Summer Loving, Saturday, June 21, 2003
For our first voyage from our new home port, we wanted something simple. And since we hadn’t outfitted the boat completely, we needed a destination with a restaurant, or it would be cheese and crackers for dinner. We went down to the boat Friday night in order to wake up on board and head out to our next destination as early as possible: Mattapoisett.
We ended up leaving around 9 A.M., straight into a northeast wind against the tide. This made progress very slow, it also was our first lesson to watch the tides in Buzzard’s Bay as sailing against them can be a slow frustrating process.
We tacked back and forth making our way up the the coast from Padanaram toward Mattapoisett. Our speedometer and distance meter, having collected a lot of algae during their idle time, were not working. So we had to guess our speed and how far we’d traveled (I guessed about 10 nm, but it could have been much more). Finally, as we neared the harbor, it started to rain slightly so we turned on the engine to avoid anymore tacks. At 2 P.M. we called the Mattapoisett Boatyard to procure a mooring, which was done in short order. It was the weekend of the Marion to Bermuda race, so many people had vacated their spots.
After getting in we decided it was time to do something we had yet to accomplish: putting the name on the boat. I had ordered a vinyl name for Bumbré, designed by me for the transom, but had not had time to put in on myself. Now, in the calm Mattapoisett Harbor, seemed like as good a time as any. We hoped, since we’d thought of the name while she was on dry land, the gods of the seas would be kind to us putting it on while she was in the water.
After we finished cleaning the transom we applied the vinyl sticker and let it sit for around 30 minutes. Then we peeled of the backing paper to reveal “Bumbré” for the first time. It came out looking very nice and clean, Bumbré now seemed complete; whereas before she had no identity, she was now identifible.
As it got later in the day, we decided to inspect Mattapoisett from dry land. We walked along the beach and watched as people set up for wedding that we’d later hear from our boat, then headed up to the Ned’s Point Lighthouse, but we were too early in the season to go to go to the top of the lighthouse. As we headed back to the boatyard, we walked by the wedding again by the roadside. The guests were beginning to arrive for the ceremony.
We took a ride for the launch over to town to have a look around and scope out what was the only restuarant in town, the Mattapoisett Inn. We got off at the Town Wharf and headed toward Shipyard Park and its rather tall flagpole. The original flagpole at this spot was the mizzenmast from the last whaler in Mattapoisett, The Wanderer, built in 1878. After years of abuse from lightening strikes and storms it was replaced in 1993.
Just accross the street was the Mattapoisett Inn, but we keep walking around town a bit before it started to rain. After a quick loop through town we headed in to the inn for dinner. Being the only restuarant around the harbor it was very popular, so we had a seat at the bar and enjoyed a nice meal. Built in 1799, the Mattapoisett Inn is the oldest seaside Inn in the nation. It was consumate “New England,” and its food didn’t disappoint.
We walked back to the boatyard past the wedding again, which was now in full reception mode. Back aboard we could hear the music and and see the lights, and we sat up enjoying the night until the activities of the day caught up with us and we retired to bed.
Sunday, June 22, 2003
We awoke to a cold damp morning and a weather report that did not sound encouraging. We went in to town to use the public bathrooms, so as not to “fill up” ours. We’d had had heavy rain during the night. We finished our duties and headed out, hoping to beat the rain that was sure to come during our sail home. We departed at 8:50 A.M., and by 10:45 we were rounding West Island, not to far from home. The problem was soon after we left the safety of Mattapoisett, the rain started in full. We donned our foul weather gear and soon were in heavy fog as well. This was not shaping up to be a very good day. But we set the GPS and kept going. The rain was annoying, but the seas weren’t overly large, running maybe 2 to 4 feet, and the wind was still from the northeast–so we were running downwind.
After three wet hours, we were on our mooring and down below packing up. Quickly, we threw everything into the dingy and headed in, and about 100 yards from the boat the rain started full force. I chose to ignore the “No Wake” rule and put our dingy to the test: before we know it, we were speeding through the harbor toward our dry car.