The Happiest Days

The Happiest Days

They say the two happiest days in a boat owners life are the day he buys the boat and the day he sells it.  With all sincerity of heart I can say that is not true for me.  We sold Fezywig today.  And more than anything, I am sad.  Sad for me, but happy to for the family purchasing her.  And happy someone else is about to begin a beautiful journey for themselves.  After returning to NYC last fall, I helped Travis and Jamie Anderson sail the boat back down to the Chesapeake Bay.  Here’s what I wrote in my journal about my last day on Fezywig:

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A Sentimental Fool

A Sentimental Fool

"Change is fast.  Transition is slow."  I picked that up in some self-help book many years back.  I’ve adopted it into my life.  And I would say we’re living through it right now.

We just marked two months of us being off Fezywig.  I figured it was as good a time as any to take stock.  We gave our Living Room Lecture several weeks back.  I learned a lot doing that.  Sorry, the recording didn’t work, so now it’s lost forever : ( That said, I did put together a little slideshow as part of that.  And that I have.  We showed it to a friend over Thanksgiving.  Paraphrasing her:  “I’m glad to see you had a good time.  From your blog posts it sounded like it was mostly just hard.”  We had a lot of hard days.  We had a lot of great days.  It’s easy to write about the hard stuff.  It’s hard to write about the easy stuff.  So we just took pictures instead.  More on that in a minute...

I’m asked fairly frequently, “How does it feel to be back?”  It’s a good question.  A fair question.  I feel fortunate.  I was able to get working (earning) again, shortly after returning.  We have our same apartment.  We have a wonderful gathering of friends and family happy to have us back on land.  We’re grateful for all of that.  The kids have adjusted—mostly—but the more time passes, the more we seem to miss it.  I don’t have all the answers, but I’ll share these two bits with you.

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The End / The Beginning

The End / The Beginning

So I suppose it’s worth writing about how all this ended up.  Wouldn’t want to leave anyone hanging.  Here goes 

After two weeks on blocks, Fezywig was back in the slings, ready to launch.  We packed the kids in the car and drove to NJ to pick up the boat.  We got there a little later then planned, but as usual with boats—there was a delay.  The starter motor needed to be replaced.  It finally rusted out as a result of the flooding.  It was 10am.  The part was supposed to arrive by 11am. We could wait.  We cleaned the boat.

There’s always a certain catharsis in cleaning something.

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The Eleventh Hour

The Eleventh Hour

I had been at the helm 14 hours already.  Too long.  I was mentally worn out.  We had gone out to sea.  It was our final run up to NYC. We were exhausted. It was 2am. A Saturday morning.  We were emerging from the NJ Intracoastal Waterway--in inland route through connected rivers, bays and inlets--into a place called the Manasquan Inlet, about 25 miles south of New York Harbor.  The plan was now to head back out into the Atlantic Ocean. I would get the sails set and then turn the helm over to the Orton ladies until 6am, at which point I would wake up and sail us into NYC.

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Everywhere

Everywhere

We turned a corner a few weeks back.  We crossed the Gulf Stream: the warm northward running current between Florida and the Bahamas.  We were back in the U.S.  We’d been looking forward to this milestone for months, but when it came—as with any ending/beginning—it was bitter sweet.  We miss sailing in the Caribbean and Bahamas, where life is a little tougher but simpler.  That said, the East Coast has brought with it’s own set of welcome surprises.  Here is my list contrasting the two regions:

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Stop Gap

Stop Gap

Okay, here's the truth:  a lot has happened.  But ironically wifi has been hard to come by on U.S. waters (at least for those of us who anchor out instead of hang out in marinas).  And we don't have one of those fancy SB radios that let's you send emails from the middle of the ocean, so we've been stymied.  We've had lots to share, but not many chances to share here on our media rich, data-hog of a website.  So we'll do our best to catch up and write about a few moments from along the way.  But for up to the moment pictures and tidbits, take a look at Fezywig on FacebookInstagramTwitter (I know, I tweet, it's embarrassing) and Tumblr (tumbling just sounds so much cooler than tweeting?)  Anyway, there you have it.  Stop gap.

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Squalled Out - Blournaling #6

Squalled Out - Blournaling #6

Editor's Note:  Some journal excerpts from our last few days of sailing in the Bahamas before crossing the Gulf Stream to Fort Lauderdale, FL.

Crossing from Staniel Cay, Exumas to Nassau, New Providence, Bahamas:  hit a squall a few miles outside of Nassau.  Kept the sails up and got some amazing speed out of the wind.  Maybe want to consider taking down the sails in the future.  Or at least reefing : )

Nassau to Chub Cay, Berry Islands, Bahamaswe were five minutes out from the channel/anchorage, when we got sucked into a squall.  We’d already dropped the sails just in case, but it got nasty.

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People Are Amazing - Bahamas

People Are Amazing - Bahamas

"Guineps!  You want to try some local fruit?...It's free."  I stopped setting the table for dinner and stepped outside to find a man and his daughter offering a leafy branch which was bending under the weight of several small green fruits.  Steve and his daughter, Keva, showed us how to bite back the thin outer shell and suck and scrape the sweet tangy fruit off the large white seed.  

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People Are Amazing - Fajardo, Puerto Rico

People Are Amazing - Fajardo, Puerto Rico

"Always carry your instrument with you when you go ashore." No doubt!!  This advice from Ike Kanakanui.  Or maybe he said surfboard.  That's how we met him at the dock on Cayo Obispo.  We learned right away that this man either defies or proliferates labels.  After two weeks sailing with a buddy, he knew it was the life for him and it has been for the past six years.  He's an ex-Navy veteran, surfer, sailor, musician, singer/songwriter, entrepreneur, film maker, charter captain, etc.,  creating his own way of life.

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People Are Amazing - Culebra, Puerto Rico, Spanish Virgin Islands

People Are Amazing - Culebra, Puerto Rico, Spanish Virgin Islands

We were sitting at a small black metal table outside the airport in Culebra.  Erik was tapping away on the laptop and I was watching a chicken that kept fanning her feathers at him.  “She’s flirting with you, “ I mused.  Erik rolled his eyes.  We were keeping an eye out for an official looking border patrol guy to come in so we could pay for a decal required in U.S. waters.  Details. 

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Hog Cay - Blournaling #5

Hog Cay - Blournaling #5

July 25, 2014

Friday.  Hogs Cay.  Sailed over from Diamond Salt Works Harbour, Long Island.  About 45 miles.  Took us 9 hours.  Gorgeous water.  Light green.  Clear to the bottom.  Followed the coast most of the day until we broke over to the Hog Cay Cut.  Depth came up to 3.5 feet under the keel.  Beautiful anchorage here.  Pure sand.  Still no topping lift.  Will deal with that in Georgetown. 

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Bahama Crossing - Blournaling #4

Bahama Crossing - Blournaling #4

Made the cross from Great Inagua to Long Island last night.  About 130 miles.  Left around noon.  Expected to arrive around 2pm today.  We arrived at 6am.  We were flying right out of the gates.  We hit 8 knots in the lee of Inagua.  Saw the Morton salt piles as we came around the north side.  Second largest salt manufacturing in the world.  We crossed through the Mira Por Vos Passage around 11pm.  Our top speed for the night was 10.4 knots from what I saw. 

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500 Miles

That was easily the most boring sail.  104 hours.  4.5 days/4 nights, non-stop from Fajardo, Puerto Rico to Great Inagua, Bahamas.  We sailed completely past the island of Puerto Rico, across the Mona Passage, past the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Turks and Caico’s up to the Bahamas.  If anything had gone wrong, we would have drifted downwind until we hit Cuba.

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All Cylinders

All Cylinders

Okay, so I haven’t posted in a while.  That can only mean one thing: things are going well.  Honestly, we’ve been so busy sailing, hiking, snorkeling, scuba diving, etc. that there hasn’t much time to think about blogging.  I know, I know.  Life can be tough.  Plus we’ve had the luxury of being in a couple of fairly remote anchorages out of reach of civilization (wifi).  But in the spirit of sharing some good news (and hopefully not jinxing ourselves), I thought I’d give a few updates.  These skew toward tech/geeky, but they’re all part of life aboard Fezywig.  Here are a few things that have gone right recently:

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Saving Mr. Banks / Reckless Man

Saving Mr. Banks / Reckless Man

Saving Mr. Banks.  I realize I’m a bit late to the party.  The movie has come and gone, so to speak.  But I just watched it, first with Emily and then again as a whole family.  Since I’ve got a head full of ideas about it and I haven’t been able to move on with my life, I figured I’d better write those ideas down.  Then I can, well, get on with my life.

I’ll start by saying that I was both inspired and frightened by this movie.  I should also say, that I think this is one of the great screenplays to come along in quite a while (giving Dan in Real Life a run for its money).  Every now and then I see or read something and think, “Dang, I wish I’d written that.”  This is one of those stories.

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