Holidays in Beaufort

We decided to take a long weekend trip out to Beaufort to visit Ryana, talk with the boat yard about needed work and play tourist for the weekend. As usual our trips to the East Coast are on redeyes so we arrived a bit tired, got our rental car in New Bern and drove the hour drive to Beaufort, stopping for Mexican food along the way.

We stayed at the Beaufort Inn which is nice enough and is walking distance to town for shopping and eating. We got an early check in and managed a decent nap before exploring. We ventured out looking at all the historic homes all decorated for the holidays, that we’ll get to see more of later when we take part in the Candlelight tour.

Our first stop of interest was the Old Burying Ground that dates back to the 1730’s, you pick up a brochure and follow a self lead itinerary discussing dead people of interest. A bit strange, I wonder if all the other folks that aren’t mentioned in the brochure are a bit jealous of never getting attention. Anyway we saw the guy that was lost at sea only to return to have his wife remarried to another man, many war heros from both Revolutionary and Civil wars and the girl buried in a rum barrel. We also got to hear about all of the town’s hauntings from the guy that leads the ghost walks, he just happened to be strolling the cemetery with his wife. He had a few good stories, enough to make the hair on the back of my neck stand on end and for Diana not to want to walk the town at night. That was about it for Thursday besides an early dinner.

Friday was our day to play tourist, no agenda. After breakfast at the Beaufort Inn we wandered town in a mild drizzle where all the shops were closing out all their merchandise for the 2013 year. It seams most shops close in January and completely reset their inventory, not sure I’ve seen this before, but it’s the low season and it’s always nice to have the luxury of a reset. The thing I really did not want to miss was the Beaufort Maritime Museum. . . Blackbeard!!!! Not sure if you are familiar but it is thought that Blackbeard scuttled his flagship the “Queen Anne’s Revenge” just outside of the Beaufort channel, and the museum has some great exhibits showing the artifacts that have been recovered from the wreck site; how awesome is that? We had dinner at the Blue Moon Bistro which was great, both service and food. We stopped by the Backstreet Pub, the beer was good and it was as musty as ever.

On Saturday we were supposed to meet up with a guy from Jarrett Bay to take him out to hear the squeaks on Ryana, but he was too busy working on another job so we took her out on our own since we had nothing else on our agenda. Well it’s said that there are two kinds of sailors, those that have run aground and those that are liars, I’m not a liar . . . won’t get into the details, but the major lesson learned is to have both captain and admiral review charts prior to weighing anchor and both agree on a course. No harm no foul, we backed off with no issue. Made the bascle bridge and headed out the inlet for about 5 miles then returned. We had tickets to the Candlelight Tour which started at 5 so really wanted to get back. I was able to sweet talk the bridge operator to open 2 minutes late so we didn’t have to wait another 30 minutes for another opening. We cruised back to Jarrett Bay with time to spare for a shower before the tour was to begin.

The Candlelight Tour is essentially an open house of many of the historic homes and inns in Beaufort. All this is quite interesting to us being on the West Coast where historic is anything over 75 year old. Many of these building date back to the early 18th century. All the hosts and hostess were very friendly and were quick to answer any questions around the structures themselves, past owners and general history of the town. It was a pretty cool evening.

Sunday we finally got to meet our project manager Steven at Jarrett Bay. Seems like a really nice guy and went over the warranty items we’d like them to repair along with the modifications we want to make before heading out on our trip; raising the davits, upgrade the counter, add a new through hull for the watermaker, increase the life lines so Stanley can’t fall out and a few others. Jarrett Bay seems like a great yard, but may be a bit too expensive to have them execute the changes we want. No big deal as we can decide later to do it ourselves or have another yard do it.

Back home to California bid a farewell to Ryana and we’ll see her again in a few months.