Galley Wench Tales

Exploring the world through the people we meet
and the food they eat.

galleywenchtales cruiser activities
Paul of s/v Kelly Nicole pens a wickedly funny,
Liebster-worthy blog, Latitude 43.

What do you do when the funniest sailing blogger says, “Tag, You’re it!”  Run?

Naw… you warn your readers (ummm, yeah… my own Mom doesn’t even know when I post unless I tell her)…. You’d better grab a pair of Depends or drain your bodily fluids before reading Latitude 43 (, because you’ll laugh so hard you’ll pee in your pants.  Thanks to Paul’s landing the Liebster Award, more surfers will find the world a funnier place.

paul s/v kelly nicole
Paul — this is all your fault!

The intent of the Liebster award is to encourage more readership of pathetically unfollowed blogs (like mine).  How?  Each Liebster Awardee then 

  • proudly displays a Liebster award logo, then 
  • pays it forward in their post with
  • links to their 5 (some say 11) bloggers of choice, and 
  • a set of 9 11 questions for them to answer in their post. 

It’s the internet version of a chain letter, though you can at least safely read it without getting tagged.  Those of you selected in this Liebster Award (Always GoBrightwater, Evening EbbHeronRuffianhowever, are now officially tagged!  You too now possess the dubious honor of paying it forward.

The questions that follow came from Paul….
    Wayne’s Dad Phil, with us
    on a sunny day in Everett.

    When did you first catch the sailing/cruising bug?
    It’s all our parent’s fault, right?  Not my folks; They’re homebodies who are practically allergic to water.  They think I’m nuts.  However, Wayne’s Dad introduced him to cruising years prior, in Mexico.  Fast forward ~25 years.  A couple sunshine state kids, we were feeling woefully sun-starved when we spun the compass the wrong way and moved North, from Portland OR to Everett WA.  We were figuring a foot in the door with Boeing there would provide a pathway to Boeing’s sunnier Charleston facility.  Wrong.  Instead, we moved right smack in the middle of what is euphemistically called a “convergence zone”.  Translation?  The crappiest, wettest, grayest, iciest weather in the area.  The year we left there were a total of 14 out of 365 days the temperature reached 70 degrees or higher and the sun shone.  Of course, the weather improved dramatically as soon as we left.  There was a converse relationship between Wayne’s pay (good) and his job satisfaction (or lack thereof).  Wayne suggested cruising as an affordable escape, presented me with a copy of Beth Leonard’s “Voyager’s Handbook.”  The plan went from “Let’s leave in 5 years… to 3 years … to 2 years … to ‘Let’s find a boat we can leave on now.'”  We did.   

  2. Describe your worst repair or maintenance job on the boat besides the head. Everyone already knows that’s a shitty job.
    Hmmm.  Good question, Paul.  Captain orders me to walk the plank, errr, get off the boat when he does repairs.  Let’s just say he’s not one to whistle while he works and we have some inkling of the inspiration for the phrase “swear like a sailor.”  He’s promised to make a rare “appearance” on this Galley Wench Tales blog and spill the beans on his worst boat maintenance or repair job.  Watch for an update, or the comments section.
  3. If you could turn back time just 3 years what would your cruising life be like today? If I could turn back time just 5 minutes I would have asked a different question because now I have that stupid Cher song in my head.
    Paul, first off, listen to Zappa — he will kill any earworm — even Cher.  Seriously. Promise.
    My biggest regret is not tapping into the Seattle women’s sailing community earlier and assertively developing my sailing skills in a more female-friendly learning environment before we set sail.  Let’s just say it would’ve improved our sailing harmony our first year out considerably.  After that?  Invest earlier in Lonely Planet guidebooks for our planned destinations.  We started doing that last year and it paid off.  Cruising guidebooks are designed more for water and places more popular with the herds than quirky, inexpensive finds off the beaten track.  Combing TripAdvisor comments on activities is also often helpful.  Led us to some great otherwise hard-to-find spots on Eleuthera.
  4. Music soothes the soul. Do you listen to music onboard? What type of music and on what media? If it’s 70’s disco please decline the award and I’ll remove you from my feed. Just kidding. Feel free to add a mirror ball to the salon and dance all night long. I don’t judge. Much.
    Did I mention Zappa?  Does being tortured by being in earshot of bad karaoke count?  Seriously, our DVD player died, something we’re rectifying by replacing it with one with jacks to plug in iPods this year.  On watches, I’m partial to podcasts, but that’s probably because we just didn’t plan our iTunes music transfer from DVDs well.  The umpteenth time of a favorite song on a long passage begins to become a hit from hell otherwise.
  5. Was there ever a time on the water when you thought “Oh shit!” and all the fun was over for that day?
    Just one?  Our top 3
    1) Seeing our mizzen mast turnbuckle part while underway
    2) Encountering our first squall leaving Great Inagua, and not knowing how to handle it, and shredding our sails in the process.  It took us over 400 miles before we were able to fix them.
    3) Then there was that day, that grounded us for 6 weeks….
    All of those happened our first year (plus a few more).  Last year we fared much better.  Dumb luck or skill / more shipshape boat?  We sure hope it’s the latter!
  6. Wine, beer, booze or tea? Doesn’t matter to me. I get high on life. 
    Uhhh.  What’s the question?  Sundowners, sipping something, anything, together in the cockpit, watching the sun set over the water’s tough to beat regardless of the libation.
  7. Has there ever been a destination you couldn’t wait to arrive at only to be disappointed when you got there?
    None.  Thanks to an under-developed imagination, I generally have no expectations… leaving me with none to dash.  Well, the Florida Keys as a lot of folks rave about them.  Maybe we weren’t sure where to go.
  8. What part of cruising do you dislike the most besides no flushing toilets or bloggers asking stupid questions?
    Showers that unless I finish with a head still full of shampoo, are interrupted 3 times by my husband who considers using more than 2 1/2 gallons total for all our water daily including drinking, dishwashing and showers to be excessive.  Thus my spoof: “All I want for Christmas is a long hot shower.”  Even though I’m Jewish, Wayne ponied up the princely sum of $4 for me to indulge in a Christmas shower in St. Martin at a rare marina stop where our rigging was getting redone.  Just for peace, I bought a saltwater shampoo, which began with buckethead shampoos (which came with the side benefit of nasal enemas) and advanced to dinghy dunks.  Sorry, Mom.  I  do miss you when I’m cruising, but I don’t stink on a daily basis because of it, so you didn’t get the #1 “miss.”
  9. Describe the best time you ever had on a boat unless it was illegal, then just email me.  Hmmm suffice to say it was among consenting adults, and I’ve been scolded for TMI.  Despite my supposed restraint, Google Adwords still banned me for “too much adult content.”  So, just picture a diplomatic Disney fade…. Ok, one story with some specifics.  We’d chartered a boat out of the San Juans, and on a surprisingly warm day minding each other’s business in the middle of nowhere, we discovered minke whales are voyeurs, or at least very curious about intriguing boat noises.  In that moment of coitus interruptus, we had a hard time deciding between finishing what we started or taking whale photos.  Thanks to the minke’s ferociously bad breath from rotted plankton, we ended up doing neither.  Our own forever memorable romantic comedy, with the emphasis on the comedy.
galleywenchtales  cruiser activities

Passing the baton (in alph order, check out these bloggers)

galleywenchtales  cruiser activities

And your questions are….

  1. What do you tell those fascinated horrified folks who naively ask, “What cruising’s like?”
  2. Describe your most magical cruising moment. 
  3. What keeps you awake at night?
  4. What do you absolutely positively know you’re doing (or not doing) that’s totally and completely stupid, but….
  5. What movie(s) or book(s) should every cruiser pirate watch or read?
  6. What’s your best tip(s) for kissing and making up?
  7. Do you have tan lines?
  8. If you could be king (or queen) for the day, what would you use your power to change? (Which may overlap the answer to question #9)
  9. Who should never, ever consider cruising?
  10. What’s surprised you most?
  11. What’s next?