Wind 5, Anchor 0

20130712-152559.jpgCan you see the entrance to the bay? We couldn’t either.

A little wind

After a very nice night at the marina in Friday Harbor, we planned on staying in the area so that we could get a little work done on Shannon.

The local marine service center was going to take a couple days to get a part we needed, but we didn’t want to hang out in the marina waiting on a part.

Being the intrepid cruisers that we are, we decided to find a spot outside the marina to drop anchor and happily wait for our part to come.

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Going, going, gone!

Today was a real milestone for our adventure.

Dodge Neon driving away

Bye bye!

The last big thing we had tying us to land is now no longer ours.  Today our good friend John came up from Vancouver to pick up our Dodge Neon.

We’ve had this car for over 11 years now.  Not only does it feel really strange to see the car going somewhere without us, it is also really weird to think that we don’t have a car any more! Continue reading

How Low Can You Go?

Depth gage showing 0

Well, we’re not aground yet.

Forgive me while I geek out a little here.

You see, at heart I’m kind of a gadget guy. I love technology and all the wonderful things it provides.

Take for instance the SONAR (SOund Navigation And Ranging) technology that almost every boat uses to determine how deep the water is beneath it.

Used by many marine mammals and developed for use with vessels in the early 20th century, SONAR sends sound waves through the water and times how long it takes to get echos back from other objects in the water. The longer the time, the more distant the object.

The downside of technology is that because it generally makes our lives easier, it is easy to become dependent upon it. Continue reading

The Work Continues And The Adventure Begins!

Mike working on changing a pump

Having fun working on the boat

It seems like there is never an end to the project list on a boat…

We finally got the mast back on Shannon. It no longer looks like a wannabe power boat.

It once again looks like a proper sail boat.

So, as soon as we got a good-weather day, we took her out. It was glorious.

We motored down the channel out of Everett, turned West, raised the mainsail and killed the engine.

Suddenly the world was silent save for the wind in our faces and the water lapping against the hull. All was right with the world. Continue reading

The Good the Bad and the Dirty

kids looking at the new toilet

The kids checking out the new toilet

When we tell people that we are living on our sailboat and we are preparing to go cruising, we usually get one of two responses.  Either “How can you afford it?” or “Oh, that sounds so nice.”

The first response I can understand.  It is the one question that plagued me for a decade before we made the leap.  The question is really just a front for the true issue… how can “I” afford to do what you’re doing?  We’ll get back to that later.

The second response is the one that makes me giggle inside.  The look of wonder on the face of the person I’m talking with tells me that as soon as I start describing what we’re planning, they are building this idyllic image in their mind of relaxing on a boat, sipping icy drinks with little umbrellas in them, watching the sun slowly set over crystal clear water with Jimmy Buffet playing softly in the background. Continue reading

How do you fit 15 years of household stuff into a sailboat?

Simple, you dont!

During our transition the living room was a disaster area

Camping in the clutter of transition

In order to move onto the boat, we have to get rid of just about everything in our house.

Do you know how much stuff collects over 15 years?  Yeah, neither did I.  Crap, that is a lot of stuff!

I had no idea we had collected this much junk!  I mean when did we get all of this stuff? I don’t remember buying half of the junk we’re finding in the boxes strewn throughout the house.  (Kelly is laughing at me, saying, “I can tell you where we got all of it.  Your memory is going!”) Continue reading

Two Weeks In December

I just kept telling myself, “This is the coldest it will ever be on this boat.  It will only get better from here…”

A beautiful sunset from the marina

The last sunset of 2012

Since we had recently purchased Shannon, and we had two weeks off for Christmas vacation/holiday, we decided it would be a great time to spend some time aboard Shannon.

Well, what we didn’t really factor in was that Shannon doesn’t have any real heating system on it yet and the temperatures in Everett are in the 20’s and 30’s this time of year. Continue reading