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Aug. 17 – Chimney Bluffs State Park

“Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” -John Muir 

On Saturday we finally got a nice day to explore and hike at Chimney Bluffs State Park. High water in Lake Ontario this past spring made hiking along the beach impossible, but today we were able to hike the beach and the Bluff Trail. We started with the beach and I was less than impressed…I guess my expectations were set too high. It was nice and I was glad we had come, but it just seemed like a rocky beach with cliffs that that weren’t too impressive…at least from the water. Well, all that changed as soon as we hiked to the top of the cliffs…the cliff definitely seemed higher and VERY impressive from the rim where we could have easily fallen off. The Bluff Trail gave us a wonderful view of the lake and an amazing look at the power of nature. 

Updates to The Pearl (Part II)

“The big lesson in life is never be scared of anyone or anything.” ―Frank Sinatra  

The Pearl is a Monk 36, hull #21, built in 1983…she’s old, 36 years old. We’ve done a lot of work on her, but this summer we’re giving her a facelift on the inside. Since the boat was built in the early 80s, it was built with ugly gold formica and gold vinyl in the shower. We painted the shower when we first bought the boat and it has held up very well. Our formica was so worn out the color was completely gone in some areas. We had several options for improving it…we could have new countertops installed, new formica laid or paint what we have. The easiest and cheapest way to go was paint.

Updates to The Pearl

“Learn to depend upon yourself by doing things in accordance with your own way of thinking.” -Grenville Kleiser

Last year I did a post that took readers on a tour of The Pearl…today’s post is an update to that tour. This summer we’ve been doing upgrades to the boat to refresh its look and make it feel a little more like home. When we bought the boat 9 1/2 years ago the saloon cushions were in good shape, so even though they weren’t the color I would have chosen, we left them alone and decorated the boat to match. After spending over 1500 days on the boat the cushions have gotten pretty worn out and needed to replaced, so now it was our chance to choose exactly what we wanted. It’s amazing how wonderful the new cushions feel and look…we love them.

Aug. 1 – Covered Bridges & Cute Towns

“Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly, leave the rest to God.” –Ronald Reagan

When Kyle and Brytanie moved to Pennsylvania in 2016 we enjoyed finding covered bridges in their county. We haven’t visited them all, but we’ve found seven just doing a little exploring. Pennsylvania is one of the leading states with the largest number of remaining covered bridges. 

We really enjoyed driving the back roads through Lancaster county. We had the chance to see some beautiful farms, cute little towns, lots of horse and buggies and we found six magnificent old covered bridges. There are 27 covered bridges in Lancaster County…so finding a few bridges was pretty easy. 


July 30- 31 Intercourse, PA (Amish Country)

“Remember that happiness is a way of travel – not a destination.” —Roy M. Goodman

We’ve been in New York for three months, so we decided it was time to fly home and visit family and friends. This year we decided to fly out of Baltimore…I know, it’s a long ways from Ithaca, but there were a few good reasons for using this airport. First we wanted to visit Kyle and his family before we left…Baltimore is as easy to get to as Philadelphia, Pittsburgh or Newark for a direct flight on Southwest (we had free flights). Another reason for flying out of Baltimore…we aren’t fond of flying out of Rochester or Syracuse…been there done that. Nether have direct flights into Austin on any airline. We’ve spent days waiting on connecting flights from those airports. 


July 13 – Last Day at Sea

“For whatever we lose (like a you or a me) it’s always ourselves we find in the sea.” —E. E. Cummings

Our last day at sea was beautiful…calm seas, blue skies and the temperature in the mid 70s. We couldn’t have asked for anything better. A perfect day for sitting on the deck relaxing.


July 11 – Day Five: Exploring in Bermuda (Part II)

“You go to heaven if you want to, I’d rather stay right here in Bermuda” —Mark Twain 

Here’s the second part of our day of exploring Bermuda. We enjoyed our scooter ride up to St. George, there was a lot less traffic on the south road once we were got away from the south shore beaches. St. George is where Bermuda began. The town was named after the legendary dragon slayer and patron saint of England and was Bermuda’s capital for more than 200 years. Town of St. George contains the highest proportion of historic buildings in the entire Island, and has been designated a Historic Protected Area to preserve its unique architecture.

July 12 – Day Six: Royal Naval Dockyard

“If your ship doesn’t come in, swim out to it.” —Jonathan Winters
We’re docked at King’s Wharf it’s one of two large docks at the Royal Naval Dockyard where cruise ships bring ashore 1000s of people each week. It’s a beautiful area surrounded by turquoise water, beautiful yachts and historic buildings.


July 11 – Day Five: Exploring in Bermuda (Part 1)

“We wander for distraction but we travel for fulfillment” – Hilaire Belloc

The problem with only having a few days in such an amazing place like Bermuda is not having enough time to take it all in or do all the wonderful things you’d like to do. We made the best of the time we had and we took in sights from the west end all the way up to St. George and Fort St. Catherine. In fact there’s just too much to report on in one blog post, so I’m cutting it into parts…part II will came later.

Our first stop…actually our first stop yesterday was Somerset Bridge. It’s a small bridge connecting Somerset Island with the mainland of Bermuda. With an opening of just 22” it’s said to be the world’s smallest drawbridge. The bridge is just wide enough for the mast of a well-sailed sailboat to pass through. Boats have to either have an appointment or wait for a kind passer by to help out by lifting the gate.

July 10 – Day Four: Hamilton, Bermuda

“The impulse to travel is one of the hopeful symptoms of life.” ― Agnes Repplier

We arrived in Bermuda around 8:30. After docking at the Royal Naval Dockyard we walked over to Oleander Cycle center to rent a scooter for the next two day. It’ll gives us the freedom to explore on our own and at our own pace. We spent the day in and around Hamilton. We did a little shopping and a little sight seeing.