We’ve been cruising for 12 days now and are still stuck in San Diego Bay.
We left Chula Vista after two nights and headed to Glorietta Bay for a planned two night stay at anchor. It was an easy trip and anchorage in a familiar location. We met up with Neil and Jessi from S/V Red Thread for happy hour. We found their blog about a year ago when they were gearing up to go cruising and it was cool to have them aboard to talk about cruising plans and preparations.
On Thanksgiving, we took the dinghy ashore in the morning so Sully could play before his nap. That afternoon the wind picked up and a big power boat that was anchored next to us started wildly swinging on it’s hook. Since we anchored after they did we pulled the anchor up and set a course to the public dock at Peohe’s restaurant so Astraea would be secure while we had Thanksgiving dinner at Matt and Anna’s house on Coronado. This is where the story gets embarrasing.
It’s always easy to dock a boat when no one is watching, but when there’s a hundred holiday diners at a waterfront restaurant – that’s when you have trouble. We’ve been Aboard Astraea for two and a half years and I’ve gotten pretty good at sailing and docking. Thanksgiving at the public dock proved to be a challenge. For some reason we were unable to dock starboard side to while towing our dinghy. Yeah, I’ll blame the three poor docking attempts on towing the dinghy. Finally, we decided to pull straight in to the south side of the dock. We nailed it on the first try, tied up our lines and got everything off the boat and locked it up for Thanksgiving dinner ashore. That’s when Natalie looked up and saw the “Water Taxi Only” sign. This was just as one of the large ferry boats was coming up towards the dock and and I mistook it for the water taxi. We cast off the dinghy and I spun the boat around and parked effortlessly on the inside of the dock. I still blame our poor docking technique on towing the dinghy…
Thanksgiving dinner was delicious and it was great to hang out with friends. That evening we cast off from the dock at Peohe’s and motored to the La Playa anchorage behind Shelter Island. I was apprehensive about night time anchoring, but we found a big open spot and dropped the hook with precision. It’s good to know that our anchoring practice paid off.
Friday afternoon I battled the Black Friday crowds to get our Macbook checked out at the Apple store because the system was running slow. It was terrible going to the mall on Black Friday. I know why they call it Black Friday because it was a dark and drity experience battling the crowds. I also visited the Best Buy to get some last minute electronics including an external bluetooth speaker so we can watch movies and clearly hear the sound while cruising. That night our friends Mike and Molly brought their boat, Sequoia, up to La Playa and rafted up with us. An hour after they tied up to our port side thick fog rolled in, and we listened to drama unfold on the radio about a 45 foot boat lost in the fog off Harbor Island.
The rest of the weekend was just playing ashore, hanging out with friends and of course, working on boat projects. We finally finished the deck job of screwing down the cockpit locker covers. Big thanks to Mike for his help on making that project a reality. We also made lee cloths to help keep us in a bunk or on the settee while we’re sailing.
Thanksgiving was a very busy day so we didn’t get to hang out with Matt and Anna like we usually do and just chill. We had them back aboard on Sunday and we went out for dinner at their favorite fresh fish place in San Diego, Mitch’s Seafood. It’s the underdog restaurant at the fisherman’s landing and we didn’t even know it was there! Hidden on the waterfront behind a fishing shop it boasts delicious fresh seafood from San Diego’s best fishing boats. A great joint!
The day after saying goodbye it was time to get back to boat projects to get Astraea ready to cruise. Natalie ran last minute errands while we had Molly’s car available to use, and I changed the oil and replaced a faulty engine preheat solenoid. The only problem with me tackling that project was that I didn’t disconnect the power to the solenoid and ended up shorting out our engine control panel. Now I need to replace all the gages. Doh! That was a stupid and avoidable mistake that ended up smoking more than a few hundred dollars of the cruising kitty.
We decorated the boat for Christmas today and are gearing up for our trip to Ensenada. We can’t wait for the weather to cooperate and not be rainy or super windy and full of waves for us to make our trip down the coast.