Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Black eyed peas on a bayou

Ever see that movie Captain Ron? Well that is pretty close to what the last couple of days have felt like. Kris and I couldn't get a stretch of weather that was good long enough to make the run to Port Aransas. We turned back once, but decided that on New Years Day we would make the trip down to a place called Offats Bayou. It is known to most cruisers around here as the best anchorage along the Texas stretch of the ICW.

There is an old saying amongst the boating community. There are those who have run aground, those who will, and those who lie. I've never been a very good liar so I'll just come on out and say that I grounded this boat good. Ran her right up onto a shoal. Kris was so scared she thought we were going to tip over. I'll admit my heart was beating a little quick, but you are not going to get any more out of me than that. We had just crossed under the Causeway Bridge and were looking for our turn down channel to the Bayou. We came a little long and had the red and green markers, but didn't realize that the red over green can was marking the shoal and not the channel. Sure enough, wham, we listed about 20 degrees to starboard and must have come a good foot and a half out of the water. Shocked is really all I can say. K and I had our moment of panic, but then I remembered something the previous owner had told me just about the time I was calling for the tow boat. "I never run aground such that Romance wouldn't dig a hole and pull me out". Remembering that, I hung up the cell phone and started running the old diesel in forward and reverse at full throttle. My hopes started climbing when Romance leveled out and the bow started drifting to starboard.

After a few more minutes of this, around 30 in total, we were free again. We got our bearing, lined up the markers, and made our way into Offats Bayou. We got the anchor down and secured just at sunset. The Gardens were still lit with Christmas lights and we had the whole place to ourselves. It was really a spectacular evening complete with black-eyed peas and cornbread. A family tradition of mine since I was a child.

We wanted to spend today at anchor doing absolutely nothing, but the weather once again is wreaking havoc on our sailing plans. Not wanting to kill ourselves beating into wind and rain we headed home and are now sitting back at Waterford Marina. We are going to continue to enjoy the rest of the week off starting with the Kemah Boardwalk and Houston Space Center both of which are just around the corner. Happy New Years Everyone!


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