Sunday, November 24, 2013

Day 3 - Just another day in paradise!

Woke up to an absolutely beautiful day!  While the wind is still howling, we have clear blue skies, low humidity, and cool temps. Tucked in behind the trees we are not feeling the brunt of the wind.

Sunrise in Ingram Bayou

It was too cool and windy to sit up top this morning, but we still enjoyed the view while sipping coffee and nibbling on some more of the pumpkin bread. Other than the one sailboat here, and they are anchored about a half mile away, we have the entire place to ourselves.

Checking the weather forecast again, I see that little has changed. Forecast is for high winds through Friday, and heavy rain Monday night and Tuesday. We were supposed to meet up with our friends Bill & Debbie Stuart, who live in Gulf Shores, but the weather is preventing us from leaving the protection of our anchorage. Perhaps things will ease enough tomorrow for us to dinghy in to a local marina to meet up with them.

With the clear and sunny skies, Ingram Bayou looks completely different. Compare this picture to the one from yesterday.

Ingram in all its glory!

Foggy Ingram!

Paula decided she was in a baking mood today, so fired up the oven and made some Banana Oatmeal cookies. Holy cow, they sure smelled good. The folks on the sailboat downwind of us came out sniffing the wind to figure out where the smell came from!  I have been snacking on them all day!

I finally got around to launching the dinghy, so we could go exploring. Of course, Duke was quite excited at the opportunity to go for a bathroom break ashore, so that was the first place we visited. He wasted no time in hopping out of the dink and taking care of business. He was one happy dog!

Back to the boat for lunch... hot dogs with pepper jack cheese, potato salad, and cole slaw. With an ice cold beer to wash it down. Life is surely good! :)

Then it was time to get down to business. I have been meaning to make some changes to our electrical system. We have an Iota 90 amp battery charger that I installed a few years ago to supplement the 120 amp charger in our inverter. The problem was that the Iota charger was running off the engine room light circuit. So, if I forgot to unplug it after shutting down the generator, it would be using the batteries to run the charger. That was not good. Also, when running the generator, if I had both chargers running, using the oven or cooktop would cause the circuit breaker to trip. So I wanted to isolate the Iota charger to a dedicated breaker that only ran from the generator or shore power. I spent the afternoon running new wires and connecting to a spare breaker on the electrical panel. It took a few hours but I finally got it all hooked up. When I ran the generator and tested the new configuration, the breaker tripped after a few seconds. It turns out the charger needs a 30A breaker, and I had connected it to a 10A breaker. Duh!  Fortunately, the galley air conditioner is on the fritz, so I was able to connect to that 30A breaker. Voila! We can now run both chargers, oven, and cooktop simultaneously! So now I only have to run the generator for two hours, rather than three hours, to get the house bank batteries charged up! An afternoon well spent. :)

By the time I was finished with the electrical project, it was time for our daily sunset ride in the dinghy. A couple of travel mugs of wine and off we go. While Ingram Bayou is known for it's scenic beauty, it is also known as a location of abandoned boats. There are two sailboats way in the back now. I got a picture of only one, but will get a picture of the other on our next outing tomorrow. The one pictured below was not here when we came through last May. 

Abandoned sailboat

We cruised all the way to the back of Ingram. The waterway forks in the back, with the west leg dead ending about a half mile back. The northeast leg goes back into the woods a ways, then is blocked by a fallen tree. The fishing is supposed to be good back there, but I have never tried. Since we are stuck here this seems like it may be a good time to give it a try. 

While we were out another sailboat came in and anchored between us and the other sailboat. They are still a good ways from us, so we still have the back area of Ingram to ourselves. The folks on both of the sailboats also took a late afternoon dinghy cruise through Ingram. We chatted with the people from the first sailboat. They commented on the fact that they had seen us here several times here before. Paula and I had already noted that this boat was here the last three times we have anchored here. As I mentioned previously, we thought they were living aboard here. It turns out that it is purely coincidence that they just happen to be anchored here at the same time we are. They come over from Mobile and spend a week or so at a time here. The guy even apologized to me for shining his spotlight in my eyes last May, when we were making our way in here late at night, after our nightmare crossing of Mobile Bay.

As the sun set it was getting quite chilly, and the wind was picking up again. So we decided it was time to get back to Microship. Poor Duke was shivering, and his teeth were chattering! As we turned the corner and the boat came back into view, Paula commented on how beautiful the scene was, and asked me to get a picture of it. So here it is.

Microship at anchor in Ingram Bayou
Once back aboard it was time for a couple of sundowners, and watch the sunset. The wind had subsided again, and it was very peaceful. No dolphin excursion boats, no fishermen, just the sound of nature. As the light faded the stars came out in all their glory. The Milky Way was very bright. 

Sunset on Ingram Bayou

Paula made her homemade Chicken Pot Pie, and I was in heaven. It must be driving those poor folks downwind on the sailboats crazy to be smelling all this good food. On top of that, she baked a Dutch Apple Pie for dessert. If she keeps cooking like this, I hope the wind never lets up!

1 comment:

Scott Kolek said...

Nice pictures and story, although personally I like the foggy Ingram picture. You know me and the sun don't get along. ;)