04/03/2009, Rodney Bay St Lucia
You can see a graphic of my worklist that I saved as a JPEG for this blog entry. Ever since the early 90's, when the Coast Guard (thank you Capt Mohn) sent me to Franklin Quest's (now Franklin Covey) Time Management seminar I have loved to compile and manangae lists. Right up until the day I retired I used my Franklin Covey Day Planner with great success. In fact I still have most of the years saved in paper format that is an archive of what I was doing when over a good number of years.
I now have a hybrid system to keep me on task with all the goals and jobs, parts lists and expectations I have set out for myself. All now are in the electronic format as the paper Day Planner of the old school just does not work on a boat. That is okay because the information revolution has given me plenty of tools to work with.
This organization of information in my opinion is important to the cruising sailor. Managing a boat that is on the move or getting ready to go on the move has a ton of stuff to organize, each is important in its own right.
Just as an example of a small thing that needs yearly attention is the CG Documentation for Christa. Why my former employer wants to renew the doc every year is beyond me, but that is another issue. I know 45 days prior to expiration the CG sends out a renewal notice. How do I remember? That's right, I dash it down in a list, but wait. I also have an electronic calendar that sends me an email to remind me. So I make a note to email the mail forwarding service to see if it has been received. Okay they have it and ask where to send it? Well now that is a hell of a question. Better get that on a list, consult the calendar and check weather to determine where I may be? Antigua? Does Jolly Harbor have FedEx? Can I stomach the $45 shipping charge to get my documentation? Guess I better because if I don't get it, the documentation expires holding me up at Customs or causing an international incident at the next port with my expired registration and a vigorous round of ink stamping. What a hassle, but one that is made easier by being proactive. I can think of 100 things I need to be more proactive on, but one of them is not getting things on my worklists. Getting them checked off the list is much more time consuming. In fact here is a shocker. I've had on my worklist to mount my oars for the dingy for well over a year. That is right, I have been motoring around in the dingy with no oars for a long long time! What happens if the engine quiets you might say? Good question, ask Janina she'll tell you first hand. No matter though, it's on the list. But today I can proudly say with Tom Larson's assistance 4 holes were drilled in 15 minutes, job complete and task swept away with one keystroke.
And here is my point. Just about everything I jot down on a list eventually gets done. I still have the "Goal Planning Sheet" from 1995 that says "Retire, go sailing." Done. Maybe I should make a new one with the heading "Get a Job." Sometimes I'll assign myself the task of reading the worklist, that way I know right off the bat I can strike something from the list. I'm jazzed straight away.
The graphic is my MindMap. The software I use is free from Freemind. This is what I use to manage all the things I have going on in terms of worklists. I first learned about mindmapping while reading a book by Michael Gelb chronicling the genius of Leonardo da Vinci. Now Leo was a pioneer in the use of mindmaps but certainly not the first. The concept of the mindmap has to do with how the brain processes information. A mindmap looks similar to a brain cell with the root and dendrites branching out in different directions. The knockin simply will be move efficient when looking at a mindmap as it processes the connection between between seemingly disconnected items.
I use mindmaps for anything that requires advance planning which for me is just about everything. That's how I roll.
PS: Don't forget sailblogs is now my secondary blog and I will stop updating this site pretty soon. So don't forget to bookmark Christa's New Website. Here is the URL. http://sailingvesselchrista.blogspot.com/ or just click on the hyperlink "Christa's New Website."
04/02/2009, Rodney Bay St Lucia
Ahoy! You can see Christa framed in the open air doorway to the thatched roofed cafe. Sandpiper and Christa are really in a delightful spot tucked right under the NW corner of the Rodney Bay. The cafe has excellent food, a bookswap, art and whatnot, cats, free wi-fi and an incredible view of our boats. It is tough not to get welled up with an acknowledgment of my good fortune when confronted with such a scene.
Amy from Sandpipers mom Pat and her boyfriend Dr. Bob are staying at the Sandals resort, so Tom and Amy have been doing some "all inclusive" visitation including long hot showers and marveling at the pasty tourists. During this period of Sandpiper/Christa inactivity I have been enjoying myself with a daily NY Times downloaded onto my Amazon Kindle and trips into the Rodney Bay Marina complex. Nice and mellow.
Tom has been over a couple of times to help out with boat projects. Tom during his Coast Guard time spent mucho time servicing Aids to Navigation which are electrical appliances. So he understands electrons pretty well. I have been having trouble with the starting of the Yanmar for a long time. Longtime readers of the blog may remember me changing out a starter and adding a dedicating cranking battery about a year ago. The problem of "click click" and then an eventual turning over of the engine has persisted. Even Mike from Adamo, no engineering slouch swung by Christa while in St John to troubleshoot. Mike made some progress by eliminating some trouble spots and zeroing in on the ignition system. Well Tom has narrowed the problem even further and I am confident we found the weak link in a connection within the ignition system. As Tom says, "Its alwasy the stupidst thing." So I think the problem may have been fixed. We shall see. I will refrain from trying to crank the engine for several days and then give it a go. If no click, I will be confident that the problem is solved. If we do get the click I will replace the ingnition wire. If that doesn't work it will be time to commit harikiri.
So back to touring. Team Sandpiper and I are heading to south end of St Lucia to tour a Rum Factory!
03/30/2009, Rodney Bay St Lucia
The Westsail Owners Association publishes a newsletter/magazine a few times a year. I had an article published just recently chronicling my sailing trip from Rhode Island to the Dominican Republic. You may or may not enjoy reading it. If you'd like to read it though I've provided the the link!
Christa's Windblown Article is in my google documents. Click the hyperlinks or cut and paste the following address into your browser. The HyperLink
PS: Don't forget to bookmark Christa's New Website
03/27/2009, Rodney Bay St Lucia
If you look closely you can see Sandpiper and Christa at the bottom of the picture. We are in a wonderful anchorage called Pigeon Island which is located at the NW corner of Rodney Bay, sheltered from the north swell that has been engulfing the SE Caribbean. Also you may notice the all inclusive Sandals Resort just off our bow. We've got it made! More later....gotta jam.
PS: Don't forget folks that I have started a new blog and it is the main documentary vehicle now for my trip. At some juncture I'll stop posting to sailblogs. So please check in at Christa's New Website by clicking on "Christa's New Website" hyperlink or cut and past the URL address. http://sailingvesselchrista.blogspot.com/
Thanks for your readership!
03/25/2009, St Lucia
Anchored Rodney Bay
St Lucia Island
With much fanfare and a surreal bizarre feeling I blasted out in the dingy to meet Tom & Amy from Sandpiper. They rounded the point and through the bino's Sandpiper lines were obvious. Just like old times, it is as if I had just waved goodbye to them. So I shot this picture just as I was making my approach to Sandpiper and of course Tom was doing the exact same thing as me. True Amigos!
So Sandpiper is anchored just in front of Christa. We spent whole day sitting aboard Sandpiper and eating. It was and is wonderful. Right now Tom and I are having some breakfast ashore while Amy takes care of stuff aboard ship. Listening to her new favorite band, "Busy Signal" awaiting our return. After breakfast it will be a beach day for all hands. More later!