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Posted by sailingnightwatch in Caribbean, Durbeck, FL, Florida, ICW, Pensacola, Repairs, Restoration, Sailing, Sailing the ICW.
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This was a year that went very fast. Good times and not so good. I guess that makes it about average. But it wasn’t. The year started in St Martin waiting for a break in the Christmas Winds so we could start heading back to the Bahamas and meet our kids for vacation.

We got a window and headed for St Croix. We had been to the BVI’s and the US Virgins enough in the past 2 years that there was little that we wanted to see. St Croix is actually the furthest east of the US Virgins. We anchored off Christiansted. The island had been settled by the Dutch and has architecture that would fit into northern Europe. It is quaint and beautiful. We found a little restaurant for lunch and celebrated the mates birthday. Great meal. Did not want to leave. The next day we rented a car and traveled to the eastern point of the island and then back to the city on the southeast side, Frederiksted. The island is bigger then it looks.

The next day we headed north to Culebra. This was our third time here so we were not going to spend much time there. We rented a golf cart and toured the island. The whole island. N,S,E and W It is a very pretty island with beaches, great snorkeling spots and an interesting history.

We left for Puerto Pitallis in Puerto Rico. This is the bay where Don and Jan of “Plane to Sea” live. We spent three days there. Jan had to leave on the 2ed morning because of a family emergency. We rode with Don to San Juan to the air port. He took us on the high mountain roads over and the eastern less mountainous way back. It is a beautiful island. It is modern and friendly. I can see why many cruisers swallow the anchor there.

We beat feet towards the Turks and Ciaos. We made it across the Mona Passage to the north coast of the DR. We were to have another nice day while we made it to the Turks and Ciaos. Our weatherman Chris Parker said that was no longer an option and we needed to find a place to hide. We did for 5 days. Then had a window that took us non stop to Georgetown, Bahamas. This put us a month ahead of schedule to meet our kids. We settled in. The kids came and went and we headed to the States. That was the first half of the year.

On the way up we spent an evening in Ft Meyers with some of the first friends we met after moving onto Nightwatch. It was a wonderful evening with a beautiful family.

It is year end and the first of the year we will be moving to a different marina in Palmetto, FL. That is a story for another day.

How you coming on your resolutions? I’m finished with mine. In 72 years I have never made a New Years resolution. Why start now. Have a very happy and prosperous New Year.



Posted by sailingnightwatch in Caribbean, Durbeck, FL, Florida, ICW, Pensacola, Repairs, Restoration, Sailing, Sailing the ICW.
1 comment so far

Looks almost like it used to. We got two new little trees with lights already on them. That is good. We place one in the saloon and one in our stateroom. We had saved our little ornaments that we had used for years and the crèche. The mate also bought a new wreath that we hang on the wheel pedestal. So much for the decorations. We will be spending Christmas eve and day at my sons place. All sounds like a plan. Pictures in Facebook.

Other then that I am still stuck with the gremlins. Actually two groups. They may have multiplied. Today I started on group one, going through the engine instruments and cleaning every connection. That will kill half a day.

I then started down the engine connections, and it became a disaster. The oil sender is where you almost can not get to. Well I got to it, took off the wires, cleaned the connection and while putting the wires back on busted the sender. Part of it is made of baked clay and is tender when new. After 19 years and sitting on the engine it got real tender. Or, my hands may be stronger then I think they are. Well after breaking the sender and giving full utilisation of my sailor vocabulary, I gave up for the day.

My second gremlin resides in my radios. They get lat/long and course information from the GPS and compass. Maybe I should say used to. A few weeks ago I had everything working like a charm. That was till the water maker man reinstalled the Clark pump. I think he may have brushed against some of the wires that come out of the controller for the autopilot. Anyway, it has not worked since. I was going to attack it right after the man left and I noticed the radios no longer got there input. That was during the time the eye doctor had me on no exercise and no bending over. The control box is under our berth. You have to crawl down in there and then wedge yourself in a position to keep from falling a couple more feet into the bilge. Then getting out is a real chore. This is the first day I could get back to exercising after 5 weeks. I did my full routine. I felt exhausted the rest of the day. The wiring of the engine instruments, had me standing on a stool with my hands over my head. By the time I got to the engine, I was really tired. Maybe tomorrow I will work my way down to the control box. If you do not here from me again, look under the berth.