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 23 and 24, Equator Crossing

08 April 2012 | Amazon River, Macapa, Brazil
cap'n alex
In two days going downstream we covered the same distance that took us seven days going up, arriving in Macapa, on the Amazon River mouth's north shore, at one in the morning. Being the only one awake I made sure to anchor a few feet south of the equator as such a crossing aboard a sailing vessel without proper ceremony would surely upset Neptune's river counterpart. Knowing that we were in pirate territory (this being the place where the famous sailor Peter Blake was killed by pirates in 2001) I spent the night on guard waking every few minutes to have look for intruders.

Ashore the next morning, Diego and Steve topped up our fresh water supply by jerry jugging water over a mile back to the boat from the tap of a local family we had met, only to later learn that city water supply is the same river water on which we floated. While the boys were busy hauling river water 'back to the river, I was held up with boat formalities at the Policia Federal while a special agent was brought in for our 'special case'. When finally finished the federal agent then offered to drive us around town, warning us of the pirate situation as we drove. He took us to the towering equator monument marking the center of the earth (Macapa is one of only five cities in the world the equator runs through). We jumped, straddled, crisscrossed, skated, and high fived our way back and forth across the imaginary line that separates the hemispheres and the seasons.

Back at the riverfront Steve noticed a dingy making circles out in the river and bringing my attention to it I was excited that maybe another sailboat was here. My excitement soon turned to panic as I noticed the familiar pink outboard of our dingy. Having his skateboard on hand Diego rushed to the scene, but as soon as he yelled out, the eight young pirates who had commandeered our vessel, all jumped out leaving the dingy to float downstream. Yelling again, one brave soul rescued the dingy, bringing it to Diego to face his wrath, which ended up being additional rides in the river making circles. By the time I got there the dingy was full once again, but now with Diego joining in the fun with the kids that would no doubt grow to become real pirates one day.

In Brazil they have the best meat I found anywhere for sailboats. Coming in 4 kilogram logs and costing only 7 bucks the mortadela meat rolls, comes in chicken or pork, can last months at room temperature, and is easily sliced for sandwiches or into chunks to add to any dish. Good cold or fried the food quickly became a Bubbles favorite and we stocked up in Macapa along with farinha and guarana (two other local items hard to find outstide of Brazil).

For the equator crossing party we filled Bubbles with yellow, orange, and pink balloons and took the ceremonial shots. When our latitude hit all zeroes Molly shot a flare into the night sky to mark our crossing from the South hemisphere into the North followed by Steve and I showing Diego how to shotgun beers. Then, just to remind us we were still in the Amazon, we got caught in some river grass. With the tide having turned against us we found ourselves being pushed back up river still 100 miles from the ocean. On our way back to the salty sea the river wasn't going to let us out easy.

About & Links