Saturday, March 27, 2010

Evening Visitor

"Knock, knock, knock."

I'd been waiting all day for the gentleman who now stood dockside in the pouring rain toting a U.S. Census Bureau bag over one shoulder.  The kindly looking man told me, as he peeked out from under the hood of his raincoat, that he was here to count us for the 2010 census. 

Now I'm not entirely sure why, but this pleased me very much. We like to think of this as our floating home, and having someone come down--in the rain--and knock on every hull in the marina to count the liveaboards validated that a little bit.

We welcomed him aboard and had a nice chat while he asked us questions and filled in the forms.  He was quick to tell us just how friendly all the liveaboards he'd met here were.  He seemed genuinely surprised!  I guess he hasn't spent much time in marinas. :)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Unexpected Perks

When Aaron and I started this blog, it was mainly designed to share our rather unique lifestyle with our non-boating friends and family.  We figured if people could see what living aboard is really like, they'd get that we're not crazy hippies--we're just passionate about our boat and being on the water.

While I'm not sure this blog has succeeded in convincing them of our sanity, it has done something unexpected... It's given us the opportunity to connect with an assortment of interesting, inspiring, like-minded people who we didn't even know were out there!  I'm always amazed when new emails and comments come in from folks who have found our blog, and I just love hearing their stories and connecting with them.  It's true what they say about the boating community being a tight-knit group that shares ideas, encouragement and support (and, of course, cocktails).  And I'm awfully glad to be a part of it.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Blake Island Raft Up

With Saturday's forecast calling for sunny skies and temperatures near 60 degrees, Blake Island seemed like the ideal spot to spend a spring winter weekend.

And that we did, tied to a mooring buoy and rafted up next to our good friends Marty & Deborah on Three Sheets, their gorgeous new-to-them Island Packet 38.  Their first mate and kitty, Lily Winston Churchill, adores boat life and came along for the trip.  She bounced here and there, checking out all the unique sights and smells, and even perched on the bowsprit for a moment before Marty put a stop to such risky behavior.  She's even trained to use the head, if you can believe it.  But no, she doesn't flush.  As Aaron aptly put it, "she has people for that."

Before Three Sheets arrived, Aaron and I spent a couple hours walking the beach and trails, and thanks to a low tide, we were able to walk from the west side of the island all the way to the marina via the beach.  The tiny marina used to be an easy place to tie up and plug in, but word has evidently gotten out, as we watched a steady stream of sailboats, trawlers and power boats wind their way around the breakwater into the marina--and then right back out again.
Aaron had the camera when we saw the little guy who made these prints pawing for low-tide delicacies, but he only managed a blurry raccoon butt shot.

We knew we needed to be back to the boat before Marty & Deborah arrived, but we were having such a great time poking around the beach, we lost track of time.  When we spotted what we thought was their boat rounding the corner by Blakely Rock, we decided we'd better hustle back.  We hopped on the trail and ran as fast as our hiking boots would take us, through the woods and mud (pausing as a deer bounded across the trail in front of us) back to the other side of the island.  From our vantage point up on the trail, we caught glimpses of them through the trees.  It was a race!  As we hit the sandy beach, they were gaining on us, and we watched them get closer and closer as we ran (okay, at this point it was more of a run/walk) down the beach to our waiting dinghy.  Dude, I need more gym time.  We made it to the dinghy, heaved it down to the water's edge, pushed off and rowed back to Bella Star--just as they were approaching.  Phew.  We decided that workout burned enough calories to earn us three free drinks. :)
Here they come!

It was an awesome weekend trip, and although we've been to Blake Island many times, each trip reminds us just how lucky we are to have this little gem in our backyard--and to have great friends to share it with.  We even met the future crew of s/v Hello World and Ms. Jack Tar here!

Spring has sprung on Blake Island.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Winch Update

nchThe old Barient winches have been reinstalled.  We took them to Art Brass Plating to be rechromed and are very happy with the results.



Now if we can just do something about that varnish...

The most amazing thing about getting these things reinstalled is that I didn't drop a single piece overboard!