Blog Archives

The Doldrums in Annapolis

Most sailors know the meaning of “the doldrums” which is defined as an equatorial region of the Atlantic Ocean with calms, sudden storms, and light unpredictable winds. It is also defined as a state or period of inactivity, stagnation, or depression.

doldrums-1

Our view from the service dock at Jabin’s.

Obviously since we are docked in Annapolis, the first definition does not apply to us. And though we are not inactive or depressed, we have been in a period of stagnation as we begin our 8th week at Jabin’s Yacht Yard.

Jabin’s has been a very good place to hang out, meet a few boaters and get to know a bit about Annapolis while we research some unexpected repairs LIB needs due to a lightning event.

During our first six months of cruising, we spent the majority of our time on the hook and very few days in a dock, so being tied to a dock has been a new experience for us. Our preference is to be at anchor and explore our surroundings from the water, but we are game for a bit of variety. We are making the best of this time while LIB is inert.

Summer in Annapolis can be warmish, maybe not Texas warm, but pretty hot.  The water in the docks is not inviting so a cooling swim is out of the question.  But we have managed to enjoy an impromptu beach party or two with our neighbors.  Mindy and Ron on Follow Me shared their bow for these gatherings.

doldrums-3There are not too many things more rewarding than a little shade, a sprinkler and a refreshing beverage during the heat of the day.

doldrums

Mindy, Frank and Ron have a head start on me.

Many of our dock neighbors come and go more quickly than we have, so we are meeting many boaters with a variety of experiences.  It’s been fun to talk with them and swap experiences.  Seeing others leave is sometimes sad, but one nice aspect is that we already have friends in future destinations.  We look forward to meeting up with some of these new friends later in the year when we travel down the ICW.

After packing up and selling our land home and leaving friends we have known for years, it is especially nice to know we have friends in places we will visit soon.

doldrums-2

Folks from Follow Me, The Abby, SeaQuest, Phantom and Let It Be enjoying spirited conversation and an excellent dinner at Jack’s Fortune, a nearby Chinese Restaurant.

While in the U.S., access to food, electronics, services and toys is amazingly easy.  So we are taking advantage of the availability since we have it.  While LIB was in charter, we had two stand up paddle boards used by our charterers.  Those boards saw a LOT of action and bear quite a few dings and bruises.  Also, based on how heavy they are now, they have absorbed a bunch of water. In fact, they are so heavy I can no longer launch them or stow them and Frank has to do it.

While we have access to a plethora of choices, we decided to order some new SUPs and are waiting to pick them up.  Our new boards, by Bote, are a bit shorter than the last ones and much lighter.

imgres.jpg

These SUPs have full track pads so Captain will have good footing on the new boards without our adding outdoor carpeting like we did on our original boards.  I’m looking forward to being able to use the SUP without bothering Frank every time.

One fun options for these boards is a “tackle rack” which will hold fishing poles and allows you to secure an ice chest.  I think it would be pretty fun to paddle down some tiny creeks and fish from the SUP…. we might have a new activity on LIB.

Frank and I have a trip planned to CA to visit our son, Clayton.  I am super excited to see him and get the tour of where he is living and working.  As a family we have always enjoyed spending time together and seeing my sons less often has been quite an adjustment.

Still, we raised them to be independent, productive young men so I can’t complain now that they have successfully achieved that goal.  Instead I will relish the time we do have together and pester them via phone and text between visits.

Thanks for stopping by, readers. We’ll let you know as things progress on LIB.

 

 

 

 

 

Playtime in Antigua

It’s hard to believe that our son, Hunter, has already been with us for 10 days! We have had a great time so far, though I admit every day, at least once, someone says, “Wow, I wish Clayton was with us.” We are very thankful that Hunter has a job that allows him to visit and get his work completed.  We are extremely proud of Clayton’s dedication to his job and realize he would be with us if he had that flexibility.  Miss you C!

One of the first things we did when Hunter arrived was cut his hair! I have little to no experience cutting hair, so I was flattered and nervous when Hunter asked me to cut it for him. Here is the before haircut photo. You’ll have to look at the later pics to see the results.

DSC01037

It was close, but my hair is still longer than his was.

Our days have been spent in a variety of ways, but the main focus is the wind and if kite boarding can be on the agenda.  Fortunately we have had four really great kiting days and there are plenty of other “toys” on LIB to keep us occupied if the wind doesn’t cooperate.

Last week we rode our bikes to Shirley Heights overlooking English Harbour but this week we hiked a trail that took us up a steep trail, past Shirley Heights, then out to the cliffs and back down to Freeman’s Bay where LIB was anchored.

ridge

It is hard to capture the magnitude of the cliffs.

Freeman's

LIB nestled in Freeman’s Bay

The paddle boards act as platforms to transport Captain to shore and explore a variety of places while getting a bit of exercise.

SUP

Hunter and Cap about to go explore. How do you like the haircut?

SUP1-1

Frank usually has to balance Cap, but this time Hunter was chauffeur. 

All good boat tools have several purposes and our SUPs have lived up to that requirement. One afternoon when the waves were b-i-g, and the wind was light, Frank and Hunter headed out on the paddle boards for some SUP surfing.

SURF

Best shot I could get from so far away.

Maybe you can get an idea of just how big those waves were if you look at the one building a bit further out. We are guessing some waves were 7 feet. The guys say they managed to catch a few waves and lots of laughs.

Lest you think Hunter’s arrival has crushed our coconut safaris, let me reassure you. Instead of abandoning our coconut searches, we have pressed Hunter into climbing duty.

coco1

Why do I keep thinking of Mowgli from The Jungle Book?

coco

Frank displays the bounty.

But what about the kite boarding? Here are a few pictures to satisfy those dreaming of beautiful water and favorable kite winds.

H launch

Hunter’s first launch from LIB – see that hair?

F launch

Frank follows suit.

kite trick

Hunter makes a grab while Frank heads the other way.

kite

Hunter has already launched from the beach and Frank is on the way.

H grab

Hunter demos another grab.

dog

Captain is on alert.

Captain gets her “shepherd” on and keeps a close eye on Frank and Hunter while they kite. I will admit she gets a little noisy and I wish she would be a bit quieter as she runs around the boat keeping tabs on her people.

Lest you think I just sit on the boat, I too have been kite boarding. I think I have finally gotten a better handle on this sport. My board skills already existed from wakeboarding, but flying/controlling the kite has given me some grief. Just yesterday I had a really great set, but Frank was there as dinghy support since I couldn’t ride up wind well enough to return to the starting point…. okay, that is an issue I need to overcome.  But I am definitely improving!

end of day

Kites drying on the front deck as the sun sets.

Day’s end brings a gentle beauty that incorporates relief from the powerful sun, satisfaction of a day well spent and a bit of fatigue from a variety of play.

Sunset’s anchored in Nonsuch Bay are just stunning and differ greatly. Here are two; which do you prefer?

Sunset

Fire reds and ominous clouds.

Sunset1

A mellow repose.

By the end of the day we are all pretty tired. Once the sun sets, we make dinner and when we finish, we are just about ready to roll into bed.

Next we set sail for Barbuda and hope the winds ramp back up to the kiting zone.

Dog Days of Sailing

It appears the dog days of summer have arrived at home in Dallas as the first 100 degree day has hit. In recognition of those “dog days,” today’s post is all about our dog, Captain, and some of her adventures while on Let It Be.

P1000336Keeping an eye on anyone remotely nearby.

P1000519

Swimming to and from shore.

P1000235

Dinghy Rides!

IMG_1097

Paddle boarding with Frank.

P1000283

Running – anywhere, anytime!

P1000451

Coaching MG on her stretches.

P1000251

Chillin’ while watching for approaching boats.

P1000310

She doesn’t snorkel, but she likes to come along.

IMG_0350

Hikes are fun.

IMG_0101

Sailing is fine, but arriving in port is better.

IMG_1213

Catching some zzzzz’s

Yep, it’s a pretty rough life Captain leads when on LIB.

%d bloggers like this: