Saturday, December 13, 2014

Friday, December 12, 2014

Amazing Night Sky

From time to time while on passages, I talk about how amazing the sky full of stars is when you are far from all of lands sources of light pollution. 

I am always struggling to describe what it really looks like. 

Well, maybe I've solved that problem. 

It looks like this. (Without the letters!)

Jim Gregory 

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Update from Puerto Rico

I am just checking in from onboard Gibb Kane’s fantastic Swan 66 in Marina Puerto Del Rey, Puerto Rico.  We arrived from Spain just over a week ago, and my plans are to stay here until just prior to Christmas when Deb and I will charter a boat in the British Virgin Islands for the Christmas/New Years Holidays.  We have family joining us and are really looking forward to that time.

Between now and then, Deb (joining me today) and I will need to keep ourselves amused in Puerto Rico.  I’m sure I’d be shot if I complained too much, but after the last six months, Puerto Rico is not going to make the top of my list.  In fact, last week I found some cheap flights to St. Martin (a favorite of mine) and jumped over there for three days of fun.

The pictures below are from that side trip…

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Atlantic Crossing Summary

I've just arrived in Puerto Rico after a 15 day trip onboard Gibb Kane's new Swan 66.  It was a 3,000nm journey and we had fantastic sailing weather the entire way.  Other than the first and the last couple of days, the winds were aft of the beam and in the 20-30 knot range.

The boat is fantastic, the crew all got along well, and we were able to complete the trip with very little damage/difficulty.  Unfortunately, we did have the gooseneck pin that holds the boom to the mast fall half way out and bend itself.  Unable to repair at sea, we were forced to keep the mainsail down and sailed the last 2,000 miles under storm trysail!!

I'm in Wales...

...where I am sure they invented alphabet soup.

 I'm in a town called llanafwr. Honest.

 All is good except I'm wearing 3 layers if clothing. My ankle is getting better. I'm still with Emily Comfort and Brett. Ita is sleeping her way through England, the trollip. On our way to a whiskey tour. More later if I can type!


Thursday, November 27, 2014

Tonight was...

Night #15 since leaving the Canary Islands, and most likely our last night as sea.

It was also a perfect night for my traditional Pink Floyd Watch.


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I haven't been this cold....

Deb here:

I am currently having a great time touring England while waiting to join Jim in Puerto Rico, and while it has been really beautiful and fun, it has also been really COLD!  -1 C!  I have not been in weather like this in 2 1/2 years.  Brrrr!  Ita was shivering so badly yesterday I had to go out and get her a coat.

Brett & Emily (Comfort) and I are currently in Plymouth, England.  Emily and I get to be tourists while Brett tank tests one of his newer wave energy projects.

Yesterday Emily and I went to the Plymouth Museum, and it was surprisingly good.  Whoever is in charge of how the displays are laid out, the information included  and what's included knows their job.  It was really a nice display.

Then a brisk walk to the park that over looks the mouth of the river Plym… ("Plym"-"Mouth"… get it…)  and a memorial to the navel losses in WWI and WWII.  We also watched a few really crazy people swimming in the freezing ocean while we had our nice warm lunch.  

It's been nice to spend some "girl time."  Em and I went to watch the new Hunger Games movie, which we are pretty sure neither of our husbands would want to see.  Tomorrow we are off to Wales.  Photos to come.


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Enjoy your Thanksgivings!!

Greetings from onboard the sailing vessel Tik Tok, soon to be Bounty. All is well and we are finally beginning to see the end of this journey ahead of us. 2000 miles under Storm Trysail is not something that I'd recommend, but given the reliable trade winds in the 20-30 knot range that we've seen most of this trip is has not been too bad.

I am sorry for the lack of updates, but the onboard email system has had a few "issues" and is also very expensive, so we've limited ourselves to weather for the most part.

Today we were shadowed for about 15 minutes by what we think was a fairly large whale. My guess is that it was about 15-20 feet long. Easily the largest animal that I've seen in the Atlantic Ocean over the past couple of years.

I hope that you all enjoy a great Thanksgiving wherever you are. Especially my family which is scattered all over the place this year. Deb is in Ireland, Chris and Pat are in California, and I am currently 323nm ENE of Puerto Rico.

I had hopes for a quick stop and a Thanksgiving meal at Saba Rock in the BVI's, but alas that is not to be.

Don't eat too much!!


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Jim will be so proud...

Made it to Plymouth in England. Very cool town. More details later....

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Check-in message from Tik Tok

Tik Tok - Atlantic Crossing
GPS location Date/Time:11/25/2014 09:25:09 PST

Message:Just wanted you to know that all is well. Everything is good!

Click the link below to see where I am located.

If the above link does not work, try this link:,-55.71524&ll=21.07559,-55.71524&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Friday, November 21, 2014

A great day riding.

The day started beautifully with a horse back ride through Hyde park. It was wonderful. But then while walking home, I fell and twisted the beejeebers out of my ankle. &@@$;$$#**#%>~!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Check-in message from Tik Tok

Tik Tok - Atlantic Crossing Update
GPS location Date/Time:11/20/2014 08:24:59 PST

Message:Just wanted you to know that all is well. Everything is good!

Click the link below to see where I am located.

If the above link does not work, try this link:,-39.32217&ll=21.53954,-39.32217&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Great Sailing as we break in Gibb's new boat

In all the history of sailiing, I doubt very much that anyone other than us has ever tried to go downwind with a double head rig and storm trysail!!

Yes, I've been quiet and yes we've had a few challenges lately, but all is well and only our speed has been affected.

We had a bolt get loose that attaches the boom to the mast. That bolt ended up getting bent and we don't have a spare. So, the main is down and flaked on the boom. It looks like at least one of the fuel tanks has something in it along with the fuel so we've had some challenges with our engine/generator, and most unfortunately our one and only spinnaker that looked like it had previously suffered multiple disasters split in half and is now an x-spinnaker.

So, here we are learning the ins and outs of a beautiful new boat and enjoying what has now been 7 days of beautiful downwind sailing.

Plus, as per above I think we've made history!!


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

She's our of the water

Morpheus is out of the water and almost ready for a well earned rest while we go back to the states and visit family! We have about 100 more yards to go before I can email Jim and let him know his baby is tucked in safe and sound.

BTW, Thank You to Carl Schumacher for designing and Davie Norris for building us such a wonderful boat. Fast, the 2 of us can handle her in all the conditions that have been thrown at us, and not one leak! (Touching wood so as to not tempt the Gods). Not even the windows, Davie!!!! Looking like Greece and Turkey next year. Who's in?


Saturday, November 15, 2014

Tik Tok - Day 2

Day 2 continued as per day 1. Noon to noon run was 181nm. Nothing to brag about, but progress. Boring and primarily motor sailing under main alone. All systems and people onboard doing well. Less than 10 knots for the most part until this afternoon when we saw things move up to the mid teens and got the spinnaker up for the first time.

Now sailing with boatspeed in the 8-10 knot range, although a bit to the right of where we'd like to be going in a perfect world.


St. Paul de Vence.

I made it to visit Fred and Janet and I've been having a wonderful time! They've been touring me around all the wonderful little village around their home in their classic little car. FUN!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

All Is Well

Really good actually!!

Jim Gregory 

No wind!

Looks like this is our forecast for the next few days.  

Jim Gregory 


Jim Gregory 

Departure Time is Here!

I will try to post some pictures as we leave, but we are about to drop our docklines and begin our 3,000 mile/two week journey to Puerto Rico.  The weather forecast is good, the boat looks to be in great shape, and the crew seems great.


We hope to make it to Puerto Rico by Thanksgiving.  I think that is extremely unlikely.  I am in favor of Plan B which involves stopping in Virgin Gorda and celebrating Thanksgiving at Saba Rock's Happy Hour!! 

Monday, November 10, 2014

One adventure ends, and a couple others begin


Morpheus has done right by us for yet another season here in the Med.  But, Rule #1 says “Keep Debbie Warm” and we are quickly running out of clothes that can make that happen here.  So, once again Morpheus has been prepared to be stored at EMV Marine in Badalona just a few miles North of Barcelona, Spain.  This is the same place that we left her last year and she was very well taken care of.  We are pleased to be leaving her with a very short “work list” and couldn’t be happier with the way she help up these past six months.





imageWhat’s next you ask??  Well, tomorrow I take everything that I need for the next 4-6 months and head down to Teneriffe in the Canary Islands to jump onboard our good friend Gibb Kane’s new Swan 66.  I am going to help sail her South to the Caribbean with another good friend Jim Callahan, Jim’s “significant other” Dani, and a few others.  (Unfortunately, Gibb injured his knee a few weeks ago and is recovering from surgery so he can’t join us.)  I’ve taken my SPOT tracker and made a few updates to the link on the front of our Blog so those of you that are interested can check in from time to time and follow our progress.

moonrise 002

And Debbie?  What about Debbie?  Well, she has absolutely no interest in sailing across the Atlantic.  Even in a wonderful yacht like the Swan 66 shown above.

So, as you can see here, she has been frantically learning to knit!  I kid you not. And, is almost done knitting herself a new scarf that will help to satisfy Rule #1!

Once I leave, she is off on a planes, trains, and automobile tour of at least three European countries by land.  She first heads North to visit with Fred and Janet Laffitte.  Fred and Janet are our doppelganger or “mirror image” friends that have boys our kids ages, sail their cruising boat all over the world, and race Etchells as well.  Great people that have a home in France and Deb is heading that way after waving goodbye to me at the airport.  Then she is off to see Chris and Caroline Longstaffe in England.  Chris and Caroline live just down the street from us, but like us rarely seem to be in their own house!  They will be in England to celebrate Caroline’s Moms birthday and the timing is working out perfectly for Deb to join the celebration.  Next, she will travel to Ireland to spend some time with Emily Comfort and her husband Bret.  (Emily can be seen in the picture above teaching Deb how to knit that scarf last week!!)

Once all that is finished, Deb will fly to Puerto Rico and we’ll sort of figure things out from there.

Lots of moving pieces.  It will be interesting to see how this all works out!

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Barcelona - Marina Port Vell

Just for fun I grabbed this from Google Maps.  This is the area near our marina.  We always enjoy visiting here with the Marina so close to everywhere you'd want to walk in Barcelona and the beaches as well.  If we need to go a longer distance, the Metro is only a block away.

It had to be done…

The math is undeniable.  Next year maybe.

moonrise 009

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Full Moon Rising

This view was absolutely phenomenal tonight.  My camera was just barely up to the task.  If only my young son Patrick was here with his camera and his knowledge of what to do with it.

moonrise 011

moonrise 017

Friday, November 07, 2014

A Few Favorite Pictures from this Season

We have such good internet here right now that I figured now was a good time to just throw up some random favorites!!