Our mission -- Space, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enter .. OOPS, sorry, I got carried away. Let me start again.

Our mission -- Warm Waters and Great Weather: The final frontier. These are the voyages of the Motor Vessel Traveling Soul. Its five-year mission: to explore strange warm waters, to seek out new forms of recreation and new civilizations, to boldly go where no Brown, Applegate or Higgins has gone before.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Second Letter from the Abacos

After the wind aborted our planned nights at Tahiti Beach, we went to the Marsh Harbor anchorage. It is pretty well protected from all directions and, since the wind direction was confusing us, we thought that would be a good refuge. We anchored, and, although we eventually got the generator started, knew that we would have to get someone to fix it – again. So, we decided to go to a marina in Hopetown, on Elbow Cay.

We had been in Hopetown before and really liked it. It has the big lighthouse that is one of only two hand-lighted lighthouses in the world. In fact, my original John Everett painting has the Hopetown lighthouse prominently featured. We arrived at the Hopetown Inn and Marina on Friday the 13th and called Richard from Cook’s Marine Services. He said he would be by the following day.  So we spent the balance of Thursday ashore in Hopetown looking around. We only went into the northern half of the town, where we checked out some gift shops and … Oh, there happened to be a restaurant/bar that we also decided to check out! We had beer and some homemade potato chips (which were very, very good). While we were eating, we saw Al and Michelle, the folks from Kindred Spirit. That we had originally met on the ICW in Georgetown, SC – outside of the Rice Museum as a matter of fact and saw them again later in Vero Beach where we had Thanksgiving. We like Al and Michelle because they keep their AIS system on almost all the time – and we know when we are getting close to them. They had initially intended to head all the way down to the Exumas, but have changed their minds and decided to stay on a mooring at Hopetown. And … who can blame them? It is a lovely location.

Richard, our repairman, called to let us know he couldn’t be there until the following morning, so we took part of the second day in Hopetown to explore the southern half of the town. We walked across the island and spent a half-hour or so strolling on the Atlantic Beach. It was beautiful as always. We also discovered a new restaurant on the Atlantic side. We certainly haven’t been to all of the restaurants in Hopetown, of course, but I thought we knew where most of them were; of this one, though, I hadn’t even heard. I guess we‘ll have to try it out next time!

On Saturday, Richard finally came, spent maybe fifteen minutes on the generator, and had it running again (just so you know, the story is not over – stay tuned). He charged us $20. I mean I couldn’t give him $20. He had taken time out of his schedule and had come across the harbor to visit the boat. I was expecting to pay him at least $100. But, since he only expected $10, I gave him $40. He was happy, I was happy, all God’s children were happy … until the generator broke down again the following day.

We also saw SeaSparrow. We seemed to be going the same places. However, they were now on their way south to the Exumas and beyond. They are a fun couple and I hope we see them again.

There was one other event that occurred on Saturday the 14th. Army lost to Navy (AGAIN … FOR THE 12th YEAR IN A ROW!) It wasn’t a surprise in that the previous week Army had lost to Hawaii, which had a 0-11 record until they played the cadets. I know many of you think it is funny. To me, it is not. Can you imagine any of the great generals allowing one of his subordinates to lose battle after battle … without being fired? Can you imagine the losing spirit being built into the Corps of Cadets – or at least those cadets who played on the football team? Well, there was one positive outcome that derived from our scrubbing by Navy. West Point FINALLY fired its coach.

On to more pleasant things. The generator was repaired, so we decided to set out for Great Guana, about an hour-and-a-half away. The wind was blowing at 15-20 MPH, from the SW and we only had a little protection so we huddled into the shore as closely as we dared, found a sandy spot and dropped the anchor. The boat drifted backwards a little, then, wham – Bertha grabbed the bottom and we suddenly stopped. Yessss! This is how it is supposed to work! Over time the wind clocked around – just like the forecasts said it would we only had a little protection from the wind, so we had more and more protection as time went on. By the morning, the island was blocking most of the heavy wind.

The reason we wanted to go to Guana was because the (in)famous restaurant/bar “Nippers” was having one of its Sunday Pig Roasts. We had heard a lot about them, but had never been to one. So we went to Great Guana, anchored and ate pig. They had roast pork, barbecued pork, macaroni and cheese, xxx and a few other things. Needless to say I spent my time on mac and cheese and the two types of pork. Actually, it was surprisingly good – but very expensive. Though it was all you could eat, it was $24 per person, and that was without the semi-mandatory drink!

Monday morning when we tried to turn on the generator to bring up the dinghy – you guessed it – the generator wouldn’t work. We were going to anchor in Marsh Harbor for a coup-le of days, but in light of the generator-from-hell we decided we would go to the marina at Marsh and get someone to fix it once and for all. When we got there, we called Richard (who had repaired it in Marsh Harbor) to see if he could recommend anyone. He told us that he had some errands to run at Marsh Harbor and he could come look at it on Tuesday if we wanted him to. That was great – or so we thought. Actually, he told us late on Tuesday that he wouldn’t be able to show up after all, that it would be Wednesday. On Wednesday we left three messages for him, but didn’t hear anything back. On Thursday AM we finally got a call that said he would be over in a few minutes. On Thursday he looked at it and basically decided he didn’t know what was wrong with it. AAARRRGGHHH! He wasted so much of our time!

Earlier in the week, we had re-connected with Kathy, from August Sun. Her husband, Martin, was back in the States wrapping things up from his former job. Martin, it turns out, used to be a Marine Engineer. He was to large ships, in other words, what Scotty was to the Starship Enterprise. He used to fix big diesel engines for a living. Although I really don’t like asking fellow cruisers for help on a project, Martin volunteered to take a look at our generator.  I explained the symptoms – as I had for each of the THREE different repairmen who had worked on it previously – and I told him what each of them had done. He nodded his head and said (in a classic Australian accent) “Did you change the filter in the lift pump?” I looked at him with my classic dumb look … “Lift pump?” I asked. ”Filter?”

He then asked, “Well does your generator have a lift pump?”

“Lift Pump?” I asked. “I dunno.” We got out the manual and sure enough, there was a lift pump and filter right next to the fuel filter. He got down next to the generator and looked … sure enough the lift pump filter said, “Change every 200 hours.” Since I didn’t even know there was a lift pump in the generator – or that it had a filter – I was pretty sure it hadn’t been changed recently. Moreover, as it happens, we had a couple of extra lift pump filters in our spare parts container. Martin changed the filter and … voila … we haven’t had a generator problem since (knock on wood). So, if you ever visit the boat and, sitting in my captain’s chair, I burst out with, “Martin, I need more power!” You will know I am just trying to emulate James T. Kirk, of the Starship Enterprise, calling for power from Mr. Scott, his Chief Engineer.

Ok, besides getting the generator fixed, we did two other things of note. First, we cleaned the boat. I mean we really cleaned her inside and out. We needed to; after a couple of weeks in the sea air, she needed a good scrubbing. We also cleaned her inside. We used wood polish on our wooden bulkheads and “Barkeeper’s Helper” on all the stainless. In short, we have a very, very clean boat.

The second thing we did was to re-provision. Now this is more complicated than it should be because we are going from running a boat with two persons on board to a boat with seven persons aboard; a boat with 60+ year old people to a boat with two 18 year olds, one 14 year old and two 40-ish year old people. Guess what … we all eat and drink differently.


Monday, December 16, 2013

First Post from the Abacos - 2013

Crossing the Gulf Stream: From the US to the Bahamas
Some of you may remember how I waxed poetic on previous crossings. I talked about the blueness, the power, the beauty and the depth of the ocean; I talked about the magnificence of the Gulf Stream; I talked about many a thing. This time, though, not so much. The waves were forecast to be 2-3 feet in the morning, then 2-4 with an occasional 5 footer in the afternoon. Although we weren’t afraid of 2 -4 foot seas we left early in the morning so we could get more of the 2-3 footers than the 2-4 footers.  Well, folks I am here to tell you that we couldn’t see the two, three or four footers because of all the 5+footers!!!! AND they were head-on. That meant that every six foot wave lifts the bow of the boat six feet in the air just in time to drop it into the trough and run straight into another six-footer. Bang! Bang! Man that was rough. Oh! Since I am doing sound effects I forgot the squeeeel of the bilge alarm telling me that the bilge pump was pumping all that water overboard. (I like the pump part, just not the screeching part.)

Now you shouldn’t get the impression that we were in any danger or felt threatened. My whole crew (Ann) spent much of the crossing in the saloon splitting her time between reading and sleeping. I guess she just inherited her grandfather’s nautical disposition.

Anyway, I tried all the tricks I knew to reduce the impact of the waves. I “tacked” at up to 30 degrees (meaning we zig-zagged 30 degrees off course northward, then 30 degrees off course southward. The net effect should have been to reduce the impact of the waves and still get us where we wanted to go – though much more slowly). I also reduced speed just before we were to hit a wave. I was trying to make it so we weren’t driving ourselves into the next wave, but were just falling into it. None of this worked very well. The only thing that worked was time. We eventually ran out of the Gulf Stream and made it to West End. “Whew!” as they say, “what a ride!”

Our time at West End (one night) wasn’t very eventful. We did go to the restaurant for the first time. We both had cracked conch and enjoyed it. There did seem to be fewer boats at the marina than had been there in our previous visits. I think the dockage fees were a little less than the first time we were there, but the cost of water and electric seem to have gone up. Oh well.

Great Sale Cay
Some of the boats near us at Great Sale Cay.
In contrast to our crossing of the day before, the water on the Little Bahama Bank was wonderful. There might have been one foot waves, but we didn’t notice them. We just put the boat on auto pilot and kept track of where we were. At about 1600 we arrived at Great Sale Cay – a wonderful anchorage we have used every time we traverse the bank. We dropped the anchor (using Big Bertha, the new 110 pound anchor that Ann named, for the first time), opened up the liquor cabinet and talked about the northern Abacos islands we would explore over the next several days. Then it happened. The generator conked out.

Now imagine. You have had almost the perfect boating day; tomorrow you were going to explore some cool islands that are off the beaten path – and maybe catch your first lobster; you had just eaten dinner and were completely relaxed. Then, the one system for which you have no back up fails. For most of the systems on the boat we have either redundant systems or work-arounds that will keep us up and running for a few days. Not so for the generator. If the generator fails, we have no way to recharge the inverter batteries. If we can’t recharge the inverter batteries we can’t run the refrigerator. If we can’t run the refrigerator, we stand to lose a lot of provisions that we have accumulated over time. I was … how can I put this delicately … royally pissed off. If I would have had a gun, I would have shot this boat and been done with it. (Now I know why boats and firearms don’t go together.) Anyway, now we had to change our plans. We had enough of a charge to make it to Green Turtle Cay the following day. There, they would have a mechanic, we were sure, who could either fix our generator or help me throw it overboard.

Green Turtle Cay
We made it to Green Turtle Cay and made it to another near-empty marina. It was a Saturday, of course, and we were concerned that we would have to wait to Monday to have someone look at the generator so we called ahead and the marina assured us that someone named Cameron would be there and ready to work on the generator. He got there about an hour after we did and worked on it for an hour or so. He couldn’t solve the problem. He was almost as frustrated as I was and was very apologetic, but it still wasn’t fixed. He said he would go straight to his car and call a friend of his who would know what to do. We hadn’t heard anything from Cameron by 1000 the following day so we called him back and asked him if his friend was coming, He told us that he was in the States but would be back in Green Turtle later that day. Meanwhile, Ann had searched for a Westerbeke generator distributor in the Bahamas and – lo and behold – there was one in Green Turtle Cay. (Westerbeke is the brand name of our generator.) It was Sunday, of course, and no one was there, but we had a lead for Monday morning in case we didn’t hear from Cameron’s friend.

On Monday, we finally connected with the Westerbeke distributor who told us we should call their technician, George. It turns out that Cameron’s friend’s name was also George. (In case you hadn’t guessed, it is a small island.) George said he would be out later that day, so, even though we had been invited to a party, we stayed on the boat waiting. He didn’t show.

The generator wasn't the only thing that went wrong. We also
sprang a leak in our fresh water system. But we have become
 experts in fixing leaks. Here is Ann deeply involved in making our
water flow again!
On Monday, while we were waiting for George, we reconnected with Jeff and Debbie aboard SeaSparrow, who we had initially met at Marineland, later at Vero Beach and then again at North Palm Beach. The reason they were in North Palm, was to take their dog to a vet and get some medicine for what seemed like a lung infection that wouldn’t go away. It is a very long sad story, but on their way across they learned that their dog didn’t have a lung infection, she had advanced lung cancer, was in pain, and wouldn’t make it very long. So, they changed their trip plans and headed to Green Turtle Cay. There was nothing any vet could do so they had to put their dog down. The only good part about their story is that they met many good people in Marsh Harbor and in Greet Turtle that helped them along the way.

On Tuesday we got a call from the elusive George who said he would be there in 15 – 20 minutes. Believe it or not, he actually showed up and, Cameron’s failed efforts notwithstanding, promptly fixed our generator – or at least kind of fixed it. (More on this later.) As soon as George was off the boat, we cranked her up and headed to Treasure Cay so we could anchor, use the generator, and visit one of our favorite spots in the Bahamas. Or so we thought.

As we passed through Whale Passage, though, the boat suddenly started a slow vibration. I had felt this kind of vibration before – nearly two years ago when we had picked up a tarp in our propeller. When it happened before, we had to go to a marina and hire a diver who cut it off. This time, we continued on our way to Treasure Cay – albeit more slowly – and anchored once we got there. I then donned my mask and snorkel and went overboard. Sure enough, there was a huge tangle of rope around our starboard propeller. It took a while, but after several dives and several cuts I finally managed to get the rope off.

A turtle near the boat at Treasure Cay.
I took three pictures; this is the best
For the balance of Tuesday and all day Wednesday we lazed around Treasure Cay. On Thursday morning we headed out for Tahiti Beach. Although we had heard about Tahiti Beach, we had not yet been there. No sooner had we arrived and dropped our anchor (Ann is getting better and better at handling Bertha) than the wind picked up from about 5 MPH to a good 25 MPH. We decided that we really didn’t want to stay in this kind of wind and seas, so we decided to head out to Marsh Harbor and drop the anchor again. Although the winds kept up in the Harbor, the seas weren’t much at all.

Next time we’ll tell you about Hopetown and our preparations in Marsh Harbor for Trent, Maddy, Nik,  Dave  and Lisa.

ANN’S NOTES:   Well it has been an interesting several weeks. We have mostly enjoyed ourselves except for that BIG piece of equipment that is called a generator and seems to have a mind of its own. I am sure someone that lives on these island can fix this monster…heaven knows several have already tried.

We have met some wonderful new cruisers and that is so much fun for me. We linked up with Jeff and Debbie on SeaSparrow once before. We first met them in Marineland on the dock, then really got to know them in Vero Beach at Thanksgiving when they sat with Lori and Russ and us. They really are a wonderful couple, from Halifax Canada and so funny. We just all `clicked`. The story on their dog is so sad but also very sweet. Stella was a two-and-a-half year old pure bread golden retriever. She was sick, but was able to pass all the vet exams and get her papers to travel to the Bahamas. She was a real boat dog in that she loved chasing the fresh water from the hose on the deck of the boat. On the way over to the Bahamas, they got a call from the vet, who said that Stella had advanced lung cancer, very rare for a dog so young. They went to the closest island to figure out what to do. This is when the universe stepped up with all the kindness she could find.  Jeff and Debbie had not even cleared customs yet, they just wanted to get Stella to a vet for help. While Jeff was looking for a place to land the dinghy at the Government Dock in Green Turtle Cay, he overshot the dock and was turning around when he ran out of gas. A woman in a golf cart (that is mainly what is used for transportation on this island) was watching. He was trying to row his heavy center console dinghy against the wind and current. He made it to the dock and explained what was happening with Stella and what he needed to get to a vet ASAP. The lady and her husband took over from there.

He explained they had not cleared customs and they told him they would help them with all that. The couple picked up Debbie and Stella from SeaSparrow and took them to Marsh Harbor on their boat, helped them clear customs and waited for them while at the Vet office. It turns out this couple are very active in the animal rescue association on the islands. The vet in Marsh Harbor only confirmed the sad news and at the request of Jeff and Debbie put Stella to sleep. The couple suggested to Debbie and Jeff that they might want to bring Stella back to Green Turtle because Marsh Harbor really does not have a kind way to dispose of their animals. Stella was brought back to Green Turtle, the couple had a place to bury her and helped dig her grave and placed her in it. Nothing was asked of Jeff and Debbie, the kindness of these people and their love of animals was very clear. Jeff and Debbie gave them twenty pounds of food, flea and tick collars and all the medicines they had from the Vets. I just had to tell this sad and sweet story because sometimes we forget that people are kind and loving and do want to help strangers.  

While in Green Turtle Cay we also meet another couple, Kathy and Martin, on a sailboat Autumn Sun. They joined us for a drink while we were having dinner on the terrace at the Bluff House Marina. Another funny wonderful couple that I look forward to meeting again.` Down Island `as they say in the Bahamas.

Traveling Soul….OUT

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Vero and North Palm (20 Nov - 4 Dec)

This will probably be our last Blog Entry before we leave for the Bahamas. It covers our stay in Vero Beach (7 days on a mooring ball and three days in a slip), including our penultimate provisioning runs, and our stay in North Palm Beach while we waited for a weather window. After we get to the Bahamas it will probably take us at least three or four days to get to Marsh Harbor and find a decent wi-fi connection. I say at “at least,” because, if everything works out right, we may take an extra day or two and visit some of the northeastern islands that we haven’t yet visited (a couple of them are supposed to have good local restaurants). I am telling you all this so if we appear to have disappeared from the face of the earth, you will know that we are alive and well living on rum and lobster on some remote Bahamian cay.

Vero Beach

Some of you may remember that Vero Beach has a very nice mooring field. It is nice because it is well protected from the wind, has good, strong mooring tackle and costs only $13.87 per day!!! When we arrived the wind was blowing pretty hard so we tried some of our new mooring techniques. We did okay, but we need to take our new techniques back to the drawing board. We intended to stay on the ball for ten days, so we drank a toast, and as we clinked our glasses we swore not to use too much water, electricity or anything else for which we might need a marina. It didn’t quite work out the way we planned – but more about that later.

On 22 November we rented a car and headed to Patrick Air Force Base so we could visit the commissary and Base Exchange. I think Patrick is the only military base of any size in central Florida and we weren’t the only retirees who decided to visit the Commissary on the Friday before Thanksgiving. I have never seen one so crowded. Anyway, we filed up our grocery carts – to the tune of about half-of-a-Boat Unit, loaded our rental car and headed home. We got staples that every cook like Ann needs in her galley and every eater like Mike needs to have in his chef’s galley!), as well as various items that are very expensive or difficult to find in the Bahamas. We weren’t finished, however. Before we got to the boat we hit West Marine pretty hard, too. We spent a little bit less than there, but not much. The good thing was this was going to last us for the next several weeks.

I know those of you in Virginia have had some bad weather while we were down here and folks in other parts of the country have had it even worse. I just want you to know that we’ve had bad weather, too. It must have rained for five of the ten days we were in Vero. Ok, so maybe it wasn’t snow and maybe it was 65-75 degrees most of the time, but we didn’t have it perfect. In fact … I know you are going to feel sorry for us once I tell you this … on Thanksgiving Day I actually had to turn on the heater AND get my long pants out of the closet!!! Yes, for about two hours on Thursday morning it was under 50 degrees Brrr! Ok, so maybe it warmed up later in the day – to the point where we were very comfortable eating our Thanksgiving dinner outside – but for one brief un-shiny moment it was cold in Vero Beach Florida!

Maintenance on the Mooring Ball

On about day 3 we decided to try all the air conditioners to make sure they still worked. One of them, of course, did not; it would have been too much to hope for all of them to work. So, we found a repairman, called him and told him we suspected it was the R-22 refrigerant. He came, looked, fixed a leak, put in the refrigerant and everything seemed to work. (I know, I know, I should have kept you in suspense as to whether it really worked or not … and here, by saying “it appeared” to work I have given away the conclusion. But I have more …)

On about day 5 we decided to go ahead and “unpickle” our watermaker and make a little bit of water. Watermaker membranes are fairly sensitive in that you have to keep them moist all the time. You can make water with them every few days, but if you don’t need water that is kind of a waste, or you can run fresh water through them – but that’s squandering fresh water. The alternative is to put a pickling solution in the system. This solution keeps the membrane moist and kills any germs that might want to grow. We pickled ours last spring. Anyway, when we unpickled it we found out that our watermaker was on the fritz. I got hold of the same repairman who had helped with our air conditioner and he came over and helped me re-prime our watermaker.

I know you are all thinking, “Wow, it sure was a good thing you got all that stuff fixed before you went to the Bahamas!” Not so fast, folks. The next day I tried to start the watermaker again. It didn’t work. Since our efforts to start it had used quite a bit of our fresh water supply to prime the pump, and since it was very loud with the generator running and almost impossible to hear when the watermaker pump clicked on, we decided to get a slip before trying to re-prime the pump again. We got into the slip (about which, more below) and sure enough, the pump wouldn’t turn on, even when it had been primed. Moreover, you remember that air conditioner? It didn’t work either. It seems the repairman we called had a magic touch … as long as he was on the boat. As soon as he left … wham! Things were back to not-working. AARGH! It is enough to make a man angry!

Pulling into the slip was not as easy as it should have been. There were three things that caused a problem. First, it was still very windy – and as I have explained before we have quite a bit of surface area on the boat which, in the face of a lot of wind, wants to turn the boat in directions other than those which I want it to turn. Second, when there is a strong current in the same direction as the wind, this can make the problem twice as difficult. And finally, when the fairway is only 60’ wide a 52’ boat does not have much room to be moved around by wind and current before she hits something. Well, after starting in to the slip twice and feeling the current take me both times, I decided the only way in was to apply a little more power. And power did the trick – almost. In the event, our bowsprit kissed the piling and rubbed the paint and gelcoat off. (The gelcoat is the plastic-like substance that covers the fiberglass and on which the paint is applied.) I now have to fix that as well. <Deep Wistful Sigh>

Oh! And one more thing. I finally yielded to myself (I have been having a discussion with myself for nearly a year) and bought a new anchor. It is the same kind of anchor (called a Bruce or Claw), but it is 110 pounds as opposed to the old one at 66 pounds. Assuming it works as it should, I will sleep better at night. We are going to take the old anchor with us and probably sell it when we get back to the Chesapeake next summer.

Oh and one more thing (on a boat, there is always one more thing). At Vero Beach, a few days before Thanksgiving I lost a crown from one of my teeth. We have found a dentist in North Palm and I have an appointment to get it fixed first thing on  Monday morning.

So, for those of you who were keeping track, we have five tasks to accomplish when we get to Palm Beach

·         Have the air conditioner fixed

·         Have the watermaker fixed

·         Fix the gelcoat on the bowsprit

·         Have the head fixed (I know I haven’t mentioned that, but seawater is not flowing into the toilet bowl the way it should.)

·         Replace the anchor

·         Get crown fixed.

One of the reasons we went to Vero Beach in the first place was to celebrate Thanksgiving with other cruisers. We had heard that the Power Squadron at Vero bought and cooked a bunch of turkey and ham and invited cruisers to bring a side dish and join the festivities. I am guessing we had Thanksgiving with 150, or so, of our soon-to-become best friends. For our side dish I convinced Ann to make macaroni and cheese. We enjoyed the meal and the opportunity to meet other folks. We ate with Russ and Lori from Ortolan. We had met and had them over for drinks when we were all at the Marineland Marina. We also had dinner with Jeff and Debbie on SeaSparrow. We had met them, too, at Marineland while they were waiting for the paperwork from Nassau so they could take their dog with them to the Bahamas.

North Palm Beach

I was going to write more, but it looks like we will be on our way tomorrow. We have accomplished almost everything we wanted to get done and there aren’t any good reasons for staying here and spending money. Moreover, the weather forecast – which initially showed Saturday as a much better day for crossing – has changed. Now, any day between tomorrow and Sunday are forecast to be just about the same (the difference between 2-3 foot seas and 2-4 foot seas). After three days here at North Palm, here is the status of our “to do” list:

ü  Have the air conditioner fixed. It turns out that our previous repairman forgot to tighten one of the fittings on the line, which let the R-22 out.

ü  Have the watermaker fixed. There seem to have been a several things that were not working as they should have been. The high pressure gauge and switch have been replaced and the “start capacitor” (whatever that is) has now been replaced. Also, I have learned that we can add another membrane and double the output of out watermaker! (Maybe a project for next year.)

ü  Have the head fixed. Apparently a bunch of “sea stuff" (barnacles, etc.) made their way into the hoses leading to the toilet. We have cleaned that out and have added a strainer so it doesn’t happen again.

ü  Replace the anchor. The anchor is just a little too big for the slot into which it is supposed to fit. We are going to have to make a few changes in our anchoring process.

ü  Get crown re-glued. Done. Apparently, I have a small cavity next to the crown that can violate the integrity of the attachment. I’ll have to get it fixed better in the future, but it will work for now.

·         Fix the gelcoat on the bowsprit. I will work on the bowsprit later today, but I can also work on it when we get to Marsh Harbor.

Ann’s Notes: My part of this blog is going to be short…it is 8:45 PM and Michael wants to get this out before going to bed…AND…it has been a very busy day for the both of us. So many details to get done and so little time. I spend most of the day helping the local pharmacist at the CVS through the maze of Tricare refills. I brought the refills in the morning when it was light out and biking was not the problem. I picked up said refills at 7:30 PM and it was very dark while riding the bike. The good news is we have our refills and should be good for a few extra months.

Our Thanksgiving at Vero Beach was a lot of fun, our table did lots of laughing and we made some more friends. A few were just voices over the radio and now we have a face to put with the voice.

I have to tell you that Michael more than `kisses` piling, he really is such a great captain so when things go wrong, I really don`t know what to do. I do, however know that my boat pole or hands will not stop our boat from `Kissing` a piling so I just have to let it happen.

The one thing that Michael did not mention on the day that several items stopped working all at once was…our fresh water hoses sprung a leak. After several rolls of `rescue tape` that failed to work, we finally cut the leaking part of the hose and spliced a new section of hose. We are actually getting pretty good at this since we have done it more than once.

I had a few important items on my list for our Palm Beach stay…really girlie ones. I got my hair cut…short and had a pedicure. I feel like a girl again.

Just one more thing before the wildlife count and quotes…

The new anchor is HEAVY !!!    I will tell you more about that in the next blog.

Wildlife Count

Thursday 19 Nov 2013

·         2 Dolphins playing for about five minuets…jumping and showing off

·         Set of 2 dolphins  2x

·         6 single

·         Mom and baby playing on the side of the boat

·         Pod of 6

·         2 Big boy playing at the bow

Sunday 24 Nov 2013

·         Dolphins in the mooring field

·         Pelicans  diving and catching fish

Friday 23 Nov 2013

·         3 Dolphins playing at the bow

·         1 Single

·         3 Playing on the side of the boat

·         Set of 2 dolphins x 2

Quotes from the Water Way

(in this case the shower next door, a little boy, Franklin, with his mom)

In a little boy voice…no real tune, just a sing-song tone…

`I live on a boat…mom said I smell like a goat…

Need to take a shower…

Hope I get a snack…

Want to go swimming…Where`s Dad?


There were several more verses and they all made me smile


Traveling Soul….OUT