Catch Up Time… Again!

Now that I have time to breathe, I’m going to work hard at keeping this blog up to date. Yea right. As that will ever happen, but I’m going to try.

I look back at the last couple of months and it has been a whirl wind. I have enjoyed every precious moment of it and I would not have changed a thing. But I have neglected projects like this and that has got to stop. I want to let you know what is going on with Magic Wind. She’s a proud vessel and wants you to know where she’s been and what she’s planning.

So this will be a quick catch up and then I will make myself sit down and keep you updated on our sailing adventures.

When things get crazy, I just watch this clip…

Download MOV03526.MPG

Let me see… The last time I made and entry in this log was December 2nd and that was a catch up too. I’ll try to construct the outings.

Most of December was spent doing the Christmas thing, but when I got back on the 26th I knew that Gary Parker and I thought Willy would be coming down for a 9 day visit. Lot’s of sailing plans. Well Willy had to deal with some health problems and took a rain check. F*** Willy. So Gary and I played.

When Gary came in we took a nice day sail out in the Gulf. Beautiful weather and Gary at the helm.

We also took a sunset sail.

One of the coolest sails we took was on New Years Eve. We headed out and anchored off the Fort Myers Beach Pier. Right at midnight the fireworks went off. I can’t belive I didn’t have a camera but it was one of the most amazing sights I have ever experienced. What a display. We found out later it was the 10th anniversary of Fort Myers Beach being a town. They went all out.

On the way back in a fog bank caught up with us. Now I’ve delt with fog off the west coast, but this was different. Matanzas Pass is a small pass. It was 0130 and so I started to look for the markers.

There were two other boats coming in at the same time. So I slowed down, so did they. I slowed down again… So did they. It was obvious that they were going to follow me.

I put Gary on the bow and turned on the search light off and on trying to find those unlighted markers. I was luck that I had the tracking on, on the GPS and was trying to follow the “snail trail” of when I came out. This worked out great. Gary was watching for markers and other boats and he was a good look out. Just before we came to the bridge, there was a break in the fog and we pulled into the slip like I knew what I was doing. Everyone, Gary, Pat, and Pat’s sister Debbie said good job captain. I just said thanks and went below and changed my shorts. What they don’t know won’t hurt them. At least in this case.

The next time our was a few days later. We had a cold front coming through and the Gulf was rough. Pat was out of town and Gary wanted to go somewhere and spend the night. I thought about Glover Bight, but it was getting cold. I decided to head up the Caloosahatchee River to the Fort Myers Yacht Basin. It was a good motor and we put up the head sail a time or two and motor sailed for a while. It was a brisk wind so we stayed in the marina over night and headed back down to Fort Myers Beach Marina the next day.

We enjoyed our sail. Ate well slept good. We stayed dry and warm. A good hot shower in the morning. It’s a good marina. I think a little high in price, but aren’t they all.

Gary headed home, but not to worry, Jim Reid came in. It was back to introduction to sailing time. We took a great Day sail and enjoyed every minute of it.

Now the weather was on our side, so a few days later we headed north and went up to Glover Bight this time. We pulled in and I checked the chart and depth and moved in slow. I almost ran up on the shoal to the south, one foot depth, but I caught my error at the last second and jumped into reverse and backed into better water. I pulled off the shoal about 25 yards and dropped the hook. We were just starting to relax. Jim started fishing. A boat from Tow Boat US pulled along side and let us know that where we were at we might have a problem with tide and current. He suggested that we might want to go north and anchor just off the mangroves. He said the water was good all around and would have a more comfortable night.

We took his advise and raised the hook. It took a long time because of the nasty bottom mud, but we got moved and anchored again. The only problem with being up by the mangrove was the skitters and no-see-em’s. We headed below and enjoyed a nice evening with a bottle of rum.

Jim didn’t catch any fish, but he had a great time and blew the “Conch” at sunset. It’s a tradition aboard Magic Wind.

Before Jim left we took a very nice sunset sail. The wind was great when we hit the Gulf, but as soon as we set our sails, it dropped to 1 mph and we just bobbed. It happens, but who cares.

The day before Jim left, Pat and Katie from Minnesota came in for the next three weeks.

We took them on the, what has become a traditional, sunset sail. We stayed out a little too long, just because I wanted to and I’m the captain. Pat, my wife and Katie got a little chilled, but we had a nice night sail back into the pass.

The next time we went out, we had what I call the perfect day. We headed out around 1200 and sailed south. The wind was perfect at about 12 to 17. The Gulf was nice with about 2 footers about 8 seconds apart. We sailed to Lovers Beach and then I had to make a decision. We were sailing so good I just didn’t want to turn around. Being the spontaneous kind of guy, I suggested we should just keep going south. I had some crackers and various provisions on board and coffee for the morning…

Over ruled again, so we made a slow hesitant starboard turn and tacked back toward home port. It turned into a great sunset and we got in about 1900 and all I could think is that we could be at Marco Island right now. It’s ok. I’ll get over it. Tomorrows another day…

Before Pat and Katie left, I had a chance to take out their sister-in-law Judy. It was a great sail. We all caught some sun and even though it was a short sail, everyone had a ball. Judy says that as soon as I’m a legal captain she will get me some business. I’ll keep sailing until that happens. Little does she know that I’d take her out anytime she wants, the license is for chargin’ the tourists.

Pat, my wife, left for Arizona last Sunday. I moved onto the boat. It’s been about a week and I’ve gotten a bunch of work done, little stuff like cleaning the cabinets and the cabinet doors, wiping down the wood with oil and just general boat keeping.

One night I was waiting for the hot water heat up to do the dishes and I heard a POP and the water pump started to run full boar… I knew what that was. A broken pipe or a fitting. I cut the pump and waited till morning to do the fix. It was in the bottom of the boat behind the starting battery under the shelf where only one hand could fit… Six hours later and trip to Ace Hardware all was well again.

Well I’ll be moving off Magic Wind on Sunday to do laundry and pack for my trip to Arizona for five days. But she’ll be tied tight and ready for a sail when I return. Brother Dan should be here from Reno when I get back, so the sailor man he is, I’m sure we will put some water under Magic Winds keel soon.

Welcome Back… Where’ve You Been…

Yea I know… It’s been a long time since I’ve done the update on this blog. It happens. I’ve been busier then I’ve been in a while. We have had a lot of guests and with Pat working and me doing farmers markets and street shows, it has been a whirl wind.

I’m going to catch you up fast and then I’m going to try to update this thing at least once a week because you deserve it. You guys read it and really it keeps me from doing so much email stuff. So it is a win, win situation. (Wait a second Patrick… “Win, win situation is a good thing.” Go figure.

Since the beginning of the year, we have had Jim Reid visit. It was great. He is such a joy to have around. He helped Pat with a couple of shows in January and during the week we went sailing and played. Check out http://bpwmagic.typepad.com/magicwind for details.

Jimconch

Jim also took a day and went deep sea fishing and brought home dinner for Pat and I. Great fish tacos and a great day at sea for Jim.

Just before Jim left, Pat and Katie came in. After we took Jim to the airport we settled in to a nice visit with some good friends from Minnesota. It was a pleasure to just have them close. We played, talked, ate, drank and just enjoyed each other for the next 3 weeks. They had a very nice room on Estero Island and just a mile from the RV Park.

Patnkatisunset

We took a sail every now and then and Patrick had a chance to help me work on the boat… Again… It’s always fun to share in the chores.

Patrickworking

Pat and Katie left on the 3rd of February and Pat, my wife left on the 5th for AZ to do the Tubac and Fountain Hills show as well as make an appearance at the Arizona Renaissance Festival. She’s a busy lady and I respect her and what she does. She does the same for me so we get along just fine. When Pat left last Sunday, I moved onto the boat for the week. Cleaning, fixing and enjoying. It was too lonely kicking around that big house all alone.

The wind has been up which makes this marina pretty bumpy. Sleeping can be disturbed every once and a while but the biggest challenge is to pour a shot of Tequila, in a shot glass, and not spill a drop. It just takes practice and repetition. So I practice…

Bpnp

This is just one hell of a sunset… It’s good to do shows everyday with a view like this.

Coolsunset

I’ll be flying out on Monday from Fort Lauderdale and spend Monday through Friday with her. We are going to clean out the storage shed and get it down to a 5×5 instead of a 10×10. That’ll save some dough in the long run.

Pop and Donna are going to come over during that week and I’ll be able to see my Dad again. He’s a great guy and I cherish the time that we can have together. He is doing great and eats like crap. I’m going to go get a cheese burger and drink a martini and grow up to be just like him. If I could be so lucky. I love that guy. Plays hard and works hard. A good combo.

So that’s about it.

Take care you guys and take care of each other. Life is a wonderful gift. We seem to let it slip by. Not anymore… Starting today.

You can click on the photos to enlarge them in a new window.