Jan's Journal

Summer in Canada

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June 3, 2003: Up early to clean up last minute items and out of West Sound at 1000. No charge for our two extra nights at the marina. Right away we noticed a problem with the autopilot. It worked for the most part but Jim ended up calling tech support when we were off Pt. Townsend. Arrived Port Ludlow at 1630 in a strong breeze. Someone was hogging the reciprocal dock so we paid for a night. After leftovers, we worked on the autopilot (a bad connector) and then I took a (free) shower. On my way back, a couple followed me to Mañana (they were checking DC out) and offered us two live Dungeness crabs, which we enthusiastically accepted. We cooked them immediately and will have for lunch tomorrow, and we promised to share some with DC!

Mañana Cruising, Just Like She's Meant To

June 4-8, 2003: TrawlerFest, Poulsbo. Out of Port Ludlow at 0530 to catch slack at Agate Pass. Autopilot works fine. Arrived Poulsbo at 0930 and was greeted by linehandler John Wilson - it was wonderful to see him and Glenda. We had a great time; saw old friends and made new ones. Our presentation went well although only a dozen people were in the audience. It was very hot out until it was time to leave on Sunday. After leaving TrawlerFest, we were passed by Dean and Jennifer on Emily B, another DeFever. We swapped photo shots.

June 8-15, 2003: At Dunato's. Bonnie welcomed us home and it does feel good to be in familiar territory although it is much bumpier than I remember. John said there's nothing that can be done for the paint because it's moisture in the wood. Ron told Jim how he'd fix the flybridge cracks and although John authorized the repairs, Jim will do the work. I had lunch at Kenworth and dinner with Colleen. We were also treated to dinner by Gus and Janet and got to ride in their boat. How funny it feels to ride in a small boat! Jim went to Orcas to mail out e-bay packages. Judy cut my hair. I started revarnishing the flybridge benches. A very busy week.


June 16-17, 2003: Up and out at 0500 to catch the tide. We cruise at 7 knots through the water. But with the current, we saw 14.1 kts off Admiralty Bay - yee haw! Unfortunately we also saw 4.7 kts off Deception Pass. Oh well! Arrived in Bellingham at 1600 - a very long day. We were barely tied up and both boys made a beeline for the kitty litter pan! We are moored behind a couple from southern California who knew Mañana when she was Por Nada, and they are good friends with Garrett Smith, Mañana's 2nd owner. Small world! Dave from Sea Freeze didn't leave the boat until 1515 so we decided to spend another night here and head out early tomorrow.

June 18, 2003: Our 20th wedding anniversary. Left Bellingham at 0650 and arrived West Sound at 1035. Peter picked us up at 1115 and Babs made clam chowder for lunch. Jim worked on projects and I went food shopping; then I made a crab quiche for dinner and Jim made a salad. In bed early - 20 years of married life but today was just another day. :)

June 22, 2003: Spent four days in West Sound. I finished and mailed Teri's wall hanging and Jim completed a couple of projects. He also passed his Ham test on Saturday. Left at 1330, arriving Van Isle at 1630. Canadian Customs insisted on boarding us and asked a lot of questions. Jerry sat in the middle of the galley floor and hissed at the officers(!), but nevertheless, we were granted access into Canada - hooray! Unfortunately the pumpout station is broken - oh no! Our holding tank is currently 2/3 full because West Sound was still broken. It's a long walk to the restrooms (1/2 mile round trip to be exact), but it appears to be a nice marina. I removed our ensign and won't display it again until we're back in the U.S.

What Do You Do All Day?
Well you sailed your dream into reality
and it isn't exactly like the fantasy
so tell me true, what do you say
when your friends all ask
what do you do all day?
        -Eileen Quinn, Mean Low Water

Last week of June 2003: Have spent the week getting acquainted with Sidney and the folks in the marina. The laundromat costs only CDN$4.00 for a wash and dry. What a deal! Joined the liveaboard crowd at the Blue Peter Restaurant on Thursday night and were told we are the "jauntiest" couple on the dock (because of the hats we wear). Can honestly say no one in the US has ever told us we are "jaunty"! We are also getting established into a work routine. Jim's been installing equipment onto the mast (using a neighbor's bosuns chair) and I've started stripping the varnish off the lower rails.

July 1, 2003: Happy Canada Day! We walked downtown and watched the parade, which ran for more than an hour. Lots of floats, bands, clowns, kids in carriages and dogs on leashes, etc. Afterwards we walked to the park for lunch and listened to some good old rock 'n roll music by the Elderly Brothers. Stopped for a coffee before walking back to the marina in the rain.

July 2, 2003: Jim got the nav. lights, as well as the stern, anchor and deck lights hooked up and working. We stayed up past our bedtime waiting for it to get dark so we could see how bright they were and to adjust the deck lights.

July 5, 2003: Finished scraping and sanding the aft and starboard rails; Jim worked on the radar wiring. We walked to the fish boat at the Blue Peter Restaurant and bought 1 3/4 lbs of fresh shrimp for CDN$5.00. Divided it into thirds and froze 2 packages. Guess what's for dinner tonight?

July 8, 2003: Continued adding Rapid Clear varnish to the starboard and aft rails. They are looking very nice. Jim got the lights over the galley table hooked up - what a huge difference/improvement in the feel of the space. Juliana came for dinner. How wonderful to visit with her and have her all to ourselves!

July 10, 2003: Today was our great BC Transit adventure day. Up very early to catch the 0730 express bus with Joanne. Transferred buses at the Times Columnist paper and out to Langford with our hawsepipe. It took about 1.5 hours. Good news! The foundry says it will cost approximately CDN$130 and take one week to cast a new hawsepipe (compared to US$225 and 3 weeks from a Bellingham company). What a deal! Stopped at Muir Communications for antenna wiring supplies on the way back. Returned to the marina around 1100. Roger Sherman, Arlene Tande and the boys (Augusta) arrived at 1700. The adults ate at Dock 503; Jim had ostrich, Arlene-venison, Roger-duck, me-lasagna. Tres excellent! Jim will help Roger troubleshoot Augusta's autopilot problems tomorrow.

July 12-13, 2003: Douglas and Juliana picked us up at 1500 and took us to their house for the house concert. Juliana made yorkshire pudding with all the trimmings - delicious! The concert by Nonie Crete and Eugene Rea was wonderful; perhaps 20 people in attendance. Nonie performed original songs and Eugene performed traditional Irish music. We spent the night and after pecan waffles the next morning, we headed home. Stopped in at the Satin Moon fabric shop so I could fondle the (expensive) fabrics on the way to our connecting bus. Got back to the boat around 1430 and relaxed the rest of the afternoon.

July 15, 2003: Arild, Amanda and Tahirih arrived for a visit at 1500. Arild helped Jim finish up the port rail project and at 1600 we went out for a two-hour cruise. I made a big pot of spaghetti with meat sauce, salad and garlic muffins when we returned. A nice day, both weather and company-wise.

July 27, 2003: Jim helped me with the 3rd and last coat of varnish on the rails. There are still a few small holidays, but basically the rails look pretty darn good! Jim's been working on the high amperage wiring. He installed the fan and valance over the stove. I finished Jim's quilt top.

July 29, 2003: Installed the rail gates and ensign staff, as well as the new stainless grab rails on the exterior of the flybridge. They look very nice and the price was extremely reasonable. At 1730, a potluck was held for a couple who left Van Isle for Mexico last year and were back visiting. 52 people showed up and the marina management shocked everyone by contributing 8 bottles of wine! I got a chance to pick Glenora's brain about what to beware of or look forward to in Mexico. She had only good things to say about the people and the country. The party broke up when the sun started to set and it got cold.

Mañana & Coho Visit Victoria, BC

July 30-Aug. 1, 2003: We got under way for Victoria at 0920 to meet up with Peter & Babs at Wharf St. Arrived at 1230, in time for lunch aboard Coho. Weds. night's house concert at Douglas & Juliana's with Sara Grey was terrific. She did old ballads comparing how songs sounded when they left the British Isles to what they became in the US. Bought batting for Jim's quilt. The Thursday house concert with Aengus Finnan was also excellent. He has a good voice and is a great storyteller. I tried to lay Jim's quilt out on the trunk cabin but the quilt is too big! It's like making a queen-size quilt in a double-sized boat! Left Victoria at 1130 on Friday, despite high wind warnings. Followed Coho to Sidney Spit. Got the shit kicked out of us at the southern tip of Vancouver Island; the freezer slid to midship, a mast wire came undone, the galley table toppled over and the leg broke off, papers on the galley counter fell off into the cats' dry cat food (sending it flying all over the floor), etc. Deja vue from last Oct. when we made the trip from Seattle to West Sound, but at least this time I wasn't scared. Guess we have to make up a check-off list for future travels, as well as secure the table and freezer. Got a buoy at Sidney Spit at 1520 and dinghied over to Coho for drinks, appies and dinner. Jerry seems very comfortable running about on deck while on the buoy, while DC appears to be quite tentative about the whole thing -- totally reversed when we're at the dock. Douglas & Juliana were aboard Coho.

Aug.3, 2003: Coho arrived at Van Isle at 1130 to drop Douglas & Juliana off. The slip across from us was empty and they were able to occupy it until 1300. We had lunch aboard Coho. I traded Babs some of Canada's Grey Poupon mustard (much better than what we can buy in the States) for her leftover veggies and salami, which she won't be able to bring back into the States.

Aug. 4, 2003: Paul & Chris Hovind from PACCAR (Restless) arrived in the afternoon. We visited briefly and then went out for dinner at the Blue Peter. We were sorry our schedule was so crazy that we couldn't spend more time with them. Jennifer & Dean (Emily B) also arrived.

Aug. 5, 2003: Introduced Gordon & Anola Laing (Sea Angel) to Jennifer & Dean and we decided it would be fun to have a DeFever dinner potluck tonight. After I finished putting the split coat on the cap rails in mid-afternoon, Anola brought me to her sister's house so I could put Jim's quilt together. We started tying it while waiting for the ribs to cook. For dinner, Anola brought ribs, a home made apple crisp and vanilla ice cream, Jennifer provided appies and a salad and Jim & I brought a rice dish and a bottle of wine. We had a great evening.

Aug. 6, 2003: Woke to rain showers so that threw the schedule off. Put a coat of final paint on the cap rails and around the hatches (they still need one more coat). Gordon and Anola brought some friends by to see the boat; Anola freaked when she saw the condition of the main saloon (Jim was in the engine room and the place was a disaster). Then Gary & Jan Nelson (Amorous - YBYC) and friends came by in their tender, Dun Working. They noticed the grab rails and said how good the boat is looking, which felt great. Jim & I are too close to it and lose track of what's been done. Gordon came by with a product that appears to remove the rust stains from the stainless steel screws that bled onto the white paint of the hull. I'll give it some serious elbow grease in the morning and see if I can remove the rest of the rust stains. A large motor yacht pulled in across from us (Griffin out of Bellevue, WA) with at least 2 doz. red roses in a crystal vase on their aft deck -- and I don't think they are silk roses. All we have are some dirty paint rags and an anchor. What's wrong with this picture?

Aug. 7, 2003: Readied the boat for a trip to Victoria, but after lunch we decided we'd take the bus, which would give Jim a few more hours to try to finish the wiring he was working on. Jim & Darlene Pellegrino (Vaporetto - YBYC) pulled into the slip next to us. I used the Spray Nine on the rust and it did a good job removing the stain, but it also removed the gloss from the paint. Oh well! Dull white looks better than a waterfall of orange! Colleen arrived on the Clipper around 1800; Juliana met us there and we went to the Bent Mast for dinner. Juliana drove us back to Sidney.

Aug. 8, 2003: Spent the day at Van Isle as it was raining and Jim wasn't able to finish the wiring yesterday. I finished tying Jim's quilt, Jim went to Achinbach Foundry to get our hawsepipes and Colleen read. Colleen very nicely informed us that we have one month to go. Thanks, kid! Had hamburgs and corn-on-the-cob for dinner.

On the Way to Telegraph Harbor

Aug. 9, 2003: Left for Telegraph Harbor on Thetis Island in the morning, arriving around 1400. Relaxed in the afternoon; spaghetti and veal cutlets for dinner. DC was his usual charming self. Many people came over to pet him and one man from Scotland took DC's picture. Maybe we should charge people $1 to have their picture taken with DC to help fund the cruising kitty. :) Dogs are a very common site on a boat, but in the past year, we've seen only four cruising cats. Most people admit to having a cat, but leave them at home. For us, Mañana is home!

The Murals of Chemainus

Aug. 10, 2003: Happy Birthday, Jim! Had breakfast at the soda fountain so Jim could have a big cinnamon bun for his birthday. After that, we took the ferry to Chemainus and enjoyed walking around and viewing all the beautiful murals. Returned to the marina at 1500. Baked Jim a chocolate sauce cake and we had steaks on the grill for supper. The cake was "interesting"; I've never seen a box mix in the States like this and I won't be looking for it, either!

Fulford Harbor Overlooking the Marina

Aug. 11, 2003: Up early so Jim could finish hooking up the regulator, then off to Fulford Harbor on Salt Spring Island. As we were cruising up the harbor, we noticed Ed Buchwald (Hank IV) in front of us. Ed bought our floating home -- small world! The town is small and very funky, with organic everything. We stopped for a coffee and cookie and then headed back to the boat. We listened to a variety of CDs while Jim made stirfry chicken and rice for dinner. Colleen talked us into walking down to the pub for a few games of pool. Got back to the boat at 2245. This is our first night without shore power; we are putting all Jim's wiring to the test!

The Variety of Sidney Spit

Aug. 12, 2003: Slept in - no need to rush anywhere since today's destination is Sidney Spit, 9 nm from Fulford. The engine started right away and all systems were working as they should. Jim took the long route so he could charge our batteries. After lunch we climbed into Ruthie and motored to the Spit. Walked along a sandy beach admiring the beautiful views and watched a heron catch fish. Then we climbed up some stairs and took a very forested trail out to a field and the lagoon. Again, lots of herons. The info board says there are 300 deer on the Spit, but we didn't see any. Returned to Mañana and relaxed the rest of the day.

Aug. 13, 2003: Underway to Victoria at 0915, arriving at 1200. A little rolly, but a nice ride. After lunch, Colleen & I went in search of gifts for Corrie and her mom and Jim checked us in and downloaded e-mails. We were both sorry to learn that Yarrow Bay Yacht Club (YBYC) has merged with Roche Harbor Yacht Club. We hope to have our membership card and new burgee before we head south. I made pork chops, seasoned noodles and cukes for dinner and we walked Colleen over to the Clipper for her 1900 departure. I hated to see her go, but we're hoping to see her in Long Beach in October.

Aug. 14, 2003: Before we left Victoria, I bought some nail polish and remover. If I'm going to be wearing sandals for the next year, my toes might as well look good! Arrived Van Isle at 1500, painted my toe nails and we rode to the Spitfire Grill next to the airport with Gordon & Anola (8 of us total). Watched planes and helicopters taking off. Great food, great price and great fun!

Jim Finally Gets His Quilt

Aug. 15, 2003: Jim helped me manuever the quilt while I sewed the binding on. He hooked up the outlets in the aft cabin and head, plus the wall light in the head while I hand stitched the binding. I was determined that the quilt would be on the bed when we climbed into it, and it was!

Aug. 18, 2003: Three weeks to go and I'm thinking I should be doing something to prepare us for the cruise. I've started my provisions list, but am not certain exactly what I should buy (other than lots of chocolate graham crackers). I also need to think of some easy-to-cook meals that freeze well for those long days, and easy-on-the-stomach meals for those big-wave days. I have thoroughly enjoyed immersing myself into the Canadian culture. We've met so many wonderful people whom I now call my friends. I hate the thought of leaving them, but I'm certain we'll meet many more friendly cruisers. This gypsy lifestyle is tough for me; I was happy in the rat race, happy with my job, friends, Seattle, etc. and I look forward to settling down again someplace next summer. On the other hand, I must admit that it's been very nice being out of the States and not worrying about what the security color of the day is, whether someone's going to plant a car bomb or constantly be reminded to report anyone or anything that appears "suspicious in nature."

Aug. 21, 2003: The cabinet over the dash has been taken down for varnishing on my part and wiring on Jim's part. The various instruments housed in the cabinet are here, there and everywhere, but we're working as hard as we can to minimize the number of days the place is in disarray. Unfortunately it takes 24 hours for each coat of varnish to dry. Thank goodness the weather is holding. I'm making curtains to cover the portlights in the aft cabin. I've got the material cut, but not yet sewn. We don't know what to expect when we turn left at Cape Flattery (will we have to run 24 hours or more, which would mean naps during the day, or will the weather be such that we can cross the bar at Westport). Gary & Jan Nelson and Bob & Dolores Eggers (YBYC) stopped by briefly to wish us a safe trip. The liveaboard group held a potluck on Sea Angel -- 11 of us and lots of great food.

Things that aren't commonly seen in marinas

The first picture is of a float plane that landed and taxied to the Customs dock. We heard a different sounding engine and looked out to see it coming towards us. By the time I grabbed the camera, it had made its turn to the fuel dock. The pilot got out, phoned Customs and then climbed back in and took off.

The 2nd picture is the Canadian Navy. Yes, that's right! You definitely won't see this in the States. Not only was the Navy in port, they were in the marina! There were 3 ships tied up at the dock that night. This is one of their regular refueling spots; this wasn't the first time we'd seen them. We could walk right up to each ship and actually TOUCH the ship -- none of this "KEEP 300 YARDS AWAY" stuff, and not one gun mounted on the decks (that we could see). We understand they are training ships. And to think that in the Puget Sound area we can't even look cross-eyed at a ferry, much less a Naval vessel. Yes, Canada has been a breath of fresh air.

Aug. 22, 2003: In the morning, on the way back from the "house on the hill", we watched as a small seal slowly swam on its back in an empty slip. It swam right up to the edge of the dock where we were standing, before slowly diving down under the dock. It seemed oblivious to the fact we were watching. A mom and pup have been spotted inside the marina over the last few days.

Aug. 23, 2003: Jim rode downtown for new bike tires and I walked to the grocery stores -- it's time to start provisioning. Jim installed the forward hatch hinge, dog and support rods. Helsa, Cap (Miramar) and friends pulled into the slip across from us briefly. They said they knew we were up here someplace and had been keeping an eye out for us. They'll be back on Thursday.

Aug. 24, 2003: Putting the overhead cabinet back up was a real struggle, but it's up and the instruments permanently hooked up. I started prepping the starboard cap rail for painting. I also started making a food list for more provisions once we return to the States. One book suggested we make lists of our favorite meals; the author recommended 20 dinners. We can only come up with 8 favorites -- what do we eat every night? Certainly lobster is my favorite, but it's not on the list! I need to figure out what meals will work best when frozen and make sure I buy the ingredients for them, too. I'm not a kitchen person -- all this thinking hurts the brain and is making me hungry! Yesterday I bought a large bag of cheese puffs and ate 80% of the bag before dinner. Jim would have liked more than 20% but I wouldn't hand over the bag. Ah, anxiety! The strobe light was tested after dark and it works just fine.

Last week of August 2003: It's been a very hectic week but much has gotten accomplished. We emptied out the starboard (right) side of the forward v-berth, aka "the garage", so that Jim could get to the anchor locker. He pulled the chain up on deck, all 250' of it, and then ran the new wires to the anchor windlass and the new hose for the anchor wash down. The real fun began when it was time to put away everything that had been moved; it could not go back into the same spot because we're going to bring the v-berth cushions on board next week. That meant we had to empty a good portion of our storage cavities, including the one under our bed, to re-organize. What a disaster! We had to go out to dinner Monday night because I couldn't get to the stove, much less the refrigerator! By Weds. we were looking better, but today (8/29) there are still boxes and tools on every horizonal surface. In his spare time (ha!) he also started hooking up the DC distribution panel, and so far, everything he's hooked up works...to quote Martha Stewart "and that's a good thing"! I have the deck boxes on the flybridge sanded, primer paint on the cap rail and have touched up the varnish on the flybridge. Joanne & Jeff Waddington (Morning Wind II) took us out to dinner Weds. night, which we very much appreciated. It will be difficult for me to leave the Van Isle group.

Aug. 31, 2003: Well, this is it. Funny, but back in June this date seemed so far away. We had docked Mañana bow into the slip so we would have access to Ruthie and be able to check out Tsehum Harbor, but the days flew by and we never even lowered her off the davits. I had hoped we'd be able to get to the Wooden Boat Festival in Victoria yesterday, but there was just too much to do and Jim was on a roll. So while he continued working on the boat, I walked downtown and ran last minute errands. Today I gave the boat a thorough scrubbing while Jim installed the brackets to hold the table down, after which we had lunch, showered and said goodbye to friends. Jim called US Customs before we left and we were given the okay to "c'mon back" without having to stop in person. So at 1440, we backed Mañana out of slip D-720 and headed SE to West Sound. Three hours later, we pulled into the slip we'd had all winter, with Peter & Babs there to take our lines. After securing the boat, we went up to their house for appies and drinks in their back yard and a delicious dinner. I must admit it felt good to be back in West Sound.

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