Stories for Readers, Writers, and Sailors

Got Diesel? Aug 29, 2018

Shout out to my mother, who will appreciate this story more than most. 

From the day I learned to drive, every interaction with Mom ended with, “Do you have enough gas in your car?”

Of course I did the broke teenager thing of paying for gas a dollar at a time (yeah, it was a...

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Enough Adventure to Grow On Aug 19, 2018

After a two-month hiatus on land, graciously filled with family, touring, dancing, paddling, biking, surfing and celebrating, it was time to return to our little floating home.

Our dual purpose was to explore the Channel Islands we missed on the way down, as well as continue our shakedown in...

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The Most Epic Wedding That Ever Was Aug 03, 2018

There are lots of ‘wedding’ people in the world: people who keep scrapbooks of bridal dresses and consider napkin choices with the seriousness of global peace initiatives. We have never been those people. 

Don’t get us wrong—it makes us giddy to be around people in...

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The Midsomer Fantasy Tour Jul 18, 2018

Once upon a time, when I worked 80+ hours a week for a fast-paced startup, I ended each day completely exhausted.

How did I decompress enough to get up and do it all over again?

While fellow Type-A’s might have cuddled up to one of those basketball-sized wine glasses, done hot yoga, or...

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Who's Driving the Boat? Jun 21, 2018

I was beyond confused.

It was dark. Colin was lying next to me, snoring. If we were both asleep, no one was at the tiller.

How had we let that happen?

I tried to remember where we were going, but the situation only came to me slowly, piece by piece. Pristine was safe in her slip in San Pedro....

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War Games Jun 17, 2018

Colin and I are pretty diligent about planning passages, but this one threw us some real curveballs.

We use cruising guides, paper charts, and electronic ones. One of us sets out the initial waypoints, courses and distances and the other one checks their work. We’re obsessive with weather...

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Point Conception In Our Rearview Jun 10, 2018

We were screaming downwind at 25 knots with following seas.

The jib was giving us six knots of boat speed and we were surfing eight foot swells with two fingers. The sun was out, we were flying and the boat was bouncing along with all the joy of a Labrador chasing a tennis ball.

“This is...

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Shaken, Not Stirred Jun 05, 2018

We said the California Coast would be our shakedown sail and here we are: shaking away. 

The planned passage from Monterey to San Simeon went well with two exceptions: it didn’t end in San Simeon and we’ve probably added both our names to the government watch list.

Let me...

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“What's That Noise?” Jun 03, 2018

That is our affectionate name for a new game we’re learning to play on the boat. 

Points gained for correctly distinguishing slapping lazyjacks from slapping halyards without leaving the cabin. Points lost for asking out loud if our refrigerator just kicked on, when the sound is...

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“I’m Just Living the Dream Right Now.” May 30, 2018

That was all I could reply after my fourth round of feeding the fish off the leeward rail. 

It wasn’t baptism by fire, as much as by fifteen foot swells. 

We’d carefully evaluated and discussed the forecasts before our first night passage from Half-Moon Bay to Monterey, a 14...

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And They're Off! May 25, 2018

The journey —a lifetime in the making—has finally begun.

It wasn’t always clear it was going to happen. 48 hours before departure, we were still on our hands and knees, scrubbing when I thought our dream was dead.

We’d been living on an air mattress in the living room for...

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T-Minus Five. Or Three. Or Eight. May 11, 2018

Colin and I find ourselves awed every day by the number of people who want to support our send-off with goodbye parties or barbecues or escorts out the gate or down the coast. It’s beyond touching the number of family and friends and people we haven’t seen in years who want to toast...

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Our Plan Mar 28, 2018

Simply put, our plan is to not have a plan.

I was a project manager in a previous life and found some success in jobs where they set the targets high and your task is to make it so. I am a planner if there ever was one.

But this adventure has no goal other than happiness. We’re not...

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Meet Pristine Mar 27, 2018

She is a stout blue water cruiser, designed to cross oceans in comfort and safety.

For our non-sailing friends, you may now skip to the pretty pictures below.

For those who crave details, she’s a 1990 Pacific Seacraft 37, a double-ender with a cutter rig, graceful sweeping overhangs, a fin...

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