Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Family Affair

Allright - passage recap. There have been a few of those through the years.

For this Kona-to-Kodiak leg, the destination was more important than it has been for most of our passages, so we'll begin with pictures of our arrival.

Elias is quietly ecstatic. Eric is suddenly anxious and has taken refuge in a "disguise".
Alisa is overjoyed. And that smear on the shoreline to the left? That would be dowtown Kodiak.
This picture would seem to suggest more complicated emotions on my part.
Our state of dress in the pictures above tells you everything you need to know about the climate that awaited us at almost 58° North latitude. It has been a particularly cold summer in Kodiak.

But we started this 18-day sail in tropical conditions. Check out the crew watching pilot whales, below. 

And that would be the Marine Engineer getting after a broken batten box on our full batten mainsail below that. Schaefer may make some good products, but their batten boxes are rubbish! Luckily we still had one of the spare boxes that we bought in South Africa. If we are lucky enough to sail up to the Arctic Ocean next summer, my bet is that our remaining Schaefer boxes will be off the main... 





And, well. The junior crew. There were some heated parent-offspring moments in the passage, I will admit. The frictions of endless energy (them) vs. short sleep (us) are guaranteed to produce combustion at some point. But those moments are quickly forgotten (by us at least; they may be in therapy for years for all I know). We really have the best under-11 crew you could ask for. You've never seen kids who are more game for a passage than these two.

How's that for insouciance under sail? Eric hasn't been seasick once since we left South Africa, though he did keep the throwup bowl near himself for the first week of this passage....I thought of it as a little comfort talisman, like a favorite blanket for a younger, or more land-bound, kid.
Sleeping arrangements - Elias in the port bunk, and Eric under the table, which is the spot he insists on. Notice the Tintin craze that has gripped our boys...

Elias rugged up to stand an evening watch somewhere in the 50s North latitude. Can you see how proud he is to be standing watch?

We played endless card games...
And, a persistant theme in Twice In a Lifetime passage notes...the fishing report!

A wahoo and...
...a mahi mahi made up our tropical catch.
While a silver salmon...
...(yum)...
...and a rockfish made up the higher latitude catch. Elias managed to grab the rockfish in the ten minutes it took me to pause and check the oil while we were motoring the final miles to Kodiak.
And finally, there was the endgame. For our return to home waters we strung up all of the courtesy flags for the foreign nations that we visited during our 10 year voyage. This is the Chilean flag...it's seen its share of wind!


I have a special fondness for the text-only blog posts that I put up while on passage. It seems so much easier to grasp at the elusive nature of seafaring when you're actually doing it, and when you're not distracted by the literal nature of photographs.

In this land-based, retrospective version of the passage's story, I'll throw up my hands at the idea of any what-it-all-means summaries.

I'll just note that being all alone together on the big big blue can make for the very best family time that we have ever known.


17 comments:

  1. Thanks, Mike. And hugs to all xx

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    1. Thanks Reinhard! And hugs to your crew...

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  2. Good One on a full circle!

    Plenty to talk about but not here.
    Sometime.
    Nic T

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    1. G'day Nic! Sometime, indeed. Would be great to catch up with you again...

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  3. Thank you for sharing your family's journey. I've enjoying traveling along through your words and photos. May your time in Kodiak be all you hope it to be!

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  4. Wow - what a journey. Thank you for sharing so much of your experiences and your family life over the years. It has been wonderful to check in from time to time and see where you are and what you are all doing. I look forward to the next book and best wishes for settling back home. Sharon, a long time lurker from Tasmania.

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    1. Thanks, Sharon...I must say that we're kind of looking forward to being in Tassie again, whenever that may be!

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  5. Mike and family...welcome home! (and on the 4th of July, how poetic!) It has been great fun reading the blog for 8+ years, especially the boys. But they will get more fun over the next 10 years too! Thanks, take care. Petar

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    1. Thanks, Petar. It's really gratifying to hear from long-time readers...

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  6. OMG (yes, I did write that) you are home. Well, home at home. Galactic is home, and Kodiak is home. And the sea is home. You are a working definition of the briny trinity. We are so incredibly proud of you, our longest and most daring of sea-faring friends. May your home-coming parade be suitably overwhelming, and oh do we wish we could be among those ogling the barky with her bunting. Next year, maybe. Take great satisfaction in your magnificent feat, Kodiak to Kodiak, via the Southern Ocean and that most blessed of oceans, the Pacific. Holy crap. Family outings don't get more epic. Great-looking fish, btw. Well done, lads and Alisa.

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    1. Hey guys - it wasn't a wrap until we heard from the ex-Enkis! Thanks so much for all the encouragement and appreciation (you get it!) and friendship over the years. Can't wait to see you in Kodiak!

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  7. Congratulations sweet family! Hope you enjoy land as much as you enjoyed the sea, but we miss you a lot... kids are jealous about those latitudes, they want salmon for lunch :)

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    1. Hey guys - You'll have to bring the crew to Kodiak...we insist! We'll go out and catch a bunch of salmon together!

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  8. What a truly amazing journey you have been on! Thanks ever so much for sharing it with the world! I hope you keep writing because it's awfully fun to follow what you are up to and to hear your thoughts about life along the way. All the best as you assimilate back into Kodiak and a new "normal" (for your family at any rate)!

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    1. Thanks, Kevin...hopefully more adventures to convey in the future!

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  9. I don't remember when exactly I signed on board, but a few years back, maybe you were in Oz. Thanks so much for bringing us along on your adventures, it's been a pleasure. Hope to read many more inspiring posts in the future. Cheers!

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