With Relentless due to arrive in Newport, Rhode Island on June 10th, we flew out from Los Angeles ahead of the delivery date. We wanted to have a few extra days to settle in at the Newport Bay Club and Hotel and get good rest before meeting our new boat.
At Bannister’s Wharf, we happened to run into Amy and Doug of SV Black River who had just arrived for their boat delivery. Our daughter Kelsea was able to join us for the month which we were delighted about. We were happy to be able to introduce her to our friends who we had grown fond of through our boat builds and spending time together at Outremer Week.
The night before our boat delivery, Steve and I hardly slept, but the long-awaited morning was finally here. After a good breakfast, we made our way to the launch at Oldport. It was hard to explain all the emotions that we felt as we made our way up the steps of the ship, climbed out to the viewing platform, and laid eyes on Relentless for the first time. We were so grateful that Kelsea was able to capture the moment for us.
We got to experience the filling of seawater which takes about 8 hours in total. This lowers the ship so the boats can drive off. Our call time of 10:30 was the last stage of the process. When we first saw Relentless, she was still on supports. Now, she was only about an hour until she was on the water. We watched as the divers beneath the boats removed the supports from each vessel. Steve signed the papers that released Relentless to us. We took some more photos and met Ike and his family, the owners of Goombay, the third Outremer.
When it was time to board Relentless and drive her off the ship, we made our way down steep steps and walked on a narrow railing along the side of the hull to step aboard. The crew had done a nice job preparing our boat. She was clean and all the plastic had been stripped off — a nice surprise! She was absolutely beautiful! And she was just ours!
After a family photo on the bow, we prepared her for exit. She was positioned toward the front of the ship, so we would be the last to disembark. We watched anxiously as the other boats navigated their way in reverse through the narrow stern with yachts lining both sides.
It was finally our turn. I would drive with Steve and Kelsea being my additional eyes and offering encouragement along the way. We only panicked once when I got a little too close to the starboard bow of a neighboring boat. The ship’s crew hollered at us, but with laser focus, we finally got her through and out into the open water. Steve was so encouraging and never raised his voice once. Kelsea captured the whole spectacle on video.
After that, we headed for Goat Island Marina, our berth for the week. The trip was a short 10-minute motor. This would be the perfect location to have the planned battery upgrade completed, additional solar panels connected, and our crate unpacked as we moved aboard.
Safe and sound at the north end of the fuel dock, we could finally breathe a sigh of relief and pinch ourselves while processing the events of the day. We took in the spectacular views of Newport Harbor before heading inside to organize the interior for our formal move in the next day. When we were done, we said goodnight to our beautiful boat and went out to celebrate with a delicious seafood dinner.
Tomorrow, we were moving in, so stay tuned for that story!