Anthem Adrift

21 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
16 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
14 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
12 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
07 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
05 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
01 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
28 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
21 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
18 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
17 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
15 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
14 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
13 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
10 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
09 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
02 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
01 April 2017 | Key West, Florida
01 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
29 March 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina

Bored, Positively

21 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Thursday 18 May 2017

Have, for the moment, sucked all the inspiration out of Darwin. As opposed to cruising, which is a surprise every day, life here is pretty humdrum consisting for us in biking, eating, sleeping, a soupçon of boat work and otherwise just farting around. Of course doing diddly has it's attractions, but with the necessity to avoid lard-buttage (not a real word), exercise, a good diet and less alcohol make the appeal rather less than it could be.

For any American who believes his TV domain is a vast wasteland, come to Australia and be proud. Except for an occasional old movie that's broadcast while people with normal lives are asleep and some great English comedy, which most Americans don't get, the airwaves are filled with reruns of the stupidest US series, a baffling abundance of cooking shows and a hugely popular sport called "footy" which is even more boring than soccer. The same few commercials assault the screen at every break including an obese woman in a red dress prancing around and singing about a super market. We read a lot.

Sunday

After a late start due luxuriating in the ritual Sunday morning banana pancakes (with real Canadian maple syrup - it's made in Canada from Canadian maple trees by Canadians, you know) we biked a circuit around a majority of the Darwin metropolitan area, 46 kilometers. Stopped short of Humpty Doo (didn't make that up and your guess is as good as mine) the last extent of civilization before the outback and a great loss it was, but this seemed to be sufficient as our last long ride for awhile. Jan has liver scan tomorrow and is scheduled for chemo Tuesday morning.

Monday

Preliminary indication is that her liver is fine and delaying inflammation is under control so today is probably as good as Jan will feel for over 5 months. Bummer. One might, however, think of this as reverse hangover. She'll feel worse and worse, then great. Looking forward to the party at the end.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort." - Herm Albright

Jack

Breathing Space

16 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Monday 15 May 2017

After weeks anticipating start of chemotherapy with consequent fun effects like nausea and hair loss, we are postponed 8 days due an inflammation. Sampling showed no infection, but oncologist is waiting for results of ultrasound performed today and a week of antibiotics because chemo lowers infection resistance. Having mentally prepared for such delays because we know that nothing runs as planned, it's still exasperating.

Tuesday

David, fridge and air conditioner guy, "licensed to chill", came by this afternoon and discovered that nothing was wrong with either AC. Great.. I guess. Both are cooling now. Could be that he scared them straight. Also could be that screens were so dirty that no air could pass, but that would imply poor maintenance and that's just crazy talk.

Wednesday

Yoga is getting a second chance this morning as more limber crew continues on bike to Casuarina Mall for coffee, granola and yogurt instead of eggs and bacon (which is not bacon and never crispy, but is actually thinly sliced, limp ham). This health kick thing is much less fun than one would suppose. One might however contemplate a quote by Blaise Pascal, "To go beyond the bounds of moderation is to outrage humanity." Therefore, in the interest of harmonious society, a muffin with the second cup seems appropriate.

Jack

Pacify This

14 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 14 May 2017

Yoga is a spiritual and ascetic Hindu discipline for relaxation and health. Distaff crew, with OCD tendencies and lately a touch of tension, thought it might be just the thing. Introductory session this morning left her creaky and sore. Balance of crew, being more than adequately unwound under even the most fraught of circumstances, went for coffee. After a few months of TM (transcendental meditation) many years ago, discovered that no one needs to be that mellow.

For all of you out there who are or want to be mothers, this is your day. Muthahs will have to wait for another occasion. As always, suggest if you own a little bundle of joy between 4 and 12, the cute years, sell it. Buy that gorgeous blue water sailing yacht you secretly want. It's amazing the number of people who will pay serious money for a little tyke of their own having forgotten about the rigors of puberty. By the time they're re-acquainted, it's too late - can't kill 'em, can't give 'em away. But that won't be your concern will it? Hop in your floating palace and sail away where you don't have to listen to the sniveling of frustrated mums and dads or the delighted screeching of their pre-jerk progeny. Of course like many parents you may have gotten attached, but wise up and one day you'll thank me.

Jack

That's Cold!

12 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Thursday 11 May 2017

Color me chagrined. Despite contrary expectations, weather here in Darwin has gotten not awful - one might, if pressed, even say good. 32 or 33 C during the day and 21 to 23 C at night with typical breeze and less humidity. On odd occasions when we're up early, such as today, it's almost, but not quite, chilly. Death of aft bunk AC, which won't get service until Tuesday, has caused little discomfort. Acerbic crew now reduced to developing and saving rudest and most offensive epithets for return of weather putridity (not a real word) in 5 or 6 months. Still contemplating maneuvering around Cape York and down to Townsville in December when finished with zapping.

Jan got a little Easter egg this morning with notice that scan showed a spot on her liver that is likely, but not guaranteed, a benign cyst. Crikey! This is like getting punched, then kicked when you're down. Ultrasound to check is scheduled for 2 1/2 weeks hence. Crikey! Not considered urgent we're told and not contemplated to delay chemicals starting Monday.

Friday

Renovated strainer with manifold and associated hoses have been made ready for return to service. Although AC will of necessity be shut down for installation, entire operation should take no more than 30 minutes - in real time about 3 hours. If someone can drag his lazy carcass out of bed sufficiently early mañana this should not present undue discomfort for various crew. Concern for well-being of Rabbit is subdued as the little deadbeat hardly raises a finger to help or even make tea in the morning, his assigned duty.

Saturday

Operable AC was conditioning its little heart out with excellent cooling flow by 0745. Who said miracles don't happen? Oh... well, in that case it must be either dumb luck or masterful work by engineering crew. I'm going with that second thing. Now breakfasting on fruit, cereal and low fat milk before heading out for a bike ride. Being a stud muffin is not pretty.

"Delusions of grandeur make me feel a lot better about myself." - Jane Wagner

Jack

Treading Water

07 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 7 May 2017

Chemo starts on 15 May, a week Monday. If all goes as planned all heavy drugs will have been administered by second week of October and last nuking the Friday after US Thanksgiving, fourth week of November. Canadian turkey day is the month before, but suspect Jan will be more than delighted to celebrate American version this year. After that, targeted treatment with herceptin will continue every third week until second week of July next year, but with typically few side effects. Expect a happy and relieved holiday season this year with entire crew feeling great and every molecule of malignancy smote.

Tried to sneak into pool this morning while Christians at church, but were overrun with moppets getting swim lessons instead of morality training - they'll probably all become criminals or lawyers. No worries, we used both side of the same lane and hardly collided at all. Each did 20 lengths of the 50 meter pool so that's about ummm, 20 kilometers, right? Swimming laps is boring, but you can't let your mind wander to contemplate life or the current boat project because of losing count. Pretty easy to convince yourself of 20 laps after only 4.. perhaps that's just me.

Jack

Headway

05 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Thursday 4 May 2017

After biking and swimming four days in a row (the local babes should start getting aroused pretty soon - see previous) tomorrow is doctor day certain to be long and woefully boring, but happily containing no exercise. CT scan, bone scan, echocardiogram and chemo information school for, in order, to see if there are any metastases, check heart operation so injected poisons won't kill her right off and give us the good news that Jan's hair will fall out and she'll feel like complete dog squeeze after each third week session until the middle of October. Also to tell us that any swapping of bodily fluids within a week of treatment will result in both of us having chemo brain and feeling like crap. She's incredibly lovable, but if she wants any serious affection, the rabbit will have to do. His slow metabolism avoids the worst effects and besides he's fluffier and less American than me, a huge advantage.

Friday

Just because all relevant parts have been renovated or purchased for reassembly of both pedestal and raw water strainer should not be construed to infer that any such thing is actually taking place. However, having lowered expectation of progress, will now revel in acclamation attendant to having mounted pedestal base to cockpit sole, a 30 minute operation accomplished in a mere afternoon. Perhaps in the next week or so steering cables will be greased and reattached to quadrant and various other bits screwed into their proper places so that cockpit is again cluttered with nautical apparati. Contrary to common perception, the plural of apparatus is apparatuses - this sounds stupid and will be ignored.

Saturday

Long early bike ride, now cooling off while finishing this entry, then back hard at work to reassemble steering... you believe me, don't you? Misspoke when claiming that all strainer parts were in hand - strainer; yes, distribution manifold; no. Finding those will occur in the fullness of time, after finishing pedestal, sometime next week, if reasonable design and engineering can be devised and proper parts can be found... probably.

Jack

Working Off One's Assets

01 May 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Monday 1 May 2017

Very happy it's May. Three fewer letters and on the keyboard it's right, left, right and you're done. Those seconds add up you know. Jan always wants to arrive early - airport, appointments, events. She just doesn't appreciate that every minute sitting around waiting is that much time ripped from your life - pissed away, never to be recovered. All the smart people wait until the last moment, drive like madmen (OK, madwomen too, although I swear in this case it's generic and non-gender specific) to show up with only nanoseconds to spare. However, one learns to compromise and cope. Jan has been a terrible influence, but is paid back by learning to J-walk and cross the street when no one is coming even though the little green walking guy is not lit. One does what one can to encourage sorties outside the box.

May Day is a holiday in Northern Territory and Queensland. Like Labor Day in US it's the day workers celebrate work by screwing off and drinking beer until unconscious. Was once a huge celebration in the Soviet Union as the day to honor proletariat cogs in the great communist state machine that was about to wither away, but then ran out of money just before achieving workers paradise. Anyway, back to point, reference previous comment about exercise: with nothing else to do went biking today through Darwin CBD, up to Casuarina, across the top of the airport and back home (most of you haven't a clue and needn't trouble to look, but it was something over 30 km). This was much like exercise, but given Jan's delicate condition (although she is a much more experienced rider) more like a social ride for peloton. Although stopping for coffee near the end, still rode for 2 1/2 hours in bright sun and heat. OK, fine, it was exercise. Maintaining studliness is not pretty.

Tuesday

Have done absolutely zilch, zip, nada on boat since removal of Groco raw water strainer. Could use doctor, holiday weekend or car wheel bearing disintegration excuses, but prefer to be honest.. dog ate To-Do list. Awoke before dawn to take car for repair so that should be done today. It's not the weekend, no doctors until Friday and the dog ran away, but still can't do anything with old strainer or pedestal until purchasing O-ring and machining wheel shaft keyway. Dang! Was so looking forward to getting sweaty, stinky and greasy. Complacency to be averted by another bike ride this morning. Unless dog returns, plan to swim laps at the public pool tomorrow. As previously mentioned, not pretty.

Jack

Forced Air

28 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Sunday 23 April 2017

Clobbered crew continues on road to rapid, robust recovery. Day of rest being treated as day of rest - great concept. Consideration was given to cinema at Casuarina Square this afternoon, which would have resulted in no pressure to perform boat work. Didn't go. Dang! Backup excuses brought to bear.

Placed rabbit ears outside overhead saloon hatch, then had TV search for digital stations and now have access to many broadcast channels. Some programs don't suck too much - regrettably not many and not often. Never realized just how awful McHale's Navy and Beverly Hillbillies were. Laugh track de-conditioning (from years of no TV) makes one appreciate just how annoying. However, some good old movies and the news is occasionally interesting. Hard to remember being a cable news junkie.

Monday

AC cooling deteriorated. Attempt to clean strainer resulted, as feared would eventually happen, in corroded ball of raw water distribution manifold crumbling - probably made of copper, no way to repair. Finally got the whole unit out with some considerable effort. Plumbing bits purchased in Sorong (a Rube Goldberg conglomeration made of stainless) for just such an eventuality were LOB (lost on board.. of course). Didn't matter anyway as unable initially to remove an elbow fitting or make stainer usable. Bought temporary plastic replacement strainer after looking at nearly every parts place in town and, after a beautiful installation (self-serving, but true.. honest) , the unit itself was crap - no way to make it stop leaking past seal. Finally found something at an irrigation supply just at closing that works and got AC cooling before nightfall. Old strainer may live again with sufficient rehabilitation, a few new fasteners and some luck. Far as can be discovered there is not a proper marine Groco or Perko strainer for 38mm (1 1/2") hose on the entire continent. In fairness, it's the smallest of seven.

Tuesday

Missed ANZAC service (we don't do sunrise), but attended the parade and had brekky with Aussie mates. Later, watched The Battle of Britain on telly with each and every English actor who was alive in 1969. War is heck.

Wednesday

Two in the continuing parade of doctor appointments this morning plus pathology report. All detectable cancer removed. Two oncologists tomorrow to get plan for treatment so we'll know when we can get the H E hockey sticks (this for the high school level prigs who are offended by "hell".. oops) out of here at least for awhile.

Friday

Large quota of Jan's blood sucked out this morning into ten (counted them: ten) vials for hematology baseline before doctors add chemicals to completely screw it up. They want to determine just how close to death they can get her without doing too much permanent damage. After about three weeks and enough UV exposure to turn it red will be able to paint a big "3" on top of her head and have a great conversation starter for meeting new people... particularly billiards enthusiasts.

Should be done with chemo and radiation around end of November, but 52 weeks of herceptin (not starting until sometime in August) may put a hitch in our Indian Ocean giddy-up until 2019. Bugger! May be possible to fly back from Christmas Island and Cocos Keeling until August then direct Rodrigues to cross next year. Alternatively, best time of year to go Townsville, November - January. Malaysia OK in October, maybe November, harder after that. Lots of time to contemplate options.

On a lighter note, tropical low brought little wind or rain and cooler temps. This is good. Sky will now clear and heat return. This is bad. Humidity will remain lower. This is good. Behold glass 2/3 full.

Maintaining conditioning and svelte physique absent physical activity of cruising will require change of perspective on working out. May have to do some. Bugger! This entails such things as swimming, walking and biking - reference 29 March mention of difference between riding and exercising. It could include visiting a health club and even, Zeus forbid, doing something while there. Why is there such a difference between, for example, walking 5 km to a chandlery or a pub and doing the same just to be a babe magnet? Yikes!

Jack

Some Fit, Some Fiddling

21 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Wednesday 19 April 2017

Visit to surgeon this morning helped allay some concerns and Jan is scheduled for additional excavation tomorrow afternoon, assuming open slot in burn unit schedule that allowed immediate response to her biopsy, isn't needed for an emergency. Another night of hospital food and excellent narcotics. Invasive margins were clear of cancer, but some of that had already found its way into most upstream of, as it turns out, 5 removed lymph nodes. Any additional cancer cells are confined inside ducts. Full chemo, radiation and herceptin treatments will be necessary. Not great news, but not awful either.

Friday

Decided to pass on full axillary node removal as new evidence indicates no better prognosis and potential for lymphedema and nerve damage, i.e. because it doesn't help, didn't rip out all the tissue under her arm, which could result in long-term swelling and some loss of motion. Threat to lash her into bed (no Cal, this isn't S&M, it means restrain) for rest when we got home this morning unnecessary - usual healthy, perky self, but tired. Pathology report may be quicker this time if huge memorial holiday, Anzac Day on Tuesday, doesn't screw it up. Surgeon and GP appointments Wednesday, oncologists Thursday. Probably start chemo in four weeks.

Professional help nearly stymied by corroded bits on pedestal, but now all done. Sand blasting to prepare surfaces has already done wonders for appearance. Rest of cockpit will look shabby with beautiful, new centerpiece. New winch stems ordered. May take several weeks until arrival in which to enjoy ignoring both future work and pile of parts in forward head. Two major projects now in train after which (OK, during which too) fiddling and diddling should become mantra. Day projects only (defined as taking no more than than a week without adult supervision).

Saturday

The girl slept all afternoon, all night and now, late morning, at it again. Longer op probably required more anesthetic that needs to wash through system. More work was done including some plastic surgery making everything more sore, probably staying that way longer, but results and prognosis good. She's tired, but feeling fine under the circumstances with plenty of happy pills. As for balance of crew, although distraught and guilt-ridden due inability to do any work on boat (what are YOU laughing at?) that might cause noise, have to bow to ingrained altruistic nature (quit it, your eyes are watering and your face is turning red) and learn to tolerate sloth (OK, get up off the floor you miserable cynic).

Awning remains off causing ACs to struggle while barely keeping interior comfortable as new tropical low builds northeast. Darwin without rain little better than with. Goofing off using numerous available excuses, however, doesn't suck at all.

Jack

Contemptible Cadliness

18 April 2017 | Tipperary Waters Marina
Tuesday 18 April 2017

Finally noticed, after nearly 4 days, that doxycycline had begun working. Many would consider this good news, despite loss of excuse to goof off. Albeit comparatively miniscule, witness another in a current series of yin/yang moments. This one ostensibly with yang in ascendancy. If one does a bit of research, yang is masculine and light; generally considered positive, yin is feminine and dark; generally considered negative.

Odd that nobody seems terribly put out about gender chauvinism implied in the yinyang concept, perhaps because it's Chinese philosophy, but, depending on one's imputed "tribe", many individuals get serious heat, sometimes justified, for similar type references. Makes you wonder about the capriciousness of aggressive indignation engendered by names, comments, looks and even inferred thoughts. Suggest that outrage shouldn't be a social mechanism to elevate one's moral status, but should rather be reserved for actual offensive acts. It's about the behavior, not the observer. Microinsults look an awful lot like microbullsqueeze and being a perpetual victim like being a perpetual loser, which seems a poor way to proceed through life. Suggest that when we expect tolerance to be required of producers as defined by receivers we create exactly the opposite of what a liberal society once considered tolerance. Come on guys, get a grip. All outraged, victims of this ofay, white bread, honky stream of consciousness, which has chased its yang tail through the above paragraph, should make a report of scandalous injustice to the PC police and organize a protest march on Washington (or the local, state, provincial or national government of your choice).

Since this is a "cruising under sail" blog, there will be precious little of that for the next year, an idle mind is a playground for intemperate thoughts and someone (who shall remain unnamed) has apparently lost the forbearance necessary to censor his dark thoughts, offended parties should probably just tell him to shut the hell up until back underway and ignore concerns such imprecations might cause for psychic damage (see previous paragraph). However, since this exercise is primarily for personal amusement, such advice might be ignored.

Jack
Vessel Name: Anthem
Vessel Make/Model: 1997 Hylas 46 - MMSI xxxxxx750
Hailing Port: Weeki Wachee, FL
Crew: Jack Warren, Janice Holmes
About:
Jack: Formerly productive member of the community as a Northwest Airlines Captain who retired to become a drain on, and embarrassment to, polite society. [...]
Extra:
While I will be delighted if anyone else enjoys these excursions into semi-intelligible foolishness, the primary purpose is personal amusement. This is not travelogue, cruising guide or philosophical exploration of anything in particular, merely random musing of a slightly twisted mind. Despite [...]
Home Page: http://www.sailblogs.com/member/anthem
Anthem's Photos - Main
5 Photos
Created 2 January 2017
Waterfall, etc.
5 Photos
Created 19 May 2009

S/V Anthem

Who: Jack Warren, Janice Holmes
Port: Weeki Wachee, FL
See profile for information on why this mess is being foisted upon an innocent world and, despite what is probably your better judgement, how to make contact.
Go to 'Contents' to view all entries.