Week 22: Settling in at St. Augustine

Old town St. Augustine is deserted, with shop after shop displaying “Closed until further notice” signs on their doors or windows.

I can’t shake a sense of discombobulation; Allan feels like we’ve dropped into an episode of “The Walking Dead.”

Empty street in Old Town St. Augustine
Old Town St. Augustine is a ghost town these days.

Gone since March 20 are the days of eating at one of the city’s many restaurants: we look up menus of the few still open and call in orders to reduce our contact or exposure time.

Deserted Bridge of Lions
A previously rare noon moment of no traffic on St. Augustine’s Bridge of Lions.

Also gone for now are casual, chatty encounters on the dock or in the marina’s laundry room. Laundry aboard Vinyasa is washed on the boat and hung to dry, as if we were in a remote anchorage.

The morning Cruisers Net on VHF channel 72 and FaceTime happy hours are our ways of having some minimal interaction with other cruisers.

Phone calls, texts, and email are our only way of connecting with our children, challenging during a week when they experienced highs such as Marine Boot Camp graduation! and lows, the heart-wrenching loss of a beloved canine companion. Not being able to travel to share joys and tribulations is disconcerting but necessary. We are so thankful for our family’s health at a time when many are experiencing devastating heartbreak.

As the week progressed, we noticed others in public venues were more likely to practice social distancing as we crossed paths. We also saw more people wearing masks, as were we. Especially at Costco, where we did a major re-provisioning run.

When we moved aboard we knew we’d have limited space while on passage, but we never contemplated having our movements restricted while in sight of land. That’s why I’m eagerly awaiting the arrival of a new pump to inflate our SUP. Our old pump broke a few months ago, and we deflated the SUP before we went offshore to Jamaica. It will be so nice to have the option to exercise on the paddle board, when the water is calm.

Sunset at St. Augustine mooring field
Beautiful sunsets are always a delight.

If you’ve read this far, thank you! Wishing us all good health and loving comfort in the weeks and months ahead.

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