Jeremy, Micah, and I emerged through a thick fog into a land of lighthouses, mooring fields and quaint houses by the sea just like a scene out of book. You probably could not choose a more mystical way of entering Mystic, Connecticut if you tried. foggy.jpg We spent much of the gray morning trying to find a reasonably priced marina or mooring field that wasn't full up. It was more of a challenge than we imagined. Connecticut is the most expensive area we have seen yet. We finally found a marina slip that was expensive, but wouldn't break the bank.

Noank Village Shipyard was not a ritzy place for its price; but it had showers, laundry, and a great view. We were also told about The Green Bicyle by one of the dock hands. The Green Bicycle are free bikes that can be used around the area with a returnable deposit of 10$. Mystic and Noank are some of the small villages that make up Groton and with the bikes we would be able to travel between villages. It was a really cool idea that unfortunately ended being less cool in practice. As we rode with Micah to his train in downtown Mystic we realized that the bikes were all in serious disrepair.

It was sad to see Micah go. We had only just arrived and had hoped to show him around the area, but duty calls. balloons.jpg It was a nice sail here and we enjoyed having the company during the wet, foggy night. I know Jeremy also enjoyed having someone help him fish those godawful helium balloons out of the sea. Yes everyone, this is what happens to those balloons your kids let go of.

After Micah left I quickly succumbed to the horrible cold my body had been hinting at. It was a lousy thing to have on my birthday, but we made the best of it. Jeremy took me to the Olde Mystick Village for window shopping and dinner and then back to boat to continue my whining and sleeping.

It wasn't long before I gave Jeremy my cold and 4th of July saw me feeling better and Jeremy throwing me dirty looks. We still had a pretty good 4th of July.seaport.jpg We hopped in the dinghy and cruised around Mystic. We motored up to Mystic Seaport(very cool mariner museum with reconstruction of an old sailing town) and tied up the one of the many docks in the old village. We were getting away with hanging out there for free, but we still went in and bought the yearly membership. cool.jpg So much for being sneaky.

After Mystic Seaport we went into town and got a nice bowl of soup and a wrap from Bartleby's Coffee house. As we walked down the town dock to where we had tied up our dinghy we noted a couple locals fishing off the dock. One elderly gent was catching one fish right after another, much to the envy of the man next to him. freefish.jpgIntrigued by his luck, we bantered with and watched him for a while. He eventually caught a Porgy that was big enough to not be thrown back. He told us that he doesn't like to eat fish and offered it to us. It made a pretty nice lunch the next day.

We topped off the 4th of July by making some hot toddies and watching the fireworks from our boat. There is a lighthouse on a little outcropping of land only a couple boat lengths away from where we were docked. fourth.jpg Every year the owner of this little lighthouse takes donations from the locals and puts together a firework show. In other words we had a great seat for the show. Quixote apparently does not like fireworks and spent the night cowering in the V-berth.

After looking at our finances we decided that we could not continue to stay in Noank no matter how cool Mystic was. We located a marina that had an affordable weekly rate.NL.jpg That weekend we did the two hour sail to New London, a larger city we been to previously while I was interning in Connecticut. The water way was very crowded, but it was a pretty day.

Unfortunately, New London was as unimpressive as we remembered it. Despite meeting a few friendly locals, New London has a scary ghetto kind of feel. It lacks a lot of charm and beauty found in other parts of Connecticut. Regardless of its affordability, we determined immediately that we did not want to stay past the week.

The one truly wonderful thing that did exist in New London is the fireworks for their annual Sailfest. NL2.jpg We were told my many people that the show was the one of the best on the East coast. I was skeptical as crowds of sun burned rednecks binge drinking beer and blaring country music filled the docks with their motor boats. My skepticism melted away as the best firework show I have ever seen got under way. Jeremy put on a Dave Matthews Band CD on our stereo providing the perfect background as heart shapes, smiley faces, and planet shapes exploded in the sky.