Saturday, December 9, 2017

YOLO folks head west

After selling YOLO, we headed back to Michigan to dump the rest of the boat contents into the cottage or the storage garage. Both are overflowing with our "stuff" from the last decade or two.  We figured we'd have to get rid of some stuff, but the weather turned cold and we figured we'd better get moving if we didn't want to spend the winter in the cold. 

We contacted Steve, a guy we met in the boatyard in VA who'd offered to have us come stay with him on his new boat in Curacao and sail with him and his girlfriend, Bobbie.  He and Bobbie broke up before they got the boat relaunched in Curacao, and he'd already found crew to help him sail it on his maiden voyage to Cartagena, Colombia, but he was thrilled to have us meet him there and carry on to Panama with him.  He's new to cruising and is hoping to glean some tips and tricks and techniques from us about his new lifestyle.  We were happy to oblige as it seems like a win-win situation.

As we headed west to Denver to get our flight, we stopped at my sister, Chris', house for her birthday and Thanksgiving.  Mom, Chris and me in her kitchen, site of scrumptuous foods and lots of Scrabble.
 A sunrise in Kansas as we left.
 After a fuel pump failure kept us overnight in Wakeeney, KS, we finally made it to Colorado.  We decided to play tourist a bit since we hadn't spent much time here since we lived here in the late 80's.  We visited the Denver Capitol Building and went on its tour. We climbed to the observation deck just below the gold dome.
 The pink onyx marble used extensively inside the capitol came from a single quarry in Buelah, Colorado.  The slabs were absolutely gorgeous!  Unfortunately, they used up the entire supply of the quarry when building the capitol, so there is no more of it.
 A pretty day for the view from the deck up top.
 We also went down the street to the Denver Mint to visit our money.  We took the tour and they gave us free samples--a new penny and an unstamped penny blank of copper.
 A cool fuzzy grass growing along the walk way there near the mint.
 My nephew, Gabe, Mom, Paycee, Tom, and Reina in Mom's kitchen.  Paycee fell playing basketball in Montana, where they live, and hurt her leg. During the x-rays, they found a mass they think may be bone cancer and sent her to Children's Hospital in Denver as it is one of the best in the country for this type of treatment.  They took a biopsy from the 13-year-old and we are still waiting for the diagnosis from the Mayo Clinic.  It was nice to meet Paycee and Reina as we hadn't ever met in person. I'm keeping fingers crossed for the outcome.....
 Celestial Seasonings, the huge tea producer, is based in Boulder and we drove to their site and took the tour.  They have almost 100 types of teas you can taste in their shop; I tried as many as I could find that sounded interesting.  They were all good and I sloshed as I walked through the facility.  The tour through their plant is always interesting, especially the Mint Room, where they keep huge bags of dried peppermint and spearmint for their teas.  One inhale will clear your sinuses and make your eyes water!  Their Peppermint and Sleepytime teas are bestsellers every year.
 The colorful artwork makes this a pleasing visual tour, too.  We had lunch in their corporate cafe, rated #1 in the area for its food and friendliness.
 Since we were on the cleaner, clearer mountain side of the smog of Denver, we stayed there and drove south to Golden to take the Coors Brewery tour, too.  This is the big brew kettle out front, with the giant Banquet beer can in the back ground.  It is just a facade for the pipeline that dumps the spent mash into trucks to drive away to the farmers for cattle feed.
 Lots of antique decorations in the plant, like this old poster.
 Jason in the tasting room with the first of our three free samples allowed in front of him.
 Karen enjoying a Blue Moon fresh from the tap at Coors.
 We decided to walk through downtown Golden since we were there, and to let the beer work its way out of our system before driving back to Aurora.  Here, Jason hugs the big buffalo sculpture on the sidewalk.
Back in the Denver Capitol building, the false roof was removed and the ceilings restored a few years ago to their 1906 splendor.  Nicely done.
 The round stained glass windows above the rotunda are of important figures in Colorado's history.
 A nice view from the top, looking west towards the Rockies.  The City/Council Building behind the flagpole was lit up at night in a spectacular, colorful display.
 Santa and his reindeer above the arch over the main street in Golden.
 A family dinner at Jim's house.  Scotty, Tom, Karen, Mom, Jim, Abby, and Jason in front.
 Headed back downtown to have lunch with Jim and play tourist some more.  This glass portal is outside Union Station.  If you look hard, you may see a diagonal line that goes through the pavers outside. It is the 105th parallel of longitude that passes directly through Union Station here in Denver.
 Brother Tom got me inspired and helped me create this mountain scene on a long pallet.  We used spray paint and lots of tape.  I think it turned out pretty good, considering it was my first try.  He'll use it to obstruct the view of some electrical boxes in his back yard.  It got the creative juices flowing, but I don't have time to do more as we're leaving the country again in a matter of days.
 This dress was made from curled sheets of music and was just one of the decorations in the Denver Governor's mansion.  Yep, we took that tour, too.
 The artwork outside the Great Divide craft microbrewery in downtown Denver.  This area of Five Points was known as a ghetto when I first lived in Colorado.  Now, this brewpub is in the top 20 in the state and it did a hopping business the afternoon we visited.
 The sign outside the tap room at the Great Divide brew pub.
 The Yeti is one of their iconic stouts.  I like the artwork.
 The famous Brown Palace Hotel in downtown Denver.  It sits on a pie-shaped wedge of land and is built to match the space.
 Tom made this flag pallet while I did the scenery.  This one was requested by Mom for her Christmas present. Looks great; hope I didn't ruin the surprise.
Denver saw a few days of below freezing weather (those days we wanted to finish painting the pallets, of course), but was mostly wonderful sunny days.  The place has grown so much since we lived here.  The traffic is a common complaint from folks who live here, as is the price of housing here. 

We've had our dose of civilization and are heading to South America to do some more minimalistic traveling over the winter and sailing on Forever Young.  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you!  Happy Holiday seasons to you, all.  Keep us in your thoughts and keep smiling.

YOLO sold, Nov 2017

YOLO was still looking good, but the dust and bird poop weren't giving us much leeway.  We had to get the hose out and scrub the decks again.  I started waxing smaller parts of the gelcoat that I could do in little bursts.  Eventually I had the entire upper parts of YOLO waxed and polished again and she was getting even better looking.  Jason had gotten down to cleaning the edges of the windows with a toothbrush.  YOLO is in better shape now than when we bought it.  Do I really want to sell her?
YOLO tied up at the marina where she'll change hands after the sale.  Notice how high above the water line she sits.  They say every 1000 pounds is about an inch, so we now have about six inches above the water, so we figure we took about 3 tons of stuff off of YOLO. just adds up a little at a time.
The new buyer, Dave.  He came a day before closing to make sure the air conditioning and washer/dryer really worked as we didn't test them on the sea trial.  All good to go.
Karen and Jason, our last photo on YOLO before it was turned over to the new owners.  Dave and Lisa will rename her Unwritten Timeline, so cruisers might still spot her out and about over the years.
The van was so packed when we left Virginia we couldn't see out the back.  Thank goodness for good side mirrors.
Jason and Karen are now going to sail on other people's boats.  We're heading to Cartagena, Colombia to sail with Steve on his boat, Forever Young, a 53' Amel.  We'll probably stay in Colombia til the New Year and then head for the San Blas and Panama.  Ciao for now.  Adios, YOLO!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

YOLO goes to Annapolis Boat Show Oct 2017

As soon as we decided to head back to VA to get some work done before we went to the boat show, the weather decided to pack it in, also.  We left MI on my birthday and drove back to VA to work for a week before heading up to Annapolis.

My friend, Chandler, lives in Arlington and again offered up his home for our accommodation while we visited the boat show in Annapolis.  I met Chandler in Queenstown, New Zealand over 35 years ago.  He had dark hair then, but is still a sweetie with a generous heart.
Chandler arranged a dinner party for the night of our arrival and invited a few friends that I hadn't seen in decades.  Paul and Jason tuck into the food.
Paul, Karen, Anne and Chandler at dinner.
Hugs are always good!
Some very unusual colored berries on a vine as we walked in Arlington.
Jason and I volunteered at the Seven Seas Cruising Association (SSCA) booth to drum up new members.  It's a great organization, is non-profit, and has amazing resources all over the world that we can tap into for help and/or information.  It happened to be located across the dock from the Hendrick's Gin tent, so I had a free taste of a few of their cocktails.  Cucumber-basil smash was my favorite.
The Hendrick's Gin artwork is Victorian and their equipment set up to create the gin cocktail recipes looked like it came from the same era.
YOLO at the boatyard dock, ready for a sea trial.
Karen's basket of shells and treasure items remained as a pretty prop during the sale period.
Jason taking a break.   YOLO is as clean as she's ever been.
When we returned from the boat show, we had some folks interested in viewing the boat and taking her out for a sea trial.  We didn't want to haul her back out afterwards so we moved around to the Deltaville Boatyard and Marina on the other side of Stingray Point.  The marina was demolishing their old, covered docks and replacing them with new, floating docks.  The steam shovelwas ripping down the structure over the covered berths.  A new pumpout and fuel dock will be part of the renewal, but the demolition work restricted the space available.  most of the yachts have now left for the Caribbean or are locals being hauled out for the winter or being tied up in their slips.

YOLO at anchor in Jackson Creek in Deltaville after the sea trial.  You can see the waterline is now well above the water.
Cosmos is the boat we sailed to Bermuda on and sailed in the Chesapeake on with our friend, Ted. He has property just up the river from Deltaville and we took a side trip to go see our friend's property and the boat.  He'd said we could tie up YOLO here if we wanted to, but it is even farther out of the way than the boatyard.  Poor Cosmos has been left idled here for years now and the wear and tear and non-use is starting to take its toll.
Cosmos from the shore.
A pretty tree starts to show the fall colors here.
Karen and Jason selfie on YOLO

YOLO break in Colo Aug 2017

I, Karen, took a break from the boatyard to head to Colorado.  My brother bought me a ticket to fly out and join him to drive to Farmington, NM for his daughter's wedding. My neice, Megan, was getting married and it was a great opportunity to see all the family for a quick week.  It had been four years since I'd been back to see any of them and it was too long! This is a family pic in front of my Mom's house in Colorado. Me, Tom, Chris are in the back row.  Jim, holding his son Scotty, and Mom holding Jim'd daughter Abby.
Tom's back yard.  He spray painted some pallets to make the flags that cover the utility boxes along his fence.  Clever!  And pretty.
Dad bought me lunch at a Mexican restaurant. I can never get enough Mex when in Colorado.
Me in a Cheetos fake beard. We all tried it on for laughs.
Brother Jim is a Batman fan extraordinaire.  He even has the Batman tattoo on his arm.  This BatMoose emblem was special for me as his nickname for me is Moooooooose. It came from watching the credits on Monty Python and the Holy Grail.  Watch it and see if you don't laugh.
Mom in the beard flashing the peace signs.
Me, Tom, Suzy, Mom with Jim, Scotty and Holly in back on Tom's back deck.
Tom and I drove his new Ford 150 truck over Wolf Creek Pass on the way to Farmington. It's a gorgeous view!
The chipmunks look for crumbs from the tourists who stop to enjoy the view.
Colorado has such beautiful vistas.
The mountain scenery is always a draw to Colorado.
Tom and his grandson, Lucas
Jerimiah, Lucas' big brother.
Megan and Tom, bride and father just before the wedding.
Megan and Randy after the ceremony.
Randy and Megan LePlatt, now husband and wife.
Jim, Tom, Dad, Randy, Megan, Mom, Chris, and Karen.  A rare family gathering.
The Lynch mob with Mom.
Tables of scrumptious goodies for the reception.
Megan and Randy at the reception.  We all had a good time.
Scotty in pop-out eyeball glasses, back at Mom's in Aurora.
It was a quick visit, but it was so good to see the family again!