Just a short distance north of Oxford is the town of St. Michaels. Known as a destination for boaters on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake, St. Michaels by boat, from Oxford would be a day trip out of the Tred Avon, back into the Choptank River, out to the Bay, and north around Tilmans point, then east to St. Michaels, or, take the ferry across the Tred Avon to Bellevue and bicycle the 10 miles into town.
That seemed OK, we met the ferry and enjoyed our ride across the river, then began our trek into St. Michaels. Temperatures in the 90’s made it a long ride and we had depleted our water before getting into town. We rested a couple of times and made the trip in about 1-1/2 hours.
St. Michaels has a lot of shops for tourists and the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.
This working museum with boat restorations and many of the types of boats exclusive to the Bay area, including “Skipjacks”, Log Canoe” and others. The CBMM also had a reproduction of the light houses exclusive to the Bay.
After our ride in from Belview and then walking around town and the maritime museum Cynthia informed me “I signed up for the bike ride into town. I am not going to ride that bike back. Find us another way.” “Are you kidding me?” “Nope. Find us another way back” That made me pause. How am I going to get us and the bikes back to the ferry landing. We will need a pick up or a taxi with a large trunk.Our bikes fold but still take up quite a lot of room. No Uber cars in the area.”I’m hungry lets get something to eat.”
At a The Shore BBQ Company I let the owner know of our or my dilema. “I got a couple of Watermen that come in for lunch. I’m sure they would help you out.” Sure enough they came in the BBQ and the owner pointed them out. I introduced myself and explained our position. They were happy to help and would not accept money but did let us buy their lunch. While talking I noticed one of the Watermen’s Tee shirt was marked First Place docking competition. Asked about it he said “It.s was not much.” But his friend told the whole story. Turns out he was so fast he kept winning all the competitions and now just watches. We were shown a video of his docking a 40+foot single engine crab boat in less than 30 seconds, single handed. Very impressive.
The Watermen really helped us out and gave us another look at the lives on the eastern shore.
Another great day on the Eastern Shore. I have a lot of respect for the watermen. They start their day at about 4:00A.M. and are back to the docks around noon. That’s so the distributor can get the fresh crabs to the restaurants for the evening meals.