Day 3 Isle of Hope to the Wahoo River: Okay, so the day did not start so well leaving Isle of Hope. In addition to what happened getting up against those boats at Isle of Hope, I had decided to start the engines while in the engine room to check the Racor pressures (we are running 2 micron) when I noticed the shafts turning. I thought to myself, for what seemed an eternity, my other boat’s shafts don’t turn when I start the engine, when it occurred to me… This damn thing started in gear! So getting the boat into neutral and realizing there was no neutral safety was what immediately preceded our fretful departure from Isle of Hope. Is that a qualifying excuse for the day’s start? Okay, didn’t think so. Anyway, thank god we were tied to a dock and not on the hook.
That day was beautiful, as was every day of our trip. We were enjoying every second of it, or at least Lou was. I was ready for some calamity to occur at any minute. Not knowing what half of the stuff in the engine room was for I would not have been surprised to have heard a pop, whistle, then boom at any second. But, Belle ran like a top. I was getting accustomed to going down into the engine room early each day to visit the boys, otherwise known as Hercules and Reliable (4-53 Detroit Diesels). But, I did not have that warm fuzzy quite yet. In their presence I was all “how you boys doing this morning, can I get you a little 40 weight? Then, when out of their ear shot I was thinking; “these things are going to die just at the worst possible moment.” In retrospect, I can only hope they will forgive my transgressions because they ran flawlessly the entire 800 miles to Tampa.
Then we found the Wahoo river and, as advised, ran up just far enough to get behind the tree line that protects from a north wind. Don’t get tired of me saying; “O’ my god.” Because just when I was thinking God lived in Dawta he apparently picked up and brought the most beautiful anchorage in all the universe with him to the Wahoo. This was our first time anchoring with Belle, but it went great. And, for the first of many nights on the hook, we put the hook out, pulled back on the throttles, and settled Belle in for a quite night’s dance on the Wahoo.
With a Macallan in one hand and the love of my life in the other we fell asleep on the bow counting stars. I know that sounds overly romantic, but at that moment I felt that if I never saw another day there would be no regrets. Or, maybe that was the fourth Macallan on the rocks talking, I don’t know, but it was magnificent. This is why we bought Belle and we were only letting the third day to slip into night.