Wednesday, November 30, 2011

LEAK is a Four Letter Word

All stocked up & ready to go!!...Not
  I've said before on the blog that when you're a traveler, you're plans are "etched in jello". Despite our daily efforts to ready Malaika for open water sailing, we will not be leaving Hidden Harbor Marina on Dec 1st as planned. Scott discovered a small leak in the hull while doing a battery project the other day. He didn't tell me about it until he had a chance to consult with Aaron from s/v Creola. Aaron is a Captain & has worked in & on boats for years. Water is leaking in slowly around a screw hole that holds a grounding plate to the bottom of the hull. It isn't a major thing, but must be fixed. Fixing requires hauling Malaika out of the water so the repair can be made to the fiberglass on the bottom. We could also hire a diver to repair it but that process allows a lot of water into the boat. Sounds like big mess. So, Malaika is going "up on the hard". We've been pricing the most affordable boat yard to do this in all morning. The plan is to haul her out, Scott & Aaron will make the repair (patching fiberglass), & then launching her back in the water. The old "Bust Out Another Thousand" saying is ringing in my head. Yesterday Scott & Aaron added a 2nd bilge pump to Malaika's system. A bilge pump pumps water out of the hull. It is a vital organ on a boat. Now we have 2. Yay!
Scott & Aaron working on the bilge pump

 It was a bit ironic for me yesterday to learn about the leak because I had spent the afternoon putting together our "ditch bag". A ditch bag is a bag full of survival goodies that you grab & run with in the event you have to "ditch" your boat because it's sinking. The options of what to put in a ditch bag vary widely depending on the survival gear you already have. We do not have an epirb, a location device that is activated if it hits water. We also do not have a "life raft". That being said, our ditch bag doesn't really need to have all kinds of elaborate life saving equipment because the reality is, without an epirb or life raft, if we're not found in 2-4 days, our survival would be doubtful. We do have a dinghy, which is our life raft. We are also purchasing a "personal" epirb that we would activate manually if needed. They aren't as good as an epirb but much more affordable & still extremely useful. Im using capri suns for sugar & water. We included flares, mirror, whistle, sunscreen, fishing tackle, knife, compass, flashlight, reflectors, plastic bags, copies of our passports, basic 1st aide kit, lighter, batteries, packaged tuna, etc. We will also have a water distillery which could help us collect water via condensation. I think all this talk of leaks & ditch bags will make our parents a bit unsettled but just remember Mom & Dad, we have to plan for these is extremely unlikely that we would ever be stranded for long in the popular routes we plan on traveling these next few years.
  Now our new departure date is in a week. Maybe. Etched in jello.
Love & Miss everyone!!! XXXOOO
A little peek into my kitchen cupboard. Everything labeled & in ziplocks!

A few ditch bag ingredients

Monday, November 28, 2011

Countdown to Launch Begins

This is my 3 page "Walmart List" for provisioning the boat!

  If all goes according to plan we will be leaving St. Augustine, Florida on Thursday 12/1, headed further south to Lake Worth, Fl. That will be our departure point for the Bahamas. This past weekend we got our navigation charts out again (haven't looked at those in a month) just to start familiarizing ourselves with the route we'll be taking. We are getting SOOOO excited to be in that Bahama blue water! :) Our chore list seems endless but we just plug away at things & squeeze some fun in between. Saturday we went on a sunset cruise with Lindsey & Matt on their boat Kindred Spirit. They let us bring Jib so he went on his 1st big boat ride. He was nervous at first, but settled down quickly. I think he is going to do just fine when we start moving again.
  Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend. We're always thinking of you. Love you all so much!!  XXXOOO
S/V Kindred Spirit is pet friendly--Oliver was a bit annoyed to have a dog on board
A little Christmas Cheer on Malaika

Jib the Sailor Dog

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

 Happy Thanksgiving everybody!!  We sure do miss our friends & family today!! :(
Wish you could have all been here to enjoy Thanksgiving on Malaika. We had our friends over for dinner. Everyone brought a dish or two & we had quite a feast. Not totally void of turkey. We had turkey tacos!  Boat ovens aren't big enough for a, it would take so much propane! We also had the traditionals.. ham, green beans, potatos, sweet yams, stuffing...the works! We're all stuffed, just like at home. So many things to be thankful for this year! Im thankful for the love & support of our families. We would not be where we are without you. We love you all so much. Im thankful for our awesome friends & the happiness & love they all bring to our lives---miss you guys so much too!! Im thankful for my husband who is sharing this life with me. Im thankful that he works so hard to make sure Malaika is sea worthy & will keep us safe on the water. Our love is such an adventure. Im thankful for our new little guy, Jib. He has been like a ray of sunshine after losing Jesse. We love him so much already.  Im thankful for our new full enclosure that is SOOO Awesome!! Im thankful for all the wonderful people we've met on this journey so far. They all helped us so much & are all just great people.  Im thankful to be healthy & to have this opportunity to live such a full life with my soulmate. We are so lucky. We have so much.
Much Love to everyone.  and...Woo Hoo!!! It's officially the Holiday Season!! Yay!!! Bring on the lights! Bring on the glitter! I CAN NOT wait to put Christmas lights all over Malaika!
Thanksgiving on Malaika. Lindsey, Matt, Josh, Greg, & Scott
Love--Michelle, Scott & Jib
  P.S. So great to hear from all the Klink brothers! So happy you all follow the blog & hope to see  you in the Bahamas!
We are fully enclosed!! LOVE IT !! Great job Cindy! Custom Marine Canvas does awesome work!
Jib is getting his sea legs...hangs out on deck with us now

Full Enclosure--outside view. Notice how enormous Jib is getting!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Water Resistant Jib

I love to bury my nose in the sand so much!!

    Just got an update from Scott & they made it safely to Charleston, SC. He sounded tired & said it was quite an adventure. Can't wait to hear all about it. He said it was a great learning experience. Sounds like they had a fuel tank problem...I'll fill you in tomorrow when I get to hear the whole story.
  Jib & I have been staying busy doing my little projects & hanging out with Lindsey from s/v Kindred Spirit. Her husband is on the boat with Scott. We had a really fun time cooking dinner together lastnight & today Lindsey took Jib & I to the beach. The sand was soooo soft!! Jib loves the sand. He loves digging in the sand even more. He covered Lindsey & I several times. What he doesn't love is the water...hopefully he will get over this as he has more exposure. Right now, he acts like it's fire. It was a fun afternoon anyway & of course Jib got TONS of attention from people on the beach. Puppies are just so cute & lovable!
Jib needing a little pep talk
Little more coaxing...getting closer
Jib saying "Hell No!"

Sleepy Jib
Thank You Lindsey for our fun time at the beach!  Love, Michelle & Jib

Monday, November 21, 2011

Lonely Boat

Hurry Home Hubby
Jib is missing Scott too
  Scott left early yesterday morning to help move a boat to South Carolina. He thought it would be good experience because they were going "outside" for most of the journey. "Outside" refers to the outside of the ICW & in open water. He's with Aaron from s/v Creola who is a licensed Captain & does this for a living & I'm sure Scott will learn a lot from him. Matt from s/v Kindred Spirit went along too for more open water experience. They will be home Wednesday afternoon. So, it's just me & Jib here all alone on Malaika. :(  I'm so used to spending 24/7 with Scott that I feel very lonely without him. So glad to have Jib. He's good company.
  I'm also trying to fill my time doing what I can to help ready Malaika for cruising again. A little difficult to run errands being solo with Jib. He's still too young & fiesty to leave home unattended so he has to go everywhere with me. We used to leave him in the bathroom but he has quickly outgrown that space.
  This past weekend was "Night of Lights" in St. Augustine. A group of us from the marina walked downtown for the official flipping of the switch. The lights didn't go on after the first countdown, it was like the scene from Christmas Vacation. The whole town counted down again & everything was all a twinkle. St. Augustine looks just like a little Christmas village now.
 Hidden Harbor Marina gang @ Night of Lights.
  Hope everyone is off to a good start this Monday morning. Will be missing all of you on Thanksgiving!! Love, Michelle & Jib
St. Augustine town square ready for the Holidays!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tick Tock

SHABAM! Our new 60 lb Manson anchor. Humongous!

New deck rack - custom built by my hubby
Scott & I are starting to feel the pressure of getting all the boat projects done....the clock just keeps ticking away. We are planning to leave St. Augustine Dec 1st. Only 2 weeks to go which I'm sure will fly by as these past 3 already have. Everyday we try to accomplish as much as we can. Our new anchor is on, anchor locker cleaned up. Scott is building some racks to put on deck so we can store things out there too, like our other 2 anchors. The full enclosure is coming right along. I will be sad to leave our new friends here at Hidden Harbor Marina but I am starting to get sooo excited about the Bahamas. We are so close!!
Super clean anchor locker...I've got the bruises to prove it! I never knew I was that flexible!
Scott getting the new anchor set up.
We have a roof!

  Poor Lil' Jib. We went back to the vet yesterday (thank you David for lending us your truck...again), his bladder infection returned almost 24hrs after finishing his antibiotics. He had an ultrasound, needle aspiration into the bladder to get a sterile specimen. New antibiotics for UTI, cream for a little sore on his foot, his 3rd round of vaccines. Yep. Pricey trip to the doctor. Good thing we love that little guy so much! :)

  After dinner lastnight, Lindsey & Matt from s/v Kindred Spirit stopped by & invited us on a night bike ride through St. Augustine. Josh from s/v Polaris came too. What an awesome time!! St. Augustine is even more beautiful at night. Thanks for inviting us guys! We had a blast & plan to do again.  This weekend is "Night of Lights" in St. Augustine. This place is going to be so beautiful !!! I hope I can capture it in pictures.
We rode to Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum where there is a replica of  David. Lindsey, Matt & Josh were awesome tour guides!

Lindsey, Josh & Matt acting silly after our bike ride
Love & Miss everybody!! XXXOOO

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Goodbye's Are So Hard

    We had so much fun with Scott's parents these past few days. It was so great to see them. BIG tears when they left this morning. We felt sad about it all day. It was so awesome being with family on our boat. Special Thanks to Pam for putting up with all our antics after too many Tecates. We love you both so much. Thanks for being our 1st visitors. I hope you all come visit us in the Bahamas because being with family on our boat is the best feeling for Scott & I.
Safe travels Andy!
Everybody in place to help Everett get on his way
Safe travels Everett !! Hope to see you in the Bahamas!
   The great migration south resumes!  4 boats left the marina today. Dan & Cheri left early this morning continuing down Florida.(Too early for me to get a photo...slept in today) We will meet up again in a few weeks. Our new friends Deb & Kevin on s/v Grace are moving on towards the Bahamas. Everett is right behind them single handing his pretty Peirson.  Just heading "South", is our pal Andy on s/v Mellow Seas. The fun part of cruising is that you run into your friends in a new exciting place with a whole new book of stories to tell. Safe travels to all of you. We spent the rest of today doing boat chores so we too, can get back into the migration. Let me just say, cleaning the anchor locker is a real drag. No pun intended.
Hope to see you soon Andy!! 1st: Connecticut. 2nd: Florida. 3rd: ?who knows?
All hands on deck !! All the guys helping Andy walk his boat out of the marina

Monday, November 14, 2011

Family Time

Birthday Brunch by the sea

We have been having the best time with Scott's parents the past few days. It's so awesome to have family with us !! Yesterday we started our day going to mass at the Basilica in the historic district of St. Augustine. The parish was founded in the 1500's, it was the first parish in America! St. Augustine holds the title of the oldest city in America. There is so much history here. We went home to pick up Jib & headed out for brunch. Bringing Jib turned out to be our lucky charm. We were seated out on our own private little patio overlooking the beach. Free flowing champagne, waves crashing in the background, delicious food. We enjoyed it so much we were there for 2-3 hours. Then we walked down to the beach for about an hour. It was a day of 1st's for Jib. His 1st restaurant, 1st day at the beach, 1st day without an afternoon nap. He did awesome. He loved the sand at the beach but not really too sure about the ocean. I'm sure when you're only a foot tall the waves are pretty intimidating.
Mission Nombre de Dios - founded in the 1565. The 1st shrine to the Blessed Virgin Mary is located here. Also, the Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche.  Mothers to be came here for hundreds of years to pray for a healthy delivery & good breastfeeding! :)
 It was a glorious day. I couldn't have asked for a more wonderful birthday. I can't wait for next year when I turn 29 !  :)   (Ha Ha)
Sand is so fun!!
Holy Huge Horses!! The one in the background is a normal size horse, not a pony!
Jib with St. Francis of Assisi
Whew! What a day!!
Love & Miss everyone!!
Schapker's on the edge of the Atlantic

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Meet The Parents

Thank You SOOO much Christina, Xavier, Theresa, Joseph, Cindy & big Xavier for your birthday wishes!! I love you all so much!! And miss you like crazy!
Like Father like Son
Beard do #4
We have had a great time so far with the parents!!  When you live on a boat you always wonder if your friends & family could handle the "boat life" . Pam & Alan just moved right in &( at least say) they are so comfy in our little boat.  We had such a fun day walking around St. Augustine. We only scratched the surface in shopper world but plan to expand that the next few days. This is just so much fun!!
Yummy Lunch at Columbia

Friday, November 11, 2011

Happy Friday!!

  Scott's parents will be here in just a couple of hours!! We are so excited! Unfortunately, Mother Nature spit out a cold front & it's supposed to be 35degrees here in sunny  Florida by tonight. We bought a little space heater to keep all Arizonans on board warm & toasty. The weather report says we'll warm up over the weekend so should be a blast doing the tourist thing all weekend in St. Augustine with our folks. :)
  Scott's beard torture continues. I have no words. The pictures speak for themselves.
OMG. That's all I can say.

XXXOOO Michelle, Scott, & Jib