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31/08/2009, club Le Cave du Roy

trying to keep up with the dancing diva that is Samantha

ready for destruction
31/08/2009, streets of St Tropez

our small group doubled one night to go hit the club.....nice pins there Sammy!

30/08/2009, Le Villa

not to be left out, the girls get in on the cool act. Here's Samantha and Sheila ready to party....

too cool for school
30/08/2009, pre-destruction

architects, fashionistas, boutique and salon owners....there's way too much talent and good looks here.....I can't compete with that. The boys ready to take on the town.

the team
30/08/2009, downtown St Tropez

here's the team fuelling up before hitting the famous club Le Cave du Roy.

Le Villa
30/08/2009, St Tropez

a classic provencial villa was to become the scene of much destruction of brain cells over the coming week as Samantha's brother and friends joined us for one of the best party vacation weeks I've ever experienced.

b'fast in the atrium, anyone?
29/08/2009, BnB Antibe

this was the most expensive room we booked for the whole trip....lucky it was only one night! But at only 50metres to the beach down a quiet lane in Juan Le Pins, it was worth it.

my first swim in the Med
29/08/2009, Antibe

I'm an early riser which is good if you want uncrowded beaches and I was surprised at how clean the beach and water was given the summer crowds. It was nice to shake off the city clothes for a first dip in the Med.

off to the beach
29/08/2009, Antibe BnB

I couldn't wait to have my first swim in the Med.

the art of being french
28/08/2009, TGV paris to nice

it's easy to swing into the joie de vivre...(forgive me if I misspelled). Here on the fast train planning how to get from Nice train station to the rental car at the airport and then to our BnB in Antibe.

flower market
28/08/2009, along the Seine

there's something about the light in France....whether it's morning or afternoon or dusk it has this amazing softness to wonder artists flock there to paint. Here's a pretty flower market in the morning light....

le navigator
28/08/2009, east bank, paris

choosing a restaurant was a constant battle all over europe.....there's so many great places to choose from that I like to take my time considering the menu and the ambience, but Sammy just wants to be fed or she becomes bearish.....

I don't mind paying for good food, but I get more than grumpy when I think I'm getting ripped off. I was determined to seek out some authentic French cuisine at the right price and I had my way with this one....not only because I could identify with the name, but their duck was amazing as was the whole experience.....I was right on the money here.

yes we have to see another church!
28/08/2009, notre damme

so a photo of the most famous church in France to close out our week in Paris.

do we have to visit another church?
27/08/2009, our cosy apartment

I loved the food and wine in a real foody I appreciated the variety that is available and I've certainly never eaten so much steak tartare and steak frittes in all my life! You can spend weeks in a single arrondissment without eating at the same restaurant twice and what better way to relax after a hard day of church hunting than with a good red, right Sammy?

another sammy silhouette
27/08/2009, walking back from Eiffel to home

don't ask me what the statue is but the photo was good....

Eiffel anxiety
27/08/2009, atop the Eiffel tower

although we appear to be enjoying the view it's a little claustrophobic going up there and it was packed full of people. So we've done it but didn't enjoy it enough to go back again....

yet another baguette

here I am trying to look as if I'm enjoying a baguette after paying 6Euro from some rip-off Eiffel Tower vendor. Sammy loves it when I get like this......and it happened a lot throughout Europe.

the Arc
27/08/2009, Arc de Triomphe

I waited for ages to get this shot without any cars in the picture. Being a roundabout the Arc is rarely without traffic. Here's Sammy trying to look patient.

a different angle
27/08/2009, monmatre, paris

me getting cutesy with the camera

the circus that is monmatre
26/08/2009, monmatre, paris

it's such a shame that Monmatre is a tourist trap. We encountered really poor mime/dance dance acts and muggings in the first 5 minutes we were there. Still it's another impressive example of what can be built with church donations.

26/08/2009, outside Notre Damme

this had to be one of the best tarts we had in Paris, and Sammy sampled her fair share! Curbside dining has it's price but it's worth it for the people watching...

the devil wears Prada

remember when Anne Hathaway (gasp, she's so gorgeous!) throws her mobile into the fountain in the same movie after quitting her high fashion job? Well this was's Sammy (gasp she's so gorgeous too!) with a peek of the Eiffel Tower in the background.

grass at last!
26/08/2009, luxembourg gardens

the french love their parks and they hang out in them constantly....but most of them have dirt floors which detracts from the experience a little.....finally in luxembourg gardens I managed to find a bit of grass to sit on. Check out the was a crystal clear summers day.

25/08/2009, louvre

sammy likes silhouettes and our little camera doesn't do backlighting so well which makes it a little tough....but here is one she managed to capture really well.

art is everywhere
25/08/2009, toulleries gardens

it's overwhelming sometimes, everywhere you turn there is examples of fine art with photo opportunities

love blossoms
25/08/2009, that famous bridge in Paris

isn't that just sweet....!

boat and model

one for the boys....

model boats
25/08/2009, toulleries gardens

these were so cool for the kids to play with

oh so civilised
25/08/2009, toulleries gardens

cwapes, qwiche and wed wine in the gardens.....all that was missing was a qwassant!


here's a different take on the entrance to the Louvre.....pronounced loovve not loovver for those culturally devoid out there reading this.....You can't escape the culture in each of the entrances there was either an opera singer, a cellist, or a violinist....I takes a good whole day to do the Louvre justice so we didn't go in but left a little something for our next paris visit.....

history lesson
22/08/2009, our local paris neighbourhood

I was in for a history lesson and Sammy was determined to boost my culture lacking consciousness with anything that resembled a church....but I have to admit that I'm now a convert (not religiously speaking of course) to the grand churches of Europe. This is not even Notre Damme, just a church we found when walking the local neighbourhood....

baguettes for breakfast even
21/08/2009, our miniature apartment

baguettes for every occaasion are de rigeur in cute is our apartment eh, even if you can't swing a cat in it!

from bahamas to baguettes
20/08/2009, siene, paris

yes it's a change in scenery, but there's no escaping the allure of Paris.....tasting a real baguette on the banks of the siene seems so authentic....getting into the swing of things on my first day in France.

back in FLL
19/07/2009, entering the basin

Kipona snugged down and ready for the dock as we enter the breakwater into fort lauderdale. The photo is courtesy of Samantha's Aunt Wendy who lives atop one of the highrise condominiums at the entrance.

a melter on the banks

no cruise would be complete without the mandatory sunset shot,,,,but they don't come much better than this melting sun on the bahama banks.....

snapper on the banks
06/07/2009, Bahama Banks

the only fish I caught without a spear the whole trip and what a beauty! No doubt that spearfishing is hard work, I'll take a fishing rod anyday.......

love that cruising spinnaker
05/07/2009, enroute to Nassau

after the nasty squally from the day before, sammy takes some time off to relax on deck on a perfect day under the spinnaker.......

caffiene fix
04/07/2009, alles enroute to nassau

mornings are not my best time......

brave face
03/07/2009, enroute from Staniel to Allens Cay

here's sammy being brave at the helm in the face of a whiteout squall and double reefed main as we return up the islands to Nassau

lucky boys

sammy and coral with her boys on our last day at Staniel

sammy with max
01/07/2009, twin cays, exuma

sammy can't resist a cute dog and max is no exception

work life balance at Marty's
30/06/2009, staniel cay, exuma

Marty our host allowed me to connect to her wireless to stay online with on the deck at her house....for the boys from Gulf Charters....note the IYT t-shirt....

hasty retreat
29/06/2009, Compass Cay, Exuma

while they're bottom feeders, nurse sharks can still suck your arm off. Here's Sammy deciding discretion is the better part of valour when one gets a little too close.....

shark bait hoo-ha-ha
28/06/2009, Compass Cay, Exuma

Coral and Sammy getting fearless....better them than me right...I mean someone has to man the camera....?

shark adventure
27/06/2009, Compass Cay, Exuma

here's Sammy up close and personal with a Nurse shark

pigs might not fly.....
26/06/2009, Big Major's Spot, Staniel Cay

but they sure can of our anchorage's main attractions was the swimming can smell 'em a football field length off the beach and they're not shy in coming out to the dinghy for a free meal.....

we'll be jammin,n,jammin,n,jammin
25/06/2009, beach road, Staniel Cay

grab whateve you can to make a noise....whistles, gallon drums and even rocks in a bottle will do!'s Coral's boys jammin with the locals.....

twilight tug-o-war
24/06/2009, on the beach in Staniel

no video parlors here....just good ole back to basics entertainment......

it's a party mon!
23/06/2009, Staniel Cay

here they are lined up ready for the fireworks at the Bahama independence day free bbq put on by the local community.

island hopping in Pipe Creek
22/06/2009, Sampson Cay, Exuma

Brian, Coral and the boys took Sammy and I on a tour up and down their local islands. The protected Pipe Creek inlets are amazing...our time in Staniel was so much more fun for having shared it with them. Here we are leaving Sampson Cay

gracious hosts
21/06/2009, Marty's on Staniel

you couldn't ask for more gracious hosts in Coral and Marty...they took us into their home as family and made Samantha and I feel so welcome, I didn't want to leave....

island transport
20/06/2009, Staniel Cay

Brian and the boys having a blast on a serious golf cart

happy couple
19/06/2009, Marty's on Staniel

here we are on Marty's deck after 8 weeks of cruising looking decidedly thinner and me a little fruity around the edges! That's Thunderball Cave in the background.

double trouble
19/06/2009, Marty's house on Staniel

here's sammy and high school buddy Coral who lives on Staniel with her mum Marty, new man Brian and her two boys. Lot's of story swapping with these two!

squeezing thru the entrance
17/06/2009, Thunderball Cave, Staniel Cay

locals recommend diving Thunderball only at slack tide otherwise you can get sucked out the cut into Exuma sound.....sammy negotiating the entrance to the cave...

Sammy in Thunderball Cave
16/06/2009, Staniel Cay

made famous in the bond movie of the same name, thunderball really is a must's sammy swimming amongst the protected sea life inside

work life balance in Staniel Cay
15/06/2009, Staniel Cay

once again work interrupts my lifestyle.....darn it

quick dip
14/06/2009, Compass Cay

Sammy couldn't resist jumping over the side of the dinghy for a quick dip in the champagne waters of Conch Cut.....

13/06/2009, Cambridge Cay

finding a home amongst the stalactites and stalgmites

work life balance in Exuma

hard at work on my next project

peaceful anchorage
11/06/2009, Warderick Wells

Kipona on her mooring at the Wells

blow hole
10/06/2009, Warderick Wells

sammy getting wind in her whistle...............

Whales in Warderick Wells
09/06/2009, Exuma Land and Sea Park

Drift diving in front of the ranger station was proof that protection works for we saw more sea life there than anywhere in the Bahamas. Huge grouper and lobsters were everywhere. But it wasn't always the case as this whale skeleton is a reminder of............

Shroud(ed in mosquitos) Cay
08/06/2009, Shroud Cay, Exuma Land and Sea Park

many rave about Shroud Cay as pristine and maybe I'm cynical but I found it just a mosquito infested swamp. Sammy braving the mosquitos for Sports Illustrated photo style shoot.....

Happy Landings
07/06/2009, Normans Cay, Exuma

it was a little sentimental for Sammy to return to her grandfathers beach house on Normans Cay....the house is now a little worse for wear but what a great location, right on Exuma sound with steps down to your own private beach!....unfortunately the drug lords in the 70's made living there a little unhealthy, so it was sold.....but the memories live on.

yum..fresh lobbie
07/06/2009, Normans Cay, Exuma

while Sammy scolded me profusely for catching one out of season with tales of boat confiscation and fines, I couldn't resist spearing my first Bahama lobbie....and what a catch it was!

wicked summer squall
06/06/2009, Normans Cay, Exuma

it's hard to capture the ferocity of a squall in a photo, but these summer squalls were some of the worst lightning, wind and whiteouts I've seen. Even though we're in the lee it tested our ground tackle and anchor set.

de-lightful dinghy duo
05/06/2009, Allens Cay, Exums

Laura joined us in Nassau and we headed down islands. Laura had only a few days with us before she was poached by a South African boat going back to Nassau. But it was easy on the eyes while she was around......Here's Sammy and Laura looking their best......

Nassau charm
04/06/2009, Nassau

while Nassau has it's detractors, there is still colonial charm to be found.....

03/06/2009, Bimini

removing all the critters that have made Kipona home while tied up in Florida for a year.......gotta love that water colour!

Bahamas at last!
01/06/2009, Nassau

after a long weekend in North Carlina I finally managed to untie Kipona and get her off the docks. After a false start (or I should say faulty starter), we got to Miami where Sammy joined and we left for Bimini, Chub Cay and then Nassau. Here's Sammy helming into Nassua with the north east lighthouse in the background.

tea for two?
19/05/2009, Biltmore village, NC

breakfast actually.....but when it's in a 1900's BnB it tastes so much better....

like my new home?
18/05/2009, Biltmore estate, NC

yes I just sold my stock options and thought I'd buy a a few 100, 000 acres to go with my new craftsman built home.....! Hah....for a modern day castle circa 1910, this Biltmore estate is impressive....but were they happy?

17/05/2009, Mt Mitchell North Carolina

from sailing in Thailand to the highest peak on the US east coast is a big many ways! Here I am after trekking to the summit...well at least from the car park anyway...of Mt Mitchell in North Carolina.

Doing what Sammy does best
16/04/2009, Captain Hook's on Koh Kood

luxuriating on a day bed with latte after an awesome seafood buffet and exploring a waterfall on some tropical island.....

luxuriating on Koh Mak

Sammy lounging in paradise......

a good reason to go sailing!

Sammy looking fabulous working on her suntan.....
Not only does she look good but she can tie a bowline too!
What more can you ask for?

13/04/2009, koh kood beach resort

trying desperately to send a work email with can tell how slow the internet is by how many beers it takes to send one email .....

13/04/2009, bangbao on koh kut

lounging on the foredeck in my rainbow warrior hammock

13/04/2009, koh kut

captain hooks resort

13/04/2009, koh chang

breakfst in bangbao

worklifebalance part1

pretending to work

grey days
13/04/2009, boiling pot, noosa heads

sammmy on a grey day at Noosa

A new romance in the New Year

or CR as Sammy and I like to call it for now.....

now where was that last chocolate bar!
31/12/2008, deep in the dry store locker

with help from Mr Fixit , Tom (pictured) , we installed Kipona's new watermaker which required a little modular re-working of the plumbing....

Xmas cruise
25/12/2008, new river, fort lauderdale

Xmas in FLL

good place for a chevvy
17/12/2008, boat ramp

the name of this guys boat was "bail out"....appropriate don't you think?

13/12/2008, cooley's dock

in Australia we call these is a male and female playing around my hull

13/12/2008, downtown FLL

Fort Lauderdale is the megayacht capital of the world and they all go up river for their refits. As they pass my berth the shadow they cast blocks the light from my cabin and I casually peer outside to see the latest in money-is-no-object yachting. They have names like, dividend or vitaminsea or recyclingmakescents or outback (as in outback steakhouse)....

Captain Jack Mouse
21/11/2008, Changi Airport, Singapore

Mickey dressed up for Xmas and pretending to look fearsome in his own Black Pearl.

don't crap on the deck!
16/08/2008, Monkey Island..Thailand

They just wouldn't we started up and put the sails up....they just went to the top of the mast....but a couple of flicks with the spinnaker halyard had them leaping into the water and back to shore...

Beach landing with an audience....
16/08/2008, Monkey Island..Thailand

I thought the dinghy was histroy as they searched for food....they even started chewing on the inflatable tubes...nasty!...but they soon lost interst after they found the taste of rubber was not to their liking!

16/08/2008, Monkey Island..Thailand

these guys swam 100 metres out to the boat and then climbed the mast to sit on the spreaders...our new lookouts...

elephant ride anyone?
20/07/2008, outside my condo in Thailand

Thailand is a ld of never know what you might see hanging out on your balconey...

putting out the fires part II
23/06/2008, waxy's across the road from IYT

a hard earned fire fight deserves a hard earned ale or several...putting out our own fires...

Who said girls can't fight fires?
22/06/2008, Resolve Fire Training centre

half of our training crew were none of the guys missed a class!

she looks great with her gear off!
22/06/2008, Resolve Fire Training centre

Ginger posing with the firey's....she's a live wire this one...:)

STCW95 Fire and Safety Training
22/06/2008, Resolve Fire Training centre was hot...I must of lost 4 lbs that day....

STCW95 Fire and Safety Training
22/06/2008, Resolve Fire Training centre

how it's done...

STCW95 Fire and Safety Training
Even hotter!
21/06/2008, Resolve Fire Training centre

geared up and redy to fight fire partner Ginger and me ready to do some damage !

STCW95 Fire and Safety Training
Hot and Hot
20/06/2008, IYT Training Facility, Fort Lauderdale, florida

How many people can u fit in a life raft..?....actually quite a lot...but first u hv to get it the right way up!

Pool training in Life raft survival techniques.

Gotta leave sometime....
fine, 15 knts E/SE
03/06/2008, Gulf Stream crossing

Duty calls and it's back to Fort Louderdale for reliable (cheaper) phone and internet access so I can return to my day job....Here's Kipona wing-and-wing with main and genniker set, crossing the Gulf Stream on a calm day.

Bahama Sunset
03/06/2008, Double Breaster Cay, Abaco Bank, Bahamas

no sailing adventure is complete without a sunset shot. This one looking over Bahama Bank towards Florida, about 250 mile and a million worlds away.

Streets of Abaco
29/05/2008, Greent Turtle Cay, Abacos, Bahamas

these outer islands seem lost in time. Narrow lanes where everyone get around in golf carts, cape cod style cottages, and the sound of conch getting beaten linger in the air is all typcial of these laidback cays

Give that man a decent meal...
28/05/2008, the beach on Pelican Cay

conch and fish are good for the diet and waste line, but give me a T-Bone anyday!

Two peas in a pod
28/05/2008, Pelican Cay, off Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas

even after 6 months, I can't tell them apart....Patrick and Thomas in clear Bahamian water

Love shack on your own private idaho
27/05/2008, Pelican Cay, off Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas

how's this....your own private Bahamian island complete with natural ocean side swimming lagoon and sheltered sandy bay with dock for your cruiser. Someone's got the right idea....fortunatly they weren't in residence so we camped out for a couple of hours like we owned the place.....

The crew at the Wrecking Tree
27/05/2008, Greent Turtle Cay, Abacos, Bahamas

After fixing a deck leak back in FL, the Russell's finally catch up to me at the Wrecking Tree Bar. So-named becuase in the old days the "wreckers" would bring their salvage from stricken vessels into this spot before sending to the auctions at Nassau.

you can find here, you can find them there
26/05/2008, Black Sound, Greent Turtle Cay, Bahamas

here's one for the Wharram fans out there....

Lazy Days
26/05/2008, Greent Turtle Cay, Abacos, Bahamas

while all the good anchorages are exposed on the SW sode of the cays, the atlantic NE side has some beautiful beaches. Here's a classic postcard Bahamas shot....

safe haven
25/05/2008, Black Sound, Greent Turtle Cay, Bahamas

after getting his fill of conch and 'cudda, Sam jumped ship at Spanish Cay to fly back to Florida 10 days after leaving. Meanwhile I headed to calm water, sick of bobbing around in exposed anchorages. I tied up here for the final week while the Russells caught up.

Chicken of the Sea
25/05/2008, Double Breaster Cay, Abaco Bank, Bahamas

the final result.....conch cerviche with cudda and chardy.....

King of Conch
24/05/2008, Double Breaster Cay, Abaco Bank, Bahamas

of course, then you have to get the little buggers out and they don't make it easy. Hammer and cold chisel are tools of choice but there's plenty of meat to be had......Sam showing us how it's done.

The colours of Bahama
24/05/2008, Double Breaster Cay, Abaco Bank, Bahamas

you just snorkel along in 6-10 feet of water and pick 'em up right off the bottom. This cay is at the remote NE end of the Bahamas, so these one's are bigger than you find in more populated areas.

Basic Instinct
22/05/2008, Abaco Bank, Bahamas

Sam is the classic hunter and gattherer type. Even is Thailand he's paddling around off his yacht fishing or diving for clams. Here's one of our Bahama 'cudda catches.

Captain Sam
21/05/2008, West End to Memory Rock, Bahamas

pretending to be an autopilot, here's Sam steering us to our waypoint for the reef pass while I try to figure out which way is N down below...

17st Causeway Bridge
21/05/2008, Fort Louderdale, Florida

with clearance to leave the US, we head out of FL to the Atlantic. Just one of the 100 or so bridges that span the intra-coastal waterway down the east coast. Following behind a newly polished >100 foot schooner....

Cash, Ass or one rides for free!
20/05/2008, Lake Worth Inlet, Palm Beach florida

like all good swabs, ya havta start at the bottom and work your way up. Here's crew member Hartford finding new ways to cool off in Florida before we head to the Bahamas.

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