Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Harvest time!

OK, I'm sitting in the Atlanta airport, waiting for my connecting flight to St Thomas: good time to write a post!

'Tis the season for fall fruit, the season of harvest, the season of plenty, whether we are talking kiwi fruit in a Berkeley back yard
or, here in Michigan, giant pumpkins
or wild (and very tasty) pawpaws we found growing near a river (granny smith apples for comparison).

There is a certain delight in seeing all this abundance and, especially, in the stuff we forage, like the tasty apples that drop, untasted, from a tree on Cape Cod and which make a wonderful pure apple sauce, even without a touch of sugar or cinnamon or other any other adulterant. Too bad we missed out on the cranberries on Cape Cod this year....

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

A photo essay of Coral Bay as it is after Irma and Maria


I see so many familiar boats, places, people....but as if after a war that has turned it all upside down. "Gone with the wind."

You can see Dorado, with it's bright red bottom, Gigi and her big sister aground on the point, Silver Cloud still miraculously afloat with Elliot, Sarah, and the dog aboard.... but no rigging. So sad.

Here are some photos that she took that touch me a bit.....
Breathe (the one farthest right, with the yellow stripe and wooden mast), a sweet boat that has always been moored near me...

My friend Rob's boat (the blue on with the stern underwater), on which he has been working since I met him.... and making final touches last winter.

Marty's boat, with the green bottom and, miraculously, the sailcover still in place... (and mine right behind it)

Angels' Rest (all that I can see are the blue pontoons)

Gigi, my neighbor Larry's boat..... along with the ONLY other CSY in the harbor...

And, of course, Dorado. How in heck will I get her off the shore? And will she float? And do I need to pay to pull the others out of the way? Hmmm...
Well, we shall see if I amend this post farther...

Monday, September 18, 2017

Dorado found!

This morning Cynthia spotted Dorado ashore in this satellite pic (from https://storms.ngs.noaa.gov/storms/irma/index.html. She spotted the bright red bottom.... and the unpainted rudder is proof that it is the correct boat. Exciting!


Sunday, September 10, 2017

Link to my facebook page

This blog is for cool, interesting, and inspirational stuff. I'm posting the whole sad St John, Coral Bay, Virgin Islands stuff on facebook instead.

Happy birthday to me. *sigh*

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Some scenes of carnage from Hurricane Irma

Apparently this is a before and after from Jost Van Dyke:

And this is a fleet of catamarans in a hurricane hole. This did not protect as well as hoped, clearly..


Probably could have been worse if it had tracked just a bit farther south...

The hurricane has tracked about 40miles south of the expected track and they eye is just barely north of Coral Bay on St John. If it had gone another ten miles south the north edge of the storm, with the strongest winds, would have blown straight into the unprotected entrance of the bay. Even so, we expect our boat, any others on moorings, and many in hurricane holes are probably all trashed.

This is sad, but stuff can be replaced. Far sadder is imagining the destruction of the places we have loved visiting and the possible loss of our neighbors' lives. We hope that they have taken refuge in the concrete houses so ubiquitous on the islands. Tomorrow we may see what opportunities are available for helping out.

Coral Bay is right about at the "I" in "British Virgin Islands" at bottom left of the eye.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Hurricane butterflies

The wind patterns shown in this website are things of beauty. I love to imagine the flows sweeping me across the oceans: freedom and open vistas! Of course, there are times when little details focus attention: the current one is a counter-clockwise vortex sweeping across the ocean like giant tornado. Here is a screenshot of tomorrow afternoon's forecast:
Coral Bay is above and slightly left of the C in "Christianstead". Anegada hides in the yellow around the eye...
 Hurricane Irma bears down upon the Virgin Islands as a category 5. The boat I own, boats of friends, homes of friends, and lives of friends hang by threads, often almost literally (if you consider mooring and anchor lines as threads). Current forecast has the hurricane passing to the north, but has Dorado, sitting on mooring, experiencing winds of 85mph for four hours tomorrow afternoon and evening. Will it still be on the mooring in the morning light?

If I were still there I might have set sail a few days ago and just sailed south, far from the path of the storm, or south to Christianstead where the winds should not exceed 40mph. If my friends did not have their hurricane dance cards filled, perhaps they could have put it in a safer place....although those are mostly completely full and the forecast winds are not the best for those hurricane holes... so, my mooring line may be better than being anchored in a hurricane hole.

All I can do is ask for my extra anchors to be set (Dickie says he will do it if he has the time) and cross fingers. The forecast winds should not bring big waves into the harbor, so any boats that break free SHOULD be fairly simple to pull free as long as the storm surge does not put them high and dry.

The islands a hundred miles farther east are already feeling winds of 175mph. Tomorrow Anegada, flat and unprotected, will get hit almost directly... perhaps the few hundred residents can go to different islands or find a bunker, but I fear for them if there is a big storm surge as the island is only 28' at highest point.

OK, everyone! Find something solid and hold on! Good luck! See you all on the other side!

9:40am September 6: update: webcams & weather stations all seem to be down. Well, I guess I can't watch minute by minute.... and will probably be the better for it.