Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Long Time No See...

West End

Well, we're back in the Bahamas.  After 4 days of motoring down the Intercoastal, stopping at the same anchorages we stopped at the last time, and hopping across from Fort Pierce, we are finally back in the Bahamas.  If you remember (not that we're so important that you WOULD remember…), but on our last trip, we hopped over from Miami to Bimini.  Well, this time, we came to the West End.  

After waiting too long for a weather window to open up so that we could sail on the outside, we decided to just grin and bear it and take the Intercoastal as there was a small craft warning off shore now for quite some time.   We saw a small weather window potentially opening up for a Gulf Stream crossing when we left St Augustine, and hurried down to try to be at the right place at the right time if it did open.  Believe it or not, the weather forecast was ACTUALLY accurate 5 days out.  (Oh man, praise the lord, Jesus Christ!)  When we got to Fort Pierce, we realized that our window for the crossing would be opening shortly, and in order to intercept it, we had to leave at sunset, sail 8 hours down the coast, and head east for 12 hours before landing in West End. The trip itself was uneventful, though pretty bumpy with the wind on our nose and some choppy seas.  Comparatively, I would say the first time crossing from Miami was an easier trip because of the angle that you have on the stream.  With that route, you start slightly south of your destination which allows you to use the stream more to your advantage and fight it a lot less.  

Being back on the ocean again was intimidating to say the least.  It has only been 3 months since the Ocean and Moitessier rendezvoused, and the experience was no less exciting than the first time.  Like 2 new lovers meeting for a date, butterflies filled my stomach with nervousness, excitement, and warmth.  I was overwhelmed with emotion when going out of the inlet, and to be honest, I couldn't really pinpoint why.  Perhaps it's because it would be a while again until I am back in the comforts of the things and the people that I know and love.  Or maybe it was the unknown of what lies ahead.  Or maybe it was realizing that I would no longer be getting fresh water showers on a regular basis that had me sobbing like it was my last day on earth.     Or perhaps it's knowing that I'd once again be alone with my thoughts and self reliant. Back to a world, where you're constantly humbled by your surroundings, and that though you may be self sufficient, try as you might, YOU are no longer the one that's in control.  But really, who among us are actually in control.  Whether living on a boat where Mother Nature pulls the strings, or living on land, where the illusion of control and safety allows you to live complacently and let life pass you by.  One way or another, I'm not quite sure which one is the key to my happiness, and often I find myself torn between the two. Sometimes, I want both and neither all at the same time.  And ultimately that makes me a crazy person, which makes sense cause you have be crazy to live on a boat, right?   

Sunrise on the ICW
Double Rainbow at Fort Pierce....good omen or what?


  1. Nice time to be in the tropics.
    Have fun out there.

  2. Hi Yu and Frank,
    Yu, I've just read your blog from start to finish over several days. First off, you are an excellent writer. The first thing that comes to mind having read your entire blog is your sense of optimism. Yes you had your ups and downs, your 'freak out" moments but overall, you've bounced back from adversity and remained resilient. The two most striking examples would have to be realizing your first boat purchase, the steel boat, was too big of a project. I've been there and done that too - kudo's to you both for admitting it and moving on to bigger and better things. Secondly, living on the hard for a year and eight months, if my memory serves me correct. Wow, now that is dedication.
    I enjoyed that you weren't afraid to tell us how it really was whether it be falling or peeing into a bottle, popping your blackheads in the mirror - now that is the gritty truth.
    I also asked myself several times how you know me so well. Of course, you don't know me from Adam, but your description of Frank fits me to a "T". Resourceful, willing to tackle just about any job, but with a short fuse in a stressfull situation and an unfortunate propensity to say the wrong thing to those nearest to me. It was good to hear your reaction to those moments when he was not nice to you. I will try not to be mean to the ones I love when I'm frustrated, so thanks for opening my eyes to your and therefore my better half's side of things.
    You made me laugh out loud at a couple of things only liveaboarders can laugh about. When you finally got Moitessier back in the water and took her out for her maiden voyage and asked yourself what you needed to pack for the journey and then realized that you had everything because you were travelling in your home, I laughed out loud. I remember having the exact same thought! But I also realized how I had missed an opportunity I now regret. You see, I bought a Bayfield 32 when I was 27 and lived aboard her for 6 years on Lake Ontario, going through what you would have done had you lived aboard your boat in NY, shrinkwrapping bubbling and heating her in the winter. The big difference was that I was single then and did what you avoided, becoming complacent with land life and never cutting the dock lines and taking off for distant shores. I wish I had had someone like you with me then to remind me why I bought the boat in the first place and focus me on the goal of setting sail once the boat was paid off and shipshape. Now as I approach the half century mark with a partner and child in tow and a mortgage anchoring me to my port, I can at least live vicariously through your adventures. Please continue to be optimistic and know that I'm sure Frank, like me, wishes he could remain calm and pleasant, when the going gets rough. Safe travels, Phil