Category Archives: knitting

Knitting is Catching Fire!

Oops!  See note at end the end of this post for why this post is badly titled!

Bob and I went to the movies last night.  It was an escape from the very sad and very stressful time we are going through, which involves a loved one’s serious health condition.  Bob has been not-so-patiently awaiting the release of the second “Hunger Games” movie so we dashed out to see it last night on his return from the daily hospital visit. I was mildly intrigued, but definitely looking forward to an evening’s distraction…

No one warned me there would be KNITTING!  The whole first segment of the movie held me captive, and I was craning forward in my theater seat to get a better look at the unusual knitted designs that Katniss wore!  It was a visual feast!  I swear there were three knitting garments, but I must be wrong…

….because these garments are already all over the internet, and there are only two:


This garment does not look knitted to me.  It made me think of nalbinding or some other rather ancient technique that predates what we call knitting today.  I’m intrigued!  I’d love to see the real garment.

Then there was this lovely cowl in luscious shades of berries/trees/water.  There is something really interesting going on in the stitch pattern. I tried to magnify this image to get a better look, but it just got a bit blurry! Hmmmmm….

Okay….enough about Katniss!  Here are a few things I’ve been working on lately.  Mostly, I have to say that I’ve been curled up in a fetal position for several weeks now….sleeping too much….

My English friend, Lesley, just finished this sweater in a deep garnet merino wool. I bet it is breathtaking!  I was so intrigued that I had to have one too…. in medium blue cotton (Cascade’s Ultra Pima in color #3772).  I have finished the cables around the neckline, and now I’ve put it aside…’s a lot of plain stockinette for the rest of the body….sigh…. I do love the way the longest cable comes down below the garter stitch area, which you can see on the right side in the photo.  What a beautiful design!

And I’m spinning my first “Tsarina of Tsocks” kit called “Kitri.”  The body of the sock is a lovely claret red merino/silk blend.  I’m doing a test spin for a 4-ply by topping off a few bobbins with the tsarina fiber so I can ply just a short amount to check my knitting gauge.

A couple of weeks ago Bob set up my large Shannock tapestry loom.  I’m ready to start two tapestries and need to decide which one comes first!  The full size Flax Spinner or “Into the Night,” which is a new cartoon I recently made…

Isn’t she an impressive loom? Cartoons are draped on the treadle bar, including a really old cartoon that I never wove.  In the foreground you can see an umbrella swift with a skein of silk draped on it.  I just finished using that silk to make a warp for my next painted warp project.  It will be a small wall hanging based on an image Bob took while we were in the Bahamas.  If all goes well, maybe I will bring it with me in January and hang it on the wall of our main salon.

And speaking of making cartoons…. I borrowed an opaque projector from an old friend.  It’s quite a relic from the 50s and makes quite a roar when I turned it on.  In fact, it blew a fuse, so I haven’t actually gotten to use it yet.  Here’s Bob setting it up for me.

So, I guess I’m doing more than just sleeping my days away, and I’m glad I wrote this.  It helped me see that I am progressing on work….just at a snail’s pace… and that (in reality) is not much slower than I normally work.

NOTE:  It has been 10 months since I posted this, and clearly interest in the Katniss fashions from “Catching Fire” is still running high!  Many thanks to Kristin from who sent some links to the two designs I wrote about.  It turns out neither one was knitted!  They are both woven! …and the green cowl is a beauty in what looks like deflected double weave! Although that makes my post title inaccurate, I am quite thrilled to learn these garments were woven.  You can take a closer look here and here.

231 Mitred Squares

All these years while my Zig Zag ruana was stuffed in a zippered vinyl project bag, I thought I only had a few squares left to knit….maybe 15.  I remember thinking I was so close to the end.  And that’s why I always thought I’d pick it up again right after whatever current project was on my needles.  I could be wearing it in just a matter of days…

Yesterday I counted how many squares I have left to knit…. 86!  How could that be? Even on the chart it looks like I’m approaching the end!  So I decided to count how many squares I’d already finished.  I couldn’t believe I’d knitted 231 squares back in the fall and winter of 2002/2003.  That’s a LOT of little mitred squares!

I remember one of my knitting friends warning me that this project involved a LOT of knitting.  Naturally, I took no heed and can barely remember the warning much less who warned me.  I was happily knitting.  Now that I’m back to it, I am slowly remembering lots of other things too.

This was the fall that my older son went away to college.  I missed him terribly, but there was a wonderful silver lining that I had not anticipated.  My younger son and I suddenly had some uninterrupted time together.  It was the year that he toured colleges, took his SATs, wrote his applications.  We went on college visits together, and I brought along my knitting….this very project.  It had not grown to the dimensions it is now which make it somewhat cumbersome for traveling.  We visited schools in Pennsylvania, New York, and New England.  We had that unexpected time to become closer.

It was the last few months before he got his driver’s license so I was still his main companion in the car, and I was the one who accompanied him when he drove places with his learner’s permit, such as the physical therapist I mentioned earlier.

It seems to me that everyone takes notice of the wonderful time you have with your firstborn, before there are siblings who require you to divide your attentions. Surely it’s a mother’s point of view to romanticize this special time with a firstborn that no other child gets.  But I think the time I had alone with my younger 16 year old was equally precious….because he was aware of it too.  We both enjoyed getting to know each other more deeply, and he had my complete attention while he navigated the rite of passage out into the world and determined who he wanted to become.  It was a significant time of life for both of us, and I was moved to have time with Chris during this stage.

And all through that period I was knitting the ‘Zig Zag.’  Chris graduated from high school over 10 years ago.  He finished his undergraduate work in math and physics and is now in his 5th year of a doctoral program in physics.  He has become the person he planned to be.  He is almost finished writing his dissertation and will probably be out of academia in a few more weeks.  There is a lot of life that has happened while this ruana lay in its project bag, buried in my studio in New Jersey, and then my new studio in Connecticut.

Such is the life of a knitting project….everything completes itself in its own time.

Life Aboard

Once again, it’s the sailor’s life for me…..sailing down the Chesapeake, watching the season gently change to fall down here, getting back to knitting.

We spent a week getting to Hampton and Norfolk, Virginia, where we’ve been stalled for almost a week.  There is a lot to do here.  In Norfolk we visited the Nauticus Museum which includes the battleship Wisconsin which served in the Pacific in WWII as well as in the Korean War, Viet Nam and Desert Storm.  Long history.  Across the harbor from Norfolk is Portsmouth, and one night we went to see the movie “Captain Phillips” at a lovely restored theatre there.  I doubt there are many places more perfect for seeing this movie, with the harbor full of the same commercial and military ships that participated in those terrifying events.

I have found it rather depressing to see so much real estate and equipment devoted to war, but the alternative is equally depressing….  There is also a memorial to General MacArthur in Norfolk which we visited.

We have had a quick trip home to Connecticut to say goodbye to our favorite Uncle Dick, who has passed away after a long illness.  He spent much of the past two years in a hospital, which is tragic for anyone, but especially so for someone who was so full of spunk and life.  His funeral was probably the most upbeat funeral I will ever attend.  We celebrated his quirky sense of humor and remembered all the practical jokes he participated in during his 60-year marriage and the rearing of their five children. It was great to see all the cousins and their expanding families.  That is certainly the upside of losing someone….pulling in the long tethers of family and friends who are dispersed for so much of the time.

I spend some of each day knitting.  My sister and I are knitting sweaters for her two daughters.  They are matching sweaters, but each in its own colorway of Adriafil Knitcol yarn, so they look quite different!  It’s wonderful to be knitting with my sister again, even though it’s somewhat vicarious, through texts and phone calls, since we are not physically with each other.  The sweaters are Polly Macc’s Brother/Sister design, and they are turning out really cute! The short sequence, space dyed yarns are so much cuter than what was used for the cover of the pattern booklet!

 We each have enough yarn left over to make matching hats, and I’m thinking hard about a design that will have ear flaps and long ties, maybe pom poms on the ends of the ties….maybe with I-cord as a border… on the days when I have internet access I am enjoying searching for idea inspiration on Ravelry.

It’s raining this morning, so we are just sitting here having coffee, enjoying the internet.  Probably this afternoon we will venture back past Norfolk to enter the IntraCoastal Waterway for the final leg of the journey to Beaufort.  We should be there in about a week.  Then I’ll head home….

Rainy Monday

Yes, it is a rainy Monday, our first rain since leaving the US way back in January.

It has rained non-stop all day today, and it’s been very lovely here in Man O’ War Cay.  The locals told us that April can be quite wet, just like New England.  No wonder it is so lush here.

We wandered through the town, along wide paved walkways just wide enough for golf carts to pass.  Lots of those here, and very few cars.  The cars that are here are models we don’t see in the US….cute miniature vehicles.

We saw a border of amaryllis planted along a fence.  They were in various stages from spent to full open and still in bud.  They were a bright, single red….just like we force at Christmas back at home.  There are lots of things that we’d call houseplants, growing as perennial foundation plants here:  Kalenchoe, “Wandering Jew,” coleus, vinca.  We even saw the biggest poinsettia we’ve ever seen!

But there are also things we cannot identify.  Some vines with huge purple trumpet like flowers, some lily-like flowers, and a huge tree covered with bright yellow flowers! I really wanted to grab a seed pod off the yellow flowering tree!…but I refrained.

Bob enjoyed visiting the Albury Boat Works that have made so many of the small powerboats we’ve seen throughout the islands, as well as many of the traditional wooden sailing dinghies used in the regattas, and most of the small inter-island ferries.

I have been looking forward to visiting Sallie’s Gift Shop ever since I learned that it is well stocked with Androsia fabrics and finished garments. Androsia is a local company (on Andros Island) where women make traditional batik on various weights of fabric.  There is light weight garment cotton, heavy canvas for making bags or upholstery, and some mid-weight cotton for household linens.  The batik motifs are all Bahamian: shells, turtles, hibicus, sharks….  It was hard to stay on task, but I think I did a good job of getting some fabrics to make presents and some small presents for my nieces!  A little something for me too!

Then there was the Albury Sail Shop, where women from the Albury family make duffel bags and every other kind of imaginable bag.  There were more bags than you can possibly imagine under one roof!  The Alburys have been making bags for three generations now.  Again, what a hard choice for me!  But I did pick a good one!

The woman on the left is the Albury who now runs this shop.  Her grandmother started the shop 60 years ago.

So what to do on a rainy Monday afternoon?  Dig out some more of my stash and start another knitting project!  I skeined this mystery yarn, rigging up a hank holder between two portholes in the galley.  I know it is merino but the tag is long gone, so I don’t know who dyed it.

I just downloaded Romi Hill’s “7 Small Shawls,” which are named after the stars in the Pleides.  I will start with “Celaeno”….very feminine and pretty.  It will be a gift.  The directions for this shawl call for over 900 size 6 beads, but I have decided to omit this since I think the shawl will be uncomfortable heavy with so many beads.  On the other hand it sure would sparkle like the night sky with beads knitted into it…



Georgetown, Exumas

We are anchored near the town of Georgetown, awaiting the arrival of Rob, Chris and Kandice sometime tomorrow evening.  Meanwhile, the northeast is getting one of the biggest snowstorms on record, so who knows if the kids’ flight will actually leave, or if Chris’ bus to Baltimore will arrive before the flight.  Our little town in Connecticut is expected to get between 16″- 20″.  Whoa!

Arriving in Georgetown feels more like reaching a goal than crossing over from Florida to Nassau did.  I can’t explain why…  crossing the Gulf Stream was certainly the bigger challenge, so I don’t know why I feel this way. Arriving here , I feel that we have attained such a big goal.  The rest of our trip, which is still another 3 months of sailing,  will all be ‘frosting on the cake’ now that we’ve come this far!

Remember these?  Naturally, it is out of service….but what a hoot to see a phone booth on a sandy beach with palm trees!

Bob is reeling in a mahi mahi on our run from Lee Stocking to Georgetown!  It took him about 20 minutes of struggle with this feisty fish, and wouldn’t you know just as Bob was about to gaff  him, the fish jumped right off the line!

A walk along the ocean side beach at Lee Stocking, with a picnic lunch.

I am on the final stretch of a simple ‘shadow knit’ sweater that I designed myself.  Although it’s quite simple, I think I will write it up as a free  download on Ravelry, as a little thank you for all the great resources I’ve benefitted from on that site!  I’m on the sleeves and holding my breath that there is enough yarn!  If not, it will be a vest….

Pandora at anchor off the dock at Little Farmer’s Cay.

Busy Beautiful Days

We’ve been back on board Pandora for five days already, and it’s been a very busy cup of tea here.  We thought we’d be crossing to the Bahamas on Wednesday this week, so there was a lot to accomplish!…. food provisions, engine maintenance, propellor cleaning, boat bottom cleaning…. various other small, but very important chores….not to mention getting ourselves further south so that the angle of crossing would be more favorable.  And as weather often does, it has changed so that Wednesday is no longer our departure day.  We are now cautiously aiming for Thursday… or Friday….

We left Ft. Pierce on Saturday morning and stopped in a lovely spot called Manatee Pocket that evening.  Great name for the location where I did see my first manatee!  No kidding, these creatures are unbelievably ungainly and touchingly sweet.  I now fully understand why they are at the mercy of fast traveling power boats.  They move very slowly and cannot possibly get out of the way of a speeding boat. When I saw my first manatee it had just started to descend back into the water, so its back looked like a giant black mooring ball!

There is so much beautiful bird life here … egrets, herons, osprey, kingfishers…. my favorite are the ibises.  They are so delicate….almost ephemeral.

During our evening walk along the shore of Manatee Pocket (looking for the perfect restaurant), I found a weaving studio!  Can you believe it???  Unfortunately for me, it was closed.

Who wouldn’t love spending time here??? That is a chenille warp on her loom.

Yesterday we motored 57 miles and went under 20 bascule bridges….surely a phenomenal logistical feat for any sailboat!  We deserve a prize! I saw The Breakers from the waterway…. where I once spent a decadent long weekend with Bob about a million years ago! I thought I might want to jump ship and stow away in a luxurious resort suite….but oddly, I didn’t!  At the moment I’m quite happy in my less than luxurious accomodations on Pandora!

The houses along the canals are getting more and more impressive.  It’s more Mediterranean here than the Mediterranean with all the stucco and terracotta roof tiles….and porticos!  The houses are huge, and are so close together.  It would seem to me if you have a house with a full acre of square footage, you wouldn’t want to be looking right in the windows of your next door neighbors!  To each his own…

On the knitting front, I cast on for a small Fair Isle purse at the airport in Connecticut.  It’s Beth Brown-Reinsel’s design from Interweave Knits Fall 2004 issue.  I’m making a number of changes to the pattern;  the most significant change is that I could not stomach the idea of knitting this purse flat. I know Beth must have had good reasons for her design, but since I’m pretty stubborn about stranding in the round, that’s what I’m doing!  I’ve got plans to make this a small tote bag, so I’ll be making a somewhat rigid insert for the bag when I return home next spring, along with a lining and leather handles instead of a drawstring.

I raided my J&S shetland and AS Scottish Campion stashes for these yarns (two large comforter-size storage bags stuffed full of yarn!), and I was quite surprised to find that I had absolutely no brown!  So I solved that dilemma with a quick trip to Yarns Down Under the evening before my flight.  Everyone needs a LYS who is willing to open shop for emergency travel knitting!  My LYS is the best enabler!

We are leaving shortly for Middle River, Ft. Lauderdale.


The best made plans….  I’ve looked forward to being home so much for so long, yet I’ve spent almost the entire month at home sick!  And I’ve had one rather big disappointment in a tapestry project…..

….but the upside is that in spite of being sick, my kids spent most of the month with us.  It was beyond wonderful to have time with them!  And I’ve gotten some weaving and some knitting done.  We’ve had some awesome meals, and I guess I will credit being sick with what has kept me from gaining weight (always the silver lining, right?)….

So, with not much to show for myself, I’ll share a couple of good cartoons I stumbled on recently….

From the New Yorker

 and from ecards:

I did my bit on fiber purchases.  I have a wonderful LYS called Yarns Down Under, in Deep River.  During my visit I learned that Filature di Crosa’s “127 Print” is being discontinued (sigh) so I bought two colors to make a cardigan.  I bought the black and the periwinkle blue, and I plan to use them in a vertically striped cardigan based on “Designs by Judith” pattern called “Buenos Aires” that called for Manos del Uraguay.

So this takes a bit of imagination…. I am knitting not quite random vertical stripes in my two colorways instead of the two-color stitch pattern used in Judith’s design.  I just love the shaping of this sweater and hope it will turn out well in a striped stockinette stitch.  Although the gauge is the same, my fabric will be considerably softer since it is not a texture stitch.  Wish me luck!

And while licking my wounds about my weaving disappointments, I found this in my inbox today:

Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.” –Dalai Lama

A Lovely Day in Cocoa

I continue to marvel at how lovely the Christmas season can be in the tropics!  Bob and I took a walk together through the more historic residential area of Cocoa, the major style being bungalow from the early 20th century… favorite!

Nice modern addition to this classic bungalow, although I do wonder how hot that glass enclosure gets in the summer!

There were also quite a few more traditional looking Spanish inspired houses. Most of these houses had historic plaques.

Palm trees and Christmas decorations….it does work!

I wonder if this lovely shade of blue was chosen to match the flowering vine on their arbor.

Christmas with orange trees, bougainvillea, hibiscus, and lots of little lizards skittering across our path wherever we walked!

I capped off the day by visiting Knit and Stitch again to sit with the other knitters and work on my Ann Jacket.  What a lovely spot!  On top of being in a community of knitters, I learned that one of the women who works in the shop, Barbara,  is an avid weaver  and reps Schacht products for the store.  One of the other shop women, Ann, seems to have done some weaving herself, so I felt that I had found some wonderful connections here.  Thank you!

As if this wasn’t enough of a perfect day, we spent the evening on board Meltemi (a Catalina 42′) with Jeff and Susan, while they taught us a popular Bahamian cruisers’ domino game called “Mexican Train.”  (I shudder at how un-PC this name is!) I never knew there are dominoes with 12 spots on them!  I was terrible at understanding all the little dots on these tiles!

 Today we are headed to Melbourne….not Australia.  Before this trip I didn’t know there was a Melbourne in Florida.  It seems that wherever the English went they used place names from home.  Makes for a very confusing world!

Day 86, December 5: Cocoa to Melbourne

This is Bliss….

The recipe for a perfect day:
Warm Sun
Gentle Breeze
A place to recline while enjoying all of the above….

It just doesn’t get any better!  Today feels like June in New England.  It is quite reminiscent of rare, lazy mornings on the front porch in either my old house in New Jersey, or my new Connecticut house.  I could become a little homesick, but I’ll just remind myself that it’s December and there is no sitting on porches there right now!

I haven’t mentioned the “Ann Jacket” in about a week, have I?  Well, it couldn’t be going any slower ….. it’s like I just learned how to knit yesterday!  It took me over a week to knit one sleeve, and it was some of the most frustrating knitting.

In the end it comes down to having good tools.  I’ve always known that.  But in this case I didn’t plan ahead to make sure I’d have the best tools on hand.  My options were to knit the sleeve flat, and this would have been my fastest option since I had the perfect needles for doing that….the very needles I used for the entire sweater.  But I didn’t want to sew at the end of project, especially this project which was so cleverly designed with no sewing.  I opted to pick up stitches around the armscye and knit circularly.

Now you know where I’m going with this…  I either have to use double points, two circulars, or one long circular as a magic loop.  I tried the double points first since I have them.  Ugh.  With the entire weight of the sweater hanging on those small double points (no matter how carefully I tried to keep the weight of the sweater balanced in my lap) at least one of those needles was always falling out.  Big time burner, constantly picking up the stitches from the needles that wouldn’t stay in the knitting!

Next big idea:  two circulars.  Maybe this is being a tad particular, but I find it quite frustrating to zip along on my best needle and then have to  s-l-o-w  d-o-w-n for the second half of the row on the less than best needle.  Ugh.  I gave that a go for quite a while before deciding that I was just getting too angry.  I can’t let knitting make me angry!

Third attempt: magic loop.  Well, this works best with a really long circular needle.  My favorite fast #3 circular is only 24″ long.  I had a lot of stitches on that needle, and there was just barely enough cable left to force that magic loop.  More frustration and a bit more angry knitting.  Not acceptable.

Compromise: I went back to two needles and finished the first sleeve this way.  More than a week for one sleeve!  Sheesh!  I knit an entire body panel in multiple colors and multiple directions faster than one simple sleeve.  Maybe I should have worked flat and sewn….

So yesterday I visited the Knit and Stitch in Cocoa (and it was as good as promised!) to buy myself a better second needle, hoping there wouldn’t be such a disparity in speed and ease between them.  Everyone swears by Addi Turbos as being the fastest needles, and I do have a small battalion of them in my stash.  But there’s another brand of needles that I bought decades ago at Patternworks, when they were in Poughkeepsie, and I love them more.  They are some kind of “plastic” covered metal, in a stone grey color, and they had a German name.  I love them.

So now I’m only slightly limping along between my fast needle and my new Addi Turbo.  I’m sure I’ll have a warm sweater jacket to wear home next week!  But I won’t be very far along at all on my ruffled cardigan.  I guess I will bring it along to knit on the plane!

Knit and Stitch is a great store.  It was Monday afternoon, and there was a crowd of women sitting at the central table, working on different projects.  Two employees were sitting helping the knitters, one more was behind the counter helping me.  There was lots of lively conversation and friendly atmosphere.  The shelves were full to brimming with yarns, although it was hard to get to some of them due to all the knitters!  Not a bad thing!  And true to their website, there is coffee, tea, chocolate, and wine! It wasn’t long before the woman behind the counter offered for me to sit down and get to my knitting while she poured me coffee…or wine, and “please help yourself to some chocolate.”  I might go back there today and indulge!

I bought the pattern and background yarn for this fun project! It requires lots of small bits of contrasting yarns, and I figure I have plenty of that. The yarn I bought is Noro’s cotton/wool/silk/nylon called “Taiyo Sock Yarn.” Check out Knitting At Noon Designs.

So I haven’t said a word about how quaint Cocoa is….the shops are lovely, and there are great choices for restaurants. Bob has done a great job with that!  I know I can be somewhat knitting possessed.  I’ve got a strange ache in my right upper arm, which I’ve never had before.  Must stop knitting angry and spend more time with the recipe for bliss!

Jetsam and Flotsam

A lot has happened in the week since I last posted here.  Mostly, I’ve been knitting!  I really want to wear my Ann Jacket for Thanksgiving, and with the cold front that is stalled here, I’ll need something wooly and warm to stave off hypothermia. (I’m on the front band now, which is 800 short rows of  20 stitches…but that’s still 800 rows and 16,000 stitches…. I’ve made peace with wearing the jacket as a vest for just this one day!)

We are in Savannah now, tied up to the main bulkhead right in the historic part of town which happens to be a very narrow part of the Savannah River.  When the huge ships go by there is a lot of rolling….and from dawn ’til dark they go by every few minutes.  I would never have guessed this would be such a busy port.

Before coming here yesterday, we spent a couple of days in Beaufort, South Carolina.  The spelling is exactly the same as Beaufort, North Carolina, and I’ve always gotten the two towns mixed up.  Now that I’ve actually visited both of them, I think I will forever keep them straight!  Both are lovely towns, but I enjoyed Beaufort, in South Carolina (pronounced like Be-yoo-frt), slightly more than Beaufort, North Carolina (which is pronounced like Bow-frt, as in tying a bow).  Perhaps it was because we were there for a particularly moving Veterans’ Day Parade.

… perhaps it was because we took a walk through an amazing historical part of town with houses that are so elegant they’ve been used in numerous movies, like “The Big Chill,”  “The Great Santini” and “Prince of Tides.”  Supposedly both Tom Berenger and Pat Conroy live nearby.

Perhaps it was because I stumbled on a knitting store!  And what an inviting, friendly shop it was!

How often does you walk into a knitting shop and see a knitted sweater that you simply cannot resist?  It doesn’t happen very often for me, but it happened here.

This is the “Ruffle Wrap Cardigan” by Cheryl Murray from the Fall 2012 issue of “Vogue Knitting.” The collar and cuffs in this sweater are knit with the wide ribbon that has holes punched in it for inserting the knitting needle.  I’ve been seeing this ribbon at yarn stores recently and wanting to try it!  This is such a pretty pattern for trying it out!  But….no starting until I have my Ann Jacket finished!

There are so many wonderful things that have happened in the last week.  The sights here are decidedly more southern.  Lots and lots of live oaks dripping with Spanish moss and softened by resurrection ferns.  The cypress have given way to more deciduous trees, but there is still sweetgrass for as far as you can see.  This area has so much water.  The charts we use for navigating are beautiful for all the winding creeks, rivers, estuaries…

And here’s the flotsam and jetsam bit…. into every adventure and journey some excitement must happen, right?  Well, we had our first excitement yesterday.  We had entered the Savannah River, and my, oh my!…it’s narrow!  There is a cold front stalled here bringing with it strong northeast winds which is pushing more water into the rivers and creeks so the tides are high, and the Savannah River is full of debris.  I was steering, watching and attempting to avoid large black plastic bags, large tree limbs that were somewhat submerged from being water logged. Ships were passing us!  Ships so big that they were longer than the river is wide.  And wouldn’t you know, as I was passing between something that look like the entire top of a tree and another something that looked like a big black garbage bag the engine coughed, the boat shuddered and lots of black smoke came out the exhaust.  I put the engine in neutral and Bob came running!  We were powerless!

There was a huge ship bearing down on us, and we had just enough forward momentum to get to the side of the channel.   Two tug boats came out to assist, and we later discovered that they were talking to the ship on channel 13, saying that they would just push us out of the way if we became a problem! New friends on a sailboat just ahead of us turned back to help us.  They came alongside, we rafted together, and they delivered us to the town dock!  It was dicey.  There was a long moment when I seriously entertained the notion of being run down by a ship.

Later, when we were safely docked and Bob was preparing to dive under the boat to see what was caught on our propeller, he got this photo.  It’s a different ship, but all the ships coming up the Savannah River are about this size….quite a contrast to the pretty schooner!

It’s November 15, and we hit our two-month point onboard on Veterans’ Day.  I’ve now been onboard Pandora longer than any previous trip.  And I certainly have more miles under my keel than ever before.

Day 63 and 64, Nov. 14 and 15: Savannah, Georgia