Day 21- Coinjock, NC to Norfolk, VA

We pull out this morning to a peaceful quiet scene. It is early as we expect to have a long day into Norfolk ahead of us. Here is what all the boats looked like at the face dock in Coinjock as we pull out around 6:30. A few boats have aready beaten us out....

By the way, for those of you who know Coinjock you are likely asking yourself ---well??? did you have the roast beef???? Short answer: yessiree! For those of you unfamiliar with Coinjock Marina, it is home to a restaurant that is famous far and wide among boaters (and others) for the best prime rib "anywhere". Well, naturally we had to test it out...and we agree, it was delicious! We even had some left-over for lunch tomorrow. yeeha!

We start out in Coinjock Bay moving toward the North Landing River. The waters are nice and calm and the wind is much improved. So far, it is looking like it'll be a nice day. We could use one of those....

However, as morning moves on we encounter lots of cloud cover and cooler temps as a result. Brrrr. (again)

But, we do come across the next state - Virginia. Well HELLO Virginia, it's nice to meet you....

Shortly after we enter Virginia, we see something way too familiar. This looks errily the same as parts of Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina - kind of sleepy, swampy, and deserted. At least so far. We are sure to see that change soon.

The boat traffic today does change pretty early though. It takes on a more "commercial" look to it. We see, and must share the narrow channels with, lots of barges and their Pilot Boats like these:

Today the most evident theme is ---bridges. We must pass under a total of 13 of them today. Some are railroad bridges that are open most of the time, some are tall bridges that we can just slide under, but most of them are bridges for which we must follow timed openings - 9 in all. And, in addition to that, we will experience our very first LOCK (ever) - gulp!

Here is what we saw in front of us in the Great Bridge Lock. It was really no big deal at all. We only had 7 of us in there so there was tons of room. From what we hear, that is often a rare indulgence. We are ok with that :-)

The comical thing about all these bridges is that all day we found ourselves motoring in a line - 7 of us in all - moving along like a family of little ducks one at a time. Here is what we looked like as we passed under one of the many of bridges we encountered.

Coming in closer to Norfolk, everything around us suddenly took on a much more rustic, industrial feel. No more pretty scenery around here:

Here we are as we approach our stop for the evening - "Waterside Marina". Looks civilized....

It is indeed civilized. Here is where we sit in our comfortable slip. We have arrived a good 2 hours earlier than expected because our bridges lined up very efficiently today. We only had to wait for any of them for a short while. We had expected much more waiting time between openings. A bonus! It looks like the weather is again improving after a very cloudy day. We are in around 2:30. It has been a good  day after all.