Anxiety!

That’s the word of the day for this couple who gave up their careers in their prime to travel, see the world and live a little more robustly while still relatively young.  Now, don’t get me wrong:  this is not fear or worry or doubt.  We have been working toward this for years and are confident in our plan.  But quitting your job and planning to live off earnings and savings for an indefinite period is a bit like jumping out of an airplane with an untested parachute.

IMG_4785 The design says it will work, but you just don’t know before you leap. Of course, if we are wrong, we just go back to work and not splat on the ground, but you get the point.  So as this odyssey gets started, we are surprisingly feeling a bit of trepidation about whether we are doing the right thing, or doing this thing right.  I think its just because we are in between ending work and starting our travels that allows the mind to play its tricks.

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SF – LA Trip

We kept this boat in Mexico for a year, and would fly down when we could to use it.  But that was less than ideal for two busy San Franciscans.  So Mike Priest brought it up for us in 2011.  We used it a lot more in SF.  As the outlines of our plan began to emerge, we decided we would participate in the 2013 Baja HaHa (more on that in a subsequent post) to get to Mexico.  With me retiring at year end, we decided the first step would be to put the house on the market and relocate (us and the boat) to LA.  This would give us a new city to explore, Mary the opportunity to work a bit before we go and put us in striking distance of San Diego, where the Baja HaHa starts in October.  We had a very foggy and cold summer in San Francisco, with little of the usual beautiful Indian summer in Sep/Oct, so we decided to get the boat to LA sooner rather than later.

Perfect foggy send off from SF

Perfect foggy send off from SF

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Please, nobody jump.

We left with our friends Judy and Torben,

Torben and Judy were a BIG help

Torben and Judy were a BIG help

experienced cruisers from S/V Tivoli, on September 23, planning to do day hops down the coast and arriving in LA in about a week.  However, we got to our first stop – Half Moon Bay – in cold, dripping-wet fog and decided to speed things up a bit.  We left at 4 am the next morning for a 60+ hour leg to get below the reach of the marine layer.  We were hoping to make Santa Barbara but after tacking back in about 80 miles out, we made Cojo Anchorage and settled for a rest there.  This is a small indentation in the coast loaded with kelp and sea lions.   There were two old sailboats washed up on the rocky beach.  Although it was a comfortable anchorage, I will never get used to the west coast habit of anchoring in the slightest dent in the coast.  Back east we usually opt for much better protected harbors.  But I guess there are fewer unpredicted storm systems here and conditions in an anchorage are pretty predictable.   The only other boats there were a coast guard boat on its mooring and a large sportfisher, whose crew paddled in later to surf the shore break.

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Happy to have the anchor down

We left the next morning and had an easy sail to Santa Barbara where we took a slip in the compact local marina.  We partied a bit in the Santa Barbara Yacht Club where Mary was given the royal treatment for representing a yacht club 3000 miles away.  Little did they know that the Orient Yacht Club is an old potato loading shack at the end of a wharf.  Then a little 14th anniversary celebration for us (what more could a gal ask for?) and off to bed.  Definitely want to return to this picturesque little harbor.  We have visited several times via land but there is something different about visiting a place by boat.

14th Anniversary in Santa Barbara!! Yay

14th Anniversary in Santa Barbara!! Yay

After Santa Barbara, one night at the beautiful and secluded (yet so close) Santa Cruz island and our first battle with the kelp monster.

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Kelp Monster

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Santa Cruz Island

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Same spot

And then it was on to Catalina island.  This is a fun little throw-back kind of place that we will visit again while stationed in LA.  It was fun to think that it was so rustic yet so close to the bustling metropolis of LA.

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Torben and Judy cutting a rug

Hey, buddy watch those hands!

Hey, buddy watch those hands!

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Cat Harbor, Catalina

The 4 Amigo's (1024x768)

The 4 Amigos

Next morning brought a lazy and easy sail up to our new home in Marina del Rey.

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Sunny snoooooooooze

And we were there.  Now that the boat is in LA, we’ll have to work on getting ourselves down there.  First we’ve got to sell this house.  Then its off to Park City for Mary to do here Sundance Film Festival thing (little known fact – few movie people ski and the slopes are EMPTY during Sundance).  Then in March, we’ll relocate to the boat.

A First Post

This blog is and will remain a work-in-progress – partly because we have no idea how to do it and expect it to evolve over time as we figure it out.  So you may see posts come and go, be edited, have pictures added or deleted (if someone thinks they don’t look good), etc.  Bear with us.  It is primarily intended to provide family and friends an easy way to know what we are up to.  There may be technical or sailing-related items, but take them with a grain of salt since we don’t know what we are doing.  There are three authors on this account:  Pete, Mary and Neko – which should be considered both of us.

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Escaping Alcatraz

We also hope to interact with people so please feel free to leave comments in the comments section and we’ll try to respond.  There may be a way to private message us on WordPress.com and if you figure it out and send us one, I am sure it will notify us.  Otherwise, for private emails, see how to email us in the About Us section.