This is it! This will be my last blog on this amazing adventure we started way back on June 28, 2018 when we left Muskegon Yacht Club aboard Adventures Await. It is almost hard to comprehend all we have done and all we have seen, but the adventure has now come to a close. We are now back in our home in Kentwood, Michigan, and the boat has been sold and is now in the hands of her new owners, Dave and Wendy.
This last week had been a whirlwind of activity of finishing up cleaning and emptying the boat of all our possessions and handing her over. After picking up the U Haul in St. Augustine, Fl, last Thursday we spent last weekend packing and placed all of our belongings on the boat in boxes and then into the back of the truck. It was a lot of work but it was almost cleansing for us in being able to say good-bye to our boat that had sustained us and carried us for almost two years and through so many incredible experiences. We have had so much fun and joy on our boat in the five years we have owned her and we now wish the same for Dave and Wendy as they embark on their new adventures.
By this past Sunday afternoon the boat was totally empty of all our things and Dave and his friend, Jon, arrived to go through the boat and take possession. I was able to spend a few hours with him Sunday afternoon showing him the many systems, electrical panels, lazarettes, and pretty much everything else on the boat. Sharon and I stayed at a local hotel Sunday night and on Monday morning we returned to the boat and packed the dinghy and outboard into the U Haul, as we agreed to take those two things back to Michigan for Dave, and by 10:40 am we were on the road headed back to Michigan.
What was it like to climb into the U Haul and drive away from Adventures Await? It was hard. It was like leaving a part of us behind. But it was also okay to leave as we knew our adventures on her were over. And we know Dave and Wendy are going to love the boat and have amazing adventures of their own aboard her, and that helped. They also have grandkids and we could almost hear their squeals of delight this coming summer as they go out sailing and stay aboard her. They are going to love Adventures Await just as much as we did!
It took two days to return to Michigan and at 5:00 pm Tuesday afternoon we pulled into our driveway back at home. What a relief to arrive! The drive home was long but we spent a lot of that time reminiscing about our trip and all the fabulous places we were able to see and visit. We were truly blessed to have been able to do all we did and to see all we saw.
I will add up all the expenses of fuel, marinas (which was pretty rare for us to stay in a marina), and other things we spent money on later, but we do know we ended up traveling 8,654 nautical miles on Adventures Await since leaving. As I discussed in last week’s blog we ended up going up and down the east coast of the US twice, visiting the Bahamas twice and going all the way up to Maine. That is a long way to go on a sailboat, we think!
We have spent the last couple of days now getting re-adapted to living at home. It probably has been harder than we thought to transition to living back home as we almost have to reacquaint ourselves in how to live in a house. Our daughter and son-in-law had lived in our home so we had stored all our belongings in the basement. Recently they purchased a new home and moved out so we are now trying to find stuff we had packed away almost two years ago. So it has been interesting to re-establish ourselves in our home and figure out how to do things. (Thankfully our daughter stocked us with some groceries and coffee, so we’re doing ok!)
We have a lot of our clothes and stuff from the boat put away and are now in the process of finding our other stuff and pulling it up from the basement. My sister, Shelly, was gracious enough to let us use her spare car to get around in and tomorrow we will start the process of finding new vehicles.
On Wednesday evening, the day after arriving home, we went to visit my Mom and then over to see Lisa and Ryan’s new home. After hugging and greeting them we noticed someone coming out of Lisa and Ryan’s house, and it was Kristi! She surprised us by driving from Boston to be there when we arrived home! How amazing was that?! (It also helped that because of what is going on that she has to work from home the next bunch of weeks, and she doesn’t have to be in Boston to do her work.) It was actually the first time in 15 months that all five of us have been together! How cool?! The evening at Lisa and Ryan’s was filled with laughter and stories and was just a magical evening. So good to have us all together again! And in May when Lisa and Ryan have their baby it will be even more magical!
It will take us a while to get ourselves set back in our home, but we will get there. We are giving ourselves time to go through things and put things away so hopefully by the end of March we will feel a bit more established.
It has also been interesting to do all of this while this corona virus thing is going on around us. We actually feel very fortunate that we returned when we did. All of the quarantines and businesses closing was just starting after we were in St. Augustine already and on our way home. It was even a trick to see if a fast food restaurant was open as we drove home as there were virtually no cars in parking lots. Thankfully we could get food and go, but it was eerie to see so many empty parking lots by businesses and restaurants. We have also read many stories of those still traveling up the ICW having a harder time finding fuel docks and marinas that are still open and it is anticipated that it will only be harder for them in the next couple of weeks. So we are very glad and thankful to having arrived in St. Augustine when we did.
Thank you for reading my weekly blogs. I wrote them every week for family and friends to follow along with what we have been experiencing and doing, but it will also be a great way for us to remember our almost two year adventure. At some point I suppose I will have to shut our website down, but before I do that I will somehow print all 90 of the blogs I have written for us to reflect on.
We give God all the glory for all the things we have done and seen and are so thankful to Him for safety and guidance throughout our journey. Thanks be to God!