Living the Dream

21 February 2021 | Isla San Geronimo - Cedros Island
20 February 2021 | Isla San Geronimo
19 February 2021 | Bahia Asuncion
08 August 2013 | Marina Village
07 April 2013
25 December 2012 | Our Marina
25 November 2012 | San Clemente Island
03 September 2012 | Mission Bay
06 May 2012 | National City
24 December 2011 | Pier 32 Marina
24 November 2011 | Two Harbors, Catalina Island
23 October 2011 | Longshadow Winery - Temecula
05 September 2011 | Mission Bay
12 August 2011 | Hoag Hospital, Newport Beach
22 July 2011 | Two Harbors
09 July 2011 | Santa Cruz Island
04 July 2011 | Channel Islands Harbor
03 January 2011 | Pier 32 Marina
19 December 2010 | Pier 32 Marina

Issue #4 - Night 12

21 February 2021 | Isla San Geronimo - Cedros Island
We were exhausted after the crazy sail, so as soon as we set the anchor alarm and had some dinner, we hit the sheets. It has been really cold most of this trip, so it felt good to get out of the wind and get cozy. We normally would have watched a movie before bed, but our entire salon (living room) was full of all the stuff from the "garage," and we would have had to loosen one of the tie down straps on the TV in our cabin to get a dvd in the player. We decided it wasn't worth it. It continued to blow pretty hard most of the night, but the anchorage was great. The wind kept us off the swell. We both slept well!

The next morning we got up to blue skies and fairly calm winds - hooray! Since the anchor windless seemed like it was going to work fine again, and we couldn't move around most of the inside of the boat, we decided it was probably okay to put everything back into the forward cabin before we took off - so small feat, but accomplished! We also decided that it would be a good idea to put our dinghy and it's outboard motor onboard, instead of towing it like we had been. We were so lucky to have made it to Geronimo with it in tow, given the crazy winds and seas. Now to get the outboard up onto the big boat, we attach a block and tackle rig to our mizzen boom. Glen then climbs down the ladder at the stern (back), and gets into the dingy. The outboard has a harness on it, so he hooks the block and tackle up to it, and I pull use the line to pull it up. Whoever came up with the b&t rig was a genius! You hardly notice the weight you are lifting! There was almost a disaster when the harness on the outboard slipped over the top, but Glen was able to get it back on, and we were able to get the outboard up and safely fastened onboard (there is a board attached to the back rail that holds it). By this time, we were both a bit tired, and the day was looking so beautiful, that we decided to go ahead and keep towing the dinghy.

A dinghy out here cruising is essential. It is your "car" - it's how you get from the big boat at anchorage, to shore, or someone else's boat, or wherever. The Dorothy Marie has had 3 dinghies. The one that we left with on our "big trip" was one that had a roll up floor - it made it much easier to get onboard, but it didn't ride that well. The tubes were small, and we were constantly getting wet in it. Our second dinghy, we purchased from cruising friends from Elusive, when sadly they lost their boat on our crossing to Fiji. We loved that dinghy! It was an Apex, hard bottom, with really big tubes... no more getting wet, and having the hard bottom, it would get up on a plane right away. It definitely served us well for several years, but alas, just like your favorite old sweater, there comes a time when you know it's time is running out. It was looking a bit like a patch-work quilt! We had chatted about replacing it, but hadn't done anything about it, when BOOM...

It was love at first sight"! My first glimpse of "Little Dot" was while walking around a boaters garage sale in the parking lot of Harbor Island West Marina. She looked so pretty with her great big, non-patched hypalon tubes, and her hard, shiny aluminum bottom. She was even beautiful on the inside - a little storage locker where we could keep an anchor and life jackets, and there were two bench seats. I couldn't wait to get Glen to come look at her... I was smitten! Glen thought she was a real looker, as well, but because we hadn't ever heard of the brand, JP Marine, he said no. Somehow as we continued walking around looking at other boat stuff, we ended up going past this beautiful dinghy several times. Glen looked it over several times and we talked to the owner about the brand. He came down a little in price, and even offered to deliver it to us. How could we say no?!!! Little Dot became ours, and our old Apex was sold/given to a young man who was as thrilled to get it as we were to get the JP!

Getting from Geronimo to our next stop, Cedros Island, required an overnighter. It was too far to make it in one day. It was a beautiful day with much calmer winds and seas. I napped a bit during the day, knowing we would be taking turns "on watch" all through the night, but Glen couldn't ever get a nap in. Being "on watch" entails several things - keeping an eye out for any other boats that might be around, making sure the autopilot stays on course, keeping the sails happy, and looking to make sure Little Dot is still behind us. All was well most of the night, but around 3am, as Glen was running through his checklist of watch items, he found that Little Dot was no longer following along! He pulled up the line that she was attached to. The float we have on the line, and the closed shackle that attached to Little Dot's aluminum frame were all in place, but she wasn't! Although there was a little moonshine, there was no way to find her.

Cedros Island has a town with a Port Captain. It was too early in the morning when we first got anchored to report in, but we reached the Port Captain on the VHF radio around 8:30. After the formalities of letting him know that we had cleared into the country in Ensenada and have all the paperwork for him, we then explained that we couldn't bring it in to him because we had lost our dinghy during the night. He said he would send someone out to us, so we thought someone would come pick us up and take us to shore. The next thing we knew, however, a Mexican Navy boat came out of the little harbor and aimed right at us! There were several armed men aboard, but only two came aboard our boat. They were so nice! They took a report about our lost dinghy and said they would put the word out for all boats to keep an eye out for it. They left us in the anchorage which was getting pretty rough - 30k winds again and high seas. In just a little bit, though, the young Navy sailor called us on the VHF and told us he had talked to the Port Captain, and that we had been given permission to bring our boat inside the little harbor. That may not sound like a lot, but man, what a difference! It was nice and calm and we had a much better view of the town. Unfortunately, there was never an offer to take us ashore, but we were so grateful for the calm anchorage, it didn't matter. We slept really well that night, after being up most of the night before. I was really hoping that we would get a call that Little Dot had been found, but alas, she has not. We hope whoever finds her will love her as much as we did!

We have to admit we feel like a child who is getting "a spanking". We know we did wrong, and probably deserve to be punished, but boy, oh boy, does it hurt!!!

Issues #2 and 3!!!

20 February 2021 | Isla San Geronimo
We can't exactly pinpoint when we knew "Issue #2" happened, but we could tell it was coming! We are so spoiled to have 2 refrigerator systems. One is the more traditional boat system built into the counter. The lower portion is deep freeze, and the top part is refrigerator. This system runs off of 110 power. The other system is an upright frig/freezer that can run off 12 volt or 110. We always laughed on
our first trip that we probably held the record for how many countries our old Norcold frig had been worked on! Once back, we replaced it with what we thought was going to be a huge improvement... a Vitrifrigo! Well, it sure looks pretty with it's brushed stainless doors, but it has had problems from day one. We have probably spent twice it's original value in having it worked on! So, no surprise, when it
started getting warmer and warmer. Thankfully for the other system, we were able to cram most everything into it and turn off the Vitri, which was running 24/7. How then, you might ask, is this really an "Issue"? To get to the freezer section of the countertop system, you must first empty the frig part so you can pull up the boards that separate the two. Normally, we have a basket of sodas, a basket of beer,
and a misc. basket that are easy to lift out and open the freezer. With everything from the other frig crammed into the countertop frig, it takes a bit to empty it to get to the freezer, where we have all of our meat and chicken for dinners. Okay, it is an inconvenience, but we have had to do worse. Now here comes "Issue #3"! Did I mention that the countertop system runs off 110? That means we need to
run our generator every once in awhile to keep it nice and charged. So, you have probably guessed that "Issue #3" is with the generator. It is a wonderful 8kw Onan. It, too ,has been worked on in several countries - completely overhauled in Figi! It had been running so well after some linkage work done a few months ago. For some reason, however, the throttle govenor (another solenoid) decided to
"poop out" on us. The gen would run fine, we were just having to manually hold the throttle to keep it going! They say necessity is the mother of invention, and we worked really well as a team to come up with some creative "McGyver" solutions. The one that has been keeping the gen running perfectly, once we get it started and put it in place, is the two hook ends of a bungy cord with a paper clip in
between! Thank goodness... we can handle Issues #2 and 3. It's number 4 that is REALLY bad! That's for next time!

Continuing on from our FaceBook posts... Issue #1 and Night 11- Geronimo Island

20 February 2021 | Bahia San Quintin
Hey all! I had totally meant to journal our "Second Big Adventure" on this blog from the get-go, but a few things conspired against us. For the first few nights, at least, FB seemed to be an easier solution. Now that we are out where there is no way to connect to FB, however, it has driven me to figure out how to reconnect via sailmail and sailblogs. So much has happened before this to get us to where we
are now, however, I would love to go back and fill in the details. Hopefully you won't mind reading this a little out of order!

Since our last FB post, I know we have a lot of "splain'n" to do!!! So here goes ...

The morning we were to leave our wonderfully calm and beautiful anchorage in Bahia San Quintin, all was amazing. As always, Glen got the engine going and was readying the mainsail, as I went forward to weigh anchor. To do this, we have a windless that has foot pedals, or in our case, knee pedals, that allows the chain connected to the anchor to either be lowered or raised. It is a true workhorse, and
we are so grateful to have it!!!! It was a typical "moving on" morning. I had removed the snubber (a line that hooks to the chain in order to take the pressure off of the windless while the anchor is down), and was using the knee pedal to bring up the anchor. I call them knee pedals, because I use my knee, while bent over a round opening into the chain locker, to flake the chain (kind of like folding it back
and forth) to make sure it will all fit into the chain locker. A totally normal act... we've done it MANY, MANY times. This time, however, we were about half way up, when I realized I no longer had control of the up button. It had gone a bit crazy! I couldn't keep up with flaking the chain at the speed the windless was hauling it in, so I yelled to Glen to switch off the circuit breaker for the windless, which
thankfully he was able to do right away. That stopped that particular problem, but there it was... "Issue #1"!... Because I couldn't keep up with the chain, it had balled up in the hauspipe , a little metal "tube" that the chain goes up and down through. Thankfully this "snafoo" was easily fixed by Glen with a screwdriver (never to be seen again!!!) and a hammer. The major part of the issue however, was in order to
"fix" the windless knee pedal, we would have to get to the solenoid that controls it. No problem, right?!!! Well... the solenoid that just needed a "little tap" to fix was under the bed in our forward cabin, or what we normally refer to as "The Garage"!!! If you have ever been on our boat, you will feel our grief! We had to unload EVERYTHING... Glen's sax, piano, guitar, ukulele, melodica, and flute, our
karaoke machine, my 2 sewing machines (one for sails, one for quilting), plus all of the extra supplies we have brought with us... canvas and plastic window material to have a new dodger made, plus lots of paper supplies (because we all know I am a paper towel and toilet paper snob!!!). Unloading everything took more than 45 minutes, but sure enough, a little tap with the hammer and the solenoid issue
was "fixed". Because it was so calm, we had remained anchored the whole time... we thanked our lucky stars for that, so we could both work on the problem. We then finished raising anchor and headed out into very calm winds and seas. We had decided to leave everything from the forward cabin in the salon, just in case we may have another issue with the solenoid when we anchored at Geronimo

Well,our calm winds and seas didn't last for long!!! Our Grib file for wind was way off... instead of having calm winds the rest of the day, they increased, and increased, and increased to the point we were having to reduce sail until we had very little up. The winds were blowing more than 30 knots and the seas were a bit crazy by the time we made it to Geronimo Island. Even Glen admits that was one of
his "fiercest" sails! We made it though... all in tact, but very tired! We were thankful to be securely anchored at Geronimo Island. There isn't much there, but two men in a fishing panga came in and checked on us to make sure all was well.
Vessel Name: The Dorothy Marie
Vessel Make/Model: Endeavor 43
Hailing Port: San Diego
Crew: Glen Vienna and Sally Houston
The Dorothy Marie's Photos - Living the Dream (Main)
Photos 1 to 34 of 34
On a mooring ball belonging to the Lahaina Yacht Club.  They gave us a temporary membership while visiting on Maui.
February - 2010
Hanging with the "big guys!"  Cruise ships were a common sight in the anchorage at Kilua-Kona.
Hawaii - January 2010
Tied up to "the wall" in Radio Bay - you drop anchor and back in to tie up to the wall.  We had a few issues in heavy weather with getting a little too close... yikes!
Radio Bay, Hilo, Hawaii -  December 2009
A very leaky Dorothy Marie sitting at anchorage in the Fanning Island lagoon.  It was either sweltering hot, or pouring down rain (and we were once again all alone)! 
Fanning Island, Kiribati
November - 2009
Alone again!!! Anchored at Christmas Island.  The water was beautiful - you can see the different hues of blue showing reef, sand, then deeper water (from shore looking out to the boat).  In the background in a few of the local fishermen that spent sunup to sundown fishing.  They had to paddle, then surf their outriggers through the waves to get back to shore.
Christmas Island, Kiribati 
(A part of the Line Islands) October/November - 2009
We were the lone boat in our anchorage in Matautu Bay on the beautiful island of Savai
Tied up at the little marina in Apia, Samoa.  This is where we were when the earthquake and four following tsunami waves hit.  We couldn
Looking back at the island while on a putt in Little Dot!  Sadly, the village that was right behind our boat in this picture got wiped out from the tsunami that hit while we were in Samoa.
Niuatoputapu, Tonga
September - 2009
While in Savusavu, we gave work to Semi, a hard working Fijian man.  He is the father of 5 and works so hard to support his family.  He totally scrubbed and waxed the hull of The Dorothy Marie by hand - she
The Dorothy Marie is up a creek!  That
The Dorothy Marie is now a "black bottomed girl!"  We hauled out in Fiji to put new anti-fouling paint on the bottom.  We had bought the paint in NZ (better quality), but the color didn
The Dorothy Marie hanging out in the Blue Lagoon with her playmate, Destiny!
Nanuya Lailai, Yasawa Group, Fiji
July - 2009
At anchor in Musket Cove, Fiji.  Just another beautiful sunset!
The Mamanuca Group
June - 2009
At anchor just outside the floating "Q" dock in Opua.   We left the boat on a mooring ball there in Feb. when we land yachted, then were on anchor for most of March,  two weeks of April, two weeks in May (we left New Zealand on the 13th).
May - 2009
It was nice to get back out into "cruising mode" after being on a mooring ball for so long in Opua.  This is in the anchorage at Moturua Island - Bay of Islands, New Zealand.
April - 2009
The Dorothy Marie at anchor in Whale Bay - The Bay of Islands.  We went out for a 3 week cruise of the Bay and up to Whangaroa and the Cavalli Islands.  We think many parts of New Zealand look a lot like the Pacific Northwest - lots of beautiful pines and ferns.
January - 2009
Opua Marina, New Zealand
After 11 months "on the hook," it felt a little strange to be tied up, but we quickly readjusted to life with conveniences!  Our first plan was to spend one week in the marina.  That quickly changed to two, which ended up being six!  We finally left on December 27th.  We were in slip B-24.
December - 2008
New Zealand Bound!!!
We had little wind most of the trip from Tonga to New Zealand - this particular day, we had just enough to fill the "Sally Sail!"
November - 2008
Picture taken by Orca III
Underway between islands in the Ha
A beautiful Tongan sunset!   Taken in anchorage #11 - Tapana, Vava
The gorgeous anchorage at Niue - the World
Med-moored in Avarua Harbor!  We were packed in like sardines and it was very challenging getting from the boat to the shore without adding bruises, but we had lots of fun here.
Rarotonga, Cook Islands
August - 2008
The island of Moorea in the Society Island chain was so lovely!
July  -  2008
The poor Dorothy Marie had to be hauled out in Pape
Sailing in the lagoon of Fakarava Atoll - one of favorite places so far!
June  -  2008
Pciture Taken by Shilling
Enjoying the gorgeous waters in the Tuamotus!  Kauehi  Atoll
May  -  2008
Day 22 of the big crossing!  We celebrate our equitorial crossing and becoming Kind Neptune
We had a great time in Mexico, but it was time for last minute repairs and provisioning in Nuevo Vallarta (Banderas Bay).
March  -  2008
Sunset in the Sea of Cortez!
February  -  2008
Sailing down the Pacific coast of Baja.  Picture taken by Edd and Judi from Claire de Lune - our first cruising friends!
January  -  2008
Pulling away from the dock!   Good-bye dear friends and San Diego!
December 29, 2007
Thanksgiving Day!  Giving thanks that we have this wonderful opportunity and that the work of moving on board is done!
November  -  2007
Getting Ready!  Our haul out for bottom paint and an insurance inspection at the Shelter Island boatyard.  
October 2007
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The first part of our trip!
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Pictures starting with Rarotonga
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Pictures starting in Taou
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Pictures start in Atuona
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Starting with Mazatlan
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