Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Another Departure

Another cruiser cast off his lines a couple of days ago.

Josh arrived at our marina awhile back and since he had to go past our boat amongst his comings and goings, we, along with a lot of other live-aboards, quickly became acquainted with him.

Monday night we had a going away party for him.

Because just like that, after putting in tons of hours of work each and every day in order to get his boat ready to go, he was... ready to go.

What boggles my mind is the fact that Josh is only 32. And while he is young in years, he has the heart and soul of someone who's been around much longer. Please don't get me wrong when I state this, it's just that he's so very self sufficient when these days it seems like a lot of young people his age still depend on Mom and Dad.

Josh opens a going away card and gift.
After Josh dropped way too much stuff overboard at the dock and then had to "go in" after it, Rich and Danee worried that this might be a sign of things to come and therefore gifted him with a Keep Away Crockigator Plan (we hope it also works with sharks). 

Wilbur took his hosting duties quite seriously and even though he's dressed in formal attire you can see he's frantically cleaning Danee's spaghetti bowl. Never mind that we used disposable dishes that got tossed in the garbage anyway, he's all about keeping our land fills clean of food debris.

Shortly after Josh arrived, some of the live-aboards here realized he had a rental car. "Get rid of it," they told him as he was welcome to use theirs. So for the next few weeks I would do a double take every time a familiar vehicle would zip into the marina and Josh was at the wheel. I can't help but feel that sailors are always eager to help their neighbors. This seems to be in direct contrast to say condo or suburban living where neighbors seem to do their utmost to cause trouble. 

John, who lives a couple of boats down from us (and whom I discovered is originally from just a few miles of my home town), went along for the first leg of Josh's journey.  He'll return in a couple of weeks or so, and here and there some of Josh's other friends will be filling in as crew. 

Josh and John casting off.

This beautiful boat has already sailed all over the world and with Josh at the helm I'm sure it won't have any trouble getting him back to Australia. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Springtime on the Gulf (the Craziness Continues).

While we enjoyed a wonderfully cool March it would appear summer is trying very hard to arrive here in the way of  sticky temperatures and a hot sun with a bit of humidity thrown in. Forget all this expensive weather radar crap, just one look at my hair will tell you what's going on.

Last weekend we sailed a good 8 miles out into the Gulf in the hopes of catching a Mahi which of course didn't happen and we then anchored for a very uneventful night in Gulfport. After we got back into the marina on Sunday we found out fellow live-aboard friends from here had been also been anchored out and were quite close by, and in addition to yelling to us, they tried hailing us on the radio. We never heard any of it and I hope they weren't close enough (I'm too afraid to ask) to observe that I spent the day enjoying the spectacular weather in our cockpit in my sleepwear and it wasn't until late afternoon that I finally put on some real clothes. If they need therapy I refuse to pay for it.

While Hans has been very busy at work, I've been creating dog and cat collars on our boat.  And without a designated sewing room, this whole sewing thing is just not that easy. A lot of hauling things out and then putting them away while sidestepping a snoozing dog and crawling over junk in the garage (guest berth); I estimate each process takes up most of an hour.

But, today, instead of sewing I finally did some cleaning which involved digging dog hair out of some tight places with wooden BBQ skewers, dusting our salon shelves with dryer sheets which made my hands horribly sticky, running boiling water and vinegar through my shower pump which has been sounding odd this past week, and sweating. 

And even though I've tried to forget it, I ran into my very first truly scary crazy person this past Sunday.
Hans rode his bike to a pool so he could swim some laps and  I was to meet him when he was done. I jumped on my bike and riding in the proper direction on the sidewalk, I found myself approaching a pedestrian. For some reason down here people don't warn pedestrians of their approach while up north we always call out, "On your left," which alerts the walker and hopefully avoids a collision.
After my "On your left," warning, the elderly man I'd been approaching turned and before he even saw me he started waving his arms like a windmill and screaming. "GET OFF THE SIDEWALK, GET OFF THE SIDEWALK!" I was shocked as riding a bike on the sidewalk down here is legal and expected. I was just abreast of him and his arms were still flailing when he screamed, "GET OFF THE SIDEWALK YOU STREET NIGG*R, YOU F*CKING STREET NIGG*R!" and I could see the spittle flying from his mouth.  I was stunned and as I slid past him for some reason I felt the need to call back, "It's legal to ride on the sidewalk." This brought forth, "NO IT'S NOT, YOU F*CKING TRAMP, YOU F*CKING STREET NIGG*R, NO IT'S NOT, GET OFF THE SIDEWALK!" The whole time this was going on he continued to swing his arms and I seriously thought he might try to knock me off my bike and I was extremely thankful that the draw bridge I was approaching didn't need to lift or I'd have been trapped. It wasn't until a minute later that I really started to shake. Hans met up with me and after I explained to him what had happened we were waiting to cross the street at a traffic light when I saw the crazy man approaching. It was just like a horror movie where the monster moves at an incredibly slow pace and the damsel in distress can't seem to get away. Well, we couldn't get away because of the stupid traffic signal but luckily at the last minute the light changed and we took off.

You can bet I'll soon be purchasing some pepper spray.

But enough of the negative stuff! On to more fun things.

Wilbur models the matching nautical collar and leash I made him before heading out for a poopy walk with Hans.
Wilbur wants to be a big boy and contribute towards his keep so I let him use my computer to find a job.

"Hey, Mom! Someone said a bunch of dogs want to hire a Chip-N-Dale Dancer. Don't wait up!

I don't think I'm ready for this..