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Kipona
Birthday babe bunking in the Bahamas
29/07/2010

cupcake for a cutie

golden sunset
26/07/2010, Abaco Bahama

when the mossies don't drive you down below at dusk, this is the view from the cockpit...............

Frontal
28/06/2010, Man o War Cay, Bahama

sorry I can't show you the next shot, but I'll let your imagine figure it out....

Sammy admiring the view....
27/06/2010, Greent turtle cay bahama

.

my new land transport.....
26/06/2010

island style......

my new deck chair.....
25/06/2010, Green turtle cay, Bahama

amazing what you find on the beach.....

My new dining table
24/06/2010, Green turtle cay, Bahama

conch fritters and guiness.....my new diet!

My new lounge.....
24/06/2010

the scenery from my new lounge chair

My new office....
23/06/2010, Alans Pensacola, Abaco's, Bahama

thanks to Sun Microsystems for making it all possible......!

Happiness is.....
20/06/2010, Abaco's Bahamas

back on the boat again and not spilling your coffee disturbing the peacefulness of dawn sailing.....

Bahamas bound.....
19/06/2010, Port Everglades, Florida

after 6 months of life getting in the way, we're finally back on the boat and heading out again, this time to the Abacos to play for a couple of summer months......

it's official
19/06/2010, the standard, Miami Beach

what is that thing on here finger?

all I want for Xmas is a new bottom job
17/12/2009, Playboy Boatyard FLL, florida

after 3 brutal weeks of sanding, grinding, bogging, sanding some more and then painting, here's Kipona ready to get splashed sporting here new bottom and boot stripe.....that should keep her slick for a couple of years....

happy hikers
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

exhausted with burning calves and knees giving out we're pleased with ourselves for having done it in a day. After sleeping it off tonight we're off tomorrow to Milan for a day before back to Florida.

sea view
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

the view from the sea gives you a better idea of how these villages are nestled neatly in the valleys and inlets.

going back the easy way
12/09/2009, riomaggiore, cinque terre

with our ferry arriving, we grab a quick bevvie before heading back to our village.

stony beach
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

with our last village closing in the distance it was a good chance to rest the calves and cool off in the Med, even if we had to rock hop to get in to it..

long way back!
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

looking back to our village Monterroso in the distance, we're almost at the end of our trek just before our calves give out!

trains and terraces
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

the train line in the Italian side of the Med runs quite literally along the coast....

cliff village
12/09/2009, vernazza, cinque terre

a village along the cinque terre typical of the spectacular country we hiked through

cinque terre
12/09/2009, italian riviera

our hiking destination was a long way off on the horizon but the pain was worth it!

olive country
12/09/2009, cinque terre, italy

the 10km hike from our village along the cinque terre takes you up each of the 5 cliffs and down to into each village, along the way through vineyards and olive groves. It's a spectacular trail but hard work!

beach lounging Italian style
11/09/2009, Monterrosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

you pay for your spot but once there, you can stay the whole day. The best things about stone beaches...? No sand up your bum!

italian riviera vista
11/09/2009, Monterrosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

Monterroso is the only of the 5 cinque terre villages to have a real beach, even if it's stony. The closest bay was our favorite spot and, even though we had to fight to get in there as it's mostly reserved for locals, once there the grey/green water was heaven.

Birthday in the Med
10/09/2009, Monterrosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

Sammy is so sweet and after a candle lit muffin for breakfast and the cutest chihuahua card she tipped off our mediterranean front restaurant of my advancing years.

where's the lift?
10/09/2009, Monterrosso, Cinque Terre, Italy

I could have booked a hotel downtown, but of course we wanted a cute Casa at the top of a hill overlooking the town and away from the hustle that is touristy Monterrosso. Here I am dragging our expensive new luggage up the rock path to our BnB that was to be our home for the next week. Every night after a day of sightseeing and me full of red wine, we had to trek uptown and then the 90 steps from the road to collapse at the top. Next time we'll have separate baggage!

ready to topple
10/09/2009, Pisa, Italy

make no mistake, it really does lean and not just a little bit.

Pisa cathedral
10/09/2009, Pisa, Italy

most of the cathedrals we visited needed artificial lighting to hide their eeriness. I can only imagine what it must have been like when catholic priests roamed the corridors and heathens were hung or worse, all in the name of religion. I doubt I would have lived a long life in those days!

Birthday in Pisa
10/09/2009, Pisa, Italy

no points for guessing the location of this one....the acoustics of the baptistry on the left were as good as any opera house and of course the famous leaning bell tower that you can climb the stairs to the top if you're game. This was a short train stop on the journey from Florence to Monterrosso.

tuscan sunset
09/09/2009, Florence

on the famous bridge over the river in Florence we stop amongst the tourists to snap a romantic sunset shot on our last day in Florence. Overall it's cute and the shopping is great, but it's a bit touristy and expensive. If we were to return, renting an apartment longer term makes more sense and we'd explore a bit further, but with only 3 days this time we'd seen the highlights.

not so shabby
09/09/2009, Duomo Catherdral, Florence

despite the overall shabbyness, you can't help but marvel at the architecture and attention to detail in these buildings in a time when construction was measured in 100's of years Here the entrance doors to the Cathedral.

Duomo
09/09/2009, Florence

The duomo's in Italy comprise a square with a cathedral, separate baptistry and bell tower. The exterior is covered in white and green marble and is quarried from famous hillsides in the area. I've got to say though that it needed a clean and our experience in Italy was the attractions were not as well maintained as in France. Here is the baptistry on the left, the cathedral with famous dome in the middle and the bell tower on the right.

bygone era
08/09/2009, Florence

you could almost hear the clip clop of hooves on the cobblestone streets as reminders of a bygone era when horse and carriage ruled the streets instead of today's Vespas. When candles were lit to mark your villa and you tied your horse up to the rings at the entrance. A time when men were gallant and women were agreeable or they risked being sent to the nunnery....oh to relive those times.....

tuscan countryside
08/09/2009, Florence

the rolling tuscan countryside is home to Chianti and Super Tuscan (solid cabernet) wines and walled fortified medieval villages. It's lush but also hot under a tuscan summer sun.

Uffuzi
08/09/2009, Florence

the Uffuzi houses a mindboggling array of Gothic and Renaissance Italian art...most of it is religious as the aristocracy competed to have the most extravagant art hanging in their villas. After a while all the scene's of virgin mary and the murdering of babies get a bit tired and make you start to question how such violence was undertaken in the name of religion........

next stop, Italy
07/09/2009, Florence

after rushing to drop off our rental car in Nice and just making our train to the border at Italy, we travelled through Columbus' birth town of Genoa and then changed in Milan for the fast Eurostar train to Florence. Another history lessons begins.....

Gastronomic heaven
05/09/2009, ramatuelle

No visit to France is complete without a culinary photo and I've had a lot of fine meals in my time but this was the best I've had in recent memory. The starter you see here was a kind of duck bruschetta with lentil tart and arugula greens followed by a medium rare filet topped with creamy foie gras and sauteed mushroom with a balsamic, red wine and pan juice reduction. As the menu was all French I probably don't do the translation justice, but it was mindblowing. A fitting end to a wonderful 10 days in the South of France.

Mademoiselle in Ramatuelle
05/09/2009, ramatuelle

I love this photo of Samantha....she looks such a French beauty.....

Historic Ramatuelle
05/09/2009, ramatuelle

it wasn't all party and we did get in some sightseeing while the boys were off at the Remy Martin wedding of the year, the whole reason we're all in St Tropez in the first place. Here is Sammy atop the historic village of Ramatuelle with the vista of St Tropez and St Maxim in the background.

Rondini tropeziennes
04/09/2009, downtown St Tropez

the most famous handmade leather sandals come from here. At US$150 a pop Sammy only window shopped, but Fred indulged in a pair that suited his style....

dockside
04/09/2009, downtown St Tropez

a day when we could drag ourselves out of bed to venture downtown in the daylight.

moonrise over the Med
03/09/2009

as we are the last to leave Club55 again, the moon rises over a perfect Mediterranean

spectacular schooners
03/09/2009, pampellone beach, St Tropez

This is a sailing blog after all (not facebook) so I thought I should include at least one sailing shot. Here the whole beach rose to watch as a big reefed down schooner charged toward the beach on a windy day before tacking away beside a sistership. Hoots and horns rang out in appreciation of the spectacle of seamanship as I thought about how Kipona might fit in anchored off the beach here? Maybe next season......

Poseur
03/09/2009, Club 55, Pampellonne beach St Tropez

Hot!.....speaking of lounging that is Sammy's second favorite pastime

loungers
03/09/2009, Club 55, Pampellonne beach St Tropez

and so was our days at Club 55, lounging with old friends and new friends

Aperitivos
03/09/2009, Club 55, Pampellonne beach St Tropez

chilled rose from a local vineyard delivered by a waiter to our cabana seems a little extravagant but it just seemed like the thing to do....?

Le Club 55
03/09/2009, pampellone beach, St Tropez

for bamboo and thatch with old sails hung around, it is the essence of shabby chic, but it's a favorite celeb hangout....Here's a bunch of celebs in their own right.....

cute couple
03/09/2009, pampellone beach, St Tropez

beach bunnies

Shapely Sheila
03/09/2009, the beach in St Tropez

sheila's in great shape

feeling better after a body surf
03/09/2009, pampellone beach, St Tropez

our first beach day before we relocated to Club55.

coastal style
02/09/2009, ready to hit beach Club 55

Sammy stylishly dressed for the beach

Recovery
02/09/2009, Le Villa

even though breakfast was often in the afternoon, it was welcomed by the hungry masses needing a hangover cure.... behind the smiles there are serious hangovers (except for Sammy who doesn't drink bless her heart). The eyes tell the story.....

destroyed
02/09/2009, Le Villa

we did this day after day.....it was a complete blur as one day melted into another...the routine was... wake up whenever you can, hopefully before the sunsets again, hit the beach at Le Club 55 for late lunch and aperitivos, home to change for dinner at another fabulous restaurant in St Tropez and then club until the wee-hours....thanks heavens we're only here for ten days...!

brother and sister act
01/09/2009, Le Villa pool party, St Ropez

The "A" alpha team......brother Jamie is a party starter wherever he goes and these glasses came all the way from Miami just for the occasion.

I've got a feeling...that tonights gonna be a good night!
01/09/2009, party in Le Villa

our theme song for the whole week....it's indellibly printed in my brain, you know one of those songs that when you hear it ten years from now you are instantly transported back in time to that experience. It's not that it's a great song so much as how much fun we had when it was playing. Here's Fred and the gang having a good night!

never plead guilty!
31/08/2009, club Le Cave du Roy

that's a good motto to live by.......Sammy and Lore hiding behind the strong arm of Lore's boyfriend

groovers
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!

divas
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 it....no 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 Paris....as 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
27/08/2009

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.

tarte-au-tin
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
26/08/2009

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 it....here'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 sky....it was a crystal clear summers day.

silhouette
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
25/08/2009

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!

loovver
23/08/2009

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 Paris....at 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 France......how 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
07/07/2009

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
02/07/2009

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 work....here 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 swim.....one of our anchorage's main attractions was the swimming pigs.....you 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!....here'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 see....here'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.....

caveman
13/06/2009, Cambridge Cay

finding a home amongst the stalactites and stalgmites

work life balance in Exuma
12/06/2009

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...............

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