Saturday, November 26, 2016

Testing 1 2 3

Hello, this thing on...anybody here?

All joking aside, this is the longest I've gone without posting in the 11 years I've had this blog, and if you read the other blog you know why. We've been so busy working on our new boat and preparing to go cruising that we've scarcely had time to update that one. And most of the interesting happenings in our lives these days are sailing related, so it's the sailing blog that gets the posts.

If you don't read the other blog, here's what's happened in the last few months. Dawn and I sold our house and moved into a temporary apartment in June. We bought a Tayana 42 sailboat in Myrtle Beach, the sale was delayed a bit, and three days after it closed in August the boat took a lightning strike (or near strike) that fried a bunch of electronics. We've purchased replacement electronics but most of that work still has to be done; we've been busy doing other things necessary to get it down to the Bahamas this winter. We did a bit of coastal cruising in the Carolinas and brought the boat down to Charleston at the end of September; it was hauled at the beginning of October, just in time for Charleston to take a direct hit from hurricane Matthew. We had the boat well-prepped and it survived unscathed. However, between the hurricane and general boatyard disorganization our planned one-month refit is now at two months and counting. We have the mast down and are replacing chainplates and standing rigging in addition to normal haulout chores like bottom painting, lubing seacocks, and repacking propshaft and rudder post bearings. A marine electronics company down here will be doing the electronics installation; they haven't started yet, though Dawn and I have already installed the new radar radome and masthead wind transducer on the mast. We moved down to Charleston full-time at the beginning of November but have been renting a vacation rental on Isle of Palms until the boat is in the water, or is at least a bit more habitable (salon cabinetry currently torn apart to get chainplates out).

In flying developments, I'm still on the Boeing 757 and 767 fleet, and now have around 500 hours. I'm really enjoying myself - both airplanes are a joy to fly, the flying has great variety, and overall going to work feels like a vacation compared to flying the Mad Dog. I transferred my base to Atlanta on October 1st; I'm a little more senior here than Minneapolis, and they have more international flying down here. I've really only been on the line for eight months and I've already taken the plane to all five continents we fly it to, though about 75% of my flying is still domestic or near-international. I just spent Thanksgiving in London on a 48-hour layover; thankfully, Dawn was able to come with and we had a really nice time (finally saw The Book of Mormon, among other things). Once we start cruising I plan to drop my schedule down to a bare minimum to maintain currency until May or so; my category's staffing is "fat" enough to do that in the winter.

My last post here told the sad story of the demise of our Piper Pacer. I still had the Yellow Cub Club membership and flew it a few times this summer, though not nearly as much as I'd have liked to, but then sold my share back to the club when we moved south this month. I'm going to miss that J-3. I already miss the Pacer a lot. Dawn and I had some great adventures in that airplane in only 18 months. But we'll have some great adventures in Windbird, too, once we finally get her back in the water and move aboard! I'm looking forward to that, very much. In the meantime there's a lot of work to be done, and some very expensive bills to be paid.