Blessed Lady

This is the cruising blog of the sailing yacht Mabrouka. The Favorites in the side bar allow those with discriminating taste to filter for just the stuff you want to read. Thanks for visiting, Roy.

13 September 2015
21 August 2015
21 August 2015
20 June 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
15 June 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
15 June 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
15 June 2015 | Mazatlan Marina, Mazatlan Mexico
13 April 2015 | Off Club Nautico, Mazatlan Commercial Harbor, Mazatlan, MX
15 February 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
13 February 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
25 January 2015
06 January 2015 | Mazatlan, MX
24 December 2014 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
24 December 2014 | Mazatlan, MX
22 December 2014
21 December 2014
18 December 2014 | Playa Isla de la Piedra, Mazatlan, MX
18 December 2014 | Mazatlan, MX
15 December 2014 | Ensenada des los Muertos, Mexico

Cruising Yields to Repairs and Projects

13 February 2015 | Marina Mazatlan, Mazatlan, Mexico
After Emily left, I was determined to resume my southward cruising, so it was on January 7th that I paid my marina bill and headed out of the harbor, stopping at Marina El Cid's fuel dock to top up on diesel and potable water. Past the breakwater I set the autopilot (you might recall her name: Mona Laguna) to steer the boat while I put away fenders and dock lines and hauled up sails. All those chores done, I asked Mona to make a 90 degree turn to head south to Stone Island where I planned to anchor over night and set off the following afternoon for Isla Isabel. That request apparently confused the little lady, who set off on a drunken zigzag course toward our destination. I fiddled with her a little, but to no avail, so I sent her to her room to consider her despicable behavior and hand-steered the two hours to Stone Island, still planning on having a stern word with her about how important cooperation is to a happy crew.

Sunset from the anchorage at Stone Island

Although I did get this gorgeous sunset out of it, I spent several long, frustrating days of poking and prodding interspersed with no small amount of swearing and several international phone calls to Wil Hamm (the system's designer and manufacturer) before I got tired of trying to fix it anchored out in a somewhat isolated Mexican bay, so I went back to Marina Mazatlan. A week or so later I overcame my discouragement and indulged Wil's request to find some calm seas to go out and adjust a potentiometer hidden inside the cover of the pilothouse control unit. With the help of John and Reina off a neighboring cruising boat, we exited the marina and made a stab at the adjustment. Gawd! I can still not fathom why, but it worked. We returned to the marina with glee in our hearts.

New refinished teak deck, hatches, and deck boxNew hatch and deck box canvas

One would think that I'd immediately head south again, but while waiting on advice from Wil, I'd made a commitment with a local craftsman to redo my teak decks. They've been in bad shape for many years. There were no significant leaks, but many, many screw heads were showing and there were vast expanses of deck that weren't even grooved, much less caulked. It was something I'd anticipated doing when I found skilled, but inexpensive labor and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to get the work done for one-quarter to one-fifth what I'd have paid in the US.

Beto (Alberto Moreno Ortega, owner and primary source of skilled labor for B.B. Marine) predicted six weeks to do the job, so I settled in to knock off a list of my own projects. Mostly that included making new canvas covers for my hatches and deck box as well as mosquito screens for my hatches and portholes. I eventually became quite the seamster and am mostly proud of the results. I also read a lot, slept in late, ate out, and explored the more commercial aspects of Mazatlan with forays to WalMart and Home Depot.

Main companionway bug screenIf you'd like to see the bug screens for the portholes and hatches as well as a couple of other sewing projects, go to the Projects album in the Gallery.

I would be sadly remiss not to share the friendly welcome I've received by the marina and its residents. Prior to my aborted attempt to sail south to Puerto Vallarta, I spent a couple of weeks on dock three where I was warmly greeted by my neighbors there. I've since visited several times with Barbara and George, including joining them to cheer the Seahawks through their debacle of a goal line attempt in the last few seconds of that disappointing Super Bowl.

Returning from Stone Island, I requested a slip closer to the marina office with better wifi connectivity, and ended up on dock six. There we enjoyed daily "safety" meetings promptly at 4pm during which I got acquainted with literally a dozen boat loads of cruisers and adopted locals over beers and snacks. What a wonderful group, always ready with helpful advice and directions for this newbie to the Mexican cruising life.
Vessel Name: Mabrouka
Vessel Make/Model: CT-41
Hailing Port: Seattle, WA
Crew: Roy Neyman
Mabrouka and I have been partners in crime since October 1998, hanging about in West Coast waters, first in San Diego, then in Seattle. All of that time we've lived together aboard. [...]
I've called this blog "Blessed Lady" because that's my preferred translation from Arabic for "Mabrouka". She's a 1980 CT-41, one of several clones of the original Bill Garden design Mariner ketches. At 50 feet from the tip of her mizzen boom to the tip of her bow sprit, she's 16 tons of [...]
Mabrouka's Photos - Main
Photos 1 to 10 of 10
On the streets of Freemont
Street art edited.
Elvis the stuffed cat is a memento of my daughters at the age of about 5.  The peace sign was a gift from good friend, Karyn Borcich.  Thanks to both!
This is Swan as I knew him, though in a more rugged environment than we ever shared.  We usually met at the coffee shop or at Voula
This is of Swan as I would also like to have known him, ...cigarettes, cameras and wine.
This is Steve hosting our Elliott Bay Design Group company picnic at his vacation home in Darington.
I never went fishing with Steve, although he let me try out his fly casting rig in the river by his house during one of the company picnics he hosted.  I
The winter slip on Lake Union
Temporary raft up with Molly Bella near my old slip at Stimson Marina
This album shares photos from mainland and Baja Mexico.
1 Photo | 3 Sub-Albums
Created 1 March 2015
The beginning of the South Pacific cruise, heading to San Diego and Mexico
1 Photo | 6 Sub-Albums
Created 15 August 2014
Killing time with local sailing and projects before heading south with the Coho Ho Ho cruiser's rally
56 Photos
Created 29 June 2014
Kathy and Karyn (with a "Y") used me as an excuse for a party. I was just fine with that!
25 Photos
Created 31 May 2014
On Lake Union where Mabrouka and I spent the winter
20 Photos
Created 31 May 2014
Shakedown cruise to Port Townsend
7 Photos
Created 25 May 2014
Gunkholing in the Seattle area, with me and Mabrouka getting our sea legs back under us.
50 Photos | 28 Sub-Albums
Created 14 April 2013
Custom made sailing skiff hand-built by NW School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Hadlock, WA
18 Photos
Created 21 March 2013
Pre-retirement cruising pics
27 Photos
Created 21 March 2013
Photos accompanying Projects blogs.
43 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 12 March 2013