July 26. Last night was great sleeping weather, a little chill and virtually no wind.
At the head of Cold Springs Harbor is a yacht club that performs the ritual of firing a canon at sunset. When the gun went off it startled all of us and almost gave Molly a stroke. After awhile she was able to calm down and I told Christy that clubs like that usually fire their cannon again at 0800, and then I completely forgot about it.
So the next morning we’re hauling the anchor at 0800 when that damn gun goes off again. I was in the bow pulpit tending the anchor and almost shit myself. Molly spazed and all around the boat a thousand tiny fish jumped from the water in perfect unison at the big guns retort.
So we’re east bound for a fifty mile day to Duck Island which isn’t much of an island at all. There’s a tiny island tucked up against the Connecticut shore with 2 long stone jetties running out from the island to form a 90 degree breakwater. A half mile to the east the land juts out to afford some protection from the east. To the west, almost a mile away is another very long jetty. So we’ve got pretty good protection from every direction.
On the way here the bay was as flat as any water we’ve seen. We had the main up to grab whatever small zephyrs of wind there might be as we motored east. The wind did build for us to about 8 knots so we were able to get all sail up and make decent time. We also had the ebb tide for most of the trip so for a good part of the day we were making over 7 knots SOG.
There’s an unusual phenomena here on Long Island Sound, Mylar balloons. When we were here a few years ago we were constantly coming across Mylar balloons that had lost their oomph but were still inflated enough to float. We saw dozens of them, one here, and 2 there. In the last 3000 miles I don’t remember seeing any at all. Today we saw at least 15, again, one here, one or 2 there. It’s probably housewives on Long Island (pronounced Long Guyland) releasing them to live in the wild. Ditzes.
When we finally arrived we dropped sail just outside the breakwater and motored inside. After a quick tour around the anchorage we picked a nice spot and dropped the hook. When I signaled Christy for reverse we found that we didn’t have any. Damn. We were still moving forward very slowly when I dropped the hook so I was fairly sure the anchor had set. I then paid out 60 feet of chain in the 9 feet of water.
Troubleshooting the problem determined that our transmission had given up the ghost, as they say. I was hoping that it was something simple (read that as cheap) like the Morse cable that controls the linkage but noooo.
We called Towboat US and since we were safely anchored we arranged to be towed in the morning. We got out the guide books for the area and were pleased to find out that we’d broken down less than a mile from the biggest full service marina in Connecticut and arguably on the Sound. So if there’s a bright side……..(remember, my glass is always half full)