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Voyages: Lake Champlain

Gus Trometer shares his experiences with moving out of his house -- and into a C34.

June 1998 - Lake Champlain

June 2

Well Summer arrived June 21 in the North Country, and I mean really
arrived!  The Lake Champlain water temperature has gone up about 10 degrees
in 4 days, and the air temperature was about 90!  But no wind, 'cause I
guess you can't have everything.  We motored across the lake to Burlington,
Vt.  I checked out the new Furuno pod mounte radar, and it seems to work
great.  Then I had to re-calibrate the auto pilot as it had been mounted 90
degrees differently in the old boat, and also had to interface the GPS
(Garmin GPS 38) with it - I had downloaded the course from the Nautical
Software Chartview Professional on this old laptop.  Would you believe we
hit the marker for Burlington Harbor breakwater within 20 feet!  Amazing!
We motored back, washed her down good, and then dinghy'd (Quicksilver with
an inflatable floor and 8 hp Merc - runs pretty fast on plane) across the
bay to a mountain stream that feeds the lake.  Since it had rained most of
the month of June, the falls were REALLY flowing.  We tied up to a large
rock and let the current keep the dinghy away from the rest of the rocks,
while we went for a swim.  Sunday was another great day with no wind, so we
went jet ski riding with some boating friends that have a new 40' Bayliner.
 Monday there was wind, but Susan had to go to the beauty shop (don't know
why, 'cause she's beautiful just the way she is!), and while she did, I
picked up/sent our email.  Got a note from Carolyn Corbett that the article
about us ("Why we switched from power to sail" - or something like that)
would probably be in the November/December issue, and a request by her to
use the pictures of "Capella" (our previous boat - a restored 1967 40'
Chris Craft) in another magazine - watch for them both!  An email from
Bryan Pfaffenberger (Catalina 34'  Web Page Guru) liked my last notes so
well he has devoted a web page to them - WOW!  By the time we got back, the
thunderstorms came rolling in (twice)!  So I teaked the flag pole, added a
hanging hook for some of Susan's clothes in the aft cabin and teaked the
wood backing plates I used.  Tuesday is supposed to be great, 85 - 90, with
10/15 Kt winds.  Daughter Amanda (who's due in July/August), her husband
Steve (the NYS Trooper), Steve's folks (retired) and Mikey are coming with
us for a sail/swim/hot dogs & snacks around noon.  I had a "Tank Tender"
added so we know BEFORE our holding tank gets full.  We've also been using
our new portable air conditioner (hatch type) and it pretty well cools the
whole boat, but definitely the forward cabin!  I have a Max 40# anchor, a
Delta 35#, and a Fortress FX16.  I also had a chain gypsy added to the
standard Maxwell windlass with 150' of chain.  I hoped I could keep the
Fortress in the locker  and put both the Delta and the Max on a roller, but
can't find anything suitable for a bow roller - so I have decided to keep
the MAX as primary with the 150'chain/80' line, put the Delta in the aft
locker (30' chain/200' line), and keep the FX16 (30' chain/200' line) in
the anchor locker.  The Maxwell does work great with the chain!  Ernie, our
canvas guy, has completed the Dodger, Bimini, Spray Shield, aft rail seat
covers and back rests pads, helm cover, and mainsail cover.  Yet to come
are some lifeline cushions, barbeque cover, outboard motor cover, and an
estimate on a complete enclosure with screens/zip out windows.  I replaced
the ceramic burner plate cover in our Magma barbeque grill with the new
stainless steel one which I think will be much better.  Had a water leak in
the domestic water system, but that was quickly repaired, and I added
another 12 V outlet near the chart table to run the additional 12 satellite
Garmin GPS (vs 8 with the GPS 38).  This one will be interfaced with the
computer for an on screen up to the minute location on the chart - I could
continue the interface on to the auto pilot, but prefer to keep it the way
I have it - one reason is I don't want to leave my computer on all the

We spent our first night "Living Aboard". I don't know when I'll get to send this email, as we only have a cell phone (518 568 3140) now, and I haven't figured out how to use it with the computer - so I'll have to ask at our local friendly marina to use their phone line; but first I'm leaving for Puerto Rico. Susan left Tuesday (9th) on business and I leave tomorrow (11th); we will spend Thur - Sunday and then return to "White Orchid".

We sold stuff, gave stuff away, threw stuff away, and stored stuff in our daughter's basement. She's getting our mail, too (18 Oakwood Dr. - Rouses Point, NY 12979). We stored stuff on the boat, reorganized, threw stuff away, reoganized,bought new stuff, reorganized!!!!!! I keep telling Susan she doesn't need 18 pairs of shoes, so she bought 2 more!! Right now we seem to have it pretty well organized, we found storage spaces even Catalina doesn't know exist - removed the mattresses from the aft cabin and are using it for our warehouse.

The day Susan left I actually took the boat "out" for the first time this year, gave it a good shake down cruise and nothing fell and broke, got the sails and lines all installed properly and actually had her doing 6.7 kts in 13 kts of wind. Checked out the radar and GPS which worked remarkably well (the GPS was downloaded from routes prepared on actual charts using "ChartPro" software). Took me right to Burlington, Vt harbor in the worst fog I've ever seen on Lake Champlain. I have the laptop set up at the Nav station, built a book rack on top of the hanging locker in front of the Nav station - great set up.

From here I can pay bills, balance the checkbook, plan a route, do email, etc. "Ernie" our canvas guy has installed the dodger and bimini, and measured for the spray shield last Thur (said he'd be back Friday but I guess he really didn't say which Friday. We've been so busy doing all this we haven't had time to think about really being retired, but this life so far is certainly more relaxing. As I write this I can hear the Amtrak chugging around the mountain overlooking Willsboro Bay, and since it's during the week the marina is completely quiet - just a handfull of folks here. More later, have to go to bed as my flight leaves at 5:25am and it's 45 minutes to the airport.

June 15,1998

We're "home"! Had a great time in Puerto Rico! Caribe Hilton was VERY nice - stayed there Thursday and Saturday. Friday we rented a car and drove a loop around the island stopping overnight in Mayaguez. We looked up Ray Villanueva who worked with us until recently when his Father called and asked him to return to PR to help with the family business(es). We had a PR dinner at Sancho Panza (Ray's place), it was great and on the house, too! Thanks Ray. Visited old San Juan, bought/smoked a Cuban cigar, bought some rum, toured old San Juan and the Forts, layed on the beach, drank Pina Coladas, and had a generally great time. It was 80 - 85 every day and if it rained, it was usually hard for a short time. Returning was a bit of a problem and US Air ended up putting us up overnight at the Sheraton Four Points in Philly - missed connection due to a VERY late plane! This caused us to miss an appointment to get a headlight replaced on the truck, we hit a pigeon the other day and knocked it cock-eyed - the pigeon, too. Got home around noon today and Amanda, Steve, and Mikey were waiting for us - Amanda is probably due in July, not August! Another boy. Went to lunch, picked up some cleaning and headed "home" to "White Orchid", and it started raining, naturally. Tomorrow Susan has to stop by work to fill out an expense report (get money back!), we have to get some money from the Credit Union at work, go to Amanda's house and do the wash, get all the mail (Steve says there's a real "stack"), reschedule the truck appointment. Tomorrow night I'll be back on the computer paying all those bills. When we left, the Stock Market was 400 points higher. Mikey is spending the night of course. This week I'll see if the Marina will let me use their phone line for email.

June 26

Well Susan officially quit today, I go in Monday for awhile (have both a
Doctor and Dentist appointment) and Tuesday I officially retire.  We've
been on vacation the month of June, and would you believe it; it has rained
every day but 5 - that's 80%!!!!  Installed the Smoke Detector and CO2
Detector in the forward cabin where we sleep (the aft cabin has become a
garage for storing Susan's clothes and SHOES!  We went to the waterfall the
other day by Dinghy with Mikey, then Jimmy Davis came by with Monica (his
grandaughter from FL) on their jet ski.  Mikey went for a ride and thought
he was big stuff, then Susan, then I - great fun!  On the way there, the
Mecury 8hp engine had faltered, so I assumed it must be a partially clogged
fuel filter.  When I checked further, I found the fuel hose pinched between
the inflatable floor and the side, once moved it ran great again.  We flew
back with the jet ski running rings around us and Mikey waving all the
time!  Tossed some filets on the grill (with the new plate) while Susan
whipped up the rest in the galley - is this living or what?  Amanda, Steve,
and his folks had come the day before and we actually did a little bit of
sailing; 10 Kts wind/5 Kts speed, got up to 6 Kts at some point, the Navico
Autopilot with wind vane worked well!  Last night another storm came
through, 2.5" of rain in 15 minutes - there is flooding in the north
country today; a train de-railed in Pt Henry dumping fuel into Lake
Champlain, ugh!!!!  Susan is reading Jimmy Buffet's book, "Where is Joe
Merchant?"  It's much like many of his songs, very entertaining; and you
can tell he had to knock around a lot in his lifetime, 'cause a lot of this
no one could just make up.  We're going to try to make his annual concert
in Tampa in February.  We're getting a lot of advice from many of the
"envious" folks in the Marina and how to do this, do that, where to stop,
etc.  Doug and Bobbie Wilson aboard "Zuma", which is a 34' Catalina like
ours (1989 model tho'), just got back yesterday from their round trip to
FL.  The marina owner asked me to help remove their mast from their cradle,
and they would step the mast next week sometime.  They had a good time
(with some bad times, like life) but aren't ready to return this fall.
They ran aground several times each way which I guess is about average,
after all even Blackbeard the famous pirate ran aground and was
captured/shot. Jimmy/Kathy Davis who live near the 2nd lock on the Champain
canal have offerred to ride through the canal with us and help with the
boat handling - they've done it twice with their 40' Bayliner, but it has
twin engines and can manuever quite well - so we're planning now on leaving
Lake Champlain at the end of August so they can come through the canal with
us on the week end.  Doug/Bobbie say the marinas on the Hudson River are
quite expensive (up to $2.50/ft/night) and they used Marinas 90% of the
time; we're planning on being "on the hook" 90% of the time, at least as
we're going down.

June 28

Today was nice, finally.  The torrential rains of the last few days washed
out a RR track near Port Kent and the train de-railed.  Today helicopters
were tracing the AMTRAK route looking for other washouts - they found some.
 Went sailing although the wind was light.  Got stopped and boarded by the
US Coast Guard for a vessel inspection - passed with flying colors.  Susan
thinks the only reason they stopped us was that she had taken off her top
and was wearing her bra, she was embarrassed.   Grilled some pork chops,
fried sqaush, and Ceasar salad for dinner - uuuummmmm good!!!  I've started
hooking up the new Garmin GPS 36, which is a gps but with no display as it
is made to interface with the computer/navigation software.  I have to go
to work tomorrow (ugh!), but I have both a dentist and doctor appointment,
plus a small party for mine & Dick Menard's retirement.  That should shoot
the day pretty well after I stop by the Chazy facility and say good-bye to
the people there.  Tuesday I just have to go in to "sign out" (out process)
- don't understand why but that's the way it is!

July 1998 - Lake Champlain

After 40 days and 40 nights, the animals started crawling aboard -- just
kidding, but June saw 21 days of rain, almost as many inches as the annual
total.  The counties were declared Federal Disaster areas due to flooding,
two trains fell through washed out tracks (one containing 100,000 gallons
of whiskey fell into Lake Champlain, but no spillage - could you imagine,
drunk fisherman catching drunk fish!).  All this was after the ice storm in
March, so we've been a "Disaster area" twice in 4 months!  And July started
out with a lot of rain the first two days of the month.  Thursday we're
leaving for the SHS (Sturgis High School, Sturgis, MI) reunion, and I'm
looking forward to seeing all the old friends I haven't seen in almost 40
years - will stop by and see my Sister, her husband, (Susans & Ed), and my
Aunt Florence (92)!  Then on to Indiana to see Susan's folks, Grammie, my 3
sons - Kokomo, Monticell, Indianpolis.  Will be stopping back to see my
Sister, et al in Buffalo, NY probably about Sunday (a week from this coming
Sunday). Then back to White Orchid.  July 4th we went with the Davis(s) on
their 40' Bayliner 10 miles across the Lake to Burlington, VT to see the
fireworks display.  We tied up with some friends of theirs on an older 45'
Bayliner, and watched an amazing display - Mikey came along, and the
Davis(s) had their Grandaughter (Monica) up from FL.  On the way back, we
heard on of the people at the marina call for help from the Coast Guard, (a
Nauticat Motor Sailor - 36'), his engine had quit so he was towed back to
the Marina.  These are the same people that while across the dock from us,
the women would jump off the boat onto the dock with both lines in her had,
and usally fall flat on her face - still hanging onto the lines!  Sunday
was finally SUNNY & WINDY!!!!!!  We went sailing, and had a great sail -
winds were up to 21 Kts, so we were reefed pretty good, but still made 6.1
Kts tops.  Checked out the new Garmin GPS 36 I added and interfaced with
the laptop (and Chartview charts), and it worked great - extremely good
accuracy! Must be the "selective errors" in the GPS system were off that
day!  Had the Marina folks add a "Tank Tender" so we could tell when our
holding tank is "getting full", before it is "full".  We haven't used our
"Carry On"  air conditioner for several days now, as the nights are cool.
Tonight Susan gave Mikey a shower in the cockpit using our cockpit shower -
worked well.  Did I tell you we got stopped by the U.S. Coast Guard?  Susan
had taken her top off (just her bra on), and was piloting when they pulled
up behind us with their lights on.  They boarded us as Susan struggled to
get her top back on, inspected us, gave us a "yellow - no violations" paper
that they said was good for 1 year, and would help even 1.5 years from now.
 We asked if they gave us a "sticker", and they said "No, we're the real
Coast Guard, the Auxillary gives stickers" - excuse me!!!!!!  Still waiting
for my "lunp sum retirement check", but they said it would probably be here
this week and they'd call.  Took the truck in to have a headlite fixed
today (hit a pigeon on the Interstate - yes a pigeon!) and pick it up
tomorrow evening.  We're trying to use up all the food in the frig so we
can turn it off and let it defrost while we're gone - that's right, it's
not frost free!  Susan has used the oven several times (a seafood
casserole, shortcake for our peaches and shortcake, etc) and loves it -
she's real finicky about the temperature being what it is set at, and this
one's right on!  Well, I'll be seeing quite a few of you in just a few
days, so long for now!
Things are getting back to normal after our trip to Indiana, Michigan, and
Buffalo, NY.  Amanda still hasn't had the baby - she's got a Doctor's
appointment this morning and Susan is meeting her in Plattsburgh to go
along.  The computer "crashed" again (operator error) but those GREAT FOLKS
AT GATEWAY TECHNICAL SUPPORT talked me through solving the problem WITHOUT
LOSING MY DATA!!!  I have a tape drive back up, but I had just decided I
would do a full back up and erased the tape (ugh!).  We've rearranged some
more, Susan has decided she really doesn't need all she brought so we
removed 2 large boxes of clothes (and some shoes!) to put in storage, along
with some dishes and pots/pans.  We motored (no wind) to Rouses Point last
week so I could pick up my Lump Sum Retirement check (now invested with
American Express Financial Advisors - previously IDS) and stayed at Gaines
Marina (Dennis Richards said "it's on the house"! - WOW, and thank you!)
On the return trip we motored too (to much wind) - we were bucking 25 - 30
kt headwind in 5' waves, water over the bow and everything - not a bad trip
though except at 3000 rpms we were only making about 4 kts.  Upon return I
filled up with diesel and checked our hourly rate of consumption for the
whole trip - .8 GPH which means I was using over 1 gallon/hour coming back.
 I'll file that away as I had planned on averaging .5 GPH on our trip!
Ernie our slow but good canvas guy came the other day and said in a couple
days he'd have a couple of more things done, and an estimate on a "full
enclosure" - this will be handy in bad weather and with the screens handy
in buggy weather - so we're waiting.

At my 40th HS reunion we had a great time (who says you can't go back), ate
a lot, saw a whole bunch of people I hadn't seen in years - I loved it and
didn't want it to end!  The people that organized it did a fantastic job
and should be congratulated!  We visited Scott & John at their houses, went
to dinner, then back to Scott's for awhile - both have nice places (Scott's
especially nice).  I missed seeing Austin, but got to see Jenae and Christy
so that helped make up for missing him.  Saw Susan's folks and Grammie
(94.9) and ate, ate, ate some more!  Stopped by in Buffalo to see
Susan/Ed/Florence (92), and ate, ate, ate some more.  Florence took us all
out to eat for my "retirement dinner" at an EXPENSIVE restaurant (most
expensive meal I've ever had!) and the bill for 5 of us was $370!!!!!
(Only one drink for a couple of us, but I did have 2 deserts!).

I've schedule engine oil & filter changes, fuel filter changes, and
transmission oil changes for 8/21, and the marina will unstep the mast and
add a permanent mount TV antenna (tired of hauling the temporary one up the
halyard everytime we dock) on Monday 8/24 - we will be heading south Thur
8/27 and will meet Jimmy/Kathy Davis in Whitehall who will go through the
Champlain canal on Saturday with us to give us some extra hands (they done
it several times before, too).  In Troy we will have the mast re-stepped
which will take another day and then start down the Hudson River.  With all
there is to see along the Hudson we will probably take about 3/4 days
before arriving in NYC, and then "out to sea" along the New Jersey coast
(2/3 days total in one day jumps.  Everything on White Orchid is working
well!  The Chartview software, laptop computer, cd charts, and Garmin GPS
are actually amazing - when I turn in on sitting on the dock, it actually
shows the correct dock and the position of the boat.  With this plan, it
should put us in Baltimore well before Sep 15th where we hope to meet Frank
Wagner (SHS classmate that missed the reunion).

The Catalina 34 Mark II is a very good boat for the money - it's amazing
how many compliments we get on her, and most people think she is much
bigger than 34'.  Susan's choice of name "White Orchid", the "Orchid"
graphic on the bow, the color selection of the canvas to match/compliment
the stripes & bottom paint - Bimini, Dodger, Line Bags, Winch Covers, Spray
Shield, Barbeque Grill Cover, Outboard Cover; and inside decorations from
throw pillows to our "Van Gogh" painting all make this a beautiful
We tried out our "Max" anchor the other day and it held extremely well in
clay - pulled up at least 50#s of it when we hoisted anchor; held so well
the Maxwell windlass wouldn't pull it free, and we had to motor forward to
pull it loose.  We also tested our Radio Shack "communicators" - it's hard
to hear with the wind blowing when I'm on the bow and Susan is driving, so
these $50.00 two way radio headsets are great.
We both will and do miss many of the real people at Wyeth Ayerst Labs
(American Home Products), but don't seem to miss the headaches, pressure,
and some of the people at all.  It's really kind of funny that I was hired
to manage and yet due to the "top down management style" there I was
allowed to do very little and in reality had less responsibility than I had
at GM, but was paid more by WA in 10 years than I was at GM in 24!!!  Susan
was not a manager and was given much more responsibility and paid less than
GM, but then she was in Quality Assurance (and that organization doesn't
report to local management).  Go figure!!  Thank you WA!

July had already set an all time record for rainfall, and in June we got as
much as the annual total!  We have had some nice days lately though, and
we've been getting in some sailing - not too far from port though as we
never know when Amanda's going to call and go to the hospital to
have"(________) Stephen Guay" - now the plan is that Monday she will be
induced if nothing happens before (It's Thur Aug 30th now).

Susan's been cooking up a storm with the oven on White Orchid.  Cakes,
casseroles, shortbread, biscuits, etc -- I really don't need all that,

Thanks to an article in "Women Aboard", I called AT&T to set up the
cellular one rate plan.  This gives us a digital phone (Nokia 6000 for
$200), and 600 minutes/month for $90 - ANYWHERE, ANYTIME - no long distance
charges!!!  Catch: you have to be in an area and have an address in that
area that AT&T cellular services; for us that's Jacksonville, FL.  I don't
know yet how computer compatable this all is but I will find out in

Well the days are getting shorter, the nights are getting cooler, and the
smell of Fall is in the air - almost time to head south.  We bought a new
video camera (JVC VHS-c) that works real well so we can document our trip
south.  It takes an VHS adapter to play on the normal TV/VCR (about $25).
We gave the old one to Amanda/Steve so they can take tapes of Mikey and
Cameron (see below) and send them to us.  I've change our Boat US insurance
to cover us in our new "cruising area". I have the maximum Boat US Tow
insurance just in case we run aground like so many people do going south,
told State Farm Insurance to take our truck "out of service" effective 9/1
(this will reduce our monthly cost from $50/mo to $10/mo).  I just bought
some cockpit adjustable Genoa cars from Garhauer ($275 vs Boat US/West
Marine Harken $1000).  I have to have our Genoa track "shimmed  up 1/4"
though, so Willsboro Bay Marina folks are coming in the morning to do this
- can't wait to try them out!  Ernie, our "canvas guy" still says he will
have our cockpit enclosure (clear vinyl with zip out window with screens
that will basically add an extra room to the boat - some people have
screened in Gazebos, we have an enclosed cockpit)  done before we leave;
SURE HOPE SO!  Willsboro Bay Marina will also be working on White Orchid on
Friday to change all fuel filters, oil filters, engine oil, and
transmission oil; and sometime this week add a permanent TV
antenna/amplifer to replace the one we've been hauling up the main halyard
each time we want to watch TV (had to hear about Bill Clinton's testimony,
you know!).  Today (8/17) I painted the bottom of the Dinghy and the
Outboard with anti-fouling water soluble paint from Boat US; then it rained
breaking the record for the most rain in one year - already!  Looks like
the paint survived though.  Willsboro Bay Marina will be unstepping our
mast on Monday the 24th, and we will be leaving sometime between Tue/Thur
of that week.  We want to "stock up" on food a little so that we have about
one weeks worth aboard that doesn't require refrigeration, just in case.
Other than that, we're about set.  We will miss Willsboro Bay Marina - it
is by far the prettiest on Lake Champlain with beautiful grounds &
facilities, great docks, very nice restrooms/showers that are cleaned
daily, a nice Ship's Store, a great restaurant, a great staff that knows
how to treat customers, and excellent repair/installation service - all on
the most beautiful part of the lake.  We doubt if we will find another
marina in our travels that will measure up to what we've become used to,
but who knows maybe we'll get lucky.

Amanda had 9# Cameron Stephen Guay (Csection) last week, had some scary
moments/days and got a little taste of the cruising life - he ended up in
Burlington at the Neonatal Intensive Care unit that saved Mikey's life 5
years ago.  Took the boat to Burlington, anchored in the harbor overnight,
and took a taxi to the hospital several times.   Everyone is doing just
great now - we haven't taken him sailing yet, but there's next summer.
Amanda said to Susan, "I didn't think you'd really leave"!  I'm sure glad
she was wrong!

We just finished playing cards with some friends and they served coffee
(REAL) so I'm wide awake and Susan didn't have any and has gone to bed.  We
looked at some pictures our friends the Davissssss took in NYC Harbor and
the Hudson River this Spring coming from Conneticutt - NICE!  Can't
remember if I already said this or not, but in the November issue of "SAIL"
magazine there will be an article that includes Susan & I about people
switching from power boating to sailing - maybe even a picture of
"Capella", our 40' (1967) wooden Chris Craft that we owned previously.   
Our American Express (IDS) Financial Planner Randy Tetrault in Rouses
Point, NY, hosted a client appreciation "pig roast" Saturday - good free
meal, and our second pig roast this summer!

The market has been going down, but today jumped up 150 pts - Thank you
very much.  We found out that we will probably be "assessed" by our condo
association in Cape Coral, FL well over $1500 for the new roof/swimming
pool repairs the condos need - the only good thing about that is because it
is rented, it will be tax deductable; so much for planning.

The AMTRAK is running again and I can hear it rumbling through the
mountains.  There were 48 washouts on the track in a 10 mile section here
from the torrential June rains, and it cost the $8 million to repair it.
The first train a couple of days ago was a freight train with a speed
restriction on 10 MPH.  The second one was a passenger train with a limit
of 15 MPH - does that mean that freight is more important????

Well, have to get up early and I'm keeping Susan awake, so more later!

September 1998 - Catskill, NY

Well, we're in Catskill, NY - home of Rip Van Winkle.  We've had the mast
stepped, put on all the new canvas (pretty nice), washed White Orchid up
and she looks great again.  Jimmy/Kathy Davis met us in Whitehall, NY as we
had planned orginally - when I called her to cancel, she didn't realize it
was me and they showed up anyway Sat morning at 8:00am just as planned.  On
the way to Whitehall (60 Mi) I had said to Susan several times let's just
stop and anchor somewhere, and finish up tomorrow.  She wanted to keep on
going so we did - lucky.  The canal trip was very enjoyable, although Sat
it rained most of the day.  We saw three deer swim across the canal in
front of us, and saw a squirrel doing the same (didn't know they liked the
water!).  We made it to Troy, NY - stayed overnight, then on to Catskill
where we're waiting for some mail to catch up, stocking up on stuff,
getting White Orchid ready, resting up, got my glasses fixed (had lost a
nose piece), and generally enjoying ourselves.  Really glad we got this
boat with the well equipped galley - Susan has whipped up some real gourmet
meals, trying new recipes every day.  I keep telling her, she should write
a cookbook!!!!  We' ll probably leave Wed morning and end up somewhere
between Peekskill and Tarrytown (60 &75 miles respectively), depending on
the tide/current - tides here are 4 - 5 ft, and the current from 0 - 2 kts;
so if you're timing is good, you can really fly!  (8 kts).  Met a frenchman
and his wife who have cruised for 4 years (they just did it!), a family who
took their son out of H.S. and are home teaching and heading around the
world (thru Panama canal the to Gallapagos and Hawaii and on), a captain on
an owner's boat going to the Bahamas, two guys from Bloomington, IN taking
their boat to the Chesapeake, and on it goes!!!!!  Had the "Captain"
inspect our "rigging" set up and made a few adjustments - he also showed us
a very easy way to tie a bowline (I always forgot how and had to look at
some "cheater" cards)  Glad the market went up today, 'cause I bought some
stuff yesterday - no TV and the market is going to hell; it's working now
though, so look out.  The Hudson River is so well marked we didn't bother
with the GPS or Chartview (except we sure found the "Tides & Current"
portion invaluable), just used the paper charts; but on the 3rd, I'm going
to turn on the computer/gps and at least verify our
position/tides/currents/track log/miles/speed, etc.

Damn market, down again!  AHP has gone from 58 to 49!!!!  Might have to
find a job (just kidding!)  Tonight we're in Marlboro, NY - home to several
winery's, and just south of FDR's home.  After waiting for 3 days at
Catskill for our mail, we got the one Amanda sent us "Priority Mail - US
Postal Service", but didn't get the one from Mail Boxes, etc in Florida;
'cause they didn't send it.  We're having it sent to Atlantic Highlands
Municipal Marina in Atlantic Highlands, NJ (just a couple of miles from
Sandy Hook), we should be there the nights of the 5th/6th depending on
weather - if we get good weather and are not too tired, we'll head off
shore to Manesquan, NJ (about 35 miles), then Atlantic City, then Cape May,
then up the Delaware River.  The longest ocean run is from Manesquan to
Atlantic City, about 50 miles - GOOD WEATHER IS NECESSARY, SO WE WON'T MISS
A GOOD DAY! The manager here at West Shore Marina, helped us dock, then
said if we wanted to go to town he'd take us; AND if we ate at the "Racoon
Saloon", they would give us a ride back.  We did, and it was very good, and
they did!  We plan on leaving tomorrow and heading to Tarrytown Marina -
Tarrytown, NY - home of a GM assembly plant (at least it used to be); then
on to Atlantic Highlands - both trips about 40 miles each.  We ran mostly
with the current today, downstream it reaches about 1.9 Kts max, so our
speed picks up to almost 8 Kts.  Used the laptop with Chartview Pro/Gamin
GPS 36 to track our progress and show position, downloaded the routes to
the handheld GPS 38s interfaced with the autopilot/etc - worked great and
oh so accurate!

We're in Tarrytown, NY - good trip, no problems!  I'm using about 1 GPH
@2600 RPMs @ 6.1 Kts.  Less than a trawler, but not quite as fast; but all
this has been against/with Tides/Currents.  I think at 2000 RPMs I use 1/2
GPH @ 5,5 Kts.  Last night in Marlboro the TV reception was poor, but
tonight in Tarrytown we got many stations very clearly!  Ate tonight at the
"Striped Bass" restaurant/bar - VERY GOOD!  On to Sandy Hook (Atlantic
Highlands, NJ) tomorrow and if the weather holds and we're not too tired,
maybe we'll try for Manesquan Sunday.

Well, like all good plans, they change!  We didn't leave yesterday morning
as planned!  Got up, checked the weather and a storm was moving accross NYS
with winds up to 90 mph/hail/rain (You should see the video!).  We moved
from the end of a "T" dock to a slip and paid for 2 more nights.  We were
at low tide in a slip when the storm came through - 50/60 MPH winds,
"Mayday" calls on the radio like crazy, 10/12 boats capsized/SUNK, 2/3 went
aground, many washed up on shore, at least 3 dead/3 missing, they brought
one body in here  - GOOD DECISION!  We're here (Atlantic Highlands) waiting
for a good time to go - gotten colder (highs in the 60s) and today winds
10/15 increasing to 25, tomorrow looks better but not a whole lot winds
10/20 (probably will go tomorrow).  We haven't really decided whether to go
to Manesquan or just push for Atlantic City; we'll play it by ear/depending
on the weather. We did get all our mail from Mailboxes etc, including the
new cell phone.

Well we're still in Atlantic Highlands!  Hoping for good weather by Friday.
Thur we went "Fluke" (flounder) fishing on a "cattle boat" and caught 2
flounder - fresh fish for supper.  Tonight we ate at a "rib place"
(Tennessee Pig Out) and actually saw a pit bull in the back room sitting at
a table being served by a waitress - good ribs tho'.  Then we went to a
movie "Something about Mary" -really funny!  Met two couples from Canada
(Ottawa/30' sailboat & Toronto/38' trawler) - we may head south together or
at least with one of them.  Bought a folding shopping cart as the
supermarket is about 1 1/2 miles away and the groceries get very heavy
after awhile.  Atlantic Highlands is a nice little town with a very big
municipal marina - 6 foot tide and pilings instead of floating docks,
sometimes a problem - showers are not the greatest!  We're waiting for the
weather on NYC channel 11 with Kyty Tong & Mr "G", and for an updated
marine forecast on the radio - We're pretty sure tomorrow looks not so
good, but are hoping Friday will be OK.  Have used the new digital AT&T
(Nokia 6160) phone works great!! Just heard the weather and Friday sounds
(10/15 Kts. W with 3/4 foot swells) very good!  Will try to send this email
before leaving.  (Tropical Storm Frances is in the Gulf around Texas tho').
  Met several Greeks (husband/wife owned a restaurant & another guy eating
there - he was out in 34 Hunter (1979) in the storm and they headed the
boat into the wind, dropped the sails, ran the engine wide open and
survived OK; very good to hear this story - the only damage was to the
genoa as they couldn't get it all furled in, so about 1' of it was shreaded
- think it was old too!  All we're very interesting people - the restaurant
owner worked for Aristotle Onasis and came from the same island.  I got  a
pirate flag for the boat, my pony tail is getting longer, and I've started
a beard (at least for awhile).  So far we've been having a good time,
eating good, seeing some sights, meeting a lot of interesting/nice people -
hopefully it will warm up a little (today was about 60/65 with high winds).
 Also picked up a copy of Anchorages/Free Dockage from the Hudson to Key
West from our Canadian friends and it looks like it will help a lot with
the "dockage bills" (here it's  $51.00/night), but it's better than being
out in a storm!!!

Well, we finally got some good weather, met some friends from Canada
(originally from England) aboard "Sea Biscuit" a 30 foot Hunter.  We look
in their boat & cockpit and it reminds us of our ODay 31; boy are we glad
we got a new Catalina 34!!! Friday, We headed out from Atlantic Highlands
into the Atlantic for our run to Cape May (All night).  We left about 11:00
am with predicted 10/15 Kt NW winds and 2/3 foot seas.  Had some wind
during the day with small swells, but at night the wind picked up from the
SW, 3/4 waves almost head on - uncomfortable.  The GPS/Charview Pro/Laptop
etc made it great, and the Furuno Radar was a big help - could see the
exact distance to shore/see other boats coming before we saw the lights -
got up to 5 miles offshore!  You could see Atlantic City for 15 miles
coming/going.  Susan slept a couple of hours but when we arrived at Cape
May at 9:30 the next morning (115 miles) - we crashed, and then ate at the
famous Lobster House restaurant in Cape May.  Left Sunday for the Cohansey
River, about 35 miles up the Delaware River.  Used Chartview Pro to
calculate the best time of departure/etc and at one time we were making 9.4
kts UPSTREAM!  Fantastic program.  Had the mainsail up, but with the tide
pushing us we were often going faster than the wind, so it wasn't much
help.  Tomorrow we leave for the C & D Canal and plan to stop in Chesapeake
city (about 2/3 through the canal), and the next day on to Baltimore (15th,
just as we had planned).  The weather the last few days has been very good
and it looks like it will continue for awhile (they're saying 90 tomorrow).
 We'll probably rest up a day or so in Baltimore, replentish our supplies,
eat out, shop, and our friend's daughter is coming in to visit them.  Then
we'll head out on the Chesapeake making a few stops before we get to
Norfolk/Newport News (Look out Bob Cross, we're coming).  Have found out
that at about 1800 RPM (By the way WBM, our tach IS reading 500 RPMs high -
full throttle it shows 3700 RPM, but the engine is only rated at 3200) we
use about 1/2 GPH @ 5.2 Kts, but a 2250 RPMs @ 6.1 Kts we use 3/4 GPH
reducing our range considerably.  The dinghy is still on deck, but when we
reach the intercoastal or maybe the Chesapeake we will put it back in the
water.  We haven't anchored out yet, but almost did tonight, until we found
a sort of dilapidated Marina 3 miles up the Cohansey, and pulled in, no one
here so we just tied up (6 ft tides/4 kts current).  The beard is starting
to "itch" but it is filling in, and the pony tail is getting longer.  Susan
bought some "stick on" tattoos so we'll try those.  Our English/Canadian
friends are going to BVI, but first they're stopping on the Cross Florida
waterway and pulling their boat out/putting it in storage for a couple
months while they return home, so we may be together all the way down, as
we're planning on visiting Indiana in November, too.

We're staying at Georgetown Marina on the Sassafrass River off the
Chesapeake in Maryland.  We dinghy'd to a nearby restaurant (took it off
the deck, added the outboard, pumped up the patched floor - it held well).
When we got back it was dark so we just tied up to the dock.  About 6:00am
(high tide) we heard a "loud pop", and I jokingly said there goes the
dinghy floor!  When we looked out later we found that at low tide the
dinghy/outboard had drifted under the dock and at high tide it was pushed
up against the bottom of the dock so hard that a bolt was pushed through
the forward air chamber and the engine was partly submerged.  When the tide
came down, we got the engine off and the marina worked on it - there was no
permanent damage, however the carbuerator needs to be rebuilt but they kit
couldn't be shipped in until about 4 days, so we plan to leave without it.
Patched the dinghy again, hope it holds - if not in Annapolis they have 2
repair centers for inflatables, SO .....   Had the oil changed, oil filter,
fuel filter, and tomorrow they will have several 30 micron fuel filters for
us for spares.   The plan now is:  Rock Hall, MD the 18th (Rock Hall
Landing Marina), Annapolis the 19th (Annapolis Landing Marina), St.
Michaels, MD the 20/21st (St Michaels Town Dock Marina), Solomons, MD the
22nd (Zahniser's Marina).  I will call Mailboxes, etc tomorrow and have the
mail forwarded to Zahnisers.  The AT&T cell phone seems to be working well,
but I haven't gotten the voice mail working as yet.  Will try to send this
tomorrow if possible. 

Bob Cross, we're coming!!  Frank Wagner will not be coming to Baltimore as
planned, so hopefully we will meet further down south in mid October.  In
about a week and a half, we will be entering the Intercoastal at Norfolk.

October 1998

Well we're on the Dismal Swamp canal at the N.C Welcome Center, rafted up
with a Bayfield 40' from South Carolina headed to Annapolis for the Boat
Show, and a (can you believe it) a PONTOON boat with outboard from Maryland
with 2 guys headed for Florida!  They sleep on cots under a tarp on the
foward section, have a cooler for ice, a porta potti, and some water - now
that's roughing it!  Tomorrow we'll be in Elizabeth City for a couple of
days - that's where they meet the incoming boats and give the ladies a
rose, and have wine & cheese parties that night.  Some of the condos in our
complex in Cape Coral need a new roof and the swimming pool needs major
repairs, so we got an "assessment" for $3250 - glad it's still rented so
that it is tax deductable!  Our voice mail seems to be acting up, got it
fixed once/twice but it is still acting up - don't get discouraged if you
can't leave a message, I'm working on it!  Bob Cross (SHS '58) gave us a
personally guided tour of Fort Monroe, the oldest fort there is that became
known as the "freedom fort" (some slaves escaped to there, and a
confederate general asked for them back - the fort commander said they were
"spoils of war, and would not be returned".  Harriet Tubman was a nurse
there, Edgar Allen Poe served there, and on it goes. Bob is a postman and
his route is Fort Monroe, so he knows it well.  He then took us to Virginia
Beach and came back the next night and took us (Susan) to a mall!  Liz was
in bed with back trouble, so hopefully she's getting better.

10/2/98  Elizabeth City, NC - The "Rose Buddy"  Fred Fearing appeared,
invited us to a wine/cheese party, gave Susan a rose.  We ate lunch at a
BBQ Pork place, and would you believe it; they didn't even have any BBQ
sauce!  Worst we ever tried to eat.  Spent one day at the city docks, then
headed across to a Pelican Marina - very nice people; the owner gave us his
truck to use to go to the grocery store.  Susan's been cooking up a storm
ever since we left making all kinds of great meals.  Last night it was
cabbage, potatoes, pork chops all in a special sauce, with green beans and
then dessert was bread pudding with sauce!!!  A cold front came through
last night, so we opted to stay another day here, rather than head out
through Abamarle sound with 20/25 Kt winds and 4' waves (it's only 10'
deep, so in the trough it would only be 6' deep!)  Tomorrow is better, it's
now 75 degrees so the heat/humidity is gone!  Plan on making Bellhaven &/or
Oriental in the next couple of days - both supposed to be pretty nice.
Voice mail OK here, so I guess it's just where we're calling from, 'cause
we got a message from Frontier Cellular that they were adjusting our last
bill due to another error I had called them about!  Didn't use our
GPS/Chartview Pro through the canal, but will be using it to cross Abamarle

10/3/98  Stayed in Belhaven, NC last night.  After we pulled in and docked
a rain storm came through, about  3 - 4 " of rain in an hour or so.  Nice
town.  Marina had been rebuilt after hurricane "Bonnie" had wiped out a
lot, but it was still under repair.  Took a golf cart to the grocerie store
about 3 miles away.  A cold front had come through again and temperatures
dropped to 70 or so!

10/4 & 10/5/98  Oriental, NC - Nice little town, 800 people but with
everything imaginable for boaters, even used equipment.  Still a commercial
fishing area, trawlers coming in and unloading.  Ate last night at the
"Trawl Door" restaurant, one of the best places we've ever eaten!!!!  Will
change oil again (every 75 hours), but will have to do it myself as the
Oriental Marina has no service, just a nice place to stay!

Next stop will probably be Beaufort, NC (that's BOWFORT as opposed to
BEWFORT which is in S.C), then on to Swansboro, then maybe Wrightsville

This marina has cable TV, and phone hook ups at the dock so will try to
send the email today.  Susan is going to find a beauty shop, but I keep
telling her she's beautiful enough!  We're about 200 miles from Myrtle
Beach where H.S classmates Jim Miller & Pam (Gelvin) Miller live on Pawleys
Island so we plan on looking them up in a week or so!

We're in Oriental, NC - nice place.  Tomorrow we're headed up the Neuse
River (off the intercoastal route) to New Bern.  Susan's going to try and
have her hair done.  We plan on staying at the Sheraton Marina ($.50/ft)
with use of all their facilities.  Weather stil great 75/80. little rain.
A fella we met spent last winter on his boat there, and said there wasn't
even any frost ($250/mo).  We'll stay there 2 days (7th/8th), then on to
Beaufort - Town Creek Marina (9th), Swansboro Dudley's Marina (10th),
Wrightsville Beach Bridge Tender Marina (11th).  We'll call "Mail Boxes,
Etc" in Jacksonville, FL and have our mail forwarded to Wrightsville Beach.
 The ATT One Rate cell phone is working well, and for $90.00/month for 600
minutes/month with no "roaming" or "long distance" charges it seems great -
(we just got a bill for $173 for our "OLD" cell phone from Frontier
Cellular in NYS - glad we switched (and they charged another $150 for
cancelling!!!!!).  Changed the oil/filter today using the new hand pump (I
hooked it up to the oil pan drain tube) and it worked well.  White Orchid
is performing VERY WELL!  In the Dismal Swamp canal we bottomed out 3/4
times, when we anchored in the Alligator river, Susan backed over the
dinghy line (the "Spurs" I had added worked well - cut the line and the
dinghy went adrift) - another couple we had met the day before retrieved it
for us).  Then we found the other end was wrapped around the rudder.  I
went in the water on the ladder and could feel part of it with my feet,
then Susan said "I wonder why they call this the Alligator River!".  I got
out and she went in with her mask, but the "tanic acid" water is so dark
brown you couldn't see anything.  Paul, the guy that retrieved our dinghy,
said if we had something heavy to tie to the line we could drop it and
unwrap it using the boat pole to get it from the other side.  We did, and
the line disappeared (with the wrench)!  Then in the Alligator River/Pungo
River canal, Susan was driving and a large power boat pushed us out of the
channel and aground!  (Hey, Blackbeard did it too!)  We backed off and on
to Elizabeth City where a driver pronounced our boat "in fine shape with no
damage, just a paint scape on the keel/rudder!  What a boat!!!!!!  She's
running great, handling great, sailing great (did a little finally in the
Nuese River!).  Have met many very friendly people, many living aboard,
some just traveling south, some with brand new boats they're taking south
to their homes, etc, etc, etc.  Met a guy today that was on a 34'Marine
Trader (he called it a "rotten trader") he bought for $15K but it was in
bad shape - stripped off all the teak deck, cut through the fibreglass on
the deck and cabin walls, replaced all the rotten wood from leaks,
reglassed it and still has much to do!  Saw a "Hans Christian", a
"Nonsuch", a "Block Island"  all very nice,  but most even tho' they were
longer because they were older were narrow and had about the same room as
our Catalina 34!  Saw some 34' Catamarans with more room, but we were
talking to one owner when a wave pounded the bottom center of the hull,
WOW!  All in all, we've decided we made a VERY GOOD CHOICE!  Fuel useage is
minimal (1 GPH @ 6.5 - 6.8 Kts), so it could cost of as much as $200 for
fuel for the whole trip to the Keys!  I fella behind us on a trawler
radioed us and ask us to report the weather on the Neuse River as we
entered, he didn't want to go out there if the waves were too high - he
called 2/4 feet high!!!!!  "White Orchid" loves 20 Kt winds and 4'
waves!!!!!  Everything is working well, the GPSs are great, the Chartview
Pro is excellent, the Maxwell windlass and the Super Max anchor do very
well, Adler Barber refrigeration is super, the Heart Inverter gives us 110
V while at anchor so Susan can use the blow dryer, we can use our fan, etc,
etc.  The Heart Emeter gives us Amp hours used, remaining, etc.  The
"HillerRange" stove & oven has seen quite a bit of use (Susan is making a
tomato casserole as I write this) and is better than any home electric
range!  All in all, it's been a good trip so far.  We keep watch on the
weather pretty closely, epecially the Hurricanes.  We're right across the
harbor from a crab processing plant, and the trawlers keep coming in to
unloady their daily catch.  I guess the place we used to work is still
undergoing more changes and the people are "more excited than ever about
working there!".  About Oct 15th we should be in Myrtle Beach and will look
up a couple more of my HS classmates that were at the reunion this summer.
We don't know for sure where we'll be come October 27th, but we plan on
leaving the boat for a couple of weeks and heading north to Indiana to see
my sons, Susan's folks and Grammie, one daughter/husband/2 grandsons coming
to Indiana then also, and then on to Buffalo to see my sister Sue husband
Ed & aunt Florence - then back to the boat wherever she is!  They're
predicting some rain in the next day or so but we put up our full canvas
enclosure and will travel anyway, but by the week end it's supposed to be
clearing up and warming up.  We ate at the "Trawl Door" restaurant the
other night, and it was one of the best meals I ever had (except for
Susan's cooking).  The pony tail is still growing and I can actually get it
in a "holder" (one of the parting gifts from some of the people I worked
with - also a silver necklace that now has a silver sailboat on it that I
bought in Annapolis - now I have 2 nice ones, 1 gold my sister got me, and
1 silver the people at work got me) now, but it still needs to be longer to
do it right.  We both miss many of the people we worked with, but sure
don't miss working there!  "Captain Bob" of the "Guide to Anchorages Along
the Intercoastal" had just been here and left when we arrived, and Eddie
Jones of "Hard Aground" fame used a picture in his column that was taken
here.  We miss getting the "Coastal Cruising" magazines that were put out
in Beaufort, NC and feel like we knew many of the contributers - Bert Quay
of Quay & Associates Brokerage writes some articles too, and he's here.
Speaking of articles, don't forget the November issue of "Sailing" magazine
that will have the article about Susan & I and our old boat Capella and our
new boat White Orchid written by Caroline Corbett who is now probably in
the Bahamas with Dave!  She's supposed to let us know when the picture of
Capella is going to be used in another boating magazine.  The farther south
we go the cheaper the cigarettes, diesel fuel, and dockage fees get -
diesel as low as $.70/gallon, dockage as low as $.50/foot/night and
cigarettes as low as $1.60/pack.  About every 4 - 6 days we hit a marina
with a laundry and do the wash, stock up on groceries about every 3 days
(we keep at least one weeks emergency food on board at all times), fill up
with fuel & water and pump the holding tank every 2/3 days - many places
pump outs are free if you're staying there.  There are also many free fine
anchorages and town docks, but usually they don't have water/power so we
only use them a couple of times a week - as we learn the route we'll
probably do more of that on the way back north.  We've done some
sightseeing, but again we'll do more coming back - there's just so much to
see and so little time (don't want the "cold" to catch up with us.  The 4
hp Johnson is working well and a joy to take on/off the dinghy as it is so
light - much easier than the 8 hp Mercury!!  I've looked at several hard
dinghies and am considering trading for one if the price is right - I think
it would be easier to hoist up on the bow and off and not have to pull one
along (and it wouldn't have patches all over it).  There's a lot of
property for sale around Oriental and if it's not waterfront it's very
reasonable and taxes are low too - $7.00 per thousand, so on a $100,000
house the taxes would be $700 per year!  Susan bought a "Restaurants along
the Intercoastal Guide" listing all the "great" restaurants - the "Trawl
Door" was listed, but we've got another 50 or so to check out.  We plan on
leaving in the morning around 8:00 am and heading to New Bern (pronounced
Newbern) which is about 3 hours up the Neuse River.

We hit New Bern - very nice.  Susan got her hair done, real nice job, looks
great!  Stayed at Sheraton Hotel and Marina.   Back on the Intercoastal we
stopped ovenight (can't remember), then on to Wrightsville Beach - lots of
money there!  Our mail got lost by the post office, so today I called
Seapath Marina (very nice) and they will forward our mail to Charleston,
SC.  On to Bucksport and we're going to Myrtle Beach to meet Jim/Pam
Miller.  Susan got sick, so we missed them, but on to Georgetown (nice),
we're on to McCellanville tomorrow, then on to Charleston, SC the next day.
 Plan on staying in Charleston for 2 days to get the mail.  Been too busy
traveling to write much, but weather is great!  Oh yeh, we ran aground one
more time in "Snow's cut" and had to have TOWBOAT US tow us off this time -
no damage and on we go!

We're in Hilton Head - concentrating on getting South to Florida.  We've
reserved a car with Avis ($286 for 2 weeks with unlimited mileage starting
10/28 in Jacksonville) so we can return to Indiana, see the "boys", Susan's
folks, Grammie, Amanda/Steve/Mikey & Cameron are all coming too, Susan's
sister - then on to Buffalo to see my sister Sue/Ed/Aunt Florence; then
back to Florida.  Right now we plan on leaving the boat in Amelia Island.
Stopped in Beaufort, NC (that's Bowfort), then a couple of days in
Charleston (liked it a lot, good restaurants. lots to do, a real neat
town),  stopped in Beaufort, SC (that's Bewfort) overnight then on to
Hilton Head.  Been trying to contact Frank Wagner (SHS alumni) who has been
ahead of us in his Grady White 27' - he stays in motels but travels by
boat.  We were two days from Charleston when I called and he had just left,
but guess what - thanks to the AT&T cell phone/voice mail we conected.  He
met us at Hilton Head (he was in Savanah, but was playing golf here), and
we had dinner together and reminisced about old SHS - he still walks the
same, I knew the walk even if I wasn't able to recognize him.  Great time,
and we're trying to hook up again around Cumberland Island (his wife Susan
wasn't with him, 'cause she's not a golfer - good for her!).  Frank liked
our boat.  Should be at St Simons Island in a couple of days, so will try
to contact Janice (Lutz) Green another SHS alum.  We had talked with Jim &
Pam Miller going by Myrtle Beach and had set it up to meet, but Susan got
sick, then I did too a little and we had to cancel, so we missed each other
(they we're heading for Hilton Head the next day), but we'll catch them on
the way back.   The Miami Boat show is in February some time, so we may get
to stop by there on the way north.  So far the Catalina is performing like
a "real champ"!  Changed the oil again today (every 75 hours, and it comes
so fast traveling!), will probably change both fuel filters next time too.
A cold wave came through and this time it really got cold 60s in the day
low 50s at night (tonight upper 40s, so we've got the heater on) and very
windy so we stayed in Hilton Head an extra day.  Got another bill from
Frontier Cellular, and boy am I glad we switched to the AT&T phone - SO
MUCH CHEAPER!  When we get back from our trip I'll visit an AT&T Cell Phone
center in Jacksonville and see if they can help me hook it up to the
computer so I can send email from almost anywhere instead of having to find
a "land line" at a  marina.  Mail received from Mail Boxes, Etc twice in
the last week (one packet was sent by US Mail and the post office lost it
for awhile so we had to track it down), but it's working so we're keeping
up pretty well.

Been looking on the newstand for the latest issue (November 98) of Sailing
that the article about us is supposed to be in, I any of you find one
please buy two and send us the extra copy - we'll reimburse even if we
already have found one.  The article is about people that have switched
from power boats to sail by Carolynn Corbett - she and her husband are both
very good writers!  (It's true!).  At "Harbour Town Marina in Hilton Head",
at 34' I think we have the smallest boat in the marina - most are 50 - 75 -
100 feet, but there's one 125'!  "Showtime" that is/was owned by the owner
of Showtime Video/Showtime channel.  Now we know how the rich people live!

St Simons Island (10/24) - called Janice (Lutz) Green (SHS alumni), but she
was in Michigan and won't be back 'til next week, so I guess will catch her
on the return trip also.  While we were out exploring the island by bike
the next day, George (Janice's husband stopped by, but we missed him.  Stay
one more day and then will meet Frank (& Susan) Wagner at Greyfield Inn on
Cumberland Island (where JFK jr got married) and have lunch, passing up
Jekyll Island where Rockefellers, Astors, etc had their "summer houses",
now open to the public on tours - then on to Amelia Island - Amelia Island
Yacht Club 904 - 277 - 4615; we'll leave the boat there for our auto trip
north and probably at least one week when we come back; restock our
provisions, do some business in Jacksonville, etc.  Then on south toward
Miami -  so far we've come 1335 Nautical miles or 1540 Statute Miles!!!!!!
 Wow!  Had great weather all but a few days, very little rain, but very
little sailing also - we're looking forward to "going outside" on some of
the trip south to Miami and SAILING!!
The market seems to be settling down, and at least the interest sensitive
stuff is going up, that's good!  I keep saying remember, this is "Long

Note to Bob (Willsboro Bay) - the stern seats will have to be re-done this
next summer, they look really bad but I keep a propane bottle on one, and a
gas can on the other so no one can see them.  Thanks (just thought of that,
so I thought I'd let you know). 
Note to Phylis (Willsboro Bay) - has the professor bought a boat yet?
We're thinking about selling her next summer depending on price,  let me
know how much we could get!

Getting plenty of excercise - when we were in Charleston at Ashley Marina,
they drove us downtown with a courtesy van.  We walked around, took a
carriage ride then started walking back (about 7 miles altogether), then
here at HH we biked around the island to do some shopping (yes, Susan's
actually riding the "Shrine Circus Bikes" as she calls our folding bikes).
Well time to hit the rack, must leave by light in the morning and it's
already midnite (Susan's sleeping already). In New Bern we actually saw one
of the "Scooters with an engine" - really neat so I've sent for the
brochures, maybe we'll trade in the bikes as scooters take less room. Still
interested in a hard dinghy that will fit on the bow better (take up less
room than the inflatable) and the 4 hp Johnson will move along pretty well
- their about $550, but I'll try to trade in the old one (only 2 patches).

We met Frank & Susan at Greyfield Inn on Cumberland Island.  They'd
arranged a picnic lunch and we biked to Dungeness, the ruins of one of the
Carnegie estates - had a great time!!  We left Cumberland Island headed to
Amelia Island Yacht Basin but the channel entrance is shoal (even tho' the
dockmaster says they have 6', we ran aground twice before deciding to
anchor out that night and return the next day at high tide!).  So we did
and it worked.  Now we're in Indiana, saw Gus (III) yesterday, Muffy/Steve/
Mikey/Cameron today, along with Grammie and Susan's folks.  Next Saturday,
we'll meet the "boys" at Scott's then go out to dinner.  Probably on to
Buffalo on Sunday to see my "little sis".

We've traveled 1600 miles with some 500 to go to Key West, had great
weather, good times, good experiences (some real learning experiences,
running aground).  On the way back, we'll  anchor out more I'm sure, maybe
have a different dinghy.  We've talked about selling the boat, getting a
smaller power boat to trailer to Florida/Lake Champlain, moving into the
condo Jan 2000, buying a camper for the summer on Lake Champlain, but
nothing definite yet!



Last modified by Phil Imhof, Monday, August 09, 2004 . Copyright 2001 by Catalina 34 International Association.  All rights reserved.