Around the world with S/V Zephyr

The adventures of Bill & Tracy as they fulfill their lifes dream of sailing the world. We've dreamed of this for years and now is the time while the health is still good and there is money in the kitty to make it come true.

20 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
20 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
18 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
17 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
14 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
14 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
11 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
10 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
08 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
07 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
07 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
07 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
06 July 2016 | Power Boats Yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats Yard, Trinidad
03 July 2016 | Power Boats Yard, Trinidad

Some rest and meet up with old friends.

20 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
Bill/ partly cloudy
I took a bit of time off today. Particularly the morning by downloading some shows and reading a book. It was nice to take a bit of time off. As I was doing this up at the lounge area, Tracy was on the boat straightening up stuff and running "Pledge" wipes around the woodwork trying to get it back in a clean condition as all the sanding and grinding on deck had slowly filtered into the cabin. Every flat surface and many others were littered with thick dust.

Earlier in the day, as we listened to the morning VHF net we found that some friends of ours, Emerald Sea had arrived here in Grenada and after talking to them after the net, we found that they were coming to our little cove here in Grenada later in the day. We made plans to meet up later.

After a wonderful lunch of steak, potatoes and a great side salad, we wandered up to the lounge area and found Steve and Rose from Emerald Sea having just come from the office where they had made reservations to come to Secret Harbour. We sat and talked and even took a walk up to the swimming pool for the marina. A nice enticement to being here.

Tomorrow, I'll be walking over to Prickly Bay to fill out the forms for the two items I'm taking back to the US for repairs--our Canon Binoculars and a Weems and Plath clock. The binoculars had failed about 2 weeks after we started using them as the door that holds the batteries in had failed. They come with a three year warranty so they have to go back. The clocks mechanism has quit and it came with a life time warranty(already replaced once) so it's going back also. To avoid paying the import duties when I come back, I have to fill out some forms showing them leaving and Customs has to stamp and approve it. Sure beats paying a 12.5% duty on something you already own. As it is, I still have to pay 2.5% anyway.

Tonight was "chick flick" night here at the marina and we just couldn't get into it. They were showing "Silver Lining Notebook". We bagged it early as no other cruisers were watching the film, only locals had shown up. The cruisers we busy swallowing drinks while the movie played off to the side. We settled in and watched a few shows for the night.

We've got power!

20 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
Bill/Sunny with rain coming
Well, Tuesday has come and gone and we've finally got electricity to Zephyr!! The day started out nice and sunny with Tracy taking one of the vans into town to hit a hardware store as well as one of the larger grocery stores(IGA) here in Grenada. I stayed behind since the electrician was coming and I had other jobs that needed attention. One of the ignitors on the stove has stopped clicking a spark so I took the electronic sparker unit apart and fixed it. All it takes is to ever so slightly bend a pair of metal prongs so when the handle is pushed, they come in contact with the wires running through the box and it makes a spark igniting the gas. I then started cleaning up inside and outside the boat, putting away things that were just dumped into buckets and boxes before we left Trinidad. Lots got put away before Tracy came back. She did well getting lots of things we needed. Now we always thought Trinidad was strange that they had no pretzels or Johnsonville Brat Original variety. Here they do but they don't carry Cheetos(only Jalapenos style) or Pepsi in large two liter bottles(just cans). We've jumped from one place to another, each with it's benefits and shortcomings. With luck and time, we might just find what we are missing but I sure enjoyed the pretzels as a snack tonight. I had them along with Pepsi I brought in from Trinidad. The best of both islands.

I spoke to "Sparky" or Dexter the electrician in mid morning and he explained that he was hung up on an emergency call but would be by later in the afternoon. And about 1500, he showed up. When I saw him earlier, he was cutting some huge wires for the electrical room and was having a friend bring in some other parts that he needed for the job. He seemed to know what the heck he was doing. By 1530, he as all ready to go and when we hit the switches on Zephyr, this time the lights stayed lit and the AC power came on line and we started charging the batteries. It was great to finally get power back on board. Now we no longer have to worry about the charging the batteries or they running flat should we forget to charge them. PLUS, we can now run our air conditioner!!! Oh, it's a happy boat tonight!!!

Mount Hartman Bay was apparently named Mosquito Bay some time ago or so I'm told and I can see why. It's a bug fest in this place. If you value your skin and don't want to continually itch, you spray with bug spray when ever you go out. I, personally, hate the stuff and have resisted using it for years but even I have given in and am now covered in "OFF". I can see hundreds of the little varmints buzzing all around me and if I've missed a spot, I spray again.

Tomorrow, it's on to other jobs that still need attention and make arrangements for getting a cab to take me to the airport on Saturday.

Still no power but a beautiful day.

18 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
Bill/cool with lots of mosquitos
It's now our third day here at Secret Harbour Marina in Grenada and things are moving along. I took off this morning to get some money as we had little of the native currency(Eastern Caribbean Dollars). Along the way, we stopped at one of the local chandleries(Water World)where I got a few things we will need down the road and now. Late in the morning, the electrician showed up and we got to work trying to figure out why the marinas power system won't work with ours.

Dexter, alias "Sparky" checked our connections and he redid a few of them. We ran the wires from one of the power posts to the boat and promptly blew the circuits on the marina. "Sparky" walked over with me in his shadow and we checked the existing breakers. They didn't look bad but heck, you never know. We discussed it with the office and decided to get some new ones and replace the old. I, meanwhile walked back to the boat and we started up our Yamaha generator to recharge out batteries. A while later, Tracy got fed up with waiting and marched over to the office to see why they wouldn't just hook up the 220 volts and we could step it down to 110 with our transformer. They were willing to give it a shot so over came "Sparky" again and we worked with different plugs and a bit heavier wire. We found a 220 that was active and plugged it in. So far, so good. I checked the plug that came to the boat and it read 220+ volts. I plugged it into our transformer and it showed it as now being just 110-120 volts. I plugged it into the boats system and threw the switches. In just a few seconds, it blew the circuits for the marina again! It just doesn't want to play nice with Zephyr!! "Sparky" is off to find replacement circuit breakers for both the 220 and 110 systems so we can install them tomorrow. We've had to do this before in another yard(Fiji) to make it stop breaking the circuits. Meanwhile, I started up the Yamaha again and vroom, off when the charger on board merrily charging up all our systems. All the computers are now nice and charges and the batteries were almost there but it came to 1700 and we don't want to run them past that time. Tomorrow, depending on what happens, we will either have power or we will be using the generator again. None of our neighbors in the marina are concerned as I've gone to each and explained out problem. Let's just hope that they get this problem all resolved. Another boat across from us has had problems with their 110 power when they came in. Guess we will see tomorrow.

We got a notice from our credit card company that some one had charged $1.99 to our card yesterday. Not us so I put it in dispute. No big deal. Today, we got another notice that someone had charged $519 on our card using the internet. Someone had our numbers and was using them. I notified the card company and they put a freeze on that transaction and have cancelled our cards and are mailing out new ones. Good thing I'm going home so I can pick them up. It's the third time(maybe fourth) that our card numbers have been compromised since we left the US back in 2009. I used to know our numbers by memory but it's now been changed so many times, I have to look at the card. What a pain!

Meanwhile, we tackle other odd jobs around the boat making sure that we get as much done before I take off as we can. Tomorrow, I get to fix the stove. To light one of the burners, you turn the knob and push in on it at the same time. That makes the stove spark and light the gas. One of the burners has stopped sparking so I'll be taking it apart and fixing it. I did it when we were in Richard's Bay South Africa. Not a big job but necessary. I'll also be inspecting and replacing the propane sensor for the auto off safety device we have in our propane line.

Leaving on Friday and getting into Grenada.

17 July 2016 | Secret Harbour Marina, Grenada
Bill/Sunny and some breeze
It's been long foretold that you should never begin a sea voyage on a Friday and we paid the price because we did. By Friday morning, we were just finishing up the few last things. They had to be last as we were already in the slings to be put in the water. Michael, the man that runs the lift even gave us an extra hour so we could finish what we were doing and even take one last shower. Michael and his crew showed up right on time at 0930 and off we went to the splash area. Michael ran the lift putting us right over the water and slowly lowered us into it, nice and easy. I went below and burped out packing gland for the propeller, turned the key and pushed the start button for the engine. She fired right up, no problem. I checked with Michael and let him know we were all ready to go. He gave us the thumbs up sign and I put Zephyr in gear. Suddenly, we were thrown sideways and then backwards,the forward and suddenly the engine just stopped. All the while, the men on the launch crew were yelling at us to do this and do that. All of a sudden, there was big crunch as our new pretty varnished teak bulwarks was slammed into the metal brackets the slings on the lift4 are held by. Once, twice, three times!! Then the bow was thrown to port and we hit one of the metal poles on the side of the slot for launching. Again, on our nice new teak!!! Michael yelled at us to just stop--no problem since the engine shut itself off. He and one of his helpers jumped into the water to see what the problem was. His explanation was that a piece of the protection sleeve that covers the slings had wrapped it self around the prop. What actually happened was that they didn't lower the slings enough under Zephyr and when he told us to go, we ran into the slings with the forward edge of the hull. That then threw us to the side. When the sling finally got past the lowest part of the hull, it flew up in the water so the prop could catch the plastic and rip it off. Luckily, the only damage was to the teak cap rail and bulwarks. It's going to take some work to fix the stern area as it gouged a deep slash in the wood. The port side will only require some sand paper and new varnish.

By this time, it was 1030 and we were off for Grenada. Yes, I probably could have pled my case to get it repaired by the yard but we had already checked out and since I fly out of Grenada next week there was no time for it. I'll just do it myself when I get back. Not that big a deal. As we headed north for Grenada, we were hit by at least 6 squalls along the way with winds from 3 to 19 knots or more, most from the wrong direction. There was some that we could have sailed in but I'm trying to get the diesel tanks low enough for cleaning when I get back. The seas were anything but pleasant with waves in the 6 foot area throwing us around quite well. The kids were ticked with Snowshoe panting and drooling down his chest making his hair a mess. Not having been on the water for over 10 weeks, I knew I'd lost my sea legs. It wasn't easy getting around the boat. We pulled into Prickly Bay in Grenada at just after 0500 this morning and slowly made our way through all the anchored boats and finally dropped the hook about 0515 in pretty much total darkness. By 0530, it was nice and bright making it easy to see around the bay. We'd just gotten in 15 minutes too early. Once the hook was set, we both headed for the bunk in the stern cabin for a couple of hours sleep before we took off for our new home, Secret Harbour Marina. We had the hook up and we were off by 0930 and in but 1030. Only problem was the space we had reserved and promised was about to be used by a 70 foot sailboat that's due in tomorrow. The weekend manager wanted us to grab one of the mooring buoys and back into the docks(called Med Moor). With Zephyr, well that's like backing up a drunk, half asleep not trained elephant. It's just not going to happen especially since we had 10 to 15 knots of wind through the marina. In the end, he put us at a different place where we could simply pull in and tie up on the starboard side. It took a good bit of talking to get the space and we will probably be moving by Monday once the big 70 footer is gone. We will see. Meanwhile I'm headed up to the office to get wifi passwords and keys for the shower rooms.

It's now Sunday afternoon, about 1600 and so far, no 70 foot boat at our reserved slip. Don't care as where we are is fine other than the fact that we have no electricity. Max, the weekend Harbor Master came by after several tries to get him to come out( on Saturday afternoon) and I brought out our 110 cord. You aren't allowed to plug in by yourself, you have to have the Harbor Master there. I plugged in the cord and we had lights on our panel inside Zephyr that there was power. I turned on the switches to activate our Heart Inverter/Charger and a few seconds later, we blew the circuits for the marina!! Max walked around to the electrical room and re set the breakers. I tried several more times, each with the same result. Not a good thing!! They promise to have an electrician out here on Monday so until then, I've turned on the DuoGen wind generator(makes a bit of power but not much) and I hauled out our Yamaha 2400 generator. After being in storage for several months, she started right up. I let her run for a couple of hours and our batteries are now back to full charge. The Marina wiring should be the same as the generator, I just don't think they have a big enough breaker in their box to handle our needs. It's not the first time this has happened.

Slept in this morning for the first time in months--0830!! God bless Tylenol PM. Great for a good night sleep. We had a nice breakfast and then started putting Zephyr "away" for the next few months. We gave her new decks a wash(had to get a key from the Harbor Master as all faucets are kept locked)with one of our hoses, pulled out assorted pieces of canvas to cover all the exposed areas on her deck. From the new cap rail and bulwarks to the dodger and bimini, everything got covered. I had to spend a bit of time crawling around on deck getting paint off the snaps that had been covered by Lobster and his men. Oh, as to Lobsters crew, both "Sleepy" and "Sneezy" have now been fired. "Sleepy" because he did nothing and "Sneezy" because he did little but he screwed up some fiberglass work on Lobsters next project and he had to redo all of it. To celebrate our arrival in Grenada, we had a nice barbecued steak with potatoes and a Waldorf Salad to go with it. We ate in the cockpit as it's cooler than inside at least till we get air conditioning. Being Sunday, it's very quiet here. Yesterday, the marina hosted a wedding reception for a good 100+ people. What a mad house. More cars than spots to park them and more people than seats to place them. As a good note, they closed down the party promptly at 2300 so it didn't go far into the night.

That's about it for now. I'd post some pictures but our camera is acting up. I'll post when I get it fixed or replaced.

Into the slings.

14 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
Bill/ partly cloudy
Zephyr is now on the slings on the travel lift so we can be launched early tomorrow morning!! Only 10 weeks and one day after getting pulled for a 4 week job. It just didn't go as planned but that's another story.

Today we were back at it getting things straightened out on deck and inside. We were waxing the hull while it was raining! No choice since this was our last day. David, the upholsterer showed us again and put the final touches on our new dodger and bimini and Jason, the wood worker showed up and finished the ceiling project in the main salon.

This haul out, we've had the teak decks removed, a new dodger and bimini made, new main sail cover and all the cockpit cushions recovered. Add in the four coats of bottom paint, using rubbing compound on the hull and then waxing it. Three coats of varnish on the cap rail and bulwarks as well as having the deck boxes remade and varnished along with the pin rails. We replaced out anchor chain as well. It's been a busy 10 weeks but we're glad it's over.

The plan is once we splash tomorrow, we will immediately head north for Grenada and the Secret Harbor Marina, our new home for the next couple of month through the hurricane season. If one comes out way, we can alway head back down the Trinidad.

I can't wait till I turn the key and the engine starts tomorrow. We are both looking forward to getting to Grenada where we can relax a bit before I head home in a week.

In the home stretch!

14 July 2016 | Power Boats yard, Trinidad
We're in the home stretch!! Today(Wednesday) started out just like every day for the last few weeks. Up before dawn and out working on the boat as the Sun came up. It was sprinkling just as I left the boat for the internet room and much better when I returned 40 minutes later. I need to get the weather info for the morning net so it takes a few minutes plus checking emails.

We spent a while straightening up on deck as well as inside before Tracy took off for Price Smart for one last mega shopping trip. It's not like we are going off the grid in Grenada but they carry things we can't get there. David the upholsterer that is making the dodger and bimini came by and made more adjustments and took off for his shop. He knows we will be lifted and prepared for launch tomorrow so he is working lots of over time to make sure they are both done right. It's not so much the dodger and bimini, it that they connect to side and stern panels to enclose the entire cockpit and every thing that's new must match up with everything that's old. As he came and went, I took care of other tasks--returned a big can of bottom paint we won't need. We already have four coats on Zephyr and don't need any more. I checked in with the office about getting the final statement and went to the local store to pick up 16 2 liter bottles of Pepsi. When we were in Grenada, while the price for Coke was reasonable, Pepsi was almost three times the price so I wanted to stock up here. Got to lug all 16 jugs back to the boat. Next I was on to reattaching the "rub straits". These are long(about 2 feet or more)pieces of metal that are screwed to the cap rail on deck to stop chafe from the fender lines when we are in a marina. They all had to come off when we were doing the varnishing. All the time I was doing this, it was slowly sprinkling and while it wasn't bad, I was slowly getting soaked.

On to attach the new hatches where the old ones were. Four in total all needed hinges positioned and screws and bolts attached once holes had been drilled. I got the anchor locker hatches in first but once we get to Grenada, they will need some attention. When Lobster cleaned out the rotted wood core, he replaced it with AirX foam but only in some places. Some sections appear to be just empty space and that is where some of the screws go in. I'm going to have to inject some epoxy inside the cavity of the hatches. So far they are fine but in the long run, the hinges will pull out. Not good. By the time I was done with the first two hatches, Tracy was back with a huge load of food. She even had a list from another cruiser that's already in Grenada of things she wants brought back when we come. We are now quite well stocked. She even came back with a cooked chicken for lunch. As far as I can remember, the last time I had a cooked piece of chicken in front of me was at Thanksgiving 20 months ago. Sure tasted good once we reheated it in the microwave. With lunch done, it was back on deck to do the stern hatches. Tracy we busy below putting food away. Bringing in this much food can fill your lockers to overflowing fast and things can get lost quickly. I was running short on the screws I needed to put the hinges on so Tracy was searching everywhere for compatible screws below deck. In the end, she found just enough to get the job done. By this time, it was 1600 and we took a short break with David coming and going asking for input and making adjustments in his shop.

By 1700, we were back outside putting a layer of wax on the starboard side hull. We'd already applied rubbing compound and now we needed to finish. As the Sun set, the wax got progressively harder and harder to remove as it's made for "high temperature" application and removal. With about ten feet short of finishing it, we bagged it for the night. It was time for a shower. David showed up again just as we were leaving to make more adjustments. He promised he will have it done before we get listed tomorrow and I believe him.

Tomorrow, it finish the waxing and clean up everything we can and give the poor deck a thorough washing. With all the coming and going we've tracked a good bit of dirt on deck and it needs to be cleaned badly. We are also waiting for Jason the woodworker to show up and finish the installation of the ceiling panel. Since he's already been paid, I'm not holding out much hope of him showing up. Tomorrow we will see. I'm just glad that while we had some rain today, it was just gentle sprinkles, at least after 0600.
Vessel Name: Zephyr
Vessel Make/Model: Shin Fa 458
Hailing Port: Denver, Colorado
Crew: Bill & Tracy Hudson
About: We've been sailing since the early 80's on lakes in New Mexico and Colorado and finally took the plunge and bought Zephyr.
Extra: We moved on board in April of 2008 and have been working and sailing her ever since. Up to Alaska and down to Mexico and across the Pacific to Fiji. We're now in South Africa making our way toward the Cape.
Home Page: http::/
Zephyr's Photos - Huahine and beyond.
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