Cheryl and Dudley's Sailbatical Adventure
Sailbatical Serendipities (Day 41)

Sailbatical Serendipities (Day 41)

Prior to this sailbatical, I delighted in serendipities: bumping into a friend at the airport, making a new client during a chat at the hair salon, and stumbling upon a favorite rock tune that held the answer to that day’s challenge. Some synonyms for serendipity include chance, fate, luck, and coincidence. I prefer other synonyms, like providence or destiny, for I believe that staying open facilitates God’s earthly delivery of key messages and solutions, sometimes delivered by strangers whom aren’t even aware they are acting as angels of mercy.

Now that we live on a boat, I especially delight in serendipities, no matter how small. They seem somehow sweeter, and more appreciated. Perhaps it’s because we are so dependent on others to help us supply the basics of life, now that we are car-less (that’s car-less, not careless). Or just maybe, I’m beginning to emerge from the fog of work and am able to clear my mind, making me more open than usual.

We have been blessed with several serendipities along this journey. Making new friends at the Dismal Swamp ranks high on the list (Day 11) especially since those friends kept reappearing to provide fellowship (Day 12), mechanical advice (Day 14), music (Day 19), and leadership out of the fog (Day 20).

We followed S/V Winsome Lass in the fog --you can barely see the red marker (triangle) ahead
We followed S/V Winsome Lass in the fog on Day 20.

And being in the Hilton Head area for Thanksgiving presented a few serendipities as well, when friends just happen to be in town for the holiday and excited to host the turkey dinner. And Savannah friends just happen to be free to join us. And because I posted some of those plans on social media, a couple of Michigan friends saw my posts and texted that they would be visiting family in Hilton Head for Thanksgiving.

Yep. On Day 41 were able to meet up with Kurt and Angela at Skull Creek Marina, a stone’s throw (okay, maybe field goal distance for Justin Tucker) from where Kurt’s dad lives. photo 1We know Kurt through work-related adventures (underscores the meaning of blog post Days 37-38) and had dinner with him and his wife Angela in Grand Rapids MI just prior to beginning our sailbatical. This time, it was our pleasure to host cocktails on Belle Bateau at the marina, and give them the nickel tour of our new home. Then they hosted dinner at the Old Fort Pub, where Ed, Kurt’s dad, celebrated his 90th birthday last year. Ed joined in on the fun and we enjoyed some of the best food of the trip. The laughter and stories were good for our souls. Another serendipity highlight!

Kurt, Angela, Ed (91 years young), and us at the Old Fort Pub in Skull Creek.
Kurt, Angela, Ed (91 years young), and us at the Old Fort Pub in Skull Creek.

Earlier in the day, I experienced shopping serendipities. Yes, they do happen, though it certainly helped that I didn’t set out to shop on Black Friday. Instead, this was Serendipity Saturday. You see, part of the cruising life includes keeping a running list of things we need just in case the next stop provides a courtesy car. So when Susan offered her car, we jumped at the chance. She and Will kept their tee time while we set off to Target, Staples, Harris Teeter, and a post office.

Susan and Will waving goodbye from golf cart.
Susan and Will waving goodbye from golf cart.


The serendipity stop of the day was Fretworks, a delightful guitar shop located between Sun City and Hilton Head Island. Originally, I had called another music store with my guitar request, and they referred me to Fretworks, which somehow had not appeared in my Google search. It took a bit of detective work to find this friendly shop, but I was so glad I did. I explained that I needed an action adjustment for my Little Martin guitar, and because I was passing through town on a boat (that always raises the eyebrows), I needed it done while I waited. Owner Rick was able to adjust the action so that my fingers can actually press the chords without me gasping in pain. Yay!

Owner Rick of Fretworks fixed my guitar on the spot!
Owner Rick of Fretworks fixed my guitar on the spot!

As I write this, I continue my Thanksgiving weekend with giving thanks for serendipities. Small ones, and big ones. Those experienced with friends, or offered by strangers. I wonder how many I may have missed in my life by neglecting to connect the dots. But rather than dwelling there, I’m simply glad that I have created an open mind and space for serendipities to enter, so that I may listen, learn, and love.

The sun sets over Belle Bateau's bowsprit on Day 41.
The sun sets over Belle Bateau’s bowsprit on Day 41.

4 Responses to Sailbatical Serendipities (Day 41)

  1. We ‘delight in serendipities no matter how small’ too!

    What a lovely evening we all had – thank you for spending it with us. We will continue to follow your adventure and hope the ‘bow-thruster fairy’ brings you some magic dust!

    • So glad we got to spend time together! We couldn’t have planned that if we tried. Safe travels back to Michigan!

  2. Amen to this post! I’m excited to hear that you are getting to experience such wonderful serendipities! Angel and I, although not sailing, are navigating new territory by land, and are so grateful when we see God’s hand moving in the everyday! Bless your journey, friend!

    • Thanks Robin. Glad you are enjoying blessings on your journey too. FYI-we may not venture further south than Vero Beach before heading to the Bahamas. So don’t think we’ll be able to visit you from the sea.

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Cheryl Duvall and Dudley Whitney

3 Church Circle, Unit #138

Annapolis, MD 21401

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