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October 20, 2005

Headed South Again!

A lot has happened since the last entry in the log. Several of you that check the log frequently have chastised me for not making more frequent entries and its true. Time seems to fly by and I don’t realize that it has been so long.
Today we officially head south for the season. We are at Hartge Yacht Yard in Galesville, Maryland just south of Annapolis. Omega has been here the last two weeks on a mooring while we were traveling.
Our trip to San Diego to visit Louisa, Chris and my new granddaughter Neva was great. Our flights on bankrupt Northwest were nice with no security hassles, on time departures, smooth flying and not too crowded. There are photos on the web site of our visit. Neva is now 3+ months old and can sit up without too much support, is starting to make sounds like talking and smiles at the drop of a hat. Louisa and Chris are enjoying being parents and seem to be taking it all in stride. Louisa starts work about now and admitted that she was not ready to be a full time mom and was looking forward to being back at work. We made a day trip up to Carlsbad where GIA is located to see her work place (spectacular!) and all her co-workers said they missed her and were anxious for her to return. Chris’ business is going well and they are hiring additional people to help with the extra work but like all self-employed business owners, the days are very long.
On October 3rd my aunt Sue Hamilton died at almost 91. She was cremated so the family planned a memorial service October 15th in Charlotte where she lived. Her five children, spouses, grandchildren, and many others attended the service and it was another great reunion. I had not seen several of my cousins for several decades and it was fun to get caught up after so long. My sister Milbrey, her daughter Laura and her daughter “little” Milbrey also were there so I got some time to visit with my family too.
We went to the annual Whitby/Brewer Rendezvous September 30 – October 1st and as always it was fun to meet the other owners and compare boats and swap stories. Our good friend John Cece did a great job of organizing it and the new venue of the West River Sailing Club was very nice. While there, Omega used their dock while the new Schaefer roller furling system was installed by West Marine.
Back in early September we attended a rendezvous sponsored by Doyle Sailmakers of Annapolis. It was a fun weekend with some friendly competitive events like a blindfold dinghy race that we didn’t win! Doyle did a lot of work on Omega’s sails this summer by reworking the main sail, a new sacrificial cover for the genoa and a new cruising spinnaker which should be a lot of fun to use and easy for the two of us to handle. Pictures of the new sail are also on the web site. The spinnaker moves the boat along very nicely in light to medium air.
Omega also got all new standing rigging and a new Schaefer roller furling system for the jib. I also replaced the two wire halyards with braded line which is easier to handle and easier on our hands. The windlass got rebuilt and put back in operation thus avoiding a $3200 hit for a new one. At the Whitby/Brewer reunion, I bought an almost new VHF radio with the Digital Selective Calling (DSC) feature and a remote microphone for the cockpit. DSC is a safety feature that links the GPS to the radio and will transmit your unique identifier number and location in an emergency. The remote mic allows use of the masthead antenna to give better range than the hand held units. All in all a lot of investments in boat maintenance and upgrades!
Our next goal is to be in New Bern, NC the weekend of October 28-30 for the Southbound Cruisers Reunion. This is the first year it is being held there and has been a last minute effort so it will be interesting to see how many boats got the word and show up. While in that part of the world, we want to drive to Durham and visit with KAT, Jackie and Jaidan if their schedule is open. We have also told our Daytona Beach friends we would try to be there by Thanksgiving and we should be able to make it subject to weather (Hurricane Wilma is about to hit Florida) and the ever-present possibility of mechanical breakdowns! For people who say they have no plan and just wander around, we are very busy and have a lot of commitments!

Posted by Dick at 07:07 AM