Work Week 3 in San Diego

We have just completed week three back in California. We are leaving in two days. Just like last time, we are eager to go back to our slow paced boating life style. Last time, adjusting back to high speed life was somewhat traumatic. This time we adjusted OK, but just because we adjusted didn’t mean we liked the faster pace.

We again spent the weekend with Eric’s family and spent time with Christi’s family. We have also squeezed in a few more visits with friends. We had a great time with all the people we did get to see, and are sad that we didn’t get a chance to see more of our friends. To everyone we didn’t get a chance to call, know that we love you all the same. We were crazy busy with Eric’s work and Christi’s project and there just wasn’t enough time for friends. While we don’t miss life in America much, we definitely miss all our friends and family a lot.

We have lots of good news to report! Eric’s project looks like it will be completed before we go, most of the loose ends we left behind last time were taken care of, and it looks as if we are going to be able to wrap up our surprise project before we leave. It won’t be the nicest wrapping up job, but it will be sufficient. Last time we were kind of stressed about all the loose ends being left behind, but this time we feel good about how neatly most things have been wrapped up. To reiterate, if you want to travel, there will never, ever be a time in your life when everything is perfectly wrapped up, so you just have to decide go when it is “good enough”.

Here is another observation about life at home versus life for us in other countries: Continue reading Work Week 3 in San Diego

Work Week 1 in San Diego

We got to the Athens airport and got in the appropriate check in line. The clerk asked for our names. She couldn’t find us. She searched a few more ways. Still couldn’t find us. She asked for our proof we had booked a flight. Even with our flight confirmation in hand, she still couldn’t find us. She went to her supervisor for help. We were nervous. The supervisor couldn’t find us. We were fighting panic. After several more minutes, the supervisor had us booked onto the flight, which was a relief. Our concern was that they were sold out and wouldn’t have any seats for us. Seeing there was availability made us hopeful that maybe there wouldn’t be someone in the seat next to us, but no such luck.

Our flight home was completely uneventful. This time our layover was in New York City. Just as we had to in England and in Germany on our previous flights, we had to go through security again when we switched planes. Normally, security checkpoints are in open, well ventilated areas. Not this one at JFK airport. It was Continue reading Work Week 1 in San Diego

Another Trip to San Diego

Yesterday Christi gave Kosmos a really good scrub down. Then she scrubbed all the canvas window covers, which was a long overdue project. The canvas covers were gleaming white when they were new, but somewhere along the way they turned brown. After vigorous scrubbing, they are now a nice shade of off white. Then she cleaned all the windows inside and out. Finally, she resumed the metal polishing project, tackling the stubborn rust stains that wouldn’t come off before, but she only got about ½ way done before she decided she had done enough work for one day.

Eric, meanwhile, got the boat ready to be left for a few weeks, which entails a very long check list of things. We are heading back to San Diego yet again. No need to panic, this time there is no emergency. Eric is has a project at work that has to be done in person instead of remotely, so his work is flying us home so he can do this project. We are not very excited about yet another deviation from our boat journey, especially so soon, but it will be nice to wrap up some more loose ends with life at home that we didn’t get to last time, and also nice to see family and friends. BTW, Eric’s mom has responded incredibly well to the chemo and continues to steadily improve. She is also suffering surprisingly few side effects to the chemo compared to Christi’s mom.

This morning we were up at 0330 to Continue reading Another Trip to San Diego

Almost Made it to Spinalonga…

It turned out to be just as windy as forecast yesterday. We should have done boat chores all day, but we didn’t. We visited with the owner of the Nordhavn for a couple hours, then went out to dinner with him later in the evening. Other than that, we lounged.

The forecast for today was supposed to be another windy day, but when we got up, the wind was calm. We checked the forecast and saw that it had changed in our favor. We decided to take the boat to a small island an hour and a half north of Agios Nickolaos, called Spinalonga. Spinalonga has a lot of historical significance and is a popular day trip for tourists. The Venetians built a fort on the island in 1579, and when the Venetians battled the Turks over Crete, the fort on Spinalonga was the last outpost to be taken by the Turks. In 1903 the island became a leper colony until shortly after world war II. Now it is simply an uninhabited tourist attraction.

While site seeing on Spinalonga was part of the plan for today’s activities, the real reason we were taking Kosmos out was so we could go to a calm anchorage to clean the bottom. There was no way Christi was going to get into the water in the marina. She wanted clean water, a nice open space with lots of room to work, and just enough current to sweep away the gross things that float in the water after being scrubbed off the bottom. Since we haven’t cleaned the bottom since the Andaman Islands, we expected it to be a really big, nasty job this time around. A secondary reason to go out was to give Kosmos some exercise. We aren’t planning on taking Kosmos from Agios Nickolaos for another few weeks, and it isn’t good for her to sit for so long.

We untied and cast off. At first, it was a smooth ride, but as we progressed north, the wind picked up to the 30’s (with gusts up to 38 knots) and the sea was full of white caps. Darn. We got hit by some bigger waves that sprayed salt all over the pilot house, which meant Kosmos would need a really good scrubbing when we got back to the marina. Good thing there isn’t a lot of fetch here. If there was, the waves would be ugly.

We found a spot in a sheltered cove and dropped anchor in about 10 feet of water. We were pleasantly surprised to find the parts of the bottom that are painted had virtually no growth at all, just the same thin layer of fuzz that had been on the bottom in the Andamans. It would be an easy scrub down. However, we were dismayed by just how much growth was on the metal. The metal was solid barnacles, and there is a decent amount of metal down there. Christi got to work scraping the metal with a tool called a 6 in 1 scraper that we bought in the paint department at Home Depot. Eric did the water line. When Eric finished the water line, he took over metal scraping. For the rest of the afternoon, we rotated metal scraping, with one of us getting in as soon as the other stopped for a rest. After 4 ½ hours of non-stop scraping, we decided we had enough for the day and headed back to the marina. We had gotten most of the metal done, but not all of it, nor did we ever get around to scrubbing the bottom. Nor, for that matter, did we make it to Spinalonga to go sight seeing. Oh well, all things for another day.

Here is a shot of Spinalonga from the anchorage. It looks old and historic, doesn’t it?