Oct 28, 2007

Brrrr!!! it's cold!

Seems all I can do these days is complain about the weather! If it's not Sunny and 75 degrees... I'M NOT HAPPY!!!

Just kidding. it is cold though. a chilly 60 degrees. Lowest high temp we have had so far. at least the sun is shining!

We have some parts being shipped in on Monday, then we are heading out of here!

Itinerary:
Head down the Chesapeake -- 3 days
Head down the Inter-Coastal Waterway -- 8 days..
Miles traveled: around 600
Miles to go: around 400

almost done. I'm excited to get moving. And I'm excited to get to our destination. There is a lot of work I want to get done on the boat. Leaks that needs fixing and hardware that needs replacing.
Here's Sushi Aunt Joni -- the little black dot in the big white sail.

LeeAnn on the boat "C-Drifters" last night. it was cold.
Jump!!

It's really hard to take a picture of a black cat on a sunny day. she just turns out as a black little blob.... but she's soooo cuuuttte!!

Oct 26, 2007

RAIN RAIN RAIN!!!

Ok. First day of rain... ok
second day of rain.... whatever...
third day of rain.... it's getting to me.

that's right. I've been on this boat here since 2:00 PM Tuesday afternoon. It has now been 74 hours and 41 minutes. I had a little jaunt outside yesterday, I rowed (in the rain) over to a friends boat to pick up some movies. Took around 15 minutes.

Today I went outside and set up a rain trap (in the rain). We ran out of pressure water yesterday. Don't fret. our pressurized water and drinking water come from two different places. I should have set up a rain trap last night. we would have got a lot more rain.

I used a sail cover. With ropes and weights I've made a big funnel that brings the water into our tank. It's doing a pretty good job. we are supposed to get some heavy rain this afternoon and tonight, so maybe we will have a full tank tomorrow morning! We could just go to a marina and fill up... but i'm lazy, and I don't want to motor in the rain. plus collecting rain water is way more cool!

The rain is supposed to stop tomorrow afternoon. I can't wait. I've done:
22 and a half sudoku puzzles,
watched 3 movies a day,
baked pizza,
cupcakes,
cookies,
read 2 full books,
drank all the beer,
painted a self portrait,
stared at a mirror attempting to read my own mind,
and
spent 300 dollars on ebay,


74 hours, two people and a cat have made this boat a lot smaller!

all rain all day makes CHAD a crazy person!
all rain all day makes CHAD a crazy person!
all rain all day makes CHAD a crazy person!
all rain all day makes CHAD a crazy person!

I've been listening to Stan Rogers. It's very nice. you should listen to him. I'm going to go cut my toe nails or something.

Oct 24, 2007

Singing in the rain!

It's still raining out. We have the boat lit up in candles, we are watching movies and eating CupCakes.

My mother has informed me that LeeAnn's Mother, Aunt Donna, and Aunt Ann would like to have some writing from LeeAnn's prospective.... I asked her, and this is pretty much what she said:

"Hey guys! I'm having a great time out here! Chad is the greatest and I'm SOO lucky to be with a guy like him! He is just so handsome, charming, romantic, smart, funny, adventurous, humble, and so so much more."

Yep. That pretty much sums up what she had to say. 


Sail naked... It brings color to your cheeks!

So today is going to be boring. It's raining. No going to town. LeeAnn is still asleep. I got up early to put our tarp up so we can run the generator and leave hatches and windows open. Then I worked on my Spanish. Hablar, nadar, bailar, llagar, regressar, ar ar ar. I'm working on my AR verbs. What's the first letter of the pirate alphabet? RRRRR!!!

Hasta luego!

Oct 23, 2007

Don't be fooled. That tub boat is huge. The barge is just so big it makes the tug look small! The waves these guys put up are huge.

The Bronx Zoo.
Broken down motor. Somewhere on the Hudson.
Atlantic City
Baking Cupcakes
Baking Cookies

Yada yada

Met back up with Ray and Irene, and some other Canadian friends Peter and Sue. Yesterday we toured around Annapolis. It was really cool. We walked down streets that George Washington walked down. We saw America's first capitol building (the first one was in Annapolis). There is a lot of neat history in Annapolis.

We are going to be stuck here for a while. A power boat wake knocked our stove off the counter on our way to a new anchorage, breaking two knobs off the stove. So we had to order new ones. It will take three days. It's not too big of a deal though. It's dangerous to head south of Norfolk, Virginia before November 1st because of hurricanes. So if we left Annapolis and made it to Norfolk before November 1st we would be waiting around anyway.

The picture below is of LeeAnn and Irene being read to by Kunta Kinte. Remember the book Roots? Kunta Kinte's slave ship arrived in Annapolis.
LeeAnn looking at the Kunta Kinte Plaques.
From Left to right: Sue, Irene, Ray, Peter.

Life is good.

Oct 18, 2007

People and Places


Ok. I've got some pictures and videos!

These are our British friends, Ray and Irene. We've had a great time traveling with them and Roman and Olya (the Canadians). Sadly today we parted ways. I was very bummed when we waved goodbye. These people were great fun. I think Ray is one of the happiest people I've ever met. He is always smiling and making jokes. Ray is very kind, I can't imagine him getting mad. Irene has a serious manner, but everything she says is funny. Probably because she is straight faced when she says it, and because she has that crazy British accent. I don't understand half of what she says, but I hear enough to understand what she is talking about. Ray and Irene have been dating for the last 30 years, they just got married in January. Interestingly, Irene was the instigator to their sailing sabbatical, not Ray.

Joke from Ray:
"Life's a bitch, and then you marry one."

Joke from Irene:
(speaking to Ray)
"I've spent my whole life trying to make you the man I wanted, and now I complain that you've changed!"

We are really hoping to meet up with them somewhere down the road.

I caught me a fish on the Ocean! It was a bluefish. I filleted him, and we ate him in about two hours. Talk about fresh. At 13 inches I thought he was a little small, but I was later told by local fisherman that you don't want to keep anything over 13 inches because they aren't as good to eat. Go figure. I was a little concerned about not having a fishing license, but I was later told that until January 1st you don't need one on the Ocean. I don't know if that's true. But we were in Delaware yesterday, today we are in Maryland, and tomorrow we will be in Virginia. We can't afford to buy a fishing License everyday!

The tall ship "Pride of Baltimore Two." We hung out aboard this ship in New York City. We took this picture on the bay today. This boat was designed by Tomas Gillmar, the same person who designed our Privateer 35 sailboat! It is a very rare day when two Gillmar boats sail next to each other.




Video of the anchorage this morning.... stupid video wont load.

Annapolis Kicks Ass!

Right, so we just pulled in to Annapolis. I love the place already, mainly because they offer city wide WiFi for free!

So this place is packed with boats. We haven't seen too many transient boaters heading south until now. This place is packed full of them. Most of them are Canadian.

We left our British and Canadian friends behind today. They went off to Baltimore, 15 miles behind us. We wanted to go with. But we are excited to get south.

All for now!
Chad

Oct 12, 2007

Tropical Storm 15

Still in Atlantic City. I'm at the anchorage. Somehow I've got WiFi signal. I have to be outside of the boat to get it though. That wouldn't be such an issue if it wasn't a gale outside.

No kidding. According to the radio we have been weathering out gale force winds for the last 24 hours which are being produced by tropical storm 15.

Some people say tropical storm, others say it is a tropical depression. All I know is that it's fuckin windy, "tropical storm" sounds way cooler, and I'm tropically depressed from sitting around with nothing to do all day.

A hurricane must really be a nightmare. We only have 35 to 40 MPH winds right now, and it is really not pleasant to be outside. Hurricane winds start at 75. Wow.

I wonder if I can download sudoku for my computer? To pass the time I have been memorizing Spanish cuss words. I wonder if pizza hut delivers out here?

Oct 11, 2007

Sailing Community

We've met very few American sailors. We've traveled hundreds of miles and met only one American... And he wasn't really a sailor. Sticking feathers up your but does not make you a chicken. Owning a sailboat doesn't make you a sailor.

Most of the sailors we've met have been Canadian. We've also met a lot of Polish people, and English. One couple was from Germany.

Right now we are with an English couple, and a Canadian couple. We all have different accents, and different words. Ray and Irene, the English couple use words like "breaky, Butty, Sharabang." meaning "breakfast, Sandwich, and three dinghys in a row."
The Canadians use words like "aye?" as most everyone from Michigan already knows.
It's very fun.

Anyway here are some videos from over the past few weeks:

This is a video of our French Canadian buddy Gorden cooking dinner. He is a very goofy fun guy to hang out with. Loves a good party. Ladies man. Good cook.

video

This is just a video of a foggy day on the Erie Canal.

video

Ok so I had more videos, but I moved most of them to a spare hard drive because they were taking up too much space. So I guess I'm out of videos.

Lost My Money & My Toe in Atlantic City

Lost my money, and my toe in Atlantic City. Actually it was just the tip of my toe. The money is gone, but we taped the tip of my toe back on.

When we first got here on Tuesday we picked up an empty mooring ball. I knew a storm was coming so I used the extra thick anchor line so I would sleep sound knowing we wouldn’t break free.

The wind was intense, I was wide awake, I thought for sure that someone‘s boat was going to drag and crash into another boat. I was glued to the window, all set to watch the circus that was sure to unfold.

I left my place at the window for just a few moments to make some more popcorn. When I returned I noticed two new boats where along side us. “Oh no!” I thought, “There is going to be a collision, and we are going to be a part of it!” But the boats didn’t get closer. And we didn’t move an inch. Then it hit me.. “We broke the mooring, we’re grounded.”

I rushed outside wearing only a rain coat and my underwear. The rain was coming down in big drops, the wind was roaring, and the lightning was striking.

It sucked.

I was cold.

Turns out we didn’t break from the mooring ball, we drug it across the anchorage! There was a sailboat next to us who had also drug a mooring ball. The captain was on deck, but like me there was really nothing for him to do. I dropped a small anchor and went back to bed.

When the storm eased up I went back outside. I lowered our dinghy into the water and set to work freeing our main anchor line from the useless mooring ball. Our neighbor (Ray) came out of his boat. He suggested we help each other out. I rowed over and picked him up from his boat.

We rowed out 100 feet from my boat and dropped the anchor, went back aboard and winched it down tight. We then did the same on his boat. The tide was dropping, the boats were sinking harder and harder into the mud. There was no hope of getting them free at that point. So Ray and I went back to bed.

As the tide dropped the boat tilted more and more to the side. It was like trying to sleep on a hill. I set my alarm to go off every hour. The wind was blowing us towards rays boat, I didn’t want the tide to come in and lift our boat, and then slam us into Ray. We had had enough surprises for one night.

The tide finally lifted us off the mud around 3:30 AM. Ray moved his boat first. Then I moved mine. We both learned a lesson about taking mooring balls. Had we used our anchors we would have probably never moved!

I have no pictures.

**Update:
I didn't lose any money. Just kidding. Sorry for not clarifying. As for my toe, just kicked a stupid cleat. It's not so bad.

Oct 7, 2007

Lots of New Posts

Sorry it's been so long!
I had more questions than I expected about why I hadn't been posting. We have had no internet since Waterford, New York. I put up a lot of posts tonight. Be sure to click "older posts" on the bottom of the page so you can see them all.

Right now we are in Long Beach, New Jersey. We made it to the Atlantic ocean! It looks just like Lake Michigan...

We had a long day. I got up at 4 am this morning. By the time we got to Long Beach my legs felt like rubber. We got our first real showers in about 10 days. We can shower in the cabin of the boat. But that doesn't make you feel clean like a real shower.

I almost think that LeeAnn has fun with it actually. She kicks me out of the boat, lights candles and plays Sarah McLachlan. Gotta do the best with what you have.

I will be posting as often as the internet allows. Thanks very much for reading.

Hudson River Pictures

Just some random pictures from the Hudson River.



F*ck New Jersey


Yeah. so our last night in New York, heading back to the boat which was anchored in Jersey City. We had to ride the light train. We had round trip tickets we had bought earlier in the morning. Two Transit Cops got on the train, looked at our tickets, and then they asked LeeAnn to get off the train. So I got off too. They said we have forgotten to do "something" to our tickets. I thought it was no big deal. They said the tickets were no good, I was bummed, thought we were going to have to buy new tickets, costs 3 dollars. They asked where we were from, asked for I.D., they were very friendly. Then when we gave them our I.D.s they suddenly got mean, and said we were going to be fined. I asked "why?" they said "Well you forgot to stamp your ticket." I said "So I'll go stamp it right now, sorry I didn't know. Like I said, we're tourists." "No, that won't work," he said "you already got on the train." Yep, 74 dollar tickets. 150 bucks total. Sweet. Fuck New Jersey.

So, had we known what was going on, would could have
1. Never gave them our I.D.s
2. Just walked away and not rode the train
3. Told them to fuck off.
4. Pretended to not speak english

Lots of other tourists got tickets too... Looks like every now and then Jersey has a little fund raiser at their tourists expense.

So if you ever go to Jersey, stamp your ticket! I know the sign doesn't say to do it! And no New Jersey assholes will be nice and let you know. But make sure you do! Or you can be cool like us and not return to New Jersey for at least seven years... or ever!

LeeAnn: Chad forgot to mention the BEST part of this story. The fact that I got a good few other tourists, Japanese I assumed, to chant "Fuck New Jersey" with me! Oh yes, it was good.

New York, New York

It was crazy to sail into New York Harbor. Talk about busy. We got to sail right past the Statue of Liberty which was very cool for us having never seen it before. We anchored just behind The Green Lady at Liberty State Park.

The city swallowed us whole. We had no plans when we walked into Manhattan, the city quickly made up our minds for us. We first went to Ground Zero. There is no longer any tribute or anything, it is just a big construction site. All the same it was strange to see a big gap in a forest of skyscrapers. I don't want to get all sappy on you, but I do want to say it was very powerful to think that 6,000 people (whether they be American or any other nationality) died in such a small area.


The pizza in New York was really great. Tastes like God. If there was nothing in New York except for pizza, it would still be worth the visit. The pizza is just that good. Yummm. My favorite part of New York was the pizza. I would really like to eat some New York pizza right now. I would like to just wrap myself up in a slice of New York pizza and eat my way out of it. I never got to try Ray's pizza.


Besides eating pizza, we went to Times Square, the East Village, The Bronx Zoo, Central Park, we saw "Rent" on Broadway (even though it wasn't really on Broadway... it was just around the corner... I don't understand how that one works, just a technicality I guess) China Town, and Little Italy. We saw a stand up comedy show with a comedian from Comedy Central (where we paid 24 dollars for 4 waters!). I was hoping to see some Sicilian Mobsters, but I didn't have any luck.

I had a good time riding the subways.
That was New York!

Pollepel Island Death Castle

We anchored out behind Pollepel Island on the Hudson River. There we found this cool castle. Our guide book said that tours of the island were given for $40, but most of the castle was off limits. So we just decided to take our dinghy ashore after the tour boats left. There was a camera, but it's power chord attached to a tree... The first obstacle we came to was a big caved in bridge. We had to walk through spooky dark rooms and woods to get to the other side of the castle. LeeAnn freaked out a little bit in the dark rooms. Mostly because of this pile of bones she stumbled over, I'm pretty sure they were deer bones....
That night after we left the island, the boat was sitting very strange in the water, sideways to the current. I thought ghosts might have been messing with us. I started thinking that maybe they would untie our anchor line or something. I laugh now, but staying there that windy night with the dark silhouette of the castle looming above was very spooking... Plus there was this scratching noise on the hull every couple of minutes, and someone nearby kept on screaming bloody murder.


Turns out Francis Bannerman VI purchased the island in 1900 for use as a storage facility for his growing surplus business. After the Spanish-American War Bannerman bought 90% of the US army surplus, including a large quantity of ammunition. Because his storeroom in New York City was not large enough, and to provide a safe location to store munitions, in the spring of 1901 he began to build an arsenal on Pollepel. Bannerman designed the buildings himself and let the constructors interpret the designs on their own. Most of the building were devoted to the storing the army surplus but Bannerman built another castle in a smaller scale on top of the island near the main structure as a residence, often using items from his surplus collection for decorative touches. The castle, clearly visible from the shore of the river, served as a giant advertisement for his business.

Construction ceased at Bannerman's death in 1918. In August 1920, 200 pounds of shells and powder exploded in an ancillary structure, destroying a portion of the complex. After the sinking of the ferryboat Pollepel, the Arsenal and island were essentially left vacant. The island and buildings were bought by New York State in 1967, after the old military merchandise had been removed tours of the island were given. On August 8th, 1969, fire devastated the Arsenal, and the roofs and floors were destroyed.