Friends along the way

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Michelle and I are now in Hilton Head, South Carolina.

It is raining again….

We are visiting our friend Ed, who we met in Key West a few years ago, his boat is at a pretty swanky marina here in Hilton Head, we are on a mooring ball and waiting for some parts from West Marine and a new propeller that needs to be modified and shipped to us.  Our Alpha Marine Autopilot has once again given up the good fight – so we are hand steering now, the good people at Southern Winding are unable to repair the motors we sent to them, so we are forced to either purchase a replacement linear drive from Alpha $2400 (plus the upgraded control unit another $1000), this would give us a stand alone autopilot – that really is still 1970’s technology, or buy a new updated system for about the same price, if I had access to a machine shop and some time, I could probably retro-fit something together that is much more cost effective.  The constraints of living on a boat, put a damper on how my ability to fix things.

Friends along the way, Steve and Sue moved our boat to a mooring ball while Len and Suzanne were kind enough to give me a lift back to Canada to get fingerprinted, all part of the Canadian Citizenship process.

Edward (Santa Man) showed us his marina and drove us around trying to get the AMS motor repaired.

Ed (Key West Ed) drove us for groceries in a brand new Denali pick-up truck, what a vehicle, the rear view mirror is a camera/video screen.  Joe and Pat gave us some cruising tips and also who to talk to at West Marine to help solve our warranty issue.

Dolphins are a pretty familiar site these days, lots swimming around the boat, we never get tired of seeing them.

Michelle did not enjoy our outside hop from Georgetown to Charleston, it was a bouncy ride getting out of the channel.

We really enjoyed Charleston, I even helped a lady put up her Christmas Tree (move it from the van and set it up in her great room) and she gave us a tour of her semi-historic home, she was quite grateful however it did turn in to a religious sermon which I had to politely listen to, a thank-you and a cup of tea would have sufficed!

We happened to be in downtown Charleston for Black Friday – as you know how much I detest shopping, this was a nightmare as Michelle wanted to look for deals, I looked like a complete chump in my foul weather gear standing outside a women’s shop with a bunch of bags.

New favourite drink – FIREBALL!

Ed lent us a propane heater for the boat, so we have been warm the past couple of nights.

Finally got the WaterMaker (de-salinator) working and have now make about 4 litres of drinkable water, at $500/litre so far, one heck of a deal!

Rambling over for now…