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The Logbook of White Swan....Bob & Dianna
 

This logbook is in chronological order...to see the most recent entries click here.
Jump to White Swan's Logbook, January - December 2005
Jump to White Swan's Logbook, January - December 2006
Jump to White Swan's Logbook 2007
Return to White Swan's homepage

Logbook: August - December 2004

August 4th, 2004 Hi all, As usual, we've been having a ball...full of adventures and quirky events. Our transit across the Strait of Georgia was a good sail, (it can be pretty stinky sometimes) and we spent the night at the dock in Ford Cove on Hornby Island. We both want to come back and spend a  more time exploring that place, lot's of huge sand stone rocks that made amazing formations. There are two appealing white sandy beaches on the south end with the smaller one reserved for the folks who want to go ala-natural! From there we headed south towards Lady Smith. I thought perhaps I could catch a bus from there into Duncan to hang out and talk with the folks who manufacture a product I take called Recovery,. it's pretty amazing stuff. If anyone is interested you can see more at: www.recoverymedicine.com  
    As it turned out Lady Smith just wasn't happening though we did find a small Kayak drifting, picked her up and went into a dock and left her with the guy running things. Then off we went to Chemanis, another town I could of caught a bus from. Low and behold...the dock was full of big power boat and with no place to anchor, off we went to the next place south...Maple Bay. Sure enough, they had room for us and we grabbed a spot at the dock. It had been awhile since a real shower and we had heard the facilities were really nice and clean...they were. I looked over and across from us and saw the stern of another Cape George, though no one was aboard. Had a nice evening and next morning we washed down White Swan with fresh water, what a treat for her!
    Later I fixed some lunch and we were eating out in the cock pit when we heard this lovely mystical euphonic bag pipe music drifting across the water...I honed in on the direction and guess what...it was coming out of the other Cape George. We waited for the music to pause and walked right over to meet Iain Gardner, what we found was  a lovely, handsome and impish mature man who was not only friendly, but warm and interesting too. Plus of course we had the love of our Cape George's in common which was an instant bond. We ended up having Iain over for cocktail hour and then dinner with a night woven with wonderful tails and a bit of grog.
    Bob had met another couple on the dock and had invited them over when they got the wee ones bedded down, they arrived and we all kabitzed for awhile. I was talking to the man telling him we had been up in Lady Smith...are you
ready...and had found and rescued a kayak and towed it into a marina. He said, "No Way...that was my kayak"! What a small world, hope he ends up getting it back. Iain gave Bob and I a ride into Duncan the next morning and I was able to visit with Tremor Watkin. It was a very informative visit and I am very glad I made the effort...I truly believe in the positive health benefits of this product, especially for my old broken down body. We got some provisions and were back on board and underway by noon. We arrived in Tod Inlet yesterday afternoon, it's the back water door to Butchart Gardens, one our good buddy Andy's Browns favorite places...ha. We like it quite a bit and spent the afternoon and also saw the gardens after dark with all the lights. If you have never experienced the gardens we both think they are
worth while. We walked back to the dingy  serenaded by the haunting hoots of a large owl. It's starting to blow a bit now, the weather says rain by mid-night. If it's ugly we may just sit tight for one more day and catch up on some reading and projects.
    Of personal notes: Hi Iain, once again it was an absolute lovely experience meeting you and seeing you in Costa Rica would just been grand! Thanks again for the ride!!!
    Hey Coffee Sue, how did you like Corvallis? Was it as much fun as I said it    would be...or more?
    Hi Andy and Kathy, been trying to call and see where you are, coverage has been sketchy, surprised we aren't hitting a signal from old "Butt Tarts"...Kathy, I put the lavender sachet paper in the hanging locker, it smells lovely every time I open the doors. We could of sworn we had the Dream Weaver Book for the Gulf Islands, can't seem to find it, is there a
chance I carried it over to your boat at some point and you now have two copies? Or perhaps I am just insane and only think we had a copy?!
    Hobie, Bob says he already asked if you could look into the back up hard drive system for us, if you have, is it possible for you to pick one up for us? I think Bob said something about Best Buy. Also, I think I am going to have my friend Kathy haul me to the Cost Co in Sequim, so I think we are covered there.
I sure do hope this letter finds it's way to you my sweet S.Q....i miss you...please give Buckie and Peach a huge hug from us!
Bock and Mary, thanks for turning us onto Maple Bay, nice facility...and they had Guiness on draft! Unfortunately they are now under new management and no longer have the shuttle into Duncan. They did have an Osprey building a nest on the top of a pile driver/crane over your long quiet...Canadian holiday, though the good old boys fixed him when we woke up at 6:30 a.m. Tues. to "WHAM", "WHAM" as they were setting the first new pile of the day. With each pound one more
stick flew off till there were no more left. Kinda sad, good thing the  animal activists hadn't arrived or they would of probably put an end to it! We would stop there again.
Hey Rob and Linda...where ya at now?
O.K., guess that's it for now...we miss you all, hugs, Dianna and Bob

Wednesday, July 21, 2004 12:32 AM Hello all dear friends, This is the first mass email letter to you all, I have been procrastinating about pulling the whole email address list together from cards and scraps of paper you have all given us, however, I see how much more practical it is going to be to paint the picture of our travels for the most part only once instead of 40 plus times. You will always be very separate and unique to me, so do not feel de-personalized by my mass letters. I will be sending the letters to my sister and she will be forwarding to all, so please do thank her...Selah Gayle Rose.
    We are using Sail Mail which is through our Single Sideband radio. Volunteers receive and send from various locations. Sometimes it can take awhile to find a free station with a good signal in order to work properly plus it does eat a bit of our juice, so we have found ourselves checking emails about every 4/5 days. It is only text and we get ten min. per day, so as tempting as it would be to forward pictures, please don't. Let us know if you don't want to receive these emails, we don't want to be bother. Of course, let us know ahead if you will be changing your address so we can update from where ever we are.
    It will be July 19th tomorrow, we left Port Townsend after a successful haul out July 1st. We spent the first night in Mystery Bay we were so fatigued and slept for 11 hours. We had a beautiful sail across the Straits and had a good time visiting and 4th Julying with the biggest raft up (9 boats!) in Roche Harbor. Bob and I had been doing very well crabbing and fed 13 people crab cakes until they were stuffed and even had left overs. Had an interesting time the wee hours of July 6th when a little blow came through and the remainder of the boats had to all break apart at 4 a.m....all went o.k.!, We went into the dock at Roche and were close enough to Johnny Carson's mega yacht "Seringeti" to see him doing some morning exercises, then off we went to visit more dear old friends.
    We headed out the next day and checked into Canada in Sydney. Since then we have been to a wonderful craft/food Sat. market in Ganges on the south end of Salt Springs Is., then some quiet time in Princess Bay on Wallace Island and then Nanaimo. We made the jump across the Straits of Georgia to Pender Harbor and rafted up with S/V Kalliope and had a nice time visiting with Andy, Kathy, Belini and Bruno, (the kitties).
    We poked our nose out the next day to start heading north and it was just too rockin' and rollin' (a 30 knot south easterly) so we turned around and went back in and tied to the Government dock in Hospital Bay. We had a good fish and chips lunch at the pub, met some very warm and friendly locals, then took a hike up to Garden Bay lake. We had a good stay there and were able to sail out the next morning heading for Princess Louisa.
    We stopped for the night at the Egmont Marina, we wanted to anchor out, however the bay was small and very deep, 300' +. We heard about the Skookumchuck Narrows/rapids and decided to do the hour and a half walk into see them. It was a 14'tide so would prove to be quite the site. We weren't prepared to have world class extreme sport kayakers there displaying some amazing skills playing in the huge turbulent waters, simply awesome. These rapids are reportedly the largest salt water rapids in the world and a must see if any of you are ever up in this neck of the woods. We met some folks on another sail boat that arrived at the rapids about 30 min. after us and said they had seen a cougar not far from the marina...yikes!
    Off the next morning at 6 a.m. heading for Princess Louisa with timing to be at Malibu Rapids at slack tide, it's a very narrow channel, you call ahead on the VHF to make sure there aren't  other boats coming out...only room for one at a time. Was obvious when we arrived why you need to wait till slack tide to go through, I'm sure the water starts boiling when the tide changes. There is a huge lodge there right above the Narrows that was built for the Hollywood movie stars during WW2 and is now run by a Christian group who invites at risk kids. It's a beautiful place with too many very cool totem poles to count. A short more distance up Princess Louisa which is a narrow deep 8/900'channel with huge rock walls stretching up over 1600' and there was Chatterbox Falls. Absolutely breath taking. We grabbed some dock space
and just sat there and stared. After looking you realize there are water falls all the way around you, it was like being in an amphitheater. Amazingly enough this has been a slow season, only 18 other boats there. We went for a short hike to get up close to the falls and then walked down to the water, it wasn't very cold at all and it didn't take long to want to get in and go for a dip, it was probably in the 80's outside temp.
    The next day we spent quite a bit of time in the water, even got the water line scrubbed...and, well o.k....a little skinny dippin' too. Last night we had a lightning and thunder squall come through, up again at 5:30 to a rain squall. We pulled anchor and headed for the rapids and went through again at slack with no problems.
    We are now working our way back out and then will head down Jervis Inlet and find a place to drop the hook for the night with a land fall and general delivery mail call in Lund. We hope you are all doing well...

some personal messages follow...
    to Andy, hey bro, can you please print this out and send a copy to Mudder, we know she would love to read our adventures.
    Aaron and Julie, not looking like we will be able to get to your wedding, we will be with you in our thoughts. I spirited away two of the cute little cocktail pics with the palms and monkey's Julie and they have found fun places to live...thanks again for the cheese knife and napkins!
    Thanks again for the Scrabble, Wine and movie Andy and Kathy...see you soon....
    Trish and B, thanks for the yummy massage oil and other mystery stuff, I can hardly wait to find out what's inside.
    My sweet sissy Gayle and L.L., we love and miss you, your never far away every time I hear those sweet little swan chimes. I have been thinking strongly of Papa and knowing he is seeing these incredible sites through my eyes, he will love what he sees. Also, thanks again for the great visit in P.T. and the amazing picture of our White Swan with the poem, no one leaves the boat with out seeing it.
    Time to go out for my watch, so please all, let us hear from you now and then.
Love and Peace to all.

July 26, 2004  Hi all, seems to be a learning curve going on here with the sail mail. We have been having difficulty getting a signal to send on as we have been tucked back in many little bays and coves surrounded by tall cliffs. We took a dingy ride out to the channel last eve. to get cell coverage. We talked to Bob's dad Hobie and found out that my sis had received the first letter and already forwarded it to all...yippee! So, as you read the below note it happened a few days ago as I had added it to the first mailing and then went back in, grabbed it and deleted everything you had already read.  We ended up stopping in Powell River (7/19) due to the need for some emergency dental work, I somehow chipped off a small piece of tooth. People up here are extremely nice, I called a dentist at 5:30 and he stayed late in order to accommodate  me and got me right in. We spent the night and got a few things done the next day and were underway by 3 p.m. I had called Wes on the S/V Daily Planet and found out he and Ann were with B.J. and Trish in Port Hardy at the north end of Vancouver Island. They all made the decision to go back to the states by going down the outside of the Island, the ocean side....good luck friends, hope it will be a very positive experience. We are in Gorge Harbor on Cortes Is., we heard Kalliope was here and snuck up on them last night. We will probably kick back today as the trip here was a bit taxing. Who knows where from here!

July 24th, been trying to send this email for days with out luck, we spent 3 days in the Octopus Islands with Kalliope and had a blast. We hiked into a beautiful lake for an refreshing fresh water swim and then found the art cabin where other boaters have created their own unique pieces of art to put on display with their names and dates. We are now sitting in Roscoe Bay and got back from another amazing lake swim..time for G & T's. Now we shall see if we can't get this mail out to all of you. back to 7/26...we came from Roscoe Bay today, another "fine" swimming lake and eagles in the trees right behind the boat...(oh, I forgot to tell you we saw an eagle just as we were coming into the Octopus Islands dive down, grab a fish out of the water and fly back to the nest to feed the youngin's), and are now anchored and stern tied to a tree on shore, it's the way it's done up here, in Tenedos Bay in Desolation Sound. It was a short day as Bob took a bad tumble and sprained his left ankle, I am now calling him fatty big ankle...yup Gayle, just like fatty big eye! It's a good thing it was a short hike into yet another lake. It was beautiful and the fresh water feels so soft on your skin. We even saw 3 loons and are hoping it is quiet enough tonight to be able to hear them sing. What's really amazing is we realized the bay was warmer than the lake, Bob is doing the conversion right now since we have a water temp reading on our instruments...he says 26.2 C is about 79 degrees. Still seems amazing. O.K., time for dinner..Bob says "ouch". Awfully wonderful hearing your voice Diane, I love and miss you and give Bob a squeeze from us...yes all, we have dear friends: Bob and Diane. Hi Elaine and Joe, can't remember if I said I have been thinking of you strongly with all these amazing climbing rocks and those incredible white water salt water rapids. Bob says he wants you all to know he mooned the loons at the lake today, ha. More soon...LOVE, D & B

July 31, 2004 Hello  friend's, It's July 31st now, 2 days post my birthday! I believe I last left you all  in the Octopus Islands...fun name isn't it. Cant' tell you how much fun the art cabin was. We did take some pictures and will before long get some kind of routine created as the "Brat's" mom Pam is going to keep our page on their web site: www.familyyachtclub.com , updated with all our info and pictures too. By the way, out dear friends, BJ and Trish on "Nellie Bly" (as I'm typing the name B and T...do I have the spelling correct?) and Wes and Ann on "The Daily Planet" made a successful journey down the "outside" of Vancouver Island and I am sure if you were to visit the family yacht club site and look you will see a reenactment of their voyage. They were surfing down 20' waves and seeing whales and bears and eating lots of salmon!  Thanks again Pam! We have been having on going fun, even though I slipped on the path back from the lake in the Octopus Islands, fell and hyper extended all my thigh muscles and have a giant bruise on my right hip...however, the good news is that it kinda blends into my tattoo, ha! Then Bob had to try and out do me several days later and fall on a path and sprain his left ankle which blew up like a balloon and is still swollen and sore. Of course I couldn't let him out do me so on my birthday (after connecting with some dear old friends who also have a Cape George Cutter in Squirrel Cove who told us we and Kalliope should meet them in Isabella Cove and from there, only a 25 minute inflatable ride (on plane) would get us to a great restaurant), was anyone planning on a windy night?  We had made reservations for 7 p.m. and left the anchorage at 6...4 inflatable's for 4 boats so we could fly like the wind. As it turned out we pounded like hell  and could all hardly wait to get there, I still feel like I was in a train wreck, what an adventure! Dinner was wonderful and the company even better. By the time we were ready to leave it was almost 10 and the wind had dyed down. We all jetted back to our boats under an amazing sky full of stars. It was truly a memorable birthday full of an early morning amazing solo low tide walk and an afternoon swim and lazing naked on some hot rocks.  Thank you Andy and Kathy for all your heart felt gifts and especially Kathy for her research on Cygnus, the constellation that's the swan. Please tell Bellini and Bruno I love them lots and will miss them...really! Was also very nice to have met John and Elisa who live on Vancouver Island. Disappointed we didn't get to see Jim and Kathy Crain on "Roll Easy" and Guch and Royce on "Puffin", between engine trouble and wind they were a bit behind Brock and Mary's "Manuhuka". We left Isabella Cove July 30th and spent the night in Lund in order to pick up a package my sister had forwarded, left there  this morn and are now sitting tied to a dock on Hornbey Island which is just off the east side of Vancouver Is. The Strait of Georgia was a fine crossing today, it can often be a challenge. Though a short message this time, we are doing great and as hard as it is to leave, we are now heading south toward Port Angeles by the 10th of Aug. As always, we do think of you all often and hope you are doing well. Love, He and Me

August 16, 3004 Port Angeles, WA...We have been here for one week and in the last several days we have been pawing at the dock, ready to go. We have been holding off a wee bit waiting for several low systems off the coast to pass in order to have more favorable winds heading south. It now looks like it's time to go. We spent a lovely time this eve with our dear friends Phil and Kathy Roush who live here. Kathy and I go way back to the old Port Townsend days and I love her dearly and have cherished our time together here. Phil made us "HUGE" cheese burger's knowing it would be awhile before we hit shore again, also did our last load of laundry. All is good to go onboard White Swan and we would be hard pressed to dream up anything else pressing in need. We have more than enough food, propane the fresh water tanks are full and we topped the fuel tanks off when we got here. Now the excitement builds...will I be able to sleep tonight? Our plan after checking out the weather on  Phil and Kathy's computer and also from the latest weather faxes
we down loaded this eve. is to leave by 0500 at slack and ride the ebb on out-a-here towards Neah Bay, then hopefully just keep right on going and wave as we go by. If all goes well our next port of call will be San Francisco.  Of course, the weather dictates all, so we shall see. O.K., we are hitting the shower one last time now and try to get some shut eye, I can hardly wait for morning to get here. See you all then.
    Woke up at 4:30 this morn and underway by 0500. It felt "good" getting underway. The first 4 hours were pretty nauseating due to a big ebb tide (out going) and 10+ knots of wind on our nose with occasional waves crashing across the deck.  It made for short, steep waves and a very unpleasant ride, kind of like some kind of demonic hobby horse ride. Unfortunately, the repair job on the deck prism above my side of the bunk we made just before leaving didn't work...rats. Now we will look for a dry enough deck at some point to add another duck tape sibling to the others awaiting the big deck repair job in Mexico. We've been following a large schooner all morning and just realized it was the Alcyon from Port Townsend. Our course is only a couple miles off shore as we head for Neah Bay,it's a mixture of huge chiseled rocks and Mohawk buzzed logging cuts. As we pass Sekui there are  scads of little fishing boats filled with people all waiting for the big one. We did see more than one person hunched over with the strain of teasing that fish in. We decided to just blow on by Neah Bay...but guess who we saw there, the Kalakalak (sp?)...what an odd place for her. As we neared the  mouth of the entrance I could see hoards of fish swarming and diving all  over the place, I wasn't prepared for the type of bird I would see...Pelicans...hey, what the heck are Pelicans doing up here? There were  100's of them diving in a feeding frenzy. And now, here we are out in Mother, Mother Ocean, the swells are getting to me a little, but I expected  that and know it will pass in a couple days. We sailed (light southerly's, the forecast said it would be 10/15 out of the north west...rats) right into  a huge fog bank as we passed Tatoosh Is. and are just now having some  viability. So, here we are leaving Washington behind and won't even get to  see it happen. O.K., we are both in need of a nap before we start our 3 hour  on, 3 hour off routine. We are safe and sound and it feels good to be back  out here.

Wed. Aug. 18, 1700
...interesting that I should pick up lap top and key board  for another chapter, look over at the clock and see it's been exactly 48  hours since we left P.A. The weather was pretty varied for quite awhile but  seems to have gotten into it's 15/20 knots out of the NW with 5/8 Ft. seas. We've been averaging 6/7 knots but also seeing lot's of 8 and even 9 surfing  down waves. We are about 60 miles off the Columbia River...good bye WA. The  long undulating languid waves seem to be having quite the sedative effect on  me and all I want to do is sleep. Bob is loving it and I think he has found  a very special time in his life to see this dream come true. I love seeing his smile and excitement. We had an amazing phosphorescent dolphin  torpedoing around the boat last night, it was very cool. Although trying to  perform simple tasks is a bit challenging out here it's great to be back.  More to all soon.
 
August 24, 2004...Ahoy Mates, well, it's been awhile and most certainly a lot has happened  since I last wrote. It's now Aug. 24th and we are tied to a dock in Yaquina  Bay, New Port Oregon. You may remember we left Port Angeles 0500 Tues. With   NW 15/20+ knots we ended up about 100+ miles off shore. The wind was o.k.,  White Swan handles it well, however the confused 5/8+ seas just started to  wear us down. We would rise up on top of a wave, corkscrew around, slide  kitty wampus down the back side, roll over and do it all over again...for 3+ days. The motion made the smallest task an effort. It became a bit of a  challenge to even hand a cup of hot tea out to the guy in the cock pit at  times. I was also pretty nauseated, and at night was simply unable to stay  awake for more than an hour at a time. I was just feeling hypnotized by the  seas. I would be sitting out in the cock pit banging my knees together in  order to stay awake. At one point I thought to myself, "Ya know if I had a  needle I could jab into my thigh perhaps that would keep me awake, then I  thought, Na, I can't do that, I would ruin my expensive off shore wet gear"!  Glad I was keeping my humor :) I guess it was me who finally said, ya know,  I think I would just as soon go in and take a break and regain some  strength, so we jibbed over and in we headed. As fate would have it  unfortunately we arrived at 2300, it was pitch  black and foggy. Bob had us  dialed in with the GPS, however we were using some old charts that came with  the boat and we found out later that some of the buoys have not only been  taken out, but also some have been moved. Hence the importance of having  updated charts. Bob and I talked and decided to call the Coast Guard and see  what the entrance conditions were...I called, however I also jumped right on  out there and just asked them if they would come out and escort us in, hey,  that's what they do, help people. It took them about an hour to get out to  us and we just sucked up to their stern and in we came. After we were tied  up to the dock they came onboard and did an inspection, small price to pay.  It's funny, we walked out to the south jetty today and looking out it all  looks pretty straight forward, however coming in at dark on bumpy seas in  the fog and with old charts, well that was a little different. We have been  sitting here since playing the waiting game for the next high to take over  for some more favorable winds going south. It's been snotty, windy, grey and  rainy. Everyone here is saying this kind of weather this time of year is  very unusual...aren't we lucky...not! This is all while we are emailing some  buds sitting down in the Delta (San Francisco area) beckoning us with promises of cold Gin when we get there. It's hard to be patient. New Port is  kind of a cool town though, a lot to see and as luck would have it there is  a "Great" brew pub (Rogue) just a wee walk away. In fact we were there again  tonight, as last night we saw that if you came in tonight in a Hawaiian  shirt they give you a free pint! While walking back to the boat I noticed  there were literally hundreds of seagull's all over a unused dock, I made a  comment to a guy walking by about it and he said, "they know it's going to  blow"...I said "how do they know"?, he said, "I don't know, they just do".
    Well, it's now hours later and it's got to be gusting up into the high 20's  and 30's and raining like the dickens. The other note worthy thing about New  Port is all the huge stinky sea lions. They lay in huge numbers on a break  wall right in front of Old Town which is of course a big tourist attraction.  They moo and bark constantly. Neither Bob or I can figure out why on earth  they smell as bad as they do when they are in the water all the time. We  have been watching and listening to the weather and hoping that by Thurs. or  Fri. we will once again be heading south. I will make sure to send you all  another update when we are out there again....and thank goodness for canned soup!

Aug. 25, 2004 We find ourselves here yet another day and possibly 2...hoping to leave Friday. We did a lot of walking today, over the gorgeous old 30's deco bridge and into town for provisions. It's still blowing and raining and just plain old nasty. Once again I find myself pawing at the dock. I did have a most interesting conversation and heard some great stories from 3 old crusty farts at the fuel dock today. They told me all about how to bleed a tuna, read waves and watch out for fish boats as we are going south again. See ya!
 
August 28, 2004 Hi all, well we have finally been given the gift of favorable weather for our southern departure and we are out-a-here tomorrow morning bright and  early. This has been a pretty nice place to be trapped, but we are pawing at the dock to leave after being here for a wee bit over a  week. We have been using our time wisely with lots of trips to the Brew Pub  and many dock talks with other cruisers all trying to head south, but not willing to  go out there and beat themselves up knowing with just a little more patience  the weather will change. Bob and I master minded a dock party last night in  order to bring everyone together and also looking for an excuse to go and  buy one of the thousands of fresh tuna coming in off fish boats every day.  We bought an 18 pounder and ended up with 9 lbs. of meat which we cut into  good size chunks, marinated and wrapped in bacon before B.B.Quing. I made a  big sign that read: "Welcome to the 1st and last Aug. 27, 2004 Yaquina Bay   Wait To Abate  Tuna Q". It went over great with lots of wonderful food and  getting to know new friends. We are loving this cruising fellowship. Today  we took our inflatable up the river about 6 miles to find the New Port  Oyster Farm, a doz. for 5 bucks. They will be on the B.B.Q. tonight. All  rightie then...I promise to email again in a few days at sea. This time we  plan on sticking closer to shore, perhaps 15/20 miles. If all goes as the  weather says we should be able to do San Francisco in one shot, 5/6 days.  Hope you are all doing great.

August 30, 2004   "We Live In A  Liquid World" Hi, yup, me again and so soon. Lots has happened since we left Yaquina Bay/New Port yesterday, and well, I just had to tell someone's. The weather outside the entrance had kicked up pretty good, 15/18 knots of NW wind and 5/8 Ft. seas. All was fine for quite awhile until it got dark, the wind stiffened up to a steady 18/24 and 10/12+ seas that  were confused shades of the first stint from P.A. to New Port. Neither of us  could sleep though we did try, kinda like how living  in a washing machine might be, the biggest difference was unfortunately we aren't clean...darn! 
    By this morning we were feeling pretty trashed and decided to jibe back in  towards Coos Bay, we were about 25 miles out. When we got in close enough we  picked up a Bar report from the Coos Bay Coast Guard Station, they had  closed it to any boats under 30' and were giving it a Hazardous Bar Warning. We heard some of the other boats that left Newport about the same time we did talking on the VHF about going into Port Orford so we decided to  check it out. It's really only a little dip in the coast line, but provides  good NW protection. It sits just below Cape Blanco which is below Coos Bay.  As if we weren't already tired little puppies in need of rest after another  beating, as we approached the coast it was totally socked in with fog. So, on goes the radar and extra care and time is taken with the GPS so we  wouldn't miss any buoys.
    We were motoring along with a reefed main up when  this ghostly shape appeared ahead of us in the fog, we were still a couple  miles out from the outer buoy. It was a very strange home built Junk Rigged  wooden boat towing this big old skiff, they were just drifting. The skipper was, well one unique individual to say the least. He was a bit of a purest and decided he didn't need one of those damn engines, however, there was no  wind by that point so he asked us for a tow back into the anchorage. We got  him all hooked up and towed him back in and cut him loose so he could go anchor. We got ourselves anchored and shortly after over he comes in his skiff with a gallon jug (which was for us to keep) of what turned out to be  some not bad blackberry wine. We found out he had just launched his boat "Fung Shui" only recently after spending 9 years building her in his front  yard and was taking off to Mexico before the country goes down the toilet. There are some real characters out here!  Port Orford is a pretty interesting looking place, it would be way to rough for a marina here so boats (most we have seen have been commercial fishing type) pull up to a dock  and get pulled out, load and all. I also hope it isn't foggy in the morning because there are huge rock formations we can't quite see now and it would  be a shame to miss them. We will probably be getting up very early tomorrow so we can make the 60 mile trip to Crescent City arriving before dark, that way we are assured of a good nights sleep. Now it's time to straighten up the interior of White Swan and get some grub on the table. As always, more  soon.. P.S. Ron and Linda, guess we are lagging behind the original plan to  do the hop in one shot, but this coast is just been snotty to us and it's  taking it's toll. We will keep you up to date on our where-a-bouts. Your Rogue brew is getting closer and if your lucky we won't have drank that  whole gallon of wine before we see you, ha. Hi Eric, Gayle and beloved pets. BJ and T, we tried to call ya last might, however these cell phones don't  seem to work very far out. All is going well, wow, this big water is somethin"...I had forgotten. I also know this is some of the hardest part. Certainly good to be on the hook tonight and will hope for another tomorrow night. Sweet dreams all
    8/31. 0930, Couldn't get a signal to send out last night so will type a bit  more this morn. We left the anchorage this morning at 5:30 motoring along in  split peas soup fog until 1030. We left the anchorage with two out of the three boats, we tried to stir up Paul on a 28' Columbia, he was groggy and uninterested in getting it together to go so we left him behind. We are all  thinking he missed a heck of an opportunity to follow us all out since he  doesn't have radar. Sitting on the hook in Port Orford would not be a good idea with southerly winds due to the direct exposure and according to the weather update, that is what's supposed to happen. At now 1200 the three of us have decided we are going to shoot for Brookings instead of Crescent City, cuts the day down by 3 to 4 hours and we will get in before dark. That shower and perhaps a meal out is sounding pretty darn good. Hey Andy, Bob's  fishing!!! Guess I better dig out the net, we did buy a gaff and club in New  Port so I guess we are ready for one. >)))}
    2045: 8+45 pm, we are at a dock in Brookings, nice to look forward to a good nights sleep with out having to wake up at 4:30 am. We are planning on heading to Crescent City by 10 tomorrow morning. The trip here ended up very nice with mostly blue skies, the head winds were fairly light so we motored  and got in by 5:00. Was a trip seeing Hwy. 101 every now and then and
all  the little miniature cars and trailers racing along packed full of screaming  little kids...o.k., so I didn't see the kids, but I could just imagine and  was glad to be out looking in.

September 4, 2004  Hi friends, typing to you all from Crescent City California, we've
been here since Wed. eve. It has been blowing like heck since with 30 to 39 knots out at the weather  buoy 7 miles out. We (and the two other boats traveling with us) are all  getting up at 4:15 and will listen to see what's going on before we head on  out towards Eureka. If things haven't settled down by then we will give it another 24 hours. Once again it is hard to wait. There isn't a lot going on here in Crescent City, lots of Tuna fisherman and huge sea lions everywhere.  We have continued to do some projects on the boat which is good and as always continue to see other boats coming in from sea, several that left from Neah Bay and this was their first stop. We knew one of the boats from  P.T. Better hit the rack. More soon.
some personal messages:
    Hey Rob and Linda, Yup, still stuck here, sure hope we get out tomorrow.  Eureka and then probably shoot for S.F. so it sounds like we might miss you.  Where are you going next? Linda, I will forgive you for drinking our Gin  since we seem to be taking our sweet time getting there!
    Elaine and Joe, such a nice thought to have seen you, but alas, we won't be  in San Diego for quite a while...shoot! Thanks as always for all you kind and sweet thoughts, I will keep the biz idea in mind. Yes, we still have  our cell till Dec. 1st
    Laurie, Loved reading about your San Juan trip, since you got added to the  mass list later, I need to let you know  how this sail mail through our  Single Side Band works. We get 10 min. per day, equivalent to about 2 full  pages of characters. We can't send or receive pictures. Also, if you type  back (which will always be delightful) don't use reply because that will  just eat up more of our time. Thanks, howdy to your hubby Hi sissy, we wanna go, we wanna go...there is a wooden hot tub rental place  in Eureka calling me badly. Haven't been able to even find an internet Cafe and the local library was closed Fri., Sat. and Sun.
    Hi Hobie, glad you two are having fun and enjoying the lush No Mow, ha,  grass. nighty night
    Hi Pam and Cliff, any chance you ended up getting Rich's email address? How  are you?

Sept. 7th Eureka! O.K., we are willing to admit at this point doing harbor hopping has been a lot more agreeable for the two of us. Depending on the mileage and seas sometimes we end up having to leave pretty early in order to make our next destination, however it is awfully nice knowing you will  either be sitting secured to a dock for a good nights sleep or on the hook.  We had one hell of a rolly polly ride here from Crescent City. We left about  5:45 a.m. with not enough wind to sail, the seas were 8/12' at about 10 second intervals out of the NW...that means we were taking them on the Starboard quarter, just aft of abeam. We did get about 3 hours with the jib up in the late afternoon, by then we had intermittent 15'ers. We made it to the outside buoy by 4:30, and came into Humbolt Bay with no problems. Of note, I came across this bar in 78' on another Cape George Cutter, we had gotten caught in the biggest Gale in 17 years, and with no close up charts
since we were heading direct for San Fran. We were safe, however a few things on the boat had become a problem and we were getting wet down below and just wanted in. Of course it was dark, a long story made short we had the Coast Guard come out and escort us in, nice to come in on our own this time.  We are feeling more and more confident about coming across these bars.     The Bay is pretty darn big, it took a little over an hour to steam into a dock right in front of old Eureka where another boat we knew from New Port was sitting. We ended up having ring side seats for a little festival held yesterday, live music, a rubber ducky race and the Coast Guard even did a practice rescue from a helicopter.
    Today we are going to do some errands and then more than likely be on our way tomorrow. We will head for another little bend in the coast line called Shelter Cove, anchor for the night and then head for Fort Bragg which is up the Noya river. It's supposed to be a very cool place, kinda like old cannery road. Still looking forward to seeing that Golden Gate Bridge.
some personal messages:
    Happy B-lated B-day our dear friend Kathy Brown, sorry I wasn't there to help make your birthday as special as you made mine. Andy, very nice of you to call. We have been spending a little time going through some of the music, one word...amazing!
    Ron and Linda, guess we are def. not going to be seeing you in S.F....rats! Hopefully it feels good to know for all we at least are not far behind.
    Elaine, very sweet hearing your voice, hope your trip is fun.

September 9, 2004  Ugh, I tell ya all, this coast will either make ya or break ya. If you came out here for your first sea experience and didn't know there was a much bigger silver lining you might just pack it in. Bob and I walked to the  Marine Hardware the day before we left to gather more information on an appropriate paint to recoat our water tanks. I don't remember if I
mentioned before we are having problems with the gel coat inside them (they are fiberglass) breaking down due to all the agitation. When we are settled somewhere for at least several weeks we need to cut out as much of the tops of the tanks as we can in order to access the inside and then will be using  a two part epoxy paint made for that application. So, not only do you need
to keep up with general maintenance, this environment is harsh enough in one  way or another that there seems to be a never ending battle with things breaking, or just generally refusing to work. I'm sure a lot of you reading these letters may think this is a very romantic life style, there are
certainly those moments (and I am looking forward to many more as we get further south and past this first leg) however there are many, many moments  when you are tested to your core. It is truly a lifestyle that lets you know  you are alive and often times pushed beyond your comfort zone. We left  Eureka at 0603 yesterday threading our way back out of the long harbor full  of buoys and range markers. The  prediction for the dreaded Cape Mendocino  was for 10/15 knots out of the NW with 5/7' seas at 8 seconds. Unfortunately  our fellow traveler Harold on Kylie lost his Auto Helm coming out of Eureka  and had to end up hand steering with his tiller for the next 12 hours.
    We  sailed right into fog and were there for many hours with enough wind for the  jib. Mid day Bob went below and put together a sack lunch for Harold knowing  he was unable to leave the helm. Under sloppy seas I maneuvered White Swan  up behind Kylie's Starboard stern quarter and Bob handed off the lunch in a  bucket hanging from our pike pole. Wish we could of had that on film, the  seas were pretty darn sloppy and it was a tricky operation.
    Eventually we  sailed out of the fog and could see the cape, it was a beautiful sail...for  awhile. The seas and wind began building, constant 25 knots and 8' seas, then upper 20's...then young 30's and bigger seas. Eventually it was a  sustained almost 40 knots with gusts higher, still out of the NW with big  breaking seas that once again were too close together. We took a couple of  whoppers into the cock pit. By then we were hand steering, it was a bit of a  wild ride with a triple reefed main only and blasting along at an average of  8/9 knots. Our destination was Shelter Cove tucked in behind Pt. Delgada, as  it turned out it wasn't much of an anchorage with sea swells, but did  provide a safe haven for the night. We have now renamed the Cape  "Mean-docino"! We pulled anchor watches all night and woke up pretty tired  and sore from the previous days work out but got back underway by 0803,  under blue skies and once again close sloppy seas we are heading south  toward Ft. Bragg. Lots of people along the way have told us Ft. Bragg is a  very cool place, kind of like the old Cannery Row. We should be in by 4/5  this eve. Hey, we went across the 40th parallel at 0838.


Sept. 16, 2004  Ft. Bragg Wow, we can hardly believe it, however we have been here for one week today with a planned departure of 11 tonight. The weather  has just been bad out in the big water and even the fisherman haven't ventured out some days. The first several days here being a tourist and all  were pretty fun. Three of us fellow yachts unpacked our inflatable's and put on our outboards for a trip up the Noyo River to a very cool covered train  tressel that the now tourist train "The Skunk" uses. The river is fairly small with more than several snags to watch for, but it was a great little  adventure. Since then we have been getting daily weather updates and faxes and continuing to hear the miserable enough forecasts to keep us here. Lots of projects as usual have gotten done and a few very fun communal feeds like ("The 1st and last Jumbalya Noyo River Wait to Escape) and B.S. sessions,  however we are all once again chomping at the bit to go. Patience...it does  sound like it will settle down enough to let us go tonight in which our next stop would be Bodega Bay...more soon.
    It's now almost 7 P.M. Friday...we all got up to leave last night by 11:30,  listened to the weather report to hear gusts up to 37 knots and 10' seas at  7 seconds at the weather buoy 12 miles off Bodega Bay. Certainly couldn't  justify heading into that so back to bed we went. We all listened to the report this morning and gathered info from the Coast Guard station, it  sounded as if things were dropping down so we left to head south by 2:00. We spent the first 2+ hours paying homage to the fog gods and finally popped out to have a view of the coast line and even got to see some whales for a brief moment. We will be at Bodega Bay tomorrow morning and see how we are all feeling after a night at sea, we may or may not elect to stop. If we keep going another 25 miles we will be at an anchorage called Drakes Bay and from there it would be an easy 25 mile trip on into San Fran. We'll keep you informed. Hope all are terrific :)

 Saturday, September 18, 2004 , hey, we made it to Bodega Bay after a bit of a rockin'
rollin' 18 hour trip. Unfortunately the pennant at the top of the Jib roller furler chafed through, broke and the jib came sliding down, of course it was  3:30 a.m. We got it bundled up on deck and would learn more in the light. We sent Bob up the mast once we were dock side to grab the jib halyard and bring it back down, however the upper swivel in the furler was jammed and no matter what Bob did it wasn't going to move. We will have to take the whole  thing down once we get into the city to figure out what's going on and have  access to parts. It's very nice to have new scenery and be closer to S.F.  It's Stan's (a single handler on a Vancover 27') Birthday tonight and we are  going to walk down the road and find a little restaurant we were told about  for a little party. Will also decide if we are going to get up at 2:00 A.M.  in order to make it into S.F. tomorrow or do one more overnighter on the hook in Drakes Bay...we should all have such hard decisions huh!
    Nice to hear your voice Kathy, I forgot to tell you that I have kept the  Xmas card you made last year I liked the quote so much...found the perfect  place to put it up on the boat. For the rest of you it goes : "Life is not  measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take our  breath away". I love you! I miss you Susie, Diane and Bob...it's a bit tearful thinking about it...or  is it the gin? Ha
9/19 eve. We are now snuggly anchored in Drakes Bay which is tucked in  behind Pt. Reyes, 25 miles north of San Fran. We had a nice sunny sail with  15 knot NW winds. The topography is really changing fast now, not many trees  to been seen. High rugged cliffs sparse, but punctuated with patchy  different colored low growth of some kind able to sustain itself in this environment. Unfortunately there is a large cattle ranch on shore and we seem to be down wind. The plan is to leave by 0700 and be sailing under the  Golden Gate Bridge by slack tide at noon. I made some calls and found moorage for all 5 boats in Sausalito. Probably won't be there long at $1 per  foot for moorage plus electricity. Time for dinner and hitting the bunk.
9/23...Hello from Sausalito, we arrived 9/20 after sailing under the Golden Gate at noon under beautiful blue skies, it's always a thrill, what a  gorgeous bridge. Our trip from Drakes Bay was nice, we saw quite a large whale diving and blowing. We've been at a marina but after taking care of some biz. (like picking up the new Tiller Master) and other "stuff" we are  going out to anchor with all the other cruisers just off town. We caught a ferry into S.F. yesterday and spent the day walking and gawking. Not sure  how long we will be here, there is a lot to check out and we still have to figure out where we are going to light long enough to do our water tanks. I  am on my way to a local Kinko's that has WiFi so I can finally send this mail out to you all. We have been having difficulty getting a good signal to  send out on. Hope all is well with you...it's sunny and 80 here today. I hear it's been raining a lot back in the Pacific NW.
P.S., good news on the Pro Furler, Bob did get it down (with a hammer and a  block of wood) and all is well, we bought a wire pennant and should be good  to go now.

October 15, 2004  Hi, Chapter 10, that's a nice round number. It's now Oct. 15th and we are still in the Bay area, Alameda to be exact. After a 4/5 day stay in Sausalito we did some checking around and found out we could get some temporary moorage over here while doing the much needed work on the fresh  water tanks. An interesting journey here under the Bay Bridge and on up into  the narrow channel that separates Oakland from Alameda supposedly the 4th  busiest water way in the U.S. There certainly are a lot of big marinas here  and a zillion sail boats. It really is pretty impressive that they all seem  to sail here in this channel quite well. Good thing they don't know about   Puget Sound, I have a whole new appreciation for all that open water and all  those wonderful destinations up there now. It's pretty much been all work  here, we got right in and cut the exposed top sections of our two fresh  water tanks out which were about 8" square. Of course I was right there  holding the shop vac hose as close to the saw blade as possible, still there  was this lovely sparkling fiberglass fairy dust floating around everywhere.  We knew there were more than likely baffles inside the tanks, but were a  little surprised to not only find fore and aft baffles, but also athwart  ship baffles too. Bob diligently worked away at cutting a great portions of  the athwart ship baffles out in order to gain access to the back of the  tanks for cleaning and sanding. As it was, by stuffing his arm all the way  in he could barely and blindly reach all the surfaces. Then came all the  sanding, we hooked our Fein detail sanding to our little mini shop vac which  helped keep a lot of the gel coat dust down, but as you can imagine it was  still everywhere. Finally we determined the surface was ready and applied 2  coats of the specialized paint just for our application.
    Since this whole  process was pretty much a one man job I decided to give the cap and guard  rails some help in the varnish department and with sanding help from Bob  have been at it since, I'm shooting for the magic 7 but have been challenged  with no-see-um's the past 3 days. I waited as long as I could yesterday and  stared in with another coat (5) about 4:00 p.m. yesterday. After looking  back at what I had just applied with already 10 ka-zillion little critters  all with feet firmly frozen to the beautiful fresh varnish I had to just  quit and hope for a little breeze today.
    Another part of the tank job has  been creating new baffles and lids with inspection ports. Our friend Bill Neill who lives in Oakland has been here lending support and chasing down stainless for us then taking Bob over to his place to start manufacturing all the pieces. As with all jobs it seems to be taking  longer to pull all together and we are getting very anxious to continue south...patience!!!
    We are going to rent a car this weekend and take the opportunity to go and visit with Bob's mom not too far from Sacramento. I have thought about writing for quite awhile and have just been distracted  with focus on the jobs at hand, also no convenient internet.. hope every one  is doing great.
Hi all, it's the 20th now , a Wed. As of Mon. night the fresh water tank are  finished...yippee!!!!! As with so many other boat jobs it has taken ten times longer to get all the bits and pieces finished. Bob and Bill have  spent many hours cutting, drilling and tapping stainless steel plates and pieces. It all looks pretty darn snappy. We filled the tanks with water this  morn. and can smell...nothing and that's a good thing. Our dear friend Bill  being the generous soul that he is finally wore us down about borrowing his car...a flaming red Corvette...to drive up to see Bob's mom in Jackson, it's up in the foot hills above Sacramento. Talk about a radical departure from any land reality check we have had for quite a long number of months, and well, fun, fun, fun!!! We are right now trying to get ready so we can head back over to Sausalito this eve. and be ready to head out and down the coast to Half Moon Bay by tomorrow morning. The weather has been pretty ugly out there and we are hoping it will have calmed down for us by Thursday. They were talking about 25/40 knot winds out of the SW with 12/16 ft. seas at 8 seconds yesterday...now that is "ugly". It is most definitely time to start heading south again before we get caught here any longer.
    Forgive me for not responding sooner, there hasn't been convenient internet connection and no signal to speak of for the SSB. Right now I am sitting on the dock next to a boat that has wifi, they are gone for a couple days and said go ahead and take advantage of it, so I will send this off through hot mail for now and look forward to getting back into the Sail Mail regime soon. We have been tied to the dock way too long!!!

October 23, 2004, As always the day you leave the dock is always hectic (we were in
Alameda for 22 days, total time in the Bay was a month and a day!) and I never did get all my email stuff done, I sure do miss having a connection when I want, now it's really a luxury when I do. We finally got off the dock at 6:45 P.M. on the 20th. The 2 hour run back to the Sausalito anchorage ended up being pretty cool with all the lights of San Fran after dark. We took off the next morning at 0700 for Half Moon Bay,  a rolly polly motor boat ride. We dropped the hook when we got there and put the inflatable in the water and zipped to shore to poke around. I had been in Half Moon Bay in the mid 80's when I did a trip on the Ragland (an old 100' wooden  schooner) as crew, a lot has changed...some not at all. We took off the next day and had another uneventful ride to Santa Cruz, spent a night there and then got under way for a quick trip down to the south end of Monterey Bay to Monterey. As always I will try to find some internet to forward this along. Feels awfully good to be back underway and heading south again, it's def. time as the honey is starting to run very slow.
    The 26th...We tried to head south to Morro Bay yesterday, but no matter how many times we listened to the weather it was just too ugly to go, big south easterly's winds and nasty seas. Sure enough, last night brought big winds, thunder and lightning. It's been fairly easy to keep ourselves amused here with lots to see and do, the old cannery row is not far away. If all goes  well we should be able to leave tomorrow and head for Morrow Bay, should be about a 21 hour run. We will look forward to leaving the horrific noise from all the sea lions behind, there are hundreds of them here.
    Wed. the 27th, it's 3 in the afternoon, we got off the dock at noon. Light  North Westerly's and pretty darn big rollers (10/15') left over from the big blow. We are sailing by the famous Pebble Beach Golf course and Carmel and just played "I wonder which seaside mansion Dirty Harry lives in. I'm getting drowsy and as this will be an over nighter I best be thinking about a nap! Thanks for all the notes friends, and to all the new-be's, if you are  interested in seeing all the other letters too you can go to a web site called: familyyachtclub.com/white_swan.htm   they are friends who have given us a page and add our letters there. Just watched an amazing total eclipse of the full moon while eating hot chocolate chip cookies:)
 
    Hi Steve Hull, did I already respond to your question "who is Hobie", he's Bob's dad.
Speaking of Hobie...Hi Hobie and Marilyn!
    Bill Sullivan, while anchored in Half Moon Bay there was another little cutter called "Mardad" with a home port of Kasilof, AK...small world!
    Harold, I miss you! Hope you are doing well, please email us with updates we don't to loose contact.
    Hi Lynn DiN, thanks for the note, my sis is forwarding our absentee ballot's, hope all is going good with your house. Did you rent out the  downstairs?
    Hi Elaine, Will try to call you this coming weekend, I saw on my calendar  Frank's B-day is next month, are you all going to Amsterdam?
    Hi Gail Lipko, glad you are enjoying our letters.
    Hi Pam, did you ever get Rich's email address? I know you wanted it awhile  ago, I would like to add him to the list. How are you? How's the boat?
    Beej and Trish...miss you!
    Ron and Linda, where ya at now? I expect that when we go to send this out  there might be something from you I hope. Did we tell you we did the Alameda  Ensinal Baj Ha Ha Ha party?
    Hi Gigi, memories in Half Moon Bay! Remember the little group chanting around the huge crystal on the bluff?
    Hi Rayna, Sarah and John, been missing you guys of late, especially thinking of you Rayna...I want to try and send you some pictures of the big Sea  Lions. Wish you could hear what they sound like.
    Hi Christina, Ezra and Obie, we copied the last pictures you sent JoAnn,  pretty darn cute Obie. I hear you are talking up a storm.
    Raye and Ray, welcome!
    Hi Kathy and Phil, will try and call this weekend, can't remember when the big trip is?
    S.Q., I adore you!
    Hi Wes and Annie girl, did you find a dream job yet?
    Hello Kimmie! It's now a little after 4 and the wind has all but died, still lots of big rolling seas. Once again, it was really cool meeting and sharing with you if only for a few brief moments!
Thanks for the update on the eclipse, it was awesome.
    Hey Andy and Kathy, which state are you in now? Did you get everything done on the boat you wanted?
 
November 03, 2004  Underway again! We finally got out of Santa Barbara yesterday.  What an amazing scene it is there. The evidence of affluence is obvious with  lots of teens prancing around in their cute little outfits (I was thinking I should become the belly button cop, ha), clutching their bags from Sacs Fifth Ave, Gucci and the Gap. The town is also extremely clean with constant worker bees scurrying around cleaning this and washing that. We did find a great thrift  store and even a Trader Joes. We weren't there long enough to be very good tourists, but did go in the Court House which was pretty old and had amazing  hand painted walls depicting local history.
    We took off yesterday about noon  and came across the Santa Barbara Channel to Santa Cruz Island and dropped  the hook in a little nook called Pelican Bay. We had heard about the Ocean  swell making some of the anchorages rather lumpy and got to experience that first hand by being woken up too many times to count. It was up at 6:30 the next morning, pulled the anchor and steamed around to the other side of the  Island to try another anchorage for the night. We pulled into Coches Prietos  (means Black Pig and evidently there are still wild pigs roaming around), another little hick-up they call an anchorage here, though, it was  beautiful. I was excited about going to shore, there was a lovely white  sandy beach that looked so tempting to dig my toes into. However, the  windlass decided to stop working and Bob tested the switch and determined we weren't getting good contact. We spent pretty much the rest of the afternoon  taking things apart and sanding things down with some wet and dry 1000 grit  paper in order to get rid of the corrosion. Things went back together and  all seemed to be o.k. By the time we finished it was afternoon and the Santa Ana winds we're up. We got a few hours of sleep and decided to get the heck  out a there at mid night.
    We took off, Bob went down to check things in the  engine room and realized the transmission was leaking way too much. We were headed for Long Beach but decided to go into Marina Del Rey in the hopes of finding some knowledge about the problem, we arrived that eve. just before dark. We did have the pleasure of seeing a huge pod of dolphins and also a  couple of whales.
    The next day we found the local West Marine and happened to run into a guy in the store that knew a transmission specialist who worked at a shop near by. We tracked him down and he ordered the new seal Bob determined we needed and said it would be in Mon., he would bring it down and walk Bob through the process. We pretty much played tourists and waited most of Mon. to no avail hearing from this guy. We did get in touch  with him Tues., however, it turned out he really didn't know that much about Herth Transmissions. Bob decided we would try Long Beach.
    I sit here at  almost 11 P.M. I hear a commotion outside and stick my head out to see a Disco (ancient borrowed term) boat go by with flashing lights, loud music and a rocking elbow's only crowd of young in's. We did walk to Venice Beach today, however it was dark by the time we got there and then after stopping for Happy Hour we decided to start walking back to the boat even though we knew there was a lot more to see...we will be here till Tues. and will have another chance to go back and watch the zoo on the beach in Venice.
    Walking back to the boat we passed the Ritz Carlton Hotel and decided to go in and check it out for fun. We walked by a small jewelry store down one of the hallways and saw some absolutely amazing pieces. We decided to go in for a peek, the owner was very friendly and started telling us about he uniqueness of his family's situation there, if they don't make money, the hotel doesn't get rent. The family has been in business for years and does all their own design work, the jewelry was absolutely some of the finest I have ever seen. I was holding $40,000 to $80,000 rings and a $60,000 natural faceted stone necklace in my hand. Absolutely a lovely experience with the owner even though he knew we weren't going to buy anything.
    We did get back to Venice Beach during the day, what a wild sight, fun! At least it had personality, more than we can say for Marina Del Rey. We got underway for Long Beach on the 11th, sailing under the end of L.A. X was pretty amazing to say the least. We got into Long Beach Harbor in the late afternoon, wow, the Queen Mary is "Cool"! There was no room at the marina there due to renovation so we ended up in  Alamitos Bay about 4 miles away. As it turns out, we couldn't seem to find anyone that knew about the transmission, but Bob did find a manual online and got that ordered. Bob's sister Liz lives about an hours drive away and we had several things mailed to her.
    Yesterday...it's now Nov. 16th...Liz and her boyfriend Brad drove down and we went out for a great sunny sail, thanks again Liz! We have been talking with some fellow cruisers that are already in San Diego and they told us about a shop there, Bob called and got things set up for them to do the work for us. As it turns out the transmission has to come out (luckily we can pull the shaft back far  enough to get it out without hauling the boat) and go into the shop. So, here we are underway again and heading for San Diego, the sun set was gorgeous. O.K., let,s see if we can find a station and get this mail out to you all. Much love Bob & Dianna

personal notes follow:
    Hi Andy and Kathy, glad to hear from you, sounds like all is good and you are back in Colorado for the winter? Pets for the furry ones. I've been buying cat food and feeding feral cats here.
    Hello Roberto, welcome to the mailings, once again it was truly very nice to meet and share with you.
    Julie and Aaron, wow, a lot going on for you two. I can imagine how hard, fun, exciting etc. all has been with the house dealings, it's such a personal thing. And then the whole job thing, wow, I am glad you are going to have a more enjoyable time working with your hubby, very cool. Glad you will be closer to the boat too, sounds like a good location. Also glad you will be able to get out to the Island for the big gathering, wow, we will be sad not to be there, such good memories. Have a blast for us too!
    Rob and Linda, as you see we are still moving south, can hardly believe it seems to be taking this long, hope we don't get way laid in San Diego for too long. Did you ever tell us what your plans are? Can't believe you still have that gin, it's got to be a new bottle!!!
    Hey Murph!
    Robert Peele, if you get this please type me, I love and miss you.
    Hi Diane and Bob, We found a really cool yarn shop in Long Beach though seemed pretty expensive, I will wait for San Diego and buy something for a little project before I forget how to shnit, tee hee. Also saw an add in the local paper for a knitters cruise ship booking, up, I think to the Caribbean, what next?
    Robin and Jeff, if this finds you...Cool! Type back, just don't forward as we get limited space for our Sail Mail via our SSB radio. Hope all is great with you two...miss you!
    Hi Al, thanks for the quickie :)
    Hi Marilyn and Brain, didn't know till today you were in San Diego too. We should be there in the early a.m., hope to at least wave to you till we catch up further down the coast. If you see Stan tell him we now have two more children in the aqua pet family...you'll see...tee hee.
    Hi Tim in San Diego, hope we get to see you while there, we will try to call again.
To all our beloved extended boating family in Puget Sound, please raise a toast to us while stuffing yourselves with all that amazing food and remember my grand entrance with the pecan pie :)

    Hi again, tried more than several times to get this mail out without success so thought I would tell you all we are now in San Diego. We talked to and saw Kavenga and Mary Joe on there way into Mexico as we were sailing in towards Shelter Island. We also were escorted by a submarine entering the ship yard, big excitement. Now it's time to tear into the transmission and get it into the shop. Icarian was still here at the Police dock when we arrived, hadn't seen them since Sausalito. This is the last stop to get our loose ends tied up, we will be busy! Hope I will find some WiFi to get this out to all of you soon.
 
November 26, 2004 It's November 26th today, we arrived in San Diego on the 17th and have been  sitting tied to the Police Dock since, it's o.k., we haven't been arrested.  The Police Dock is a temporary tie up for any boat for 10 bucks a day for 5  days and then 20 bucks a day for the next 5 days with a 40 day wait period  between your next moorage there. There are way more boats here in San Diego than places to put them, so it's a popular spot plus it's generally where  all the cruisers stop before heading south or north. The marina is at the very end of Shelter Island which makes it an almost 2 mile walk one way to get up to the first major street. However, on the way you pass almost every conceivable marine store you would ever need. There's a great marine store called DownWind Marine that is really well set up for cruisers and every resource they may need, they even carry sprouting seeds, receive mail for you and   will forward it down to Mexico too. Or, they could always just find someone heading down your way willing to take packages too. It's all pretty warm and cozy. The West Marine flag ship store is here also, what a place full of theatrics with all the impressive mock ups like a life size power boat stern displaying furniture and the galley with different stove set into the counter and on and on...wow. They can even print charts right there on demand.
    Our Transmission was rebuilt and we already have it  reinstalled, haven't used it much yet, but we will do that soon. We are now waiting for some last min. things to arrive before we can leave like our recalled Epirb. Last Wed. we saw a boat come in we had met back in Alameda, it was a surprise to see the boat because when Glen left Alameda with his new 3 crew members (he didn't have any history with these people) they  were on their way to do the Baja ha ha race and then keep going. Unfortunately the crew all ditched on him in Cabo San Lucas after the race. He didn't have any luck finding a new crew in Cabo and instead decided to bring the boat back up to San Diego and sell it, especially after finding out he could get his old job back. The boat was a Down East 37 with a lot of problems, (although loaded down with great cruising gear) and Glen admitted he was very green when he bought her and was unaware of what makes a good off shore boat, at that point he didn't even know how to sail. So, when he arrived he basically had one week to liquidate everything, including the boat. Long story made short I ended up helping him for the next two and a half days clean up the interior which was no small task as it was very wet and moldy and we ended up getting an unbelievable deal on things we had talked about wanting but unwilling to spend the thousands on before we left. An Air X wind generator, Katadyn fresh water maker (produces a gal. and a half per hour), a small Pur hand fresh water maker for the ditch bag, and a radar detector. Then out of generosity and need of just getting stuff off the boat so he could show it to Brokers he just gave us an enormous list of stuff, it  was truly an amazing win fall.
    It's now November 31st and Bob has been busy as ever trying to install our new gear, pretty much has the wind generator in and now looking at where he can install the water maker. We are also going to install another in line filter for our fresh drinking water that filters out 99.9% of all those bad little critters that could be swimming  around in our tanks. We do always add a little bleach, but as we go into foreign countries where water is suspect we want to give ourselves every chance we won't get sick.   Our friends from Canada Brock and Mary (who just happen to have another wonderful Cape George Cutter) told us about the filter while we were up in the northern territory last summer. We are hoping to have the Epirb by the end of the week, have all parts and pieces of everything we haven't yet installed so we can do it down the line, re-provision and then take off for Mexico...and a roar came from the crowd!
    It's been quite a trip here surrounded by all these mega yachts. There is a sloop here called "Whirlaway", it's got to be 160' long with a mast so tall (maybe 200') that's lit up like a Xmas tree at night due to aviation regulations. Last weekend we were anchored in La Playa which is surrounded by yacht clubs, we were putting to shore in the Avon and saw Dennis Conner's  absolutely gorgeous newly refitted "Q" class sloop. She was built in 1918, probably about 60', rumor has it he dumped over a million into the refurbish. We skulked in for a closer view and realized Dennis was sitting there and ended up talking to him for a couple minutes...nice guy. The next day Dennis and crew were out in his lovely Q and sailed right by us, he  noticed us from the day before said hello and complimented us on  our beautiful White Swan. We took some photos of the Q and then took the opportunity to try out our new little printer (a Cannon I-80), printed off a couple pictures, put the rest on a disk and I ran them over and gave them to Dennis when they got back in...pretty cool, huh.
    We are out on a mooring buoy now in the Americas Cup Harbor, we met a guy who leases it back at the Police Dock, he's out of the water till Thursday, then we will go back over and anchor at La Playa for the weekend. This place is unbelievable, we think there must be about 400 boats out here all lined up like hot dogs in a package. Talk about making use of every square inch. We got here Mon. after noon, that evening (it was dark), I heard a splash and then voices, I quickly went up on deck and saw some glow sticks in the water and loudly  asked if someone needed help, the response was, "no, we are working". There was also a skiff with nav lights we didn't recognize. I went back down to fix dinner and Bob was pretty convinced he could hear dolphins breathing and interacting with the skiff. I did find out later  the navy does dolphin training in the bay, the little guys are trained to attach tracking devices to hulls and then go back and retrieve them. Pretty amazing.
    Time to head for shore now to Down Wind Marine, they have a cruisers coffee and donuts every Wed. morn at 10. I understand there was some kind of snafu with the email list and some of you haven't gotten all the letters, I'm working on figuring that all out. Hope everyone is great and looking forward to Xmas. If you can believe it there was a fine layer of ice on the cushions this early a.m. and only 44 degrees...hear me whine, ha.
 
Personal notes:
    Hi Eric and Gale, I miss you guys, I miss the kitties terribly and also have heart pangs when I think about that wonderfully magic place! Hope your holidays are happy and full, Hi to Dub if he is still around. As it turned out due to the transmission snafu we never did make it
to Balboa, rats! Squeeze all the pets for me.
    To the Silverwater crew, hello all! I was thinking strongly about Steph the other day after meeting another Stephanie who reminded me so much of her. Also my old friend Kathy Roush said she talked to Step in the restaurant and reminisced about me. Alison, if you read this at home, please tell Steph and others who know me hello and life is good. Much love and hope the baby is
wonderful!
    Charlie and Katie, HIIIIIII! Should of tracked down your email address sooner, but better late than never! I'm sure Robin will tell you I called the next time you see her. I miss you...For the Glory!
    Andy and Kathy, we finally broke into the Hedges on Thanksgiving with our Prime Rib, just the 2 of us, it was delightful, thank you very much!
    P.T. Sail Loft, Hey girl friends, can't remember if you get this mail at home or at the shop, please tell all hello, especially my sweet friend Makia. We have run into two dif. boats here that have seen you recently: Jerry and Joanie on steel hulled S/V Lotus and Warren and Stephanie on a  West Sail 32 S/V Moco Verde. I love this small world and look forward to running into lots of people down the way you have touched in some way.
    Al and Sandy, thanks for the mail Al, we are now leaning back to the South Pacific...strangers things have happen than it would be to bump into you  there...like tracking you down at the yacht club bar in Lahina after many years had passed (s.p.?), ha!
    Brock and Mary, looking forward to having the new filter in line! Can't  thank you enough for that tip. Hope things are lovely in Vancover, we have been bumping into a lot of Canadian sailors heading south.
    Kathy Roush, I love you tons and hope your Birthday is great, perhaps you will be drinking sake out of the little cedar box? I only lament I will not be there to share!
    Bill Sullivan, thank you for your thoughts and sharing the sad news, although I can see the two of them dancing on the clouds. I also wanted to tell you I met a really cool guy while in Marina Del Rey that fishes up there in your neck of the woods, tho I think they long line. If you hear of a wild man wind surfing in the Pribilofs it will probably be him!
    Susie, I love you and hope you are hanging in there for the winter, or at least till you get a reprieve trip to Arizona.
 
To all that haven't gotten the letters before, if you like you can go to :
familyyachtclub.com/white_swan.htm   and click on our log book to read them
all.

    Thanks Pam! loved hearing from you, sounds like you had a blast, well you would of probably preferred blasting the fog, ha. I think I have you back on the list now, have no idea how that snafu happened??? Wow, Jer and Monica in the Ukrain...wow...Thanks for missing us on Turkey day, we missed you all too:(
    Hey you crazy kids Bob and Diane...we miss you.
and to all a good night :)

December 13, 2004  Hi Everyone, Not sure how we ended up not getting so many of you on the original and ongoing updated email list to receive our letters, but I think it's all fixed now. For some this might be the first letter you have received. Our good bud Pam has been adding all the letters to our page on the site she manages for her family (that all seem to be crazy about boats) and also those of us lucky enough to have been adopted..., yippee! I would encourage you to go there to see #1 letter through #12. My habit has been to add personal notes to the end of each letter and there will probably be something there for you. Please feel free to email us at: wdb5588@sailmail.com  it comes through our single side band radio. We get 2 hours each day, or something like two full written pages of transmission space. So, a few rules are don't use reply if you write, that way our original email to you won't get sent back to us using up space, and no pictures. Darn on that one. We do have a hot mail account and will try and check that now and then when we find internet cafe's:  bobanddianna@hotmail.com
The below letter got too long to send in one shot so I am going to send the first half (I hope tonight) and the second the next night...stay tuned:~)

 It's December 13th today. Let me catch you up on Bob and Dianna's great adventure since we left San Diego. We were all ready to go on the 8th, got up at 0430 in order to make it to Ensenada before dark, it was socked in and raining. After 2 hours trying to sail and motor straight into 15/18 knots of Southeaster's, not even being able to go 3 knots and feeling like we were in the industrial wash cycle, we decided to turn around and head back. We went back into the Police Dock,  took quick showers and got permission to go over to Glorietta Bay to anchor for the night. You have to get permission to anchor anywhere in San Diego Bay now, amazing! About two hours later we were anchored in the Bay with an amazing view of the famous Coronado Motel. We were both exhausted and I laid down and took a nap for a couple of hours. We went to shore for a quick tour of the Motel and walked a bit down the street and headed back out to the boat with hopes of leaving the next morning.
    After a good nights sleep we headed back out with a quick stop to top off fuel in Americas Cup Harbor. Remember the huge sloop Whirlwind I described in the last letter, she sits right next to the fuel dock. A couple of what had to of been crew came by in an inflatable and said "looking good, are you headed south"? Of course we said "thanks" and "yes". They said they too are heading south soon and to look for them..."oh boy, ICE":)! We headed on out with much more favorable conditions this time. Having gotten such a late start and knowing we would be in Ensanada at dark we decided to just keep going. Bob threw our fishing, trolling line in the water and caught our first fish...a Mackerel, boy do they stink! Then he caught another and another...you get the picture. Late in the afternoon Bob looked over and saw a little bird flying right towards the boat, (we were about 15 miles off shore) we think he must of been lost and decided he needed to take a little rest so he  lit on the life lines. "Jeronimo" started feeling comfortable quickly and proceeded to hop all over the boat...then he flew off...then he flew back and hopped around some more, even onto Bob's knee. He proceeded to use us for rest and recreation a couple more times and was even sitting on Bob's head for a while, I think he was looking for a nest and Bob's tousled mop was just the thicket...get it, ticket, thicket, ha, ha. "A bird in Bob's hair" is worth a whole lot-a-laughs. He was a pretty little Mexican finch with lots of bright yellow. We encountered lots of fog in the afternoon and into the night, woke up to our first sitting of a huge California Gray Whale. Bob is now the king of the King Mackerel by continuing to catch the little buggers...still didn't want to eat one. I am holding out for our first tuna so we can open mystery present #1 from B.J. and Trish. It's a can I think with something inside that sounds kind of like sand...is it seasoning...powdered wassabi...or is it really just sand? We shall see and I hope it's soon. The other mystery gift they sent along with us was not to be opened till we get to the equator. Funny thing about that one is there doesn't feel like there is much in there at all...I wonder what that means? Will let you know in about 28 more degrees. Speaking of degrees (we are now at 28.12 Lat and 115.08 Lon). We had land sitting (Isla Cedros) about 1000 on the 12th and were lead to a good anchorage by a couple of Mexican fisherman in a skiff to a bight on the north east side by 1230.
    We felt like we were (hey, we are!) living out a National Geographic moment as we saw that the beach was littered with seals, sea lions and elephant seals. The elephant seals are absolutely huge sizing in at up to 18', looking like they weigh about as much as an elephant and with a face only a mother could love. The book says they are the largest marine mammal in the northern hemisphere other than the whale. This was a very unique opportunity as from what we have read they have an annual migration here to this specific area with the males arriving in late November and the females coming in a couple weeks later.
They have their pups, come into season again, copulate (no we did not get to witness this act, although it certainly would of been something to see) and depart. You just can't imagine what kind of noises they make, the pups sounding like crying baahing baby sheep and the adults making huge guttural snorting, barking, sneezing and coughing sounds, try to imagine a regurgitating sewer pipe under a lot of pressure! We watched in amazement over and over as the adult males throw their head back and with the obvious involvement of their huge proboscis like snouts make a loud clap-like sound letting everyone else know that this was their turf, each having their own rookery. It sounded like Baja's version of the Seringetti. Just before heading down below to hit the bunk I heard a big splash to starboard, then another closer, then something hit the keel, then another splash to port, I was pretty sure it was a seal. Often through out the night we heard this phenomenon.
    We got up early today and pulled the hook as we want to be in Turtle Bay by afternoon, it's getting dark here now by 5:30. I usually flake chain down below in the locker while Bob is pulling it in and noticed the distinct lack of chain markers, after we were both back in the cockpit and underway Bob asked if I had noticed anything strange with the anchor chain. We had the biggest laugh realizing that during the raucous antics going on under the boat and obviously the chain too the night before, the sneaky gang of Banditos Seals had chewed off and stolen #30, #60 and #120 chain markers...can you believe that one!
    We left the Mexican Seringetti early morning of the 13th. While sailing down a channel just outside Turtle Bay, our destination, we were approached by a fishing panga. The two Mexican lobster fisherman came along side and asked for agua so we tossed them two bottles of water and they tossed us back two big lobster...I'm going to like this place! We were anchored in front of Turtle Bay by evening with a little excitement thrown in with the engine refusing to start. No big deal, we just sailed in and dropped the hook. Of course Bob dug right in and before long had determined the problem was fouled fuel. Turtle Bay was interesting in it's own way, unfortunately we got sucked into a guy who befriended us and then later wanted money for showing us around (learning curve). We also unfortunately picked the wrong little restaurant and had a really bad meal and also used   internet in a funky little place with the key board in Spanish! Bob made a phone call to find out if our new wind generator had been repaired...15 minutes, $12.50! So, to the Denny family, I know you are all used to hearing from Bob regularly, but more than likely that won't be able to happen nearly as often mostly due to the fact we will never know when we can even find a phone. So, sharpen up those finger tips and email us, we have lots of time to email back and will be checking it regularly.
    We left Turtle Bay the 15th and did some really nice sailing for over 24 hours, the stars come right down to the horizon 360 degrees. The next morning we had our first encounter with real S.O.B's.,  na, not what you all think, I mean Squid On Board, or should I say glued to the deck. It's now the 17th, Bob, the King of King Mackerel just caught another one. We are close hulled on a course right into Bahia Santa Maria which is just outside Bahia Magdalena, a famous Gray Whale birthing place. We will also be checking in at San Carlos. Stay tuned, this will be our first check in and quite an adventure I am sure doing what's known as the paper work Cha Cha.
    Hi, wow, it's the 20th today, it's true, time flies when your having fun. Mostly we have been sitting here in this giant bay (Bahia Santa Maria, just outside Bahia Magdalene) relaxing and catching up on projects which )never seem to end. We are about 150 miles north of Cabo San Lucas.
    We did a really cool pretty wild hike from the bay side up gullies and over the top, then down the other side to the wild crashing waves of the Pacific. Lot's of really cool cactus, a huge pile of gorgeous abalone shells and even the skeleton of a Pelicans beak. There are a number of fish camps at the end of the bay that you can get to by crashing through the surf, I am assured there is enough water, however it looks scary to me. We have been approached by a number of pang a's that approach you holding a big bug (lobster) in the air by his antenna. I"m afraid the price has gone up a bit from a bottle of water, some only want money, others want tee shirts, sun glasses chocolate or beer. We have definitely decided not to bring alcohol into this equation and I have learned how to say no beer for trade in espanol: "no cerveza pora negociar". We had some old friends come in last night after dark, a Nauticat 44 "Cyrano", Shirley Rudolph and her husband Jim and also a crew member Craig. I had actually bumped into them in a pretty magic way in San Diego. I was walking down a street in the rain in full on foul weather gear pulling my little cart when I heard someone call my name. I turned to see Shirley (a good friend of over 20 years) sitting in a car and talking on the cell phone with Arlis Newcomb back in Port Townsend another old friend...small world! Our plan is to go into Puerto Magdalene tomorrow to check in, then grab a panga water taxi to take us over to San Carlos for groceries etc. The adventure goes on and we continue to have a BLAST.

December 26, 2004   Frigate's, Turtles and Whale Tales       
Dear Family and Friends, We are now in transit to Cabo San Lucas with an e.t.a. of about 0800 manana. Our stay in "Mag Bay" turned out to be quite an adventure. We arrived in Man  of War Cove/Puerto Magdalalena the afternoon of the 22nd. Found a good place to anchor in about 40' of water with our 44lb. CQR and 220' of chain, the  bottom was sandy and the holding was really good. Once settled in we went to  shore to seek out the Puerto Capitan to check in, we had no sooner barely started walking down the dirt road when this beat up old jeep came barrelling down toward us. El Capitan Gragario told us in broken English it  was no problema and he would check us in tomorrow afternoon when he returned.
   
We jumped back in the inflatable and headed out to visit with another boat  we knew, Jerry and Joanie on "Lotus". They told us Gragario was taking some mates into San Carlos (about a 30/40 min. ride) in his Panga the next morning and said there was room for two more. A Panga is an open 20' skiff with about a 150 hpr. outboard that seems to  be the chosen mode of earning  a living by fishing or to just get around here in Mexico. We had known there  was a time change coming up for awhile, from Pacific to Mountain time, but  unfortunately it had already happened and we ended up missing our ride. I  was a bit bummed as we were starting to run out of fresh food. That afternoon when the Panga came back Gragorio came over and checked us in and  I arranged for him to take another 8 lucky people to San Carlos on Friday. It didn't take long to collect another 6 people, there are practically no  groceries in Puerto Magdalalena and it looks a little tricky taking your big boat up a semi shallow channel to San Carlos. A Santa Ana system settled in the evening of the 23rd and we bucked all night long. The next morning though still blowing we decided we were holding well and decided to go ahead with the trip to San Carlos in order to provision, send Xmas Cards (sorry family the cards are going to be a little late)and have a nice meal out for a change. On the Panga's way out they stopped and picked up a couple extra people and we ended up getting bumped. I could of gone, but I wanted to have  a nice day on shore with Bob. As Karma would play out it was meant to be we didn't go.
    The wind continued to pick up and was gusting to 22 knots and the whole anchorage (11 other boats) were looking more like angry bucking bulls than not with the occasional nose being dug into the frothy bay in a show of anger. We were sitting in the cockpit taking it all in when we noticed the 47' wooden schooner "Escapade" was starting to drag, then we got a VHF call confirming her flight from another boat. We knew the skipper Dennis had gone on the Panga trip, but his crew Connie was on board. We gave her a call, she was hunkered down below and I don't think she knew the boat was dragging  plus she was new to boats. Gratefully she did know how to start the engine, Bob threw on his foul weather gear, dove into the inflatable and off he flew into the snotty seas. He managed to get onboard and get the anchor up (an old navy anchor) and get her underway, a couple people had come over to help, but by then Bob had things under control and it just wasn't safe to be out there, especially in a little rubber boat. They motored the boat back away from the beach which by then had become dangerously close and back out into the anchorage. Someone had gotten in touch with Gragorio over in San Carlos on the VHF and they got a message to Dennis who had a Panga bring him back as quickly as possible arriving just as Bob was re-anchoring his boat.
    Needless to say he was immeasurably grateful. It was scary watching Bob come back to the boat, it was gusting so hard and the seas were steep and ugly.  Quite a fetch can build up due to the size of the bay. I was very glad to have him back on board White Swan, he was pretty beat. He barely got his wet foul weather gear off (maybe 2+ min) when another boat "Amber Moon" decided to break loose and was going fast, unfortunately there was no one on board.  No time for foulies this time...it's  B.O.B.(Bob on Board)  with another dashing rescue. This time he had someone else show up to help, they realized she hadn't drug, the snubber had broken, the chain had jumped off the windless and the rest of it (another 200') had all payed out. What a day to remember, no fresh food, but what memories. The next day was Xmas and we had a big pot luck on shore with the other cruisers, lots of food, music and a special award ceremony. Bob was presented with the Golden (well of course it was actually stainless steel) shackle award with a great poem written by Jerry from Lotus  for saving the day. It was really quite special.
It's 9 P.M. now, but all morning we were seeing wonderful sights, humpback whales, huge frigate birds soaring around and checking out the lure we were dragging... and big turtles...lots of them! In the afternoon we got a call from another boat telling us there was a large pod of dolphins jumping way out of the water, we grabbed the binocs and sure enough it was absolutely
unbelievable to see how far they would leap, maybe to 8' out of the water! Then, an amazing moon rise. We got another call informing us we are now (at Lat.23.27 Lon 110.48) officially in the tropics, yeah!!!

personal messages to follow:
    For all our friends back in the states, I am now checking on shipping and hope I can arrange for "things" to be sent to us through a San Diego biz. called "Mail Call" as they are already going to ship our newly fixed wind generator down to us in Puerto Vallarta. The things I am requesting are for giving away as gifts and I just ran out of time in San Diego to gather many together. We are asked often for tee shirts, so if anyone has some that are  in good shape and have some kind of logo on them, also ball caps, I was also  thinking tooth brushes and mini tooth paste would be really great...even dental floss. I was also disappointed I didn't find a dollar store so I  could buy pencils, colored pencils, water paints, felt pens, note pads,  little kites, frisbees and other "little" toys. I'm sure you may spot something else you think might be great too. For us, if anyone finds some fun cheap movies (I found a few in the 6 to 8 dollar range) that would be awesome. My sister has charge of our check book, (this could be fun, right, ha) so I will let her know she can write people a check for stuff. I will let you all know soon what the address to send to is...it would need to be in San Diego in a couple weeks.
    P & K, your Xmas with family sounded wonderful, didn't like the rocks on the windshield part, but cool you have a new car. Hope the road trip was a blast. luv u
    John, Sarah and Rayna, we would love to see cookie girl lathered in icing! Please send pictures via cyber space to our hotmail:
bobanddianna@hotmail.com  Sounds like you did some amazing cooking for Xmas dinner, hope it was fun and yummy, it sounded awesome! Needless to say we love and miss you!
    Hi Hobie and Hi for Marilyn, you sound good, glad you continue to do what you like. Where are you going on your road trip?
    Jim Copeland, what a surprise...welcome to our reality cruise!
    Susan and Brian, sounds like there is a good chance of seeing you in Cabo...hope so.
    Rob and Linda, we really are getting closer to you party animals, really looking forward to catching up, lots of stories to tell. We see where you are and will be stopping there also, not sure when however. We know we will stop in Cabo, the rest is a bit up in the air. We were talking about going up to La Paz to see the father of Cape Georges, Cecil Lange. I guess we will just wait and see how things pan out. And, hey, we want to be some of that rif raf swilling down your gin! Will continue to stay in touch, bear hugs and yes, Don Rocks!
    Tom and Maggie, awesome to get your email, you confirmed the stories we have been hearing about the possible unpleasant trip back up stream to La Paz, making me wonder if we will...it unfolds daily. Right now all I want is fresh food, ice, a shower and laundry. No need for jealousy yet, we still don't have the water maker plumbed, and talk about ice envy from this end!
See you soon one way or another.
    Hey U Dave, you lil'darlin', glad you found us! Sorry to hear you were poopy for Xmas, I heard that from a lot of folks all the way up to WA. :( Stay in touch and welcome to the family, more Bear Hugs and also...you rock for helping me so much!
    Icarian, thanks for the note, you are inching ahead of us. Keep us informed, I need another hug Marilyn! We made your rolls for the Xmas pot luck, big hit, we added rosemary. Stay in touch.
    Tim Strike, Rats on missing you, best of luck in 05
    Jeff and Jenny, yes, you are not forgotten either, drop us a note now and again, we love you 2 thanks for connecting so we could have your new email, the old ADAMSCAMP came back
    Charlie and Katie, hey, I found you! I hope you go to the familyyachtclub.com/white_swan.htm site, click on the "Log Book" and read the other letters so you get the whole picture so far, it's been a real adventure. Hug P.T. for us, the boat above referred to about the dolphins jumping was Shirley Rudolph and her husband Jim...she's a realtor in the same office with Marilyn and Lynn...small world. Love and miss you, hello to all and happy new year
    Hi Rich...we are kinda sweet on you too, love to Laurie and yourself.
    Jeff and Melody, welcome to the family, hope you had a great Xmas onboard. Drop us a line:)
    Bob and Ellie, great Xmas letter, we think of you two wild and crazy kids now and again. Glad you continue to luv your tug.
    Rick Rawls and gang at the family care clinic...I am so glad I found out you weren't receiving the letters, please drop us a line and let us know if your well and life is so great that people are waiting in a long line just to see you!!!! more big bear hugs.
    And to all a good night, it's now 1210, I'm sleepy and want to try and get a connection so we can send this out.

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