We ventured out of Wrightsville Beach and back into the ICW towards Cape Fear River. Yes, Cape FEAR, the treacherous sounding body of water that does not have an inviting name. The shallows of Frying Pan Shoals extend 30 miles outside of the entrance to Cape Fear River and are known to be dangerous, or at the very least, to be avoided. And, remember the movie, Cape Fear, starring Robert DeNiro, Nick Nolte, and Jessica Lange (1991)? To avoid the fearfulness of Cape Fear, you just plan accordingly. We checked the currents and planned our trip down that part of the river to miss the fiercest current. It worked – we had a very peaceful run and arrived in Southport, North Carolina in mid-afternoon.
Southport has been the location for a number of movies, most recently Nicholas Sparks’ Safe Haven (he lives in New Bern, NC.) Other movies filmed here are Domestic Disturbance, Crimes of the Heart, Spies, I Know What You Did Last Summer, and Summer Catch. I think we will have to rent some of these when we return home. The town is very walkable and very charming. We liked it a lot.
The world is truly small! We had barely set foot on the street just behind a little restaurant, Fishy Fishy, right on the dock, when a man came right up to us to tell us he was from Middlefield CT and saw our hailing port of Durham, CT!! Middlefield and Durham are neighboring towns and share the same school system. Both towns are quite small so it is out of the ordinary to run into someone so far away. He was so excited at the coincidence. Frankly, so were we! His wife and their friends, visiting from Middlefield, joined him and we had a nice little visit right there on the docks.
After our walking tour, with a little shopping thrown in (we needed more cold weather clothes so we bought sweatshirts,) we decide to have dinner at Fishy Fishy. Its reputation is well-deserved. We had a great dinner and were able to watch Kindred Spirit at anchor through the entire meal.