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The Hynes Honeymoon!
Top 10 Things We Miss
08/16/2009, En-route to Vava'u, Tonga

Author: Elizabeth & Seth
Picture: Our friend Eben bringing items to the Galapagos from "the real world" (like granola for E!)

It's TOP 10 week! Our GPS Trip Log just flipped over the 9,999 mile mark and reset itself to 0000 miles, so to celebrate our achievement in sailing over 10,000 miles from Norfolk, Virginia to Bora Bora we will post a week's worth of Top 10 lists. Today's TOP 10...

TOP 10 THINGS WE MISS!

Elizabeth's Top 10 List!
10) Snowboarding in Tahoe
9) A real grocery store (with plenty of granola!)
8) Baths at night with a never ending supply of hot water
7) Walgreen's
6) Favorite Foods (North Beach Pizza, Houston's Cheese Burger, TJ Burrito)
5) My yoga studio (crunch gym)
4) My job
3) My hairdresser and Mani-Pedis!
2) Union Square Shopping! (especially, Banana Republic & Zara)
1) Friends and Family

Seth's Top 10 List!
10) Surfing on the weekend, squash during the week
9) Up-to-date news magazines
8) Motorcycle rides up the coast
7) Our apartment and views over the bay
6) Sushi restaurants (Sushi-Ran!), Mexican food (Burritos!)
5) Starbucks (espresso!)
4) Good wine from actual wine-glasses (not plastic!)
3) Speedy internet
2) West Marine - oh how I miss west marine...
1) Friends and Family

Top 10 Changes
08/15/2009, Currently in Niue

Author: Seth
Picture: Me and my best friend, the generator (removed for an overhaul in Tortola).

It's TOP 10 week! Our GPS Trip Log just flipped over the 9,999 mile mark and reset itself to 0000 miles, so to celebrate our achievement in sailing over 10,000 miles from Norfolk, Virginia to Bora Bora we will post a week's worth of Top 10 lists. Today's TOP 10...

TOP 10 CHANGES. If we could start over, what would we do different?

10) Give ourselves more than 2 months to prepare a boat for a 15 month voyage!

9) Ease concerns and add a back up auto helm (hand steering for days could get old).

8) Bring a scuba tank compressor to fill our own tanks ($10 a tank is expensive!)

7) Add more toys - like kayaks, kite boards, wake boards, etc.

6) Change to a roller-furling main sail, making reefing a simple task, not a disaster.

5) Remember to bring a sea-drogue when passing the Colombian coast.

4) Get a man's dingy, not a child's. We need 15hp minimum next time!

3) Add two reading lights and two fans in the main cabin (recipe for a happy marriage!)

2) Add solar panels to every flat surface on the boat (generators suck!)

1) Install a head that NEVER smells (someone please tell me that it exists?!)

Top 10 Disasters
08/14/2009, Currently in Niue

It's TOP 10 week! Our GPS Trip Log just flipped over the 9,999 mile mark and reset itself to 0000 miles, so to celebrate our achievement in sailing over 10,000 miles from Norfolk, Virginia to Bora Bora we will post a week's worth of Top 10 lists. Today's TOP 10...

TOP 10 DISASTERS!

For the most part I like to sit back and laugh at other sailors when they make mistakes. We've seen some doosies like the Moorings Charter Boat that rammed a clearly marked reef going 7 knots or the French Sailor who thought it perfectly normal to tie onto another boat (instead of a dock) when all the slips were taken in the marina. But to be fair, we've had our own fair share of moments...

10) No Boat Heat. Our "honeymoon" in Norfolk Virginia was turning out to be very different from the rosy picture I painted of palm trees and red-stripe. It was cold, wet and not very nice outside for the first two months of our live aboard days. So when I finally realized our boat had heat (of all things!), Elizabeth was both annoyed with me and happy for the discovery. We had been freezing for no reason. Ooops.

9) Anchor Jammed in Bow Roller. One day we hauled up the anchor sideways and managed to jam it into the bow roller so tight it refused to come loose. So while we motored around the protected anchorage and the other boats, I began to loudly bang on the anchor with a hammer to try and get it loose. It must have looked interesting with our anchor jutting out from the boat diagonally and me loudly swinging away with a hammer. We got it off and crept out of the anchorage feeling pretty stupid about ourselves.

8) Hauling up Coral Rock. It could happen to anyone, but of course it would happen to us. In yet another anchoring saga we somehow managed to snag a 50 pound rock with the peculiar shape of our anchor and had a heck of a time getting it off. We couldn't do that again if we tried - and it certainly looked funny to anyone passing by!

7) Dropping Bottle of Rum. It would have been bad enough to waste an entire bottle of Rum for no reason, but to drop it into a million little pieces of broken glass on a boat with a barefoot crew made it worse. And to top it all off, the fish we were planning on using the rum to kill was a worthless skipjack anyway. And replacing it in French Polynesia would not be cheap. How humiliating - at the very least we should have caught an edible tuna for all this trouble...

6) Skipping Customs and Immigration. About 20 miles off Antigua we realized that we forgot to visit customs and immigration on the way out of the country. Yikes! Would the next port admit us without our clearance papers? Would Antigua officials come looking for us? Should we turn around and go back into the wind? In the end it seems that most customs officials could care less about doing their job correctly (or timely) and we were not even questioned about our lack of paperwork. Sadly we forgot two additional times - but our luck continued.

5) Running Over Dock Line. Tahiti has a unique docking system where you back toward the dock and pick up a mooring line before tying stern-to. Although it should have been obvious, we left our boat in gear as we pulled up the line and it immediately got wrapped around the prop. In front of all the other boaters I had to dive into the port waters off Papeete to get the line loose. This was a public and dirty job that could have been avoided with even an ounce of advance thinking. Doh.

4) Hitting Log. Running over something can be hard to avoid at night. But during the middle of the day you would like to think that we would see a 30-foot long tree trunk floating in the middle of the ocean. Instead we heard the tree hit our Starboard hull twice - once in the bow and then a second time on the keel. Aside from taking off a little bottom paint it caused no damage, but it was a good reminder for us to pay a little more attention during the day. We got lucky.

3) Mast Track Removal. On our second day of 10 across the southern part of the Atlantic Ocean we went to reef for an oncoming squall. Reefing is important and when the sail refused to come down it put shivers down our spines. For better or for worse, the rain from the squall managed to pull the mast car off the track completely, so while we were able to bring the sail down we also lost our top car. After an 8 hour repair at sea we were on our way again, but with a permanent reef in the main sail. Not good...

2) Dingy Flip. After checking into the San Blas islands I returned to the boat and clipped the dingy into the davit lift to haul it out of the water. Unfortunately I forgot to haul it out and we started motoring away with the dingy sideways! Although we quickly heard the water slapping against the dink and I cut the engines, it was too late. I watched in horror as the entire dingy flipped upside-down, pouring all of its contents into the ocean. Elizabeth dove through the gasoline-covered waters to retain our jerry can while I managed to flip it back over from the steps. Although we managed to keep from breaking anything, it was a complete disaster! Anyone watching that would surely think we were idiots...

1) Replacing Toilet on Day 1. When we purchased our boat we fully expected things to go wrong along the way, but when the head (toilet) failed to flush on our first day we couldn't help but get disappointed. This was one dirty job that needs no further explanation. To all those future boat owner's out there - don't think "it can't happen to you" because that's what we thought!

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Seth & Elizabeth Hynes
Who: Seth & Elizabeth Hynes
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