Living The Dream

Most of them dream... We LIVE IT.

Vessel Name: Santorini
Vessel Make/Model: Mariner/Mayflower 48'
Hailing Port: Punta Gorda, Florida
Crew: Tom, Dawn, Chico & Charley
Social:
13 August 2016 | Isla Mujeres, Mexico
28 July 2013 | Punta Gorda, FL
28 July 2013 | Punta Gorda, FL
22 April 2011 | St. Andrews Bay, Panama City, FL
21 March 2011 | Panama City, Florida
16 March 2011 | Port St. Joe, Florida
14 March 2011 | Tampa Bay, FL
12 March 2011 | Ft. Myers, Florida
11 March 2011 | Ft. Myers Beach, FL
03 March 2011 | Isla Mujeres, MX
25 February 2011 | Isla Mujeres, MX
17 February 2011 | Colon, Panama
14 February 2011 | Panama City, Panama
07 February 2011 | Panama City, Panama
05 February 2011 | Isla Toboga
02 February 2011 | Golfo de Panama
01 February 2011 | Panama
31 January 2011 | Bahia Honda to Ensenada Benao
30 January 2011 | Bahia Honda, Panama
Recent Blog Posts
13 August 2016 | Isla Mujeres, Mexico

Back in Isla Mujeres!

It's been a fast 3 years since moving to Punta Gorda, FL. Although we haven't done much sailing, we have made some very nice improvements and upgrades to Santorini. We had her hauled out for bottom paint - this time applying Petit Trinidad 75. It had been 5 years since her last paint job with Trinidad [...]

28 July 2013 | Punta Gorda, FL

Home At Last

We moved into our new house end of May 2013. Tom towed the SeaRay down and put it in storage. We made several trips down to move, but sadly left Santorini behind in Panama City, Fl until we could prepare her slip in Punta Gorda.

28 July 2013 | Punta Gorda, FL

Getting Our Freedom Back

After swallowing the anchor in Panama City, FL for 2 years we are looking forward to getting back into cruising mode. We were certainly grateful for Tom landing a job when he did - it saved us when our businesses went bust. It was tough working 8-5 M-F with 1 week of vacation after having been self-employed [...]

22 April 2011 | St. Andrews Bay, Panama City, FL

Settling In on the Gulf Coast

We had a great trip back to OC. It was wonderful to see everyone and a relief to finally move the rest of our stuff. We stopped and stayed with family and friends along the way during our trip home. We missed the kitties, and they missed us even more. Our neighbors, Don & Kelly live on a houseboat [...]

21 March 2011 | Panama City, Florida

Back to the OC

Well it's only been 4 days since we sailed into port here in Panama City, FL but we're already heading back to Orange County, CA. My friend Beth is engaged to a great guy named Alan. He happens to own a private jet. They flew in this afternoon from Key West for a short overnight visit and are returning [...]

18 March 2011 | Panama City, Florida

Mission Accomplished: Over 5000 miles in less than 5 months!

We finally made it! We sailed into St. Andrews Bay at 2 pm on St. Patrick's Day, it was a very moving experience! There's nothing like achieving a many years long goal. The people here are wonderful - everyone is SO NICE! Southern hospitality is alive and well.

Home At Last

28 July 2013 | Punta Gorda, FL
We moved into our new house end of May 2013. Tom towed the SeaRay down and put it in storage. We made several trips down to move, but sadly left Santorini behind in Panama City, Fl until we could prepare her slip in Punta Gorda.

Finally on July 17, dredging was completed - the same day we left for Dallas, TX. We quickly pulled out the Tide Charts - very important since she sits on the bottom at low tide in PC, and the Ponce De Leon Inlet in PG is only 6 ft deep mean low tide. Santorini draws 6.5. We were returning from Dallas on 7/22. It became clear that if we did not get her out of PC that same week, it would be 3 WEEKS before we could think about moving her.

We got home from Dallas on 7/22 at 2:30 pm, drove home from the airport, dropped off our convention clothes, and picked up our sailing clothes (& the ship's cat Chico.

We drove 8 hours to PC, got in about midnight and slept on the boat. We got up early to provision, get fuel, etc. and pulled away from the dock about 2 pm - just after high tide. We decided to sail to Port St. Joe - 4-5 hours away. We'd get a good night's rest, do an overnight sail to hopefully arrive at Egmont Cay (Tampa Bay) late the next day.

Our first disaster was a cockroach infestation. Tom ran out of room the last trip of our move and stored a bunch of stuff on board. The bugs must have been in the cardboard boxes - what a MESS! We anchored in PSJ just before a squall came though - with 45 knot winds. We were glad to be in a protected anchorage. We had a nice dinner, went to bed early, so we could get an early start. Our next problem was the windlass - the switch went out so Tom had to pull up 100 ft of 3/8 chain and 60+ lb anchor BY HAND.

West winds were predicted - great we thought since we are headed East. The problem was the West and Southing we had to do to get around the Cape at PSJ. In the midst of it, the engine quit. We've had fuel problems in rough seas before, but Tom thought he'd fixed it. Apparently not. Sails went up very quickly!

It took half the day to get around the Cape, and by then the predicted thunderstorms had rolled in. We knew the dodger was on its last legs but now you see daylight though the canvas - and it leaks like a sieve. Time to replace it with that hard dodger we've talked about! We were soaked.

Fortunately we got the jib rolled in before the storms came - only to realize that the roller furling bearing had parted. The seas were rolling, getting hit broadside made for a VERY bumpy ride. The wounded jib was a non-issue because the wind was 15-20 knots - to much. The evening wasn't bad, but not very comfortable either.

We were tired, clearly out of shape for the trip. We really did not want to have to do this during Hurricane Season, but really had no choice. Let's just say this is NOT this time be be sailing the Gulf of Mexico. We didn't see ONE boat all night that first night at sea.

We were headed for Egmont Key, but soon realized we'd likely get in around 3 am. By that night West winds had shifted to NW, right behind us pushing us home. We decided to spend a second night at sea and get in to Charlotte Harbor the next morning. We were blessed with a gorgeous sunset, a full moon and lots of stars.

Turns out we made the RIGHT decision, the thunderstorms later that night were INTENSE. How intense you ask?

Well, Tom was sleeping in the cockpit with his eyes closed and his hat over his face. There was lightening in every direction and he could see the bolts through the dodger, hat and closed eyelids! He was nervous, but I just visualized a bubble of white light around us and Santorini- protecting us all - determined we would NOT be hit by lightening.

We were glad we weren't trying to get into port or anchor in those conditions. At times it was coming down so hard that we almost couldn't see the bow of the boat! The rain looked like fog.

We had a better sail the next day, eventually the waves eased and the wind was behind us - surfing down the waves. Tom was able to fix the fuel problem but then the alternator went out. Fortunately we had solar panels to keep the batteries charged - necessary for the auto-pilot (which started to wander off course toward the end of the trip) and the refrigerator. We put up the storm jib and hauled.

We pulled in to Charlotte Harbor at about 10:30 am, we got to PG about 3:30 pm. It was still 3 more hours to high tide, but we wanted to be HOME. We decide to go for it and did not hit bottom. Our neighbor John saw us pull in, so he ran out to help us tie up at the dock.

She may look like the boat in the movie Captain Ron now (before they fixed her up). But she's HOME, and with a little TLC she'll be back in Full Santorini Splendor! Welcome to your New Home Rini.
Comments
Santorini's Photos - Main
Here are a few photos of Shell Island, the barrier island outside St. Andrews Bay.
5 Photos
Created 22 April 2011
22 Photos
Created 21 March 2011
17 Photos
Created 11 March 2011
58 Photos
Created 27 February 2011
26 Photos
Created 27 February 2011
20 Photos
Created 27 February 2011
7 Photos
Created 27 February 2011
44 Photos
Created 27 February 2011
51 Photos
Created 26 February 2011
34 Photos
Created 26 February 2011
From Bahia Santa Maria to Cabo San Lucas
15 Photos
Created 28 January 2011
Leg 2 was from Turtle Bay to Bahia Santa Maria Mexico
14 Photos
Created 28 January 2011
Left San Diego on 10/25/10 and arrived in Turtle Bay on 10/28/10
19 Photos
Created 28 January 2011
12 Photos
Created 24 January 2011
Five years after seeing her at the Long Beach Boat Show, we meet again.
11 Photos
Created 24 January 2011

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