Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Crocodile Barf

Sometimes even a crocodile can have an upset tummy. This one barfed up...me!

Yep, this is a marvelous water slide here at the Paradise Village Resort where we have the boat berthed. A group of us cruisers decided to play "vacation tourist" and play at the big pools. Jonesy was busy watching Nascar racing on the TV - his last opportunity before we leave Saturday. After that...no more TV, internet, running water, or plug-in electricity.

It was kinda scary to climb up the spiral staircase to the top of the slide and walk across the suspension bridge. Also, I was worried that maybe I was too big to fit down the tunnel - but no problemo! It was really FAST and FUN! I did it three times in a row.

So, besides playing with the neighbors, I've been busy with knitting. Here's another little pattern I designed for the Holiday Mystery Gifts group. It is knit with Knit Picks Palette wool fingering weight yarn and fits an 18" doll such as the American Girl brand dolls. This pattern will be available tomorrow (Oct. 29th) and will remain FREE for downloading through the end of December 2008.

In just 4 days we will untie the lines and cast off! My cupboards are packed full of shelf-stable food for the next five months of cruising. We know that we can get fresh produce, eggs and fish along the way so we'll be well fed.

Whooo hooooo!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Socks, Chores, & Insurance

Here's my latest sock design for the Holiday Mystery Gifts Yahoo group called FLOWER PATCH socks. The are knit top-down with a picot hemmed edge over corrugated ribbing. The simple stranded colorwork is easy to memorize. So now you know another little piece of what I've been busy knitting lately. There's lots more to come too!

Other pre-occupations have been boat chores. I've sewn a patch on the hole in the V-Berth mattress cover, designed and began sewing the massive mosquito netting for our berth, and continued to put "stuff" away in safe places for cruising. Jonesy has had a long list too and accomplishes some task, or two, every day.

Then of course, there was the Sunday night Potluck BBQ, the Tuesday beading session, and then then first Bingo Night of the high-season all at the Vallarta Yacht Club. I won a bottle of tequila on the first hand of bingo. Dang, I'm good. Jonesy gave it to a friend of his - the dock manager - for helping him out with diesel fuel that day. We really appreciate the service as we dread trying to shimmy up to the fuel docks while fighting off the pushy sports fishing boaters. This 22-ton sailboat is not easy to maneuver in close quarters.

We've been sweating out our request for extended boat insurance to go thru the Panama Canal and to Columbia. Finally - we got confirmation that we, after paying a lot more money, can be insured! Yipppeeee! Naturally, they put in the clause that terrorism is not covered. Oh, and we have to have another marine survey of our boat done by mid-April. This involves hauling the boat out of the water. Oh well, we'll get this done in Panama and have the bottom re-painted with anti-barnacle stuff at the same time.

Today, Jonesy picked up our Panama and Columbia courtesy flags from the gal who makes them here in Mexico. Another purchase successfully completed. Now we have the full set of flags needed for our next cruising season: El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, and Columbia. Marine vessels have to fly a small "courtesy flag" of the country that we are visiting. We also fly a larger USA flag as that is the country where the Niki Wiki is registered.

We'll leave you now with a sign we saw in a gas station/convenience store in Central California. Yep, this is for real.

Sunday, October 12, 2008



Here we are in our slip (parking space) in the marina - that's Jonesy standing at the end of the dock finger up at the bow (the pointy end of the boat). Our neighbors were turning their boat around to varnish the other side so we took this opportunity to get a photo of the 50-ft Niki Wiki across the empty space.

We have some new neighbors too. All sorts of high-dollar sports-fishing boats have come and gone this summer. These usually have a crew and the owners fly in occasionally for some fishing action - marlin, tuna, etc.

Also some mega-yachts with fulltime live-aboard crews. This first photo is the 107-ft yacht Anne-Marie. She's been here for several months.

But wait, she's now being dwarfed by the recent arrival of the Sea Quest which is a brand new 163 ft mega-yacht.

We watched as the crew of the Sea Quest lined up on the dock to say good-bye to the guests. Each guest shook hands (and said a few kind words I assume) and they passed the crew members. Then, finally a crew member toted the little white dog up the dock following the departing guests. Of course, the guests were all dressed up - suits for the men, one even wore a nautical navy blazer, and nice clothes for the women. Yep, in the 95 degree humid tropical heat.

Oh boy! Don't expect this kind of behavior if you come visit our boat!

And then we have the new neighbors who are less glamorous. As some of the big sports fishing boats moved on to the seasonal trophy fishing competitions elsewhere, the crane and dredge moved in. In this photo of the crane you can see our Niki Wiki - well just the canvas cover & Jonesy on the dock - in the background. So now we have industrial neighbors in this fancy marina. Why? Because they are going to refurbish the docks here to be able to accomodate LARGER MEGA-YACHTS!

Yep, more of these big guys have been built and are cruising the seas, thus needing places to park. This is a worldwide trend. I wonder if the current economy will slow this down. No, the rich will always be rich and need their play things.

Oh! If you know any young folks (20/30's) they might like this lifestyle. Crewing aboard these mega-yachts is a full time job and you get to see the world. Sure, you gotta act like a servant when the owners/guests are aboard, but the rest of the time you get to see foreign ports, surf, whatever. Both men and women crew these vessels. They even have their own newspaper that gives ideas as to what to do in the different ports.

Sorry - no knitting content. It's all a mystery these days...

Wednesday, October 08, 2008


Giggles Hat


The Giggles Hat! Take a couple of skeins of hand-dyed sock yarn, add in a few yards of an accent/sparkle yarn, go a little crazy with bobbles and picots and you get a wild hat.

This is my latest design released to the members of the Holiday Mystery Gifts Yahoo! group. Last week, members followed a series of mystery clues to knit up something....What? Mystery Slippers, that's what. Check out the photos of completed slippers on the blogs of Littlewilds and Fibernating.

We had hurricane Norbert come through here yesterday afternoon. Although the eye of the hurricane was about 300 miles away, we got hit with an "arm". Super intense rain fell for a couple of hours. Warm rain. Then a little bit of wind. Really, nothing bad except we were out waking about during the rain - so we had to dive into the Yacht Club to get out of the downpour. Then we had to eat dinner there (that's our story and we're sticking to it.)

Friday, October 03, 2008



One month to go until we sail south into Central America! Besides provisioning, we had to get our immunizations for all sorts of scary diseases: Typhoid, Yellow Fever, Tetanus, Diptheria, Hep A and Hep B. All in one doctor visit. Ouch! Now we need to go buy our anti-malarial meds.

The doctor spoke great English and provided us with printed out travel medicine information, and some free medication samples including an Epi-Pen for my allergic reaction to bee stings. I slept most of the whole next day. Jonesy has been feeling "achy" for a couple of days. Oh well, it's better than getting one of those icky diseases!

Here's a picture of a little green iguana we saw on one of our walks around the resort here.

Immediately after getting all those shots, we had to almost run to the next doctor's appointment - the dermatologist. We both had places on our faces that concerned us and we wanted a doctor to check them out. Yep. We both had some pre-cancerous spots and they had to be frozen off with liquid nitrogen. Right then. Mine is on my nose. Right on the center of my nose. It looks like somebody burned me with a cigarette. I've been hiding on the boat for a couple of days (keeping achy Jonesy company). Too much sun. Wear a hat, sunscreen, yada-yada...

So when is a Yacht Club a "Yatch" club? When they misspell the parking space signs, that's when. Okay, everyone is entitled to a mistake now and then. But this is Mexico. The sign stays. Yep. It's been here for months.

Introducing...The Dana-Marr Shawl. That's my sister Dana-Marr modeling her new shawl I knit in Interlacements "Floss" cotton. The pattern for this easy-to-knit shawl is on the Holiday Mystery Gifts Yahoo! group. Just one more free pattern for the knitalong.

The stitch pattern is the traditional Feather & Fan or Old Shale design that has been popular for generations.


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