This past Sunday I repacked Annie and headed for the Chesapeake. With a stretch of cool, dry weather predicted it seemed like an open door. As I've mentioned before single-handed sailing has given me some of my most revealing and spiritual experiences. It is a place to be with myself and often it serves up answers that often allude me. With all the raw eruption around the George Floyd murder and the challenges of being progressive but simultaneously a privileged white Southerner, I yearned for more clarity. My daughter, a champion of social justice, had just encouraged Eleanor and I to download Ibram Kendi's How to Be An Antiracist
. For three days I sailed, read, resisted social media as requested, sorted out and grew. A real gift for my 70th year around the sun.
Trailed to Mathews County's Town Point ramp. Clear day with a fresh N wind. The ramp was more congested than I would have liked and everyone seemed to be in a hurry. With little to make off on, it was taking me more time and thought. I felt in the way.
I jibed downwind along the East River and into Mobjack Bay. It became clear that I had no plan. Annie pulled hard as we finally chose to head NW toward the North and Ware Rivers that partially feed the Bay. I heard what sounded like a steam relief valve and saw a pod of dolphin coming up from behind. One in particular swam right beside Annie's aft quarter. I noticed a scarred back and a split fin. Surely old encounters with props.
Skipping the North River we continued on slow but steady progress up the Ware and west on Wilson Creek. A quiet anchorage there made for good reading.
Woke at 0500 but languished due to winds of 20 Kt +. At 0830 I weighed anchor, tacked out of the creek and beat into short chop across to the windward shore of the Ware. Anchored for a short reorganization and saw the same split fin dolphin. Strange indeed. Having left my iPhone charging cord in the truck, I decided to make my way back up the East River to fetch it. A long tack across the Mobjack near Pepper Creek and then a series of shorts back to the ramp. Charger on board a course was set SW to cross the Bay again and up the Severn. Anchoed up Thorton Creek. Read and decided not to post on social media. BLM.
Feeling the urge to keep moving I crossed over the Mobjack again and up the North River. After a brief lunch off Mobjack Bay Marina on Backwater Creek I motored further up and anchored in complete calm.
The weather was deteriorating. I left at dawn and closed back again and up the East for the second time. The tide was high at the ramp and all went well hauling and trailing home. Richmond was still in the throws of protest. I was more clear about my desire to actively practice antiracism. The local news read Time for Change. Long overdue. Trip 83 nautical miles