After our docking fiasco on Monday evening, we arose a little extra-early on Tuesday morning so as to have our departure coincide with slack water. By 6:00 a.m., we were pulling from the slip in a very unexciting manner (thankfully!). The sun was still a few minutes from rising. Manasquan inlet was quiet and peaceful. We made our way between the jetties and back out into the Atlantic. We then continued northward in anticipation of entering New York Harbor sometime around noon. We approached the city full of excitement which was tempered with some trepidation. New York Harbor is, of course, one of the busiest harbors in the world with large container ships making their way in and out of port, ferries criss-crossing the harbor, mixed in with other commercial and recreational vessels, to compound the challenges.
We were so pumped to be bringing our own vessel into New York Harbor. As we made our way beneath the Verrazano Narrows bridge which opens up vistas of the Statue of Liberty and Manhattan, we could not help but feel some camaraderie with thousands of immigrants in former days, likely even our own relatives, who made their way over this same body of water and, after 1886, caught sight of the lady in the harbor welcoming them to America. Just a little while after passing beneath the bridge, we were approaching the Statue and bearing to the left just before reaching her, leaving the Lady to our starboard. We passed through a narrow inlet past the Statue of Liberty ferry docks and into a small basin situated behind the colossal structure. We joined two other sailboats and dropped anchor in about 15 feet of water. Lady Liberty stood proudly in full view from Beatitude’s cockpit.
As we approached New York Harbor, I could not get the gospel song of many years ago out of my head:
“In New York Harbor stands a lady,
With a torch raised to the sky;
And all who see her know she stands for
Liberty for you and me.” – Statue of Liberty, Neil Enloe
The anchorage behind the Statue does not have access to land nearby, but we were content to relax and spend the evening on board. We sat out on the trampolines for a while enjoying the cool breeze blowing in from the harbor. We grilled steak for dinner and paired it with a nice red California zinfandel. This was followed with watching one of our favorite movies, “Pride and Prejudice.”
Our anchor held fine overnight. This morning we slept in a little later than usual (7:15) and decided to dedicate the morning to boat work and cleaning. Cindy did most of the cleaning and I went about doing some minor electrical repairs, among other things. After devouring some delicious pizza Cindy made for lunch, we weighed anchor almost twenty-four hours after dropping it. When we pulled up the anchor it was covered in the most disgusting black goop you can imagine. The chain was also entangled in fishing line and numerous pieces of black plastic garbage bags it had accumulated and drug up from the bottom. Yuck! But, despite this, it was a perfect location to spend our first day in the Big Apple. We made our way out past Lady Liberty once again and into New York Harbor on the way to our next stop. As we did so, we felt again the sense of awe and wonder that we had navigated our own vessel up the east coast and into this famous city’s harbor. It’s a feeling I can’t really describe, but I’m thankful we were able to experience it.
After about an hour of cruising up the Hudson River, we arrived at the marina at which we had made reservations four days earlier. Unfortunately, when I called the dock master sounded like he didn’t have a slip for me, despite multiple phone conversations previously. He had one slip, but he didn’t know wide it was. Our beam (width) is 24’ 7”. Well, after trying to fit into it, I can tell you that the slip wasn’t that wide. The entire time, I had to beg him for information as to where I was going and what the plan was. I’d definitely not recommend the Lincoln Harbor Yacht Club Marina. The entire experience was distasteful and unprofessional. But, maybe it was for the better because the place looked pretty run down on top of everything else.
The main reason we’re getting a marina in NYC is because our daughter, Julie, and Tracy are coming to see us this evening! They’ll be staying through Sunday. We’re looking forward to a great time in the city with them. But, unfortunately, at this point, I was scrambling for a place to dock Beatitude. The first marina I called had no slips that could accommodate us. Fortunately, the second did. A few moments later we pulled up to the dock in Newport Yacht Club Marina. What a difference between this place and the first. This place is much nicer, run much more professionally, and was actually cheaper!
After docking, we did some laundry and some more cleaning in anticipation of our anxiously-awaited guests. We had a quick bite to eat at a nearby Chili’s and now sit at Starbuck’s for wifi. We can’t wait for Julie and Tracy to arrive.