Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Halfway Down the Baja!!!

Buenos Dias amigos y familia,

We left San Diego a week ago and are now anchored in Bahia de Tortuga a sleepy town halfway down the Baja penninsula. The trip has been great so far, even the long passages have been bearable. After a stop at the Coronado Islands and then checking in in Ensenada, we stoped at Cabo San Quintin before arriving Nov. 19th in Turtle Bay to toast Mark´s birthday. What a place to be. It´s a lovely anchorage and we are lucky to have already met lots of other wonderful cruisers to celebrate with. We plan to head south in the morning.... I promise pictures on the next entry.
Until next time..Happy Turkey Day to you all. We have our turkey from San Diego and will be celebrating somewhere this week.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Bon Voyage Ventura, Hello Santa Barbara Island

Bon Voyage!!!
Striking a pose on a steep cliff
Mark in his Necky on the way to the pier
The kayak I just leaped out of....on the left are the sealions

Well we finally did get the Watermaker and set sail around 2pm on a perfect windy and sunny afternoon. We sailed the first three hours and grinned from ear to ear as we drank champagne and toasted the glorious day and our luck at the opportunity to have such an adventure.

9 hours later we arrived at Santa Barbara Island in the dark and anchored to the sound of thousands of moaning and barking sealions. The hike around the island is about 4 miles so the next day Mark packed a lunch and we set off in our kayaks to land on the pier. My new kayak (i call her scarlett) is a sit on top, the landing was a little surgey for my taste but I managed to make it. I guess I am still getting my kayak-leg. As I landed I was surrounded by about 400 very curious and boisterous sealions. I have never climbed a ladder so fast in my entire life. Mark assured me they were harmless and after being on land and seeing them cuddling together like puppies I have to agree with him. It was all the echos and gutteral moaning the freaked me out.
Above are some pictures from the Island. Next stop, Santa Catalina then San Diego.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Butch and Many Goodbyes

Butch on the beach near Pismo.....

Oh what a glorious time in Phoenix this time of year.. We brought the rain and showers half way accross the desert with us from California. We watched as some or the arroyos filled and ran with the lifeblood of the desert, the water we live by. We drove with our longtime friend and fellow traveler, Butch. Butch like Pat defies genders, works hard and doesn't complain too often. Butch, a 1984 Ford Econoline conversion van, has been the frame through which we have gazed at many a long sunset for over ten years. Butch has hosted numerous picnics and parties. Butch has been entrusted with the care and conveyence of many a friend and family member . Butch has sheltered us in storms and brought the cool wet desert coarsing through our viens innumerable times all of which remain treasured memories.. Thank goodness through the generous and keen insight of our friend Dr. Ken, Butch will be assured of an active retirement ... Discretion prevents me from enumerating Butches many exploits besides no one who knew would ever want to sit in it again...anyways.. good luck to the both of you. And in the words of Niel Young , "Long may you run."
I can hardly remember all that has transpired in these last frantic days before our finally setting sail. What with the all the parties in Phoenix for my mothers 36th annual 39th birthday celebration with my wonderful family and all the river rats from our earlier adventure down the Grand Canyon. The harried flight to the train to the taxi with over 200lbs of luggage, the last minute items we had ordered all arriving within minutes of our send off. Geez the great guys and gals on e-dock in Ventura Isle marina throwing together a last minute Bon Voyage party with an inprobable spread of food and booze and desserts. I can only just try to catch my breath. We're on our 5th day of traveling south now and we have stopped at Santa Barbara Island for the classic "round the Island" hike, and the Isthmus on Catalina Island for a good nights sleep before leaving early for Avalon. 2 nights in that quiet town and we're on our way again. We're due to drop anchor in Mission Bay this evening and with my Big Bro in town on some pretense of work I have a feeling it's gonna be another liver punishing evenings with tearful goodbyes as if the drinking weren't dehydrating enough.