August 6th, 2007
Well, first off let me apologize for not updating sooner. Perhaps you will understand as you read on. I can't believe the end of June was the last time I wrote. Part of the reason was I was not sure how much of my personal life to share. Ultimately, I have decided to share ALL.
I think I will start off with the jar at work. I have had such a fun time with that and actually it had encouraged me to show up for work on days I wanted to call in sick. I saved all the items in a box which is at "our daughter Stephanie's house" I will be getting a picture of everything and post it when we go up to "Stephanie's House". We still own the house but it is hers for the time being. The people who were filling the jar are my good friends Ann and Lori. They also had some help from Joey and Tony.
For the end of June and most of July I have spent my time helping Bill to get some projects done on the boat. I also spent a great deal of time at the doctors. I had not been feeling well and spent many hours in the emergency room to try to figure out what was going on. After a mis-diagnosis I was told that I had a mass in my uterus along with many, many large fibroids. In the process of waiting for my surgery date, Bill and I moved out of the master bedroom and moved Steph in. We now were crammed in the smallest room in the house. We also packed most of our personal belongings in totes and stored them in the garage. We sold my 1967 Camaro convertible and my Camry, then moved onto the boat. I brought way too much but that was the plan bring a lot and then send a tote back. That seemed to work well.
At work I had one week to train my replacement who quit after a couple of days and then trained one of the managers to take over until they find another replacement. Mariani Nut was kind enough to give me an awesome going away lunch. This took place on my last day of work which was also my birthday. After work a group of us headed to the local Winters bar. This was something new to me. I tend to not frequent bars. I must say it was quite fun. I am so glad to have had a driver. Apparently I was having trouble turning on the microwave when I got home and also thought I was getting ice out of our refrigerator door. That feature has been broken for about 3 years. Stephanie not having seen her mommy really drunk before had called Bill and "Dad, there's something wrong with mom". Fun times.
On August 2nd I delivered my Camry to it's new owner. I now have lost my freedom. It just seemed like another weekend on the boat. I then went in for my surgery on the 8th. As it turns out I had Endometriosis as well. That means I had some cells that normally grow inside the uterus growing on the outside and they attached the uterus to my bowels. I had to have my belly opened up and now sport a zipper. That will come out on Tuesday.
I spent a week up at my mother-in-laws recovering and came back to the boat on the 16th. It sure is hard for me to keep track of the days.
Yesterday the 18th we had our Bon voyage party. This was the first day I actually felt good. The party was awesome. I had some guest who I never thought would be there. It was fantastic. One was my friend I had not seen for 15 years. We had lost touch and then our kids found each other on Myspace and reconnected us. My friend Stephanie who I had not seen in a very long time also dropped by. Another huge surprise was my former boss Mr. Jack Mariani. I felt so honored to have him at the party. I enjoyed visiting with everyone.
There were many helpers from the docks to make everything come together nicely. I really appreciate that since I am limited to lifting no more than 5 pounds for six weeks. We ate lots of food and had two gas powered blenders along with a keg. Before the end of the night Bill was singing karaoke on the loud hailer. Many of Bill's former employees were there and where quite wild.
One thing I can not leave out was a girl of questionable character that showed up and no one seemed to know. She was walking on "B Dock" We are on "A". From a distance she looked very hot with her short black dress and long blond hair. She was also quite slender. Well, one of the guys yelled for her to join us. That is when we realized she was of questionable character. Teeth missing, blue jean shorts with the bottom ripped exposing her black underwear which she kept bending over to show everyone. When talking to her it was obvious she was missing several brain cells. There are not many people who say they have had someone like this crash their party. It made for great gossip on the docks and was most entertaining.
Today is the first day that actually feels I like I am living on the boat. It is really relaxing and I am very much looking forward to being healed well enough to take off. According to the doctor that may be about a week away.
22, June 2007, 40 Days until quitin’ time!
Holy Smokes! I can not believe how time is zipping by. At work I started my countdown back when we were at 287 days. I have a jar on my desk with a penny for each day until I quit. Every morning I remove one penny and Mondays I take out three. The jar is getting pretty empty now.
A few weeks ago someone started messing with my jar. I came into work and routinely went to take out my penny. “Someone” had filled the jar all the way to the top with pennies. Haha funny, funny. I thought of a few people who might have done it then I recounted my pennies with a smile. What I did not realize was that this was just the beginning.
The next day the jar was filled with delicious fresh cherries. Since then everyday the jar has been filled with something new, it has actually given me motivation to go into work. Here are some of the items so far: pink and white confetti, wine corks, ocean tumbled rocks which have a special meaning to me, drink umbrellas with fringed toothpicks, garden rocks with a tinsel foil flower bouquet and golf tees, books of matches ( My short timer attitude has left some believing I am burning all my bridges at work), who needs a bridge when you have a boat, this left me laughing. Large colorful jacks and two rubber balls were also left.
This past week we have been on a fish theme. Fishing bobbers, Gummi worms, gold fish crackers and my all time favorite so far…… a ceramic sign that reads “Beware of Jaws”. This was in the jar filled with water and two LIVE Neon Tetra fish swimming around. “Someone” is quite creative. I am told when we all go out for drinks on my last day I will be told who has been doing this, so, far this has been really fun.
It is amazing that our day is really coming! I am certainly going to miss all my friends more than they realize. This has prompted me to make every effort possible to spend as much time with them as I can. Now I am going to lunch almost 3 days a week as well as stopping off at my friends to hang out in their backyards with a cold one. On the weekend at the boat we stop working every day a 5:00 and make time to hang out with our boat friends. Usually this includes appetizers, dinners, cocktail and a dinghy ride. I also make time for Sunday morning walks with my gal friend to the coffee house and what we call foredeck conversations (girl talk). I will miss all this but look forward to meeting new friends too.
This weekend should have many must do projects wound up. The largest being the propane conversion. I hope it all goes well. The cockpit table should get it’s final finishing coats on Saturday and then be re-installed. I am looking forward to getting that done and enjoying it. I love the table. Bill made it and it ROCKS! It will be the center of many cockpit dinners, cocktail parties, coffee clutches, dinners, breakfasts, lunches and hopefully internet sessions to include some Skype activity also, a place to rest your wine while star gazing. The table will truly become the center hub of the boat.
23, January 2007
Well we are only about a month behind on the 20 questions: Because we still need to work on a second site (larger with unlimited pages) I have decided to post the 20 questions here. Later we will move the questions and answer page to another location but still have it linked here.
Twenty Questions from Friends & Family
1. Are you worried about pirates? No, the areas we plan to travel to are not know for piracy. In the event we do travel to these sorts of areas, both Bill and I have eye patches and facial hair make-up so we are sure to fit right in.. Actually we will treat all areas in a business as usual fashion. Sometimes you have to take risks to live your life and feel alive.
2. Will you be going to nude beaches? From what I have read this is not an acceptable practice in Mexico and we plan to respect their culture. Perhaps we will in another country but honestly you probably don’t want to watch.
3. Are you going to sell your house? We are fortunate to have our 21 year old responsible daughter to live in our house while we are gone. "The party is in Winters"! Actually, we will not sell or rent our house during the first year. When we complete our "shake-down" we will take a second look at this question and come to a more complete answer about how we will sustain our trip or what we will do when we decide we are done cruising.
4. What will you do if you get sick or hurt? We are in the process of getting medical insurance set up. It will only cover major medical bills and is really quite expensive at about $2500.00 per person.
5. Do you have a list of all the places you will go? Nope, we are just going to take it as it comes. No schedules. That’s what cruising is all about. If we are having fun in one place we will stay as long as we like or until they kick us out. If something appeared to be interesting to us in a brochure and doesn’t match up to our expectations when we get there, we will check out early.
6. How many days will you be out at sea? At the moment we are thinking three days at any one time but that may change. We would like to try to come into an anchorage each day but that won’t always happen.
7. Will you stay in marinas? We want to anchor out as much as possible. Marinas get quite expensive and can kill a budget real fast.
8. Did you win the lottery? We only wish this were true. Our trip will be funded by cashing out some of the retirement money we have saved and paying the tax on it. We have lost lots friends and family in the last few years and realized we had this dream to live and need to live it while we can. We can always go back to work if things don’t work out.
9. Will your jobs be waiting for you when you get back? Lisa has made it clear to Mariani’s that she is quitting but that does not mean she would never go back. Bill still needs to address this with his employer. We will figure it out when the time comes.
10.How will you do your laundry? When we don’t have a laundry facility near by we (Lisa) will wash our clothes in a 5 gallon bucket with ammonia and then a quick rinse with some fabric softener. The cloths don’t need rinsing when you wash with ammonia so this will save on water as well. We (Lisa) did this on the two week trip in the delta and it worked great.
11.Will you do any scuba diving? Yes, we are looking forward to that. Bill has been certified since he was about 12 and Lisa just got certified a couple years ago. As a bonus to getting to dive we now have an underwater case for our camera given as a Christmas gift from our dear friends Dino and Cathy.
12.When you sail through the night do you take turns at the wheel? We will take turns. Most people do four hour shifts but for us it is a bit different. Lisa sleeps when she is tired or just feels like it and Bill sleeps when Lisa lets him. It may sound selfish on Lisa’s part but it works for us.
13.Where will the dog go to the bathroom? We are lucky in that Sparky has no trouble going to the bathroom on the boat. We are tying to get him to keep his business to one area on the foredeck. We have "cat pan" for him but when that doesn’t work we just pull up a bucket of water and wash it down.
14.How will you stay in touch with the people back home? Bill has his HAM license which will allow us to transmit email though the radio. We still need to work out some of the details on that but theoretically it is functional. We also have Skype which is an internet based telephone service that works for free so calls can be frequent when we have an internet connection.
15.Do you have satellite internet or TV? No even though it sounds like a cool thing there are two reasons we can think of to not have it. One, it is very expensive and we will be on a budget. Two, we are going cruising to disconnect.
16.Will you get bored out there? Sure there will be moments of that. We have several books we would like to read. One which was given to Lisa from a friend who passed away from cancer two months after giving Lisa the book to read on the trip. We also have a collection of DVDs and music. There will also be lots of projects to work on to keep the boat going and looking nice. It’s not all cocktails and sunsets.
17.Is your family worried about you? Perhaps a little bit. This we are sure is simply because there is the factor of the unknown. That is why we are trying to answer some the question here.
18.How long will you be gone? At the moment the plan is to take one year. This is subject to change. If we're not having fun we have the option to come home. If we are having too much fun there is also the options to keep going. We just need to do it while we are breathing and have our health.
19.Will you fly home for the holidays? This has not really been addressed yet. There is always the option of having our family fly out to see us which should be a nice adventure in itself.
20.What will you do if your boat is sinking? First we would locate the leak and stop it if possible. If it was a hopeless situation we would not leave the boat until the water inside is up to our hips. At that point we would get into our life raft which has all the survival gear we need already packed into it. We would toss it over tug the line and it will self inflate. We also have several other bags packed with additional gear. The raft has an EPIRB which sends a signal to the Coast Guard to let them know we need them and give them our exact location. As a bonus Lisa added some wasabi to put on any fish that may be caught while waiting to be rescued. The reasoning is if she is out in that situation she does not want to be just surviving but having a dinning experience. Life is way too short to not enjoy every minute.
Well, that's it for now. We came up short on questions so send them in if there is something you are interested in that I haven't answered. Our email is on the home page at the bottom.
20, December 2006
I am working on a 20 question and answer page. If you have any questions send me an email. I should have it done by Christmas. BTW- the question "What about pirates?' has already been taken.
5, October 2006
I am currently gathering pictures of the interior. As a girl that is always what I want to see on a boat. It is amazing to see how many different configuration there are on the Hans Christian boats. Every one is different and after all nice boats we have seen I still am satisfied we picked the right one for our needs. Work has been keeping me busy during the week and learning to varnish on the weekends leave little time to putter with the net.