Sailing Around The World

Archive for December, 2012

Smashing the Rum Drunk Turk Mosquito

I have been all over the world and experienced many of the planets very annoying pests called the mosquito. I have experienced the very strong and tough Alaskan Mosquito. The Alaskan Mesquite is very much like the mid west Upper Michigan mosquito which has equal numbers as Alaska but there is a big difference. An Alaskan Misquote is the size of a small bird and can take down a Bald Eagle if they wanted to. I have been swarmed by clouds of them flying fishing and really never want to do that again, it felt being stuck with a million needles at once. I think I lost a pint or two to the State Alaska bird called the mosquito. Now I am in the Tropical climate in Turks and Caicos Islands and the mosquitoes are very few but just as irritating. The Turks and Caicos mosquito is a very dumb mosquito. For example they fly very slow and are the size of a big fruit fly which have a buzzing sound of a weed whacker on crack. They always fly in pairs like drinking buddy’s and plan evasive maneuvers on how to attack you. But like most drunk ideas they always end up being bad.It’s like a storm moving across the ocean at night, you can hear it coming but don’t know when it will hit. You hear a loud buzz and then bammm you are hit with a little sting and bingo your there next meal. But if you can make visual contact they are easily smashed. I think they are very drunk from all the local rum drinking people and for that reason are very brave. Like most people they feel very brave and ready for fun at any chance when drunk. Unfortunately the mosquito here is the same way and ends up getting smashed off people and then gets smash by people, bummer dude. But like being drunk they do get lucky every once awhile.

To the Mosquito! Cheers,

Jacques


Met some New Friends

This evening I went to a potluck dinner with other cruiser and met some very cool people  A couple from Michigan and the gentlemen has been working in Columbia as a VP of a coal mine. I also meet a older couple from Norway and they where very cool, they have been sailing for 5 years. I will have to share more but I am ready for bed I will share more tomorrow.

 

Thanks,

 

Jacques


A Letter to a Friend

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I have been on the high seas for 50 days or so and I am starting to understand the things we dislike about today’s culture and our generation. I have meet in the last three days a man that has been involved in every major military action sense the 1950’s till the 1990’s and has open my eyes to all things that the history books don’t included. The man has been in peace keeping and prisoner exchanges in Vietnam and when he started his military career he was picked up in the middle of the night and dropped into Cuba days before Kennedy started the Bay of Pigs. I met a man that has served in United Kingdom Merchant Marine and logged thousands of miles using a sexton and compass. I meet a couple from Wisconsin that traveled from the USA through a Tropical Storm with 60 knote winds and 27 foot wave and lived to tee the story. I meet a man by the name of Crazy George who has given us the direction to the Dominican Republic which we will set sail tomorrow for.

I guess what I am saying is that this trip around the world is more about the people then the places. If only you could open your mind and not worry about the money, what people may think, or say, you will begin the rest of your life when you step on Dragonsbane. I have found that each day is easier then the last and everyday makes my eyes grow wider with wonder and possibility. I am beginning to not care about TV, wealth, or impressing that one girl. I am finding the world is big and beautiful and no money or influence can change the simple and basic principle of the world which was beautiful long before all the money and influence. Dragonsbane has brought me to this and for that I will care for her with every drop of sweat and energy that I can muster. The ocean and seas are really where we need to be today to see what we really are personally, emotionally, and it will measure the amount of happiness we really have. Like the evolving world we will run into the people that matter the most by sailing to them, around them, by them, or at them.

I guaranteed with out a doubt in my mind that after 2 tough, long, hard, months of sailing aboard Dragonsbane and among her crew you will see the light, and life will start to take a whole new meaning with out you even knowing it. You cannot read a book to find the answer to life, you have to live it, see it, breath it, and play in it!

Your options are simple sell the money sucking physical items that cost money/bills, and come sailing for two years on Dragonsbane. You don’t need money where we are going, just courage and a good heart! Food will taste better, conversations will have more meaning, people will fall from the shadows and open up. Life at sea is just as much apart of life as is that little island you never heard of.

Sincerely,

Jacques


Driving Backwards in Turks and Caicos Islands

Don't Think I Need Beer that bad!

Don’t Think I Need Beer that bad!

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Sailing into Turks & Caicos

I had a very busy day today. It started with some home made pancakes and bacon which was very hot and sweaty work because it was 82 degrees. I then went and rented a car for 40 bucks with my dad. I drove on the left side of the road and it was very challenging to do but I made it all over the island. We went and got food and the most important RUM and WIne! I also found out the the middle finger is a international sign and is used the same way as we do in the state when driving. I found this out by driving on the wrong side of the road a few times OOPS. After that I installed a VHF radio into the cock pit of Dragonsbane and antenna which will be very nice to have. I then made  a frozen pizza and drank some wine and talked with our neighbor in the boat slip next to us. I found out he was a pilot in the military for 25 years served in Vietnam  Alaska, and everywhere else you can think of. He had a very interest family back round and talked about his uncle who took all the photo of the nuclear blast back in the 40s that we see today and then took all the photo of the first space shuttle that went to the moon. Then I talked with our other neighbor who was a merchant marine for 14 years and all the things he did on freighters back in the 70s and 80s. He was from the UK ans just recently divorced of 36 years and is now looking for a lady to come sail with him. Let me now if your interested  he is a real nice man. O my dad dropped the good screw driver into the ocean today, had to make sure something went wrong today, lol. Anyway it was a very busy day and I am going to bed. I will post some pictures tomorrow  over coffee.

Thanks,

Jacques


The Ocean Kicked My Butt

Well to start I tried emailing through my radio three days ago and it stopped working so I gave up till now. Then the weather that was forecast for our trip from Clarence Town to Turks and Caicos was wrong and we ended up spending 3 days to travel 190 nautical miles. We pounded through rough waves, and a few squalls  but the wind was right on the nose 20 knots. To make matters worse the roller furling line snapped and I made a quick repair to get us through the trip, then the wind instrument stopped work so I had no idea what the wind speed was, and now something is going on with the thrust bearing on the drive shaft we think. It appears to make a loud buzzing sound when we put a large loud on the propeller when climbing swells only and we back off the RPM’s and it goes away, not sure what to think?

After all that we had to navigate Dragonsbane through a series of coral shoals, coral rock heads, breaking swells, currents, and through a coral passage that was as wide as our boat. I thought of steeping off onto the coral to take a break but land was finally with in my grasp. We cleared customs, had a stiff drink and I am now using the free wifi and hopefully figuring out a way to fix everything that broke so I can go back out in a few days for our 4 and half day trip to Porto Rico! Anybody up for a sail?

Location: 22deg 4.23min N, 72deg 2.55min W

Slow Rider!

Jacques


Clearance Town, Long Island Bahamas’

We sailed from George Town to Clearance Town which was a 53 nautical mile trip. We motored sailed the whole way and maintained 7.5 knots with the current. Upon entering the remote harbor the entrance was missing its channel markers and the mouth to the opening of harbor was a mile wide letting in all the swells from the Atlantic Ocean. We decided to dock the boat for the first times in 6 weeks. I have not seen my dad so happy! Anyway we took a shower and ate at the local restaurant and I had the best fish taco ever.

Location: 23deg 6.12min N, 74deg 57.60min W.

Thanks,

Jacques


My Worldly Thoughts!

I was told by a friend that it takes 3 months to find your way in your new life at sea to really enjoy what you are doing. I agree, and every day too today, has been a struggle. My dad and I butt heads about everything and being raised by the same man to be a leader and to be in charge I find it hard to compromise on this issue with him. For the last 5 years I have been in control of workers, and contracts in construction.  The idea to listen to an older person that is hard of hearing, sight, and action I find myself stressed and frustrated. But today I realize that if it was not for the old man I would not have an opportunity to have my eyes opened to a whole new world of people,  culture, and experiences. I am not sure if I can make our father/son relationship work every day but for the good of the experience I must go forward and comb the impossible or possible to see the world as it is and not as the postcard I think it is. So far I have hated many days and I have loved few days but the ones that count bad make 10. But 1 good day makes the 10 bad days seem like 1. I realize that without friends and family being shoulder to shoulder to the old man on this one path around the world is sometimes the loneliest path to take but it must be done to make me strong. I think it will lengthen the depth of my passion for life and grow my heart for my family, friends and those that I meet on this path big. I remember my high school life statement, it was “Don’t take the path that everybody follows but very from it. Blaze your own path and make your own tracks”. Easy said than done! My current path is drifted with danger, fun, and eye opening events that I can’t imagine what comes next. So I sign off tonight again with my own idea of what the world is and will continue to refine it, mold it and see how it all turns out after 27,800 nautical mile journey into the unknown. So enjoy your family and friends and give thanks for them.

It’s interesting that I am so deep with thought on my relationship with my father and family because I look up into the sky and see stars shooting across the sky as if god himself is flicking the stars with his finger. The world is amazing and I am but a dot above the letter “i” and wonder when I will impact such a large and wonderful world that we all share. With a sky full of stars such that is like looking into a dark bag pricked with a million wholes to let the light in I am speechless.

Thanks and God Bless,

Jacques – Slow Rider