Our Adventure Begins

After nearly two months in Charleston, it was finally almost time to begin heading south. We had just a few last-minute projects to finish up and we’d be one step closer to the tropics.

Preparing to Leave Charleston

Brandon, Gabriel, and Isaiah got to work servicing our onboard generator. Unfortunately, the replacement zinc anode we’d ordered slipped out of Brandon’s hand, through the trampoline, and into 40 feet of murky water. Fortunately, Abel and I were able to find another one at a nearby marine supply store.
A week earlier, Brandon told me how careless it was that I accidentally dropped the sea strainer for our port air conditioning units off the back of the boat (which had to be rush-shipped from France), so I rather enjoyed rubbing this mistake in his face!

We had a few lingering questions about some of the systems onboard, so we met with a Frenchman by the name of Jean-Michel from St. Bart’s Yachts. He spent two hours walking around our boat answering questions and giving advice. He was a wealth of knowledge and we’re really fortunate to have met him before departing Charleston. 

Our First Overnight Passage

We left Charleston Harbor at 4 p.m. on October 13th. The seas were pretty calm at 2-3 feet. Brandon sailed until I took over around 3 a.m. Since I wasn’t quite comfortable sailing at night, we dropped the sails and I motored until he took over again at 8 a.m. We had underestimated just how hard it would be to stagger our sleep schedules on overnight passages. It was an exhausting night.

Brandon and the boys spent a lot of time fishing on the 14th, so we didn’t arrive at Palmetto Bay Marina in Hilton Head until dusk, but at least we had a freezer full of king mackerel.

Birthday in Hilton Head

I woke up on my Birthday, October 15th, in Palmetto Bay Marina. It was calm and beautiful until I opened the door… and was greeted by thick swarms of biting gnats. They were everywhere.

The kids gave me a pair of sunglasses and sandals for my birthday, and then we took a cab to a nearby Publix to stock up on groceries. We had lunch next to the marina at Black Marlin Bayside Grill, where we had some delicious seafood chowder and fried oysters. Hilton Head was a little too crowded with tourists and gnats for our taste, so we fueled up the boat and continued south!

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