Oct 1, 2005 Letter

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We stayed at the public dock in Channel Islands Harbor for the entire month.  In retrospect, we probably should have stayed in Ventura Harbor where we had nice shower and laundry facilities, internet access from the boat, nice neighbors and restaurants within walking distance.  We naively thought we would find a less expensive but nice temporary slip in Channel Islands Harbor for the month, and have a change of scenery.  Costwise, we only saved $140 in slip fees, because the public dock got more expensive with each 10 day extension.  And we met some real characters.  None that you'd add to your Christmas card list.  Kimberly knew to clear out her washing machine if we were coming over, because we always brought our laundry.

Of course the month wasn't lacking fun times.  We had many great days visiting and/or sailing with Kimberly, Lance and the kids, Herman and Claudine, Ray B., Billy and Monica, Barry and Babbie (pictured left), Janet and Allen.  Even Linda's 80-year-old mom Marion went out sailing with us and had a great time.  Fortunately, the sea conditions were much more favorable than they were last month when we took Mike's mom Eleanor sailing.  On one afternoon, our grandson Blake brought his best friend Kristian sailing with us.  Kristian said ours was the most beautiful boat he'd ever seen.  We love hearing that, even when it's coming from a 7-year-old!

Between the visits, we mostly spent the month preparing for our departure.  This consisted of repeated trips to West Marine to pick up spare parts, on-line shopping for hard-to-find items, a couple of appointments with our trust attorney and banker, selecting an  appropriate marine insurance policy for our international travels, creating the menu plan and provisioning list for the trip to Cabo, and then finally ... selling our Suburban.  We sold the car last week, and it feels very strange to be without wheels.

We're in Marina del Rey now until Oct. 10.  Then we're sailing down to Newport Beach for a few days, then on to San Diego to attend Ray's Retirement Party.  We'll depart with about 130 other boats on Oct. 31 heading to Cabo San Lucas on the Baja Ha-Ha Race.  Herman, Claudine, and Kevin will join us in San Diego to crew with us on the race.  We plan to meet Darlene and Mark in Cabo, then Patricia and Joe will meet us in La Paz to sail with us to Puerta Vallarta for Thanksgiving.

I'm fighting a head cold, so I feel like I'm in a daze trying to deal with all the pre-departure details.  Coupled with the stress of thinking about missing my daughter and grandchildren while we're gone has me feeling pretty low quite often.  (That's probably why I caught the cold.)  We're investigating VOIP technology to make it easier to communicate regularly without worrying about cost.  This is where you use the internet and your computer as a telephone.  We downloaded the free software from Dialpad and have been playing with it to make phone calls.  Seems to work well.

Linda's Mom Marion pictured left.

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