Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Sky is Falling!

I woke up this morning and something horrible and strange had happened to the sky.  There was this puffy white stuff hanging up above the bay - almost like a white ceiling - and I felt uneasy because I had never seen such a sight here in La Paz.  Clouds.  Feel bad for us.

Well... things have been going along fairly well.  Still no definitive word on the rigging wire.  They want more money, etc..., and we may have to engage a shipping agent to help us out.  Back when I lived in Africa we had an expression there.  TIA.  This is Africa.  It kind of was a reminder to Mzungu's (whites) of where they were, and all that that implies.

Well, I think another expression should be coined - TIM; This is Mexico.  File under Manana.

Stowing of gear is progressing.  Clothing is put away, snap-lock food storage containers are aboard.  Easy to get at provisioning storage areas are cleaned out (we keep finding "treasures" belonging to the previous owners), and food shopping has commenced.

I've set up my work area for the computer.  It's at the Navigation Station desk.  There, above the desk I have installed a nice "RAM" brand swing arm laptop mounting unit so my computer can be at eye level while I do my interpretive artwork.  Also that location for the computer works well for using the computer when it is functioning as a navigational aid while under weigh.  We run software called MaxSea that interfaces with one of our GPS units, and shows the boat's position on a chart in real time.  We have charts for the whole world (as well as paper charts for large chunks of it).

Currently I'm working on jobs for a nature reserve on the Hudson River in New York state, and am gearing up to finish a half completed project for a wildlife demonstration garden in Edmonds (waiting for text).  I also have to update my website with two years of new artwork.  Oh.. and a dozen other work related things too.

Tamsyn and Griffyn have begun winter term of school with reading, writing, math, and even some science.  As the teachers are uber busy still getting the boat put together, they are still getting off easy compared to what will be the case a week hence.  Some of the newness of the boat is wearing off, and now they are finding their favorite spaces (quarter berth), and games (doggie races).

Carrie and I are still mostly attending to the basics; getting the boat livable, while leaving time to make food, do dishes, work on contracts, and a fair amount of walking around trying to find stores that sell the item you really need but cannot find.

We wake around seven; doze for half an hour, then get up around half past the hour.  At eight we hear the bells being struck at the naval base next door, much at they have been struck for hundreds of years on navy ships the world round.  Then it's to the shower, and back for the morning radio net.

We have a backlog of pictures to share, but as evening rolls around and the kids go to sleep, we find ourselves fading as fast as the twilight here (as we are further south than the Florida Keys night falls quickly).  Last night Carrie fell asleep sitting down on the cabin sole while in the process of stowing clothes in a forward locker.  My routine of late has been to work for an hour before be, and then when I crawl into our rack - in the V-Berth - I manage to read 1 or 2 pages of the novel I'm reading (The First Man in Rome) before my eyes blur and I find myself re-reading the same paragraph I was reading five eternal minutes before.  Bye bye to another day.

Our friend Paul (from S/V Jeorgia - an Edmonds boat) has been so great in helping get our systems checked out.  In the last few days we've verified that the Pactor modem (which interfaces with the Single Side Band radio (SSB) is working great.  This modem will not only allow us to do email on the high seas through the SSB radio, but also us to download weather faxes and satellite images from NOAA while at sea.  So a good thing to have in working order.

We also have a visit yesterday from Steve from S/V Saben (another Edmonds boat).  So it's great to have familiar faces from home around.  Good to hear from friends back home who are reading this blog.  Thanks.  Tamsyn is anxious to write about her experiences here.

Wildlife moment of the day - seeing about fifty frigate birds circling like a big school of fish above gently waving palm trees on the waterfront.  Sunny tomorrow.  That's the news from Lake Wobegon.


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