round we go!!

Vessel Name: Bubbles
Vessel Make/Model: Fast Passage 39
Hailing Port: Seymour IN
17 September 2012 | Nanny Cay, Tortola, BVIs
22 July 2012
10 June 2012 | St. Martin
04 June 2012 | St. Martin
31 May 2012 | Saba Rock
19 May 2012 | english harbour, antigua
07 May 2012 | Bridgetown, Barbados
27 April 2012 | Georgetown, Guyana
22 April 2012 | Paramaribo, Suriname
19 April 2012 | French Guyana
13 April 2012 | Atlantic Ocean somewhere off of South America
08 April 2012 | Amazon River, Macapa, Brazil
01 April 2012 | Amazon River, Brazil
30 March 2012 | Tapajos River, Brazil
28 March 2012 | Amazon River, Brazil
21 March 2012 | Xingu River, Brazil
20 March 2012 | Amazonia, Brazil
18 March 2012 | Para River, Brazil
18 March 2012 | Belem, Brazil
13 March 2012 | Capim River, Brazil
Recent Blog Posts
17 September 2012 | Nanny Cay, Tortola, BVIs

The final blog, Bubbles sold yesterday

First lets go back to that week in May in the British Virgin Islands… we had over 20 sparkling crew on board Bubbles (all wearing the coral crew shirts) approaching the round-the-world finish line at Nanny Cay. With only a few hundred feet to go the propeller fell off. Not being able to raise sail [...]

22 July 2012

the last leg sail

We had good wind on the morning we set sail to complete the 90 mile last leg (from St. Martin to Tortola in the British Virgin Islands) of Bubble’s circumnavigation. With a full boat, I was on deck explaining some navigational markers to some of the more virgin crew when Trevor at the helm yelled [...]

10 June 2012 | St. Martin

Magic Aboard Bubbles

That night in St. Martin the party aboard Bubbles can only be described as magical. With Christmas lights strung up both in the rigging to light the deck, and in the interior to light below, a special glow illuminated the boat that had carried us around the world. Paddy King lead a conga line of Bubbles [...]

04 June 2012 | St. Martin

The Round the World Pre Party Begins!!

The seven of us woke well before sunup to the Indiana Jones theme song cranked over the Bubbles sound system. Sails were up by sunrise with Paddy King at the helm and brother Joe standing by as we watched the morning light illuminate mountainous Saba's cliffs rising from the sea. With 20 knots of wind [...]

31 May 2012 | Saba Rock

the Sea Hawk 4 takes flight

The day sail to Barbuda was sunny with good wind and buzzing excitement from both new crew and old. Arriving in the poorly charted waters we ran aground, but jumping into a shallow sea full of starfish isn't a bad place to get stuck. Ashore the six of us strolled on an endless beach of pink sand with [...]

19 May 2012 | english harbour, antigua

Adding more Bubbles

Bubbles and crew ran completely broke of funds after Carine flew back to Amsterdam. Having neither cash nor credit via any type of card, Diego and I resorted to trading. For a couple dive tanks we got the jib sail repaired, for a regulator we got fresh produce out of a local garden. We were able [...]

Amazon River, Day 14 & 15, Steve gets Baptized

21 March 2012 | Xingu River, Brazil
cap'n alex
Now motoring 24/7 to cover as much river as possible we split into two teams handling 8 hour alternating shifts. The debris is so much in the bigger of the rivers that a bow watch is constantly needed. A perpetual game of frogger is played zig zagging through the river grass and logs, but despite our caution the prop continues to get fouled multiple times a day (and night). After Diego and I had cleared the prop several times I decided it was time to baptize Steve (19 years old, from Texas). It was a night entry and he performed his duty well coming back aboard as a bonified Amazon River prop cleaner.

With someone constantly at the helm Molly has performed as one the best steerers of the boat so I was surprised one morning while at the bow to see us going off course to starboard. I turned back to see her with the wheel hard to port but Bubbles wasn't responding. We were in huge slick and small whirlpools formed around us in the current. Not being able to control the boat one whirlpool after another would spin us this way or that until we were finally able to get out of the slick. Talk about going with the flow.

Because of the heat and moisture in the air the cloud formations here are the most spectacular I have seen. Large, bright white, anvil shaped clouds fill the lower sky with fish scale altocumulous and streaky cirrus covering the upper sections. This has given us some amazing sunsets and sunrises with the peacefulness of the river adding to the enjoyment. However, not always are things calm. Lightning flashes frequent the night sky and heavy rains can last for hours. On one night our dingy (holes 2) that we tow behind nearly sank due its filling with rain water. That same night we were forced to anchor for a couple hours as visibility due to the heavy rain was so low we nearly ran into a jungle island.

Now in the mouth of the Xingu river we took a turn through a small canal to take in some jungle. As we neared the big river again we heard some Brazilian dance music and as we neared the junction to the river could see its source at small river town. Like the sirens from the Odessey I foolishly turned towards the sweet music and was lured into shallow water and the familiar lunge of running hard aground. The current was pushing further into the mud and our situation looked dire. Small children in dugout canoes appeared first offering assistance followed by a river boat from the town. After much tugging and pulling didn't budge her, we finally freed her by rafting up with the river boat (named 'Pe de Deus', the 'Foot of God' in English) and letting her eat. We were then lead to deeper water by a group of natives and wished well on our way. Next time we hear music like that I'll have the crew tie me to the mast.

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