fi.  We got a lot of e-mails and sent a lot of e-mails.  We were going to try to pick up the Olympics on the TV, but everyone was too tired from sending/writing e-mails.  Plus, it was a long afternoon of sailing.

We are going to sail through the Cape Cod Canal tomorrow.  The Gizzi's are going to sail with us.  We will have fun and it will be awesome!

Thursday, 8/21/08
                                                                                Day 201

Today was just like I predicted yesterday - awesome!  At around 8:00am, we pulled in to the Onset Marina fuel dock, got fuel, and picked up our early riser guests, the Gizzi's.  Then we left for the Cape Cod Canal.

The weather was glorious and our sail through the canal couldn't have been better.  The Gizzi's brought Dunkin' Donuts for breakfast.  We ate those all up.  I showed Hugo all about eddies and whirlpools and that kind of stuff.  The Gizzi's recognized some landmarks along the way, such as a picnic they go to and Hugo's school.  We got a good current in the canal and flew through at 8-11knts. We were out of the canal by 9:30 or so.

By lunchtime, we were making only 1.5kts, sailing.  The 6kt. current off the Cape Cod Canal was gone.  We didn't mind though, and grilled chicken while it was calm.  I got to hold baby Stella once more.  She will be one month old tomorrow.  She spit up on me twice.  The second time was bad enough to make me have to change my clothes.  Everyone thought that was simply hilarious.  Ha ... Ha...Ha - very funny. 

We took a mooring ball at the Plymouth Yacht Club.  The Gizzi's took us to dinner at the Deck - a seafood restaurant.  I got a yummy dish of Shrimp Scampi.  After dinner, they had to leave really quickly because the baby would have to eat in 45 min. or so and they wanted to get home before they had to feed her.  We had a great time today.
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