Guess I love living on my sailboat.  

It's super tiny (36') and compact, but I think it serves its purpose.  

House me, keep my drinks cold, heat my food.  Enjoy a moonlit night now and again (I mean, for real - how pretty) and just read, read, read as much as I can.  NPR in the AM with some sort of folky tune in the PM.  Dig through billions of magazines and books, watch Minka grow./sleep/play/amuse and that's round about it.  

What a simple little life.






Guess I'm A Boat Girl


It all goes back to mobility...

Finally, after years of craving a new dark green paint job, Enola (ALONE spelled backward and also a character in Waterworld - the orphan who had the only map of dry land tattooed on her back was named Enola) was hauled out to the boatyard and is currently drying from her brand new paint job & bottom job.  She will be oh so pretty once she's back in the water. 

Boat yards are magical spheres to me - all kinds of hectic activity going on.  Dreams on the make.  Plans being schemed to get the heck outta dodge (or just the idea of it).  Paint jobs; valves replaced; prop being replaced; thru-hulls being installed.  This is all the madness I got going at the moment.  But, she should launch back to her slip soon and next up is the radar system, a fresh varnish coat, some electrical work and the installation of the anchor windlass.  Oh the joy.  Finally, one project coming to a slight, slight level out.

Which brings me to - I went and looked at airstreams this weekend.  There is a new Airstream only dealer out in San Gabriel (home of best Chinese food EVER) and they are loaded with new airstreams.  I'm digging on the International 23D.  Nice layout. My Rover can haul it weight-wise.  Seems perfect.  A used one of course.  Baja plans, camping plans, star gazing life plans.  They are all coming together.

And, GD - what a pretty boat.


New Canvas on My Sailboat and Other Improvements


Been awhile since I've given the old Enola update. 

Me and my guy Nando are always working on something - me dreaming, him executing! 

I got a new parchment colored canvas bimini (witn new stainless steel frame) and all hatch covers.  Holy moly - what a difference that light makes.  And now you can stand up while at the helm.  The green was beyond tired and falling apart. 

I just replaced the stove.  I mean, this new one just lights right up.  Guess I've been used to living on the Flo Bo where I need a lighter to light mine.  It's like I've entered a new life with this small gesture. 

I installed a little TV with a mini DVD player.  Of course, all the varnish works needs to be done and redone.  I'm having her painted a new fresh shade of green while I'm away in Indo, as well as having her bottom painted.

I'm on the make for a full radar, chartplotter set up - you know, for the long hauls I anticipate doing someday.  Time to put in the watermaker as soon as I can located it in storage!  I need an autopilot.  I of course need a bit more comfy mattress with some new thread counts. 

Oh, and since I posted last on her, I changed her slip.  She's now right on the main channel for easier in and out access.  Not sure if I ever wrote about the fiasco when me and Lis took her out last (engine died, slip closed in on us, controls caught in the gate...almost never came back and headed straight to Mexico) - it was horrifying.  I'm gonna work this summer to build back up the confidence that was RIPPED FROM MY ENTIRE BEING with that one little dramatic event.  Oh, and about a billion people were out on a Sunday.  Christ.  Anyhow, new slip is much, much better and all the seals and sea lions literally live in my back yard.  Just a nice way to begin or end the day.

Anyhow - the more time I spend on her, the more things I find to tweak.  Nando is always painting something, replacing a hose for this or that, making her look really special.

I just love this vessel.  And oddly, the old owners who sold it to the dude I bought it from reached out the other day.  They were trying to hunt her down and found her via the Tooth.  Must mean she haunts).

And BTW, Enola is the name of the little girl in the movie Waterworld that everyone was looking for - she had the only map to dry land tattooed on her back.  I know Enola is ALONE backwards (which I love), but to finally know from the original owners why they named her that is cool.  I dig alone, though... 

PS, these are iphone photos, so sorry the quality.  And, I don't have the cushions out, but when I do...very cute indeed!

Oh - and just realized that the tempered butter in the last post was at Frasca in Colorado - NOT Casa de Mita in Mexico.  Must have been cause I am planning a trip back to CdM that they made their way into that entry.  Unreal.  They have great butter too:))



Navigating the High Seas - A Very Good Skill to Have.


Chart Navigation 101 - last weeks class was absolutely bananas.  So much math goes into chart plotting, I tore out of the Del Rey Yacht Club with my mind reeling and my head justa throbbing.  Ahhhh, but nothing a steaming hot pile of fried rice couldn't fix (I'm telling you, the secret is grapeseed oil).  This weeks class, however, was way more up my alley.  That's cause we did all sorts of hands on exercises.  We figured out how to literally determine where we are on a chart without using any sort of GPS intel.  Nothing electronic.  All just lat/long coordinates and if you do xx and go xx where do you end up and how deep is it?

God, I love this stuff.  Incredibly empowering - especially when I remember - like baby bolts of lightening - "OH YES! I own a sailboat! How could I have forgotten you??"

Thanks USCG!  Oh - and I had to register my boat in LA the other day at the DMV and those fools, those crazy fools.  The batty old loon was like - So....we're gonna need you to bring the boat in here.  I was like - where?  She's like - the DMV.  WTF?  I said - LADY, the boat is 41' long - you mean to tell me I need to pay thousands to haul it out of the water and get a 50' 18-wheeler to bring it over to Culver City so you can make sure it's actually in the state of Cali.  OK - no problem!  That's what the USCG is for - they come verify the vessel, duhhhhhhhh....

Left in a fury.  Then I made shrimp ceviche and all was well in the world again.  

And, for all of you out there that think you might get lonely sailing to remote lands - read this bit that I spotted in the LA Times this week.  You are never, ever alone out there.  And, don't forget to go see "Oceans" on Thursday - it's Earth Day!


Enola Rockin' All 3 Sails...


Haiti devastated.  I can't even get past the horrificness of it all.  Yet, a cupcake still eaten.  A faraway trip still planned.  A pal still about to cross the Pacific.  A TV show still made.  A book still read.  A laugh still had.  A workout still sweated thru.  A bargain still sought after.  A boat still cleaned.  A dream still realized.  A movie still watched.  A wall still painted.  A life still lived.

In times like these, it's just best to be on the ocean.  Period.

Boat Projects & Mexicans


Not only do the Mexican's run the kitchens of the USA, they run the boatyards.  My mechanic is Mexican, my rigger is Mexican, my canvas guy is Mexican.  They do great work, and they do it quick and cheap.  Which means I can pull off all kinds of little boat projects for a quarter of the price.

Like say...a custom cushion for my V-birth on my boat.  Fernando busted out the wood insert.  Miguel hopped on the custom cushion.  And, now I have a nice, comfy complete V-berth that feels like a full size bed on a little bitty boat.

That kind of stuff makes me incredibly happy.  As I told the Budro, I ain't headin' east of the Rockies again
unless somebody's payin' me a wad of dinero.  I like South and West - where the Mexican's are.  




Varnishing a Boat = Brightwork


Weeks have gone by since my brightwork dude started the job.  By the end of it, he desperately hated my sweet little boat.  So much wood, so much sanding.  Poor guy. 

But, all's well - he's finally done and the wood just gleams. It makes my heart swim just to look at it.  Piece by piece it all comes together - and when I get back from my upcoming shoot on the East Coast, I fully expect my mechanic/all-around handy man to have ripped through his list of Enola projects.  To the sheer delight of me on the road.

Life is good.




Enola Gets New Cockpit Cushions


Yesterday my mind was wandering and I was trying to conjure up thoughts on when I was/am most happy.  Cruising thru Mexico alone for long stretches of time was a huge one; feeling my spirit come resurrect itself in Indo is a biggie as well; so are things like becoming PADI certified, finishing up TV shows, figuring out something on my boat, the feeling I get just after a killer workout, my constant need to be exploring new places, and the bliss I encounter curled up in bed at home in TN with a good thriller in my paws. 

However, this morning, when I rounded the corner to check out my new green cockpit cushions that Manuel the canvas guy had made - well let's just say happy is an understatement. 

Little by little and dollar by dollar, the good ship Enola comes together.