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Barb
Somewhere in the Caribbean aboard s/v La Luna Actually, we are currently in St. Thomas -- until May 2014.
We lived aboard a Cheoy Lee Sailboat year-round in Maine for 8 years. In October, 2010 we set sail for the Bahamas and Caribbean.
Interests: travel, dogs, sailing, Maine, writing, sailboat maintenance, living on a sailboat, Bahamas, Caribbean, Cartagena, Grenada, Buenos Aries, photography, food
Recent Activity
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Finally! t was the first morning of my first day of school. I was nearly 7 years old, and we lived in northern Maine in a very small town which didn’t offer kindergarten, so I’d had to wait until first grade. And since my birthday missed the cut-off by three days, I was going to be one of the oldest kids in the class. I had been excited for weeks finding it difficult to think of anything else, and having trouble getting to sleep each night. Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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Every cruising boat has it’s own rhythm; each captain and crew have their favorite ports and harbors; and each cruiser has his or her own bucket list of passages, islands, and countries. When many boats are cruising one area, such as here in the Eastern Caribbean, the ebb and flow of boats brings us together for food, fun, stories, music, and adventure – and pulls us apart as each boat sails to new or favorite anchorages. Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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A few days later we were excited to host friends Ed and Lynn from New York. They aren’t sailors, but are great sports, and have known EW for 60 years – well Ed has. We invited Peter and LeeAnn and our friends Keith and Jaime from Kookaburra to come for dinner. LeeAnn insisted on making dessert. (She’s like that.) Later that afternoon I saw them on shore and she told me she was going to bring bread too. (Of course.) Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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As I write this, the boat is pretty much a mess, with only two seats available in the main salon. There’s a vacuum cleaner on the galley counter; tools on the port settee, the bed, that same galley counter, and on the sole of every room; the non-working fridge/storage unit and the old inverter are in the cockpit, as are two large duffels of clean clothes; and one whole set of drawers are spread out in the forward cabin. In short, the only unaffected space on the boat is the forward head. Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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Our neighbors towards the sea – where La Luna was heading. Throughout our experience with La Luna we’ve been impressed with her timing. Maybe it’s because she’s middle-aged and has learned a few things since 1985, or maybe it’s because she’s an ocean cruiser who had been confined to coastal cruising for many years, and just wants to extend our journey. Probably we are being fanciful, but both EW and I believe that La Luna has excellent timing. Usually this has been experienced in terms of “At least it happened here.” Whatever “it” was – when things have failed on... Continue reading
Posted Feb 4, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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Maine is a small state. Years ago, EW and I were visiting Ottawa and met a couple from NYC at one of the tourist stops. Their knowledge of the other states was limited and I can remember her abject horror that Maine only had just over a million residents. “Do you know that there’s more people in Manhattan, alone?” she exclaimed. I refrained from saying they couldn’t be alone much, packed onto that island. I’ve often said that being from Maine means that if you ask the right questions, you can find a link to any other Mainah in only... Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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So, I untied the dinghy, securing the painter inside, started her up with power and then somehow did a stupid thing. I tried to loop the safety switch around my wrist at the same time I went to throttle down in order to put her into gear, but the safety cord was evidently around the gear lever. I managed to put her into forward, at nearly full throttle, without getting the safety cord on. Continue reading
Posted Jan 18, 2014 at Harts At Sea
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The Queen Mary 2 visited St. Thomas on the day after Christmas. EW has no desire to ever go on a cruise ship, but I’d go on the QM 2 in a heartbeat. She docked not far from us at the Crown Bay Cruise Ship Port – and she was beautiful. “It’s probably just like any other cruise ship aboard.” Scoffed EW. “I don’t think so! Look at her. She looks nothing like those giant shoe boxes with propellers.” As you can see, for someone who earns money because of cruse ship passengers, I have very little respect for the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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EW Aboard “Rudolf” on Christmas Morning. Both EW and I had to work on Christmas, but we weren’t alone. With six cruise ships in town for the day, nearly everyone in the tourist industry worked. Christmas dinner at the Hart Abode was prepared by Master Chef Jeff, with excellent contributions from some of the others who had the day off. EW and I got ready for work early, and while I read, EW decided to sing a song he’d been practicing … one of our favorite songs of the season: “How’d You Like to Spend Christmas on Christmas Island?” Here’s... Continue reading
Posted Dec 27, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Still, this live-aboard life certainly isn’t all bad. Did I mention that we don’t have to shovel snow and that in terms of ice we simply worry whether there are any cubes in the freezer? Life is good in paradise. Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Bring only the minimum of cooking equipment: 1 skillet, 1 pot or saucepan, cups, plates, bowls and silverware. Yeah, right. I did purchase nesting pots at a boat show and never regretted giving up most of my beloved pots from home. I do regret not bringing more serving pieces for parties. I have three skillets, four pots, one Dutch oven, a pressure cooker, a lobster steamer, and a crockery bean pot. Hey, I’m from Maine, I wouldn’t leave home without the lobster steamer and bean pot . Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2013 at Harts At Sea
First, I have no photos of the actual events, and will instead link to better and more fortunate photographers and videographers than I. You’ll just have to believe me when I tell you that I witnessed something spectacular and feel incredibly blessed. Here is a spotted leopard ray. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing them while snorkeling. This photo is from Wikipedia. Did you know they could jump? Most of you probably do; some of you may have seen it. Over the past three years, I’ve heard the loud splash, I’ve caught a glimpse at the end of a leap,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 27, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Some of the news reports about the storms in the US have been a bit over the top, but there’s no denying I’ve been worrying about friends and family who will be traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday. Frankly, I’ve also been gloating about the lack of snow in St. Thomas, as I’ve always hated white Thanksgivings. In fact, this will be our first winter without shoveling snow; we do not miss that. EW and I have become the Mainiacs of whom we used to speak derisively. The weather gods slapped me for that. This morning was warm and sunny, with... Continue reading
Posted Nov 26, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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If you follow the news or Facebook, you’ve heard about Thanksgivukkah. But have you heard about Hurricane Thanksgiving? Traditionally it’s celebrated in St. Thomas on the Third Monday of October. Even though “hurricane season” lasts from June 1 to November 30, most hurricanes that have hit St. Thomas have done so in August, September, or October. So, according to the report on “Hurricane Thanksgiving”, if a large storm hasn’t hit St. Thomas by the middle of October, the residents here feel safe. Humph. Celebrating in October seems a little early to me. The only storm to hit in these islands... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Bob, one of my friends in Maine, ended a Twitter message recently with “Hope all is well in Paradise”. It reminded me that even though EW and I aren’t exactly living the cruising life we desire this year – this really is our paradise – for now. We are on our sailboat in the Caribbean. If we want, we could drop this mooring any time and sail off into the sunset -- or the sunrise. But by the time we actually choose to leave St. Thomas we’ll have been here for 18 months or so, and we’ll have had J.O.B.s... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Now, it gets interesting. My first priority of business was to get the poles in the awning, as we’ve had a bit of wind and the awning without poles causes the boat to “sail” on the mooring. So there I was on deck working this out when I heard our neighbor Stephanie from s/v Eagle, “Barb! Come help me!” Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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There are more than 181 photos of pelicans on my camera. Pelicans are funny birds, very photogenic, and currently we are living cheek by fowl with them. Small adult fish have been massing near shore and in the marinas, and they’ve been followed by larger fish, who’ve enticed still larger fish, and by pelicans. EW and I love watching the pelicans. These are brown pelicans, the smallest variety of pelican, and one of only two varieties who fish by diving. It’s the dive, and resulting “boosh!” -- something we describe as a boof/splash – that tickle us. Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Facebook has allowed me to stay in touch with friends and family back home and at sea. On one recent day, my Maine Facebook friends had my mouth watering with posts about Macoun apples, Bean Suppahs, and Maine Lobstah. In late August I craved fresh Maine corn on the cob, caved, and bought days old corn from Florida. That’s just wrong. Macoun apples. Bean Suppers. To all of you back in the Northeast – please enjoy some of those treats for me. To all of you who cruise – what foods do you miss? It’s all part of our adventure. Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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EW had a rare Sunday off. Sunday is football day but he proved his love to me by agreeing to spend the afternoon on Honeymoon Beach. We packed towels, books, sunscreen, and some money for the bar and lunch. For those who don’t know, Water Island is one of the two islands in the Charlotte Amalie harbor area. A number of people live there, taking dinghies or the ferry to the main island for school and work. We are moored off Water Island, and spent last winter anchored off Honeymoon Beach. Honeymoon is the gathering spot for Water Island, with... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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I’ll always make my biscuits with Coldwell Cream, insist on real maple syrup on my pancakes, prefer brown eggs for no reason, drop my “r’s”, and retain reams of useless knowledge of my home state – but I’ll not be a Mainah for much longer. We are “moving” to Florida. Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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We don’t use much diesel, but we are using about 13 gallons of gas each week for “Lunah Landah” and “Jenny”, the Honda generator. EW has been working 7 days a week, so I’ve been much more up close and personal with our gas cans. For years, EW had complained about the new CARB Compliant gas cans that don’t have vents and have resulted in more spills on La Luna than the old gas cans ever did. Here’s a blog post I found that exactly corresponds with EW’s gas can opinions. I never had the arm strength or coordination –... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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So, after my last pleading Facebook message about Donnell, John called to find out more about him. John is one of those brilliant technical people who appreciate fine music and who used to study the violin. John and Dora are without a doubt two of the nicest, most even-tempered people one could ever meet. They live on a boat with only one stateroom, still they invited Donnell to move in with them for “a month or two” until he could find appropriate space on shore. Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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A few days before they had arrived, EW had come home from work and announced, “I have a present for you!” He was incredibly excited and couldn’t wait for me to open a $150.00 gift certificate to the Lazule Spa at the Marriott. “I thought you and Lynnelle could use a little Splurge Time together.” Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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Here’s what I’ve learned about staying in St. Thomas over the summer, AKA Hurricane Season. 1. The boating community clears out. Except for boats owned by locals who live ashore and a few cruisers and charter boats, most are here because captain and crew are working ashore. I have no idea why those others cruisers have stayed. I wouldn’t. Now, in addition to checking Facebook to find out what fun things friends and family back home are doing, we also check in to find out about the music jams in Grenada and Trinidad, how difficult the last hash was, or in which new exotic locales our friends are making boat repairs. Sigh. Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2013 at Harts At Sea
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I grew up in a small town in Maine, and my parents both came from even smaller towns in Maine. The heck with Kevin Bacon, before I went to college, I could have connected nearly everyone I met to Daddy or to Mom in only three or four moves. That, of course led to 1. not being able to get away with much; and 2. feeling that I was pretty safe in all situations. Continue reading
Posted Aug 26, 2013 at Harts At Sea