We left Chestertown early Friday morning and motored back down the Chester River to a familiar spot shown to us by our sailing parents, Penny and Dave, called Lovely Cove. Lovely Cove is a peaceful spot at a cozy little bend on Langford Creek. It is the place where last fall, Damian and I kayaked up the smaller streams and discussed our tentative life plan: the dream we have been living out ever since. We were both sentimental about going back.
Sailing through a sail school
Sailing up Langford Creek, we saw hundreds of little white flecks–sails out in the distance. As we approached, we realized it was a bunch of little sun fishes from a local sail school. We were excited to see all of the kids in their own individual boats feeling the wind and holding their mini tillers, feeling the wind and learning how its direction is the key to the propelling of their vessels. A few of them looked bored, and I wanted to yell down to them and shout, “You’re doing the greatest thing in the world!”
Booh-bah’s first swim
Once we were anchored, we both prepared the boat for Booh-bah’s first swim. We had researched and read lots of sailors who had boat cats explain the importance of preparing and training their cat for an emergency if the cat unfortunately falls overboard for whatever reason. They all encouraged us to practice/simulate an experience where the cat is in the water and learns to climb up the side of the boat.
We had watched several YouTube videos, including this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iLOLWY9RDxE. As you can see in Millie’s case, the owners had put out that thick rope into the water for her to latch onto with her claws and climb up onto the swim deck. Damian and I decided to use one of our carpets to hang over the side of the boat for Schnitzel to climb up from the water. I cut a slit in the carpet and put it around the starboard stern cleat. Then still in his lifejacket, we put our sweet little feline friend in the water and helped him find the carpet. He instinctively knew what to do, but he had first headed towards our metal swim ladder. Damian gently helped him around to the dangling carpet, and then he quickly realized how to get up the side of the boat.
Poor little thing was all wet and pitiful looking. We had wanted to practice a second time but decided after one try that little Booh-bah had had enough. When cats are wet, their fur mats down to their skin and bones, and they look so skinny and scrawny until they eventually dry out again.
Things we love at anchor:
- swimming around the boat when it is really hot out
- relaxing and napping with all of our hatches open
- eating dinner in the cockpit with a sunset, waterfront view
- stargazing on the bow at night with our binoculars