Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I might just stay a while

Sorry for the lack I updates lately, Internet has been pretty hard to come by in Sumatra. But it's been a busy couple of days. After landing in Medan I spent the night in a shabby little hotel room before heading up to Bukit Lawang as quickly as possible. Which was a great call, it's a sleepy little town right next to a river on one side and the jungle on the other, a perfect place to get away from the city for a while. The main reason the town exists is as a jump off place for multi day jungle treks . And the trek was amazing, I decided to only sign up for a two day trek but on the first day we hiked across the jungle, following animal trails through up and down and around the hills and ridges and valleys. I swear I have never been as sweaty in my life, I could have jumped in a pool and there wouldn't have been a difference. We saw tons of orangutans, including some young adults and babies still with their mothers, two kinds of gibbons, tucans, monitor lizards, Thomas monkeys and a bunch of the macaw? monkeys. We finally stopped for the night and set up camp right by a small waterfall with a great little swimming pool. The next day we did a little bit more hiking and finished the trip with an hour long raft down the river back to where we started.

Right now I'm on an island called Palau Weh off the northern tip of Sumatra. It was supposed to be a two or three day stop to do a little diving before heading over to Malaysia but once I got here and realized just how good the diving was, and that the beach front bungalows (the picture below is from my front porch) cost five dollars a night, I decided to add a couple days here and get my Advanced open water dive license. I went on three dives yesterday, including a deep dive and my first night dive, and it was stunning. Schools of fishes swarming around, eels poking out of rocks, lion fish, scorpion fish, we even saw a manta ray on the afternoon dive and an octopus, two cuttlefish and tons of lobsters on the night dive.

After I finish here I'll probably fly over to Malaysia for a couple days before working my way up north to southern Thailand. We'll see what actually happens!


And today we received...

"I decided to do my advanced diving course here cuz it's pretty darn cheap and it just let's me become a better diver so you guys don't have to worry as much lol. Hope all's well


Sent from my iPhone"


Pats travels

Deb here. We got the following message from Pat a couple days ago. He seems to be doing well...

"Sorry, i've been out of internet access for a while, I think you guys know that i flew down to Sumatra, Indonesia and then headed out to Bukit Lawang to go on a two day jungle trek through the forest, it was amazing, saw tons of Orangutans, gibbons, thomas monkeys, monitor lizards, and the jungle and scenery was just spectacular. And now I'm in Palau Weh off the north end of the island and gonna do some diving before heading to malaysia. Spot should have been working tho, hope alls well with you guys


Monday, July 30, 2012

Back in Newport

There are not many days that I'd trade for the one we just enjoyed!!  

Jim Gregory 

And we are off!!!

Jim Gregory 

A Virgin Mudslide!!

Hi Pops!!!

Jim Gregory 


Jim Gregory 

The National Hotel

Jim Gregory 

Team Bike Riding

Jim Gregory 

The Narragansett

Jim Gregory 


Jim Gregory 

Great Salt Pond

I created this panorama with the Photosynth app on my iOS device, http://www.photosynth.net.

Jim Gregory 

First Stop

Jim Gregory 

Block island for the day

Jim Gregory 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Newport Folk Festival

Every weekend there is something new a great in Newport!  Jackson Brown tomorrow!!

Jim Gregory 

Friday, July 27, 2012


Here is what a nasty cold front looks like when it is right over your head!!

House Cleaning Day

Jim Gregory 

Begin forwarded message:

From: Jim Gregory <jim@jdgregory.com>
Date: July 27, 2012 11:42:41 AM EDT
To: Morpheus Blog <jgregory123.m0rpheus@blogger.com>
Subject: House Cleaning Day

Debbie is having so much fun today!!!

Jim Gregory 

I think I have bulb envy!

Jim Gregory 

House Cleaning Day

Debbie is having so much fun today!!!

Jim Gregory 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A day without boats

I decided to try something different today and had a great time "playing golf" with Lyn Comfort. 


Jim Gregory 

48 hours in Bangkok

So far, Bangkok has been basically the polar opposite of Japan. The roads are chaotic and unorganized, filled with motorbikes and three wheeled taxis called Tuk-tuk's that seem to think the road lanes are more of a suggestion then a rule. But more then anything, it's cheap! My room on the main strip of khao San road is 180 baht a night ($6), to put this in perspective it was 400 yen ($5) to rent a train station luggage storage locker for four hours. Road side carts in Thailand sell meals for 40 baht (~$1), in Japan it was at least 8 or nine dollars for lunch and more for dinner.

But anyways, I'm heading down to Sumatra, Indonesia tomorrow. Sumatra is one of only two places left in the world where you can still find wild orangutans. So the plan is to join up with a guide and go trekking through the jungle for a couple of days and then head up to Palau Weh, an island off the northern tip of Sumatra, for some world class scuba diving. I got new batteries for SPOT so it should be working again


Monday, July 23, 2012

Back Onboard

Good to be back on Morpheus this morning. 

I am heading up river to New England Boatworks to get some new paint on the bottom and to take care of some minor deferred maintenance. 

The "plan" from here is to stay in Newport through next weekend to enjoy the "gathering of the clan" as Ily Comfort's visit home with the "new" boyfriend gives everyone an excuse to get together. 

Then it's off to a bit of cruising on the way to Shelter Island the first weekend of August where we will meet up with Johnny Ryan and Paul Cole. Then off to Maine for the rest of the month where we may be joined by my Mother and hopefully some others!

After tht things are less clear. Probably some time back in Newport and the Rye, NY. A trip to Maryland via car or boat to see Candace and Bubbles and it will be time to head south by very early October. No more big storms on the way to Bermuda for us!!

Jim Gregory 

Bangkok tomorrow

I jump on the night bus back to Tokyo in a couple hours and after killing one last day in tokyo I board a plane to Bangkok tomorrow night. Japan has been an amazing experience, at times frustrating but always exciting. I am still figuring out my travel plans after I land in Bangkok but as of right now I'm leaning towards heading down to Sumatra, Indonesia relatively quickly and then working my way north through the Malaysian peninsula and southern Thailand. After that who knows, Laos? Cambodia? Vietnam?

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Another very tough day!

Sunday's just don't seem to work well for us on Mutiny. 

Three races today and the best we could manage was a tenth. 

We were fast and went the wrong way, slow even when we went the right way, and a few times we did everything wrong...


Jim Gregory 

Post Race

The crew of Mutiny enjoying a post race cocktail on top of the hill at Harbor Court!

Jim Gregory 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Kyoto, a shrine on every corner

Took the night bus to Kyoto last night and got in to Kyoto bright and early at 4am. After a quick nap in a cafe in order to wait for the subways to open I got to my hotel for tonight (it's a capsule hotel and looks like its straight out of 2001: a space odyssey) dropped off my backpack and headed out sight seeing. First we went to Kinkaku-ji, the golden temple. Then Ryoan-ji, who's famous rock garden is still being analyzed as to why it's fourteen? boulders are laid out in that particular method. Kiyumizudera temple next, and some great views of Tokyo. And I finished at the Fushimi-Inari shrine, which is basically a path up a small mountain completely covered with thousands and thousands or tori gates, each one no further than a couple inches from the last, forming a tunnel of shrines that you walk through. I was going to just do a quick run-through of Fushimi-Inari because I was already pretty worn out but there was a full on festival going on with food and drink stands, carnival games, kids running around in kimonos, and thousands of paper lanterns hung up everywhere. It was a great way to end the day. Tomorrow I'm planning on walking through the markets and older areas of Kyoto and basically just wander, and I'll let you know how the capsule thing goes (look up "9hrs kyoto" if you are curious)


NYYC Race Week

Day 3 of the NYYC Race Week. The wind gods have not been kind to this event so far.  After two days we have only completed three races. We have a nice 15 boat fleet and our finishes have been 9, 11, 3. 

We didn't like the 11 much, and are hoping to see a few more finishes closer to that last third. 

Johnny and I are a bit sad about missing this years pacific cup, but Newport, RI is not a bad substitute!

Updates to follow...


Jim Gregory 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

It's HOT! But not for much longer

We have a serious cold front with lots of thunder lightning rain and wind moving through Newport. This heat wave is just about over!

Jim Gregory 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"Go-raiko" or the ridiculous tradition of climbing Japan's highest mountain in the dead of night in order to see the sunrise

I've been up for about 36 hours now so I'm just going to give you the bullet points:

  • jumped on a bus to mount Fuji last night intending to do the climb overnight in order to see the sunrise.
  • on the bus I start talking to a bunch of Japanese college students and we all decide to do the climb together.
  • leave the "base camp" that's about halfway up the mountain (right at the treeline) at about 9:00
  • made it top at 4:00am, perfect timing to see the sunrise. And talk about a sunrise, it was amazing, words can't do it justice.
  • lo and behold the guys who I was hiking with had brought beer all the way up. So... Beers were drunk... On the top of mt fuji
  • somehow I got myself interviewed on the summit by a japanese news team
  • afterwards, I was planning on heading to Kyoto but due to a slight public transportation mix up I'm now in a town called Mishima with the option of paying for a $100+ bullet train ticket to Kyoto or going to a nearby beach town for a day or two and waiting for the overnight bus. 
  • Yep, beach it is.


Patrick Update

It looks like Pat's been climbing Mt. Fuji!!

Mount Fuji  is the highest mountain  in Japan; located on Honshu Island at 3,776.24 m
(12,389 ft).[1]  An active stratovolcano that last erupted in
1707–08, Mount Fuji lies about 100 kilometres (62 mi) south-west of Tokyo, and can be seen from there on a clear day. Mount Fuji's exceptionally symmetrical cone, which is snow-capped
several months a year, is a well-known symbol of Japan and it is frequently
depicted in art and photographs, as well as visited by sightseers and
climbers. It is one of Japan's "Three Holy Mountains" along with Mount Tate  and Mount
Haku it is a Special Place of Scenic Beauty , a Historic Site, and has been submitted
for future inscription on the World Heritage List

Jim Gregory

Monday, July 16, 2012

Tracking Patrick in Japan!

I think we finally have Pat's SPOT tracking map up and working.

Here he is!

Where in the world is Patrick Gregory??

Newport Regatta - Day 2 Report

When something seems to good to be true, it usually is..

All things revert to the norm.

Pick your expression, either one works fine to describe yesterday.  Things did not break our way at all.  On Saturday,  we were charmed and didn't seem able to put a foot wrong.  Sunday seemed to more than balance all that good luck.  We just were not sharp, and the results showed it.

Oh well, on to the Nationals which start this coming Thursday!


Nikko waterfalls hike

Went on a great hike through the Nikko national park today, the trail led me past four or five different waterfalls, including Kegon waterfall (left) which is one of the highest in Japan. And also Yudaki waterfall (right) which was my favorite.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Newport regatta -day 2

Heading out for day two. Tied for first after a 5,1,2,2 day

Jim Gregory 

Hostel Food

So I left Tokyo and headed about two hours northeast to a little town called Nikko which is know for its beautiful temples and shrines and also for its lake and one of the largest waterfalls in Japan. I just got back from wandering through the shrines and the owner of the hostel that I'm staying in is preparing a huge wok of stir fry. Smells good!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Early Morning Humor

Two old men were sitting on a park bench in a retirement community one day.
The second one says to the first, "So how did you make your money?"

The first one says, "I had a factory for many years but it burned down and
now I am retired in luxury, living off the insurance payment."

The second one says, "Funny I had a similar thing happen. I owned a factory
for many years but it was destroyed by a flood and now I am retired off the
insurance money from my loss."

The men sit for a few minutes and then the first one turns to the second and
says, "So how do you start a flood?"

Jim Gregory

Description: Morpheus White 4

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Next stop Tokyo!

Jim Gregory 

Guest Blogger

Patrick here, if you all didn't know I am about to jump on a plane and go backpacking around Japan and Southeast Asia for six weeks before I start working in New York. I'll be posting occasional updates of my travels here and for anyone who wants to follow my SPOT tracker the address is: http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glld=0exvDJLv4e64KR176qFld8WfLxsOkzL4S


Sent from my iPhone

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Bermuda Race Finish

A great shot of Morpheus finishing the Bermuda Race!

And, yes I do understand that I still owe the blog a write up on the race itself. 

I think that will come sometime in the next week. I'm still trying to figure it all out myself right now. 

Jim Gregory 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

4th of July

We saw some pretty amazing fireworks here in Newport, RI!!

Jim Gregory 

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Just Hanging Out

After a big day on Block Island yesterday, Pat and I are happy to be enjoying a slow evening after a nice sail back to Newport this afternoon. 

Jim Gregory 


There's a reason Tetris is my favorite game. The garage is holding 2 pods plus a bunch of furniture. And there's still room for more.

Who 'da Man!!!

2 hours! Yeah!

Let the games begin!

Friday, July 06, 2012


While taking apart all the stereo equipment to put it into storage, I realize my husband has, at some point, punched holes in the area rug to run the sterio wires through.

I don't think I have words to express what I am thinking right now...


Should we stay, or should we go??

Pat and I headed over to Block Island yesterday afternoon. Time to take a break from loading gear back onboard. 

We are the advanced party for a group of others heading this way this afternoon. Skip And Nancy Helme, plus others. 

We knew the 4th was a big weekend here, but given that it was on wednesday we thought we'd get lucky and find a mooring. 

No such luck. Not only that but the anchorage is mobbed!!

So, we are anchored just outside the channel and we are the only boat out here. 

So, is this good or bad??  Pure sand bottom, excellent holding, just a long dingy rise to shore. On the other hand, I get very nervous leaving my boat unattended. 

Should we stay or should we go??

Jim Gregory 

Thursday, July 05, 2012