Eagle's Big Left Turn

Now that La Paz is our temporary home, for now, travel with us as we explore Baja and other Mexico destinations, learning about the riches that Mexico has to offer with it's history and people.

27 July 2016 | La Paz
26 July 2016 | La Paz
20 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
20 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
19 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
19 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
18 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
16 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
16 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
14 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
14 July 2016 | zapopan, Guadalajara
13 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
12 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
11 July 2016 | zapopan, Guadalajara
10 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
09 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
08 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
07 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
06 July 2016 | Guadalajara

Comparisons - Day 21

27 July 2016 | La Paz
Jeanne

Driving a wheel chair is similar to driving a twin screw boat! Ok so I’m dreaming here…because I’d really like to be out on the water rather than cooped up here.
My wheel chair needs to have a name…. the W/C Escape, the WC go fast?
Both wheels forward, go forward. One in reverse, one forward pivot in place. One in forward the other slower – slow turn.

I’ve always ‘gotten’ the twin screw thing, and have had several opportunities to practice on the real thing. I can see it in my head. Now, I’ve had more than my share of wheelchair time in the last 50 some years, so maybe that has something to do with it.

Perhaps a few minutes spent in a wheel chair for a new twin screw owner, would give a different and hands on perspective to what is going on underwater!
Stupid little things to keep my mind from melting!

Post op 21 days, 49 for crutches.

26 July 2016 | La Paz
Jeanne Sunny with some clouds
When I got the ok from Dr Jaime last Wednesday to leave GDL, it was under the proviso that I would still be on crutches for at least 8 more weeks, possible longer depending on how the bone grafts/healing were progressing.
Then I'll move to slight weight bearing and one crutch, then to no crutches.

It's very limiting being on crutches, and or in the wheel chair.
I've commented before on how this city is not very accessible for those not able bodied. The condo and the marina grounds are just two more examples.

If you've been in Marina Palmira lately you know that there have been some major renovations: new laundry, shower/ restrooms, tienda, cruisers lounge and offices have all been redone and relocated. The side walks have all been done as well. It was last minute additions and 14th hour suggestions to even add a couple of ramps to the side walk around our office and the marina office. I'm sure the delivery people for the tienda appreciate the ramps. But the 'contractor' or designer didn't think about that! Tom ran out one evening as the guys were finishing and said... hey what about....? Ramps were installed the next morning.

Ok so we have ramps. I can get up and down them on crutches and down with the wheel chair, unassisted. But there is no getting up them in the chair without them, nor over the threshold at the cruisers lounge, the tienda or the office. And the stamped concrete makes for quite a bumpy ride.... Remember being a kid in the car and a bouncy road going 'ahhhh ahh ahh ahh ahh ahh !!!!! You get the idea. Not a very comfortable ride when one is trying to 'knit together' bones!

When the new sidewalks/malecon were done, the contractors moved the ramp leading up to the condo level, to allow for the fencing to be placed around the pool. It was steep before, but now it's very steep even for an able bodied person! The marina has been informed of this... I expect to see at least 'sand strips' placed for better traction.

There are sidewalks all around the condos. Most are navigable, but many are so overgrown that it's hard to walk down them, let alone with crutches. I have to turn sideways on these while using mi muletas! ( crutches)

Around the condo it's better, but I'm still frustrated. I can't carry my own cup of tea from the counter to the table outside, nor can I wheel with it - think McDonalds and the hot coffee incident!

If I do stand in the kitchen, then there are crutches in the way. At the refer, I can set something on the counter nearby. Then reposition myself to move the item to the counter behind.... Turn, reposition, move, turn, reposition, turn... etc. It's just time, and the slowing down of completing a project. 10 minutes to fill a glass, and then I still cant' get it to where I want to be.......


I'm so used to being able to stand in my galley and have everything at hand with just a turn or two. But getting on and off of the boat, or into or out of the bed would be a real challenge..... so, I'll
So, I'm trying to be more vocal about what I need and asking for the glass of water, or the ice bag to be refilled, or I need some food, and just staying out of the way in the kitchen or elsewhere. It's so hard for me to do that!

We've done a bit of re-arranging to accommodate my 'stuff' and projects. The sofa table has been turned into my computer table. I've got some books and papers, hard drives and tablet ready to go when I feel like writing, like this morning. I look out across the living room to the patio and the marina beyond. Pretty nice view, and this morning, the temperature is nice. We've got the AC off for now and the sliders are all open allowing in some fresh La Paz air.

A cup of tea was just delivered to my writing table... I think I'll go enjoy it.

Post op 20 days, day 4 condo….one day ago

26 July 2016 | La Paz
Jeanne - blue sky morning cloudy afternoon
The Sailblog site was down for maintenance all day yesterday, so I was unable to get this post posted - yesterday!

And about 8 weeks to go on crutches. A double YUK and yikes!

The visit with the doctor on Wednesday was good. He’s so excited about the results, that he practically does the ‘snoopy dance’. When we arrived, after a very short wait, he came practically running out of his office and said ‘let’s go get my x-ray!” So off we went.
At least twice the x-ray tech had to put her hand up – in a wait just a minute, I know my job, let me do it attitude.

He and the technician, with my help, had decided up on 2.5cm lift under my foot – 2 at the ball of my foot, 2.5 under the heel. It felt pretty good, but not being able to put weight on it, I knew it was still off.

They got me up on the stool, appropriately placed and he grabbed one of my crutches and headed out to wait. Once the image was taken he was right back in telling her what he wanted to see! Again, she was right there with the hand to his chest… wait for it… wait for it….!!!


After a few minutes to locate the crutch he’d taken with him… I was done and back in his exam room.

The x ray looks really good. A bit scary with the ‘new’ hardware, but none the less, the leg is very straight.

The ideal anatomical position is to have a straight line run from a particular landmark on the top of your hip to one on your inside ankle. This line should run through the center of your knee. On my right leg it does. Prior to the surgery my left leg was way outside of this line. Of course, Dr. Jaime was hoping for perfection and this line to be down the middle of the knee. Well, they came close. The final correction, with out weight bearing, is 4.6 cm’s closer to the center line. Get out your tape measure to see how much this is. The line now runs through the 60% part of my knee. According to Dr J, this is ‘normal’ for the majority of people out there! So, WE are all pretty happy with the results.

The staple removal part was not as exciting! 8 from the front of my knee – piece of cake…. 3 from both the top and side of my thigh, again no problem – a little pinch here and there. Then he took out the stitches from the inside of my upper knee – a little pulling. I had wanted him to start with the big one, but he did that one last.

I was really glad that Lefty was along for moral support – my squeezy toy, as crap those hurt…. And 18 staples into 22 or 23, the little tool used to remove the buggers, broke!!!! That gave me a chance to breath again, and calm my self down. Damn those hurt! At one point I realized that I was close to squeezing the lead weight out of Lefty, I was squeezing so hard!

So I was released and allowed to fly back to La Paz on Thursday, for at least 8 more weeks on crutches, and monthly returns for x-rays and visits for 3 more months +/-. Gaby and I had an uneventful flight, wheelchairs in all the right places, and Tom, Mom and Dad waiting for us at the La Paz airport with hugs and a ride to the condo.


We’re all just getting settled into a rhythm here at the condo. Now I have 3 monitors making sure I don’t do too much and get enough ice, rest… etc. etc. It can be a bit stifling at times, and lots of questions to answer, but we’ll all get our systems down soon.

We did foray out on Friday to Tailhunters to assure Jonathon and Jillene and crew that I’m ok. A nice dinner was shared with a few friends. Then I was ‘grounded’ back at the condo again!

I expect to make an appearance or two down on our malecon and maybe even an hour or two in the store during the week. I know there’s lots of stuff for me to get caught up on. But I also know that it will be a bit at a time.

It’s good to be back.

Counting the last hours in Guadalajara!

20 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
Jeanne - blue sky morning cloudy afternoon
I had a good visit with the doctor this morning - 15 days post op.
The staples were removed and some of them were mighty tender..... ok, not the words I used while laying on the table trying not to move....... but they're all out.

The x-ray was taken and while I'm not placing any pressure on my left leg yet - another 2 months!!!! - he was able to straighten it 4.6 centimeters!! Wow.

Everyone in the office was pretty excited and pleased with the results.

So, Gaby is out for one more run for some needed supplies, my suitcase is packed, the front desk knows we're leaving and is preparing the bill...... can I go yet, huh? huh?


Yea.... I get to go give Tom a big hug, and one to my Mom and Dad who arrived last night. I know it's really hot there, but I can't wait......
tick tock, tick tock.....

Stitches come out today!!!!

20 July 2016 | Zapopan, guadalajara
Jeanne
In about one hour we will go to the doctor's office to have the staples and stitches removed and a new full leg x ray.
I have been doing everything I'm supposed to...ok a few extra jaunts about town..... But all feels good AND
today there is not a cloud in the sky!
I expect to be on a plane to La Paz,Tom and my folks tomorrow!

Post of Day 14 Tuesday

19 July 2016 | Zapopan, Guadalajara
Jeanne

I woke up this morning, early, to an unusual noise. The hotel has a large group of little league teams in the house, and one of the little ‘outfielders’ was trying his key in our door.
Ok , now I’m awake. I’m also REALLY tired of living in this hotel….. and I miss my Sonic care toothbrush! Basically I’m in a crappy mood – we’ll be going out to get some sunshine and see something besides these hotel walls.

I can usually keep my self occupied with some project or another. I brought a couple of books, which I’ve read. I even had Tom send me a couple more with a few other needed items.

I recently had to have some major ‘surgery’ done on my Mac Book – the spinning beach ball od death kept occurring. So now I have to start over with Light room. I have all my images but I’ve not been in any frame of mind nor do I have the stamina mentally right now to tackle that project. Perhaps over the next few months. On the other hand... any one want to buy a Mac Book Pro Retina? Not being a Mac User, I find it really frustrating!!!!!!

On to real life things. The incision on the side of my leg is driving me bonkers with the itching. I know this is a GOOD thing, - it means healing, but DAMN its annoying and I of course, can’t think of anything else!

I am able to do al of the leg exercises that I had researched prior to surgery and approved by my doc. Full leg lifts laying on my back, heel lifted 12” and held for count of 10/ 10 each.
Side lying same 10 each… the last 4 are hard and I feel it in the osteotomy site. Laying on my stomach, doable if I have a small pillow under my ankle, I can do straight leg raises, and bent knee heel pushes. Knee flexion feels pretty good in this position and Gaby reports good range of motion. I’ll have to trust her as I can’t see it.
I was also able to ‘hang’ my knee as I call it. Pillow under the ankle and nothing under the knee to work on extension – similar exercise to a total knee replacement. I was able to complete 9 minutes and 40 seconds of relative ease, and 20 seconds that were excruciating! As the hamstrings and other knee flexors were already tight, this is something I’m always going to have to work on. I can hardly wait until things heal up enough for me to use the foam roller! NOT!

So while parts of me are very frustrated, I still find it relatively easy to take a nap during the day. “Patience my little one”! I know I know, it has been just two weeks.

I’ve commented before on how I thought the hazardous sidewalks would be very difficult for a handicapped individual – one needing to use self propelled transportation. Now that I’m one in Mexico… here rare few observations, just from this hotel!

The main elevator, maybe 5x5’ is currently out of service and has been since Tom and I got here on July 1. They are ‘waiting for a part’. The service elevator, now the only one is quite a bit smaller and barely big enough for me in the chair and Gaby to join me. I certainly can’t turn around in it.

On the main floor, there is a sofa near the service elevator that limits the access to the ‘up’ button. I can ‘just’ reach it, but it’s a real stretch. Once inside, the elevator I can hardly reach the 4 button. If I’m going from the 4th floor to the lobby (1) I can go in backwards to see to get out, and reach the button as I’m half in and half out of the door. If I’m going to the 4th floor, I must go in forward as the elevator doesn’t quite make it all the way to the even level… 2 “ that only the big wheels and some force get me over. I’ve tried in forward and the small front wheels just turn and get caught in the ‘slot’. And I consider myself very mobile!

I haven’t tried the access to the bathrooms.

Now to get to the street level one must roll down a fairly steep driveway of 30 degrees! There’s no way I could get myself up this nor do I trust myself going down! We have the taxi’s come to the top. But if we’re going to one of the neighboring restaurants, I usually crutch it.

That means down 2 sets of 12 lovely white marble steps. I use the banister and one crutch. Three more steps at the bottom from the main floor to the street level. Down one step to the driveway, across it and up the other side. To Da Massimo, the Italian restaurant there are 8 steps to a ‘landing’ then 4 more up to the outside seating, four more to the inside lounge/lobby area, and then 4 more to the main restaurant. Are you tired yet? When we left the other night they opened up a ‘ramp, unlit, that eliminated about 8 steps. I then choose to climb up the driveway rather than tackle the steps. There is so much effort involved in getting to and from, that I completely forgot about the nice dinner we had.

We were at a mall the other night for a meal and a stroll/roll. While it was better suited and set up for wheel chairs, the entrances and exits to the mall were not well labeled as to wheel chair access. WE had to follow around a good portion of the mall to find the taxi stand… and good thing we bring the crutches as I could get to 15’ of the taxi before I ran out of access. Now, Tom could have tipped me back and lifted me up the curb, but Gaby does not have the strength to do that.

I’m sure I’ll have more to write on this subject back in La Paz. I can already picture the ‘ramps’ around the marina and how inaccessible they are … and I’ won’t be quiet about it!

Obviously I need a change of scenery, food and activity.. a good swim would be very good for my head. I’m hoping the stitch removal tomorrow goes well and the little spots heal quickly so I can get in the water!
Vessel Name: Eagle
Vessel Make/Model: Freeport Islander
Hailing Port: Des Moines, Washington
Crew: Tom Brown & Jeanne Walker
About:
Tom, an avid speed boater for many years, fell in love with sailing shortly after falling in love with Jeanne. Prior to sailing, if his boats didn't go fast enough, he'd buy a bigger engine. He's readily adjusted to traveling at much slower speeds and enjoying the ride. [...]
Extra: This is the story of the love, tears, sweat and bruises on the path of this adventure. We're glad you're joining us!
Eagle's Photos - Main
a few more random images of the past 10 years
12 Photos
Created 15 July 2015
A random sampling of images of the past 10 years. Enjoy.
49 Photos
Created 14 July 2015
The children of the shelter get a day of play at the beach.
60 Photos
Created 22 July 2014
Selected images of Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay and Ketchikan
60 Photos
Created 23 September 2013
Selected images around the islands
66 Photos
Created 19 February 2012
20 Photos
Created 19 February 2012
20 Photos
Created 19 February 2012
20 Photos
Created 19 February 2012
14 Photos
Created 31 December 2011
16 Photos
Created 31 December 2011
20 Photos
Created 31 December 2011
6 Photos
Created 31 December 2011
18 Photos
Created 31 December 2011
A short walk from Man 'o War Cove at Magdalena Bay
20 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
There's a reason it's called Cabo Crazy!
13 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
The sights, angst and scenery of entering a foreign country!
20 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
out and about in Channel Islands/Oxnard
10 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
A few selections of the passage around Pt Conception, the 'Cape Horn of the Pacific' to Channel Islands Harbor/Oxnard.
5 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
Thanksgiving 2011 in paradise
13 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
A collection of photos as we explored the area.
18 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
Collection of photos from our time in Avalon Harbor
20 Photos
Created 5 December 2011
Some photos of all the fun things Lefty saw and got to do while we visited San Francisco>
50 Photos
Created 17 September 2011
Our little eaglet, Lefty as he travels around, sharing our adventure with us.
33 Photos
Created 22 July 2011
Some of our favorite pictures as we travel north and south through the area
12 Photos
Created 22 July 2011
With out a doubt, our favorite spot in the Desolation Sound area.
6 Photos
Created 22 July 2011
A beautiful spot, just north of Desolation Sound
17 Photos
Created 22 July 2011
This is a few of our pictures as we tour the area, 2011
5 Photos
Created 22 July 2011
A collection of photos from the epic party held in Des Moines with our all our family and friends celebrating our departure (humm have to think about that)
24 Photos
Created 27 April 2011
A small group of pictures from our time in the CSR boat yard in Des Moines. This is hopefully our last time in the yard before we take off for Canada and then Mexico
14 Photos
Created 20 March 2011
Pictures of our girl, out doing what she does best...Sail!!
8 Photos
Created 12 December 2010
This a collection of pictures of the things we have done to improve the deck of the boat.
6 Photos
Created 16 September 2010
A few pictures of the frame work we built to hold the jerry jugs secure, and the awesome covers that Jeanne has sewn. This system will give us eight (40 gallons) of deisel, 5 gallons of regular gasoline, and five gallons of emergency potable water.
3 Photos
Created 31 May 2010
Our new wind steering equipent, being installed and ready to use!!
6 Photos
Created 31 May 2010
Just some fun pictures of our sails, including our more colorfull spinnakers
4 Photos
Created 25 May 2010
We had an invitation from some very good friends, Dale and Cynthia to spend a long weekend at their beautiful home in Scottsdale Arizona!! We had a blast!! Here is a brief sample of the pictures we took while we were down there
4 Photos
Created 9 February 2010
we added a new AIS tracking system and tied it into the chart plotter. This shows how we installed it.
2 Photos
Created 18 December 2009
5 Photos
Created 18 December 2009
The boat came from the factory with just a two sided ice box. With the fact that it was almost 9 square feet we felt that we could add some additional insulation and not compromise the needed space.
7 Photos
Created 18 December 2009
While one of the amazing features of the "B" Plan Freeport is the amount of storage, we have done a few things to increase the space or useability of that area
5 Photos
Created 13 December 2009
In an effort to remove the stress out of our manual windlass (Tom's Back) we have installed a new Lewmar windlass and upgraded the bow roller
15 Photos
Created 7 December 2009
This is a group of pictures that might be of interest to somebody. There are many small projects that we have done, but really dont rate a full album to their own.
21 Photos
Created 1 December 2009
Repair and up grade of the Nav station
6 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
Just few of the electronic goodies that we have added to hopefully make our crusing adventures easier
3 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
Changing out the old yellow counter tops and faucet for something a little more up to date!!
5 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
Some photos of us changing the toe rail from teak to extruded aluminum
2 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
Showing off the new solar panels and Blue Sky regulators
6 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
Complete rewire with new AC/DC panels and a battery management system
4 Photos
Created 30 November 2009
The first few days when Eagle was still on the hard in Portland and when she was trucked up to Seattle
3 Photos
Created 29 November 2009
A series of photos showing the repowering of Eagle with her new Vetus engine
8 Photos
Created 29 November 2009

The Crew

Who: Tom Brown & Jeanne Walker
Port: Des Moines, Washington

Where Are We?