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June 2014

Friends - Again

This blog has a whole lot of posts about friends. As friend/cousin Jeff says, “I love you a whole bunch of lots.” Well, we love our friends a whole bunch of lots and I tend to write about what I love. For the most part, cruising sailors seem to be outstanding friend-makers, and those we’ve gotten to know talk often about special friends back home, or cruising friends who keep in touch from distant ports.  EW and I are incredibly fortunate to have wonderful friends; childhood friends, friends we met in our late teens and twenties, friends we met just a few years before leaving Maine, and many new cruising friends-for-life. Thank goodness. I don’t know what we’d do without our friends. Here are a few examples – with apologies to those not mentioned:

IMG_0087EW met Jim in third or fourth grade. (That’s what EW said. Jim could probably quote the exact time – but then Jim wouldn’t be installing bulkhead supports for the auto pilot when I asked him.)   Jim and his lovely wife, Marcia, visited us last year in St. Thomas, and this year they drove over 6 hours one way to have lunch with us during our short stay in Florida. Jim is on the class reunion committee so we made sure to get a photo he can show to the rest of the class of ‘64. It’s not the best photo of either of them, but the conversation, laughter and love overflowed the table at that lunch. P2222714Ed lived across the street from EW. P2212663Ed was a few years older and as EW says, “He used to beat me up.” Evidently both got over that. Like Jim, Ed and Lynn came to Maine for our wedding nearly 29 years ago, visited us in Maine over the years, and were must-sees whenever we went to the Buffalo area.  Ed and Lynn visited us this year in St. Thomas and we had a lovely time showing them the sights on St. Thomas and St. John, catching up on the gang, and sharing stories about our adult kids, recent adventures and past exploits.

Kathy and I met the first day of school in fifth grade. The two of us met Cathy when she was assigned to our freshman triple at UMO almost (gasp!) forty years ago. We three have been dear friends for life ever since. Kathy and Cathy know more about me photo (14)than any other two people on earth – even EW. (For example, EW didn’t know until recently that I knew almost all the lyrics from all of the songs in Sound of Music. Kathy knew that. Nor does EW know everything I did in college or before I met him. Kathy, Cathy, and I have sworn vows of silence.) Cathy and her husband, Stu, have visited us on the boat in Maine and in Grenada. We hope to see them while we are across the Atlantic, too. This past March, EW and I flew to Florida mainly to get our driver’s licenses in our new home state. We stayed with Cathy and Stu, and Kathy drove nearly 9 hours one way to stay there with us. Cathy let us use her car to take our driver’s test. (Or planned to. We didn’t have to take a test. Woot!) Kathy and Cathy spent a day shopping with me for boat things – not giving up until I had everything on the list. We laughed, we cried, we told stories, drank wine and other beverages, hugged, shared, and loved. They both pretty much dropped everything in order to spend time with us over those five days. I cannot express what that meant to us.

 

P1000021P1000040 Of our many sailing fP1000023riends, two couples who stand out from the past year are Jaime and Keith from Kookaburra,  and Peter and LeeAnn from Two Much Fun. Jaime and Keith got stuck with us when we moved to a nearby mooring for our 18 months in St.Thomas. When everyone else we knew cleared out for hurricane season, Jaime and Keith became our support system, euchre partners, dominoes competitors, pizza night guests, and weather reviewers. They had already lived in St. Thomas for over a year, and are two of the most helpful, giving, people you could meet.They also love to laugh and are dog saps like we are. Jaime and I walked three miles nearly every weekday at 6, getting to know each other and every nice dog on Honeymoon island. I don’t think I’d have survived St. Thomas without Jaime and Keith. Peter and LeeAnn return to St. Thomas each winter, where they operate their boat for couples only charter. (It is an awesome week. Check them out. LeeAnn is an amazing cook.) Peter is an outstanding musician and excellent teacher. LeeAnn cut our hair (expertly) tried out new recipes on us, and became a wonderful friend while we listened to the guys practice and perform. Thanks to LeeAnn, I’m a Band-Aide, not a Groupie; a Band-Aide has much more status. Peter spent hours and hours over the past three years, helping EW improve as a guitarist and performer. Heck, if it weren’t for Peter, EW wouldn’t be a performer. Peter helped EW live his dream. 

P2222730

In fact, that’s what friends do. They support your dream, listen, learn, provide guidance, a shoulder, perspective, and encouragement. Our friends back home don’t want our lifestyle, but they love us and are thrilled that we are sailing our boat. We are thrilled for them, too – and love to hear about the grandchildren, PhD daughters, new homes on the lake or in Florida, world travel to Paris, and China, moving across the country to hold that grand-son and grand-daughter more often, meeting the man to love forever, sailing in Boston Harbor, and more. Sometimes it feels a bit lopsided because our dream requires help from folks back home. Their support is a tangible thing, whereas we can mostly just listen, learn, advise, love, and admire. P1000047

That’s where paying if forward comes in. We can never repay what Jaime and Keith, Peter and LeeAnn, or many other cruisers have done for us. And we can never repay the favors and help we’ve received from our conscripted support system back in the states. They didn’t volunteer for this, but stick with us anyway. We can pay it forward as much as possible, and help other boaters, and help back home – when we can, from a distance.  We do what we can under the circumstances. But always, always we are so very thankful for all of our friends. They know our faults, choose to love us anyway, and help whenever possible. We are rich in our friendships. As we finally cross the Atlantic, we know that we are missed and will miss all of them. We also know we’ll meet up again. We have to. They are our friends. And we love every one of them a whole bunch of lots.h

Photos:

  • EW and Jim
  • Ed, Lynn, and EW
  • Ed, Lynn, and EW walking on St. John
  • The most recent of a million photos of me and the two C/Kathys
  • EW and Keith with Jenn from Jenn’s Restaurant in St. Thomas.
  • Jaime opening a present
  • Jaime with the pup
  • Kirk, EW and Peter jammin’
  • LeeAnn, Peter, and the darling Mimi – saying good-bye the morning we left St. Thomas

The Passing of June

Happy summer! Back home in Maine, I bet the strawberries are delicious, flowers are blooming and the corn is almost knee-hi. Here, I actually wore a light weight fleece jacket on my night watch. Come to think of it, that's like sailing in Maine. No fog here, though. We are cranking with reefed sails in 15-20 knot winds with gusts over 25, and less than 900 miles to go. We are heading a bit too far north and hoping for a wind shift in the next few hours.

Our location is 36 42.8 North and 45 44.3 West. The good news is that this is the farthest east I've ever been. The bad news is that we are closer to Newfoundland than we are to the Azores. When I woke up for my 10A watch, EW said, "No icebergs, yet." Need a wind shift. Need a wind shift now.

Actually, we are doing fine and the wind has started to change. Life is still good on the high seas.

Cheers!

This IS Voyaging

Not that I hold a grudge or anything, but when I self-published "The Harts at Sea; Sailing to Windward" I received some over the top positive reviews, many appropriate middle of the road positive reviews, and one nasty negative review. That person seemed to be looking for swashbuckling tales of storms at sea, pirates, peril, and adventure.

There's a secret about this cruising thing and it's one that we wished our non-sailing loved ones understood: If the boat is ready, and the captain and crew are capable, and if they pay attention to weather, prevailing conditions, and use common sense, then there will be very, very few swashbuckling tales of storms at sea, pirates, peril and adventure. Sure, we and our friends have had equipment fail at sea, and we've had to deal with the result. Ross and Diana on their catamaran, One White Tree, hit a giant ray when they were crossing the Pacific and broke a rudder. That's not good, but they coped beautifully.

The other day, EW wanted to tweak the whisker pole, so we waited for a time when we both were rested and the winds were light. He knew there should be a halyard to hold the pole at the right height and wanted to rig that. It would also make it easier for him on the foredeck when we needed to raise, lower, or adjust the sail.

It was a lot of effort, but he got her done.

However, shortly after the shackle he had installed failed and the halyard came free.

That is NOT a good thing. For you non-sailors, a halyard is a line that goes to the top of the mast over a pulley and is used to raise and lower things. We have a bunch of them: one each for the three sails we have; one for a spinnaker we don't have; one for the whisker pole; and one to hold the awning up at anchor. All of them are long enough to go from the deck to the top of the mast and back. Rule number one for halyards, is DON'T LET GO OF EITHER END.

The whisker pole broke that rule and we had the working end of the halyard banging around about 20 feet above the deck. We tried to pull it down with the extending boat hook but couldn't get a purchase on it in the rolling seas.

"Send me up," I said.

"You sure?"

I was. Back in St. Thomas, we had practiced with me sending EW up and I was easily able to haul him up the mast and to safely return him to the deck. If anything has to be actually fixed up there, he'll have to go. But I'd much prefer to have my life in his hands than vice versa. This was a no brainer.

So we got out the bosun's chair, I removed my life jacket, strapped myself in, tied on a strong halyard, and he hauled me up the mast. I had only been up on the dock or at anchor in a calm harbor, so at first I swung a bit -- which made EW nervous, but I was fine. I could even spit if I wanted to. (On prior trips up the mast I discovered what "scared spitless" meant.) I grabbed the line, unwrapped it about 10 times and lowered the working end to the deck, securing it on a cleat before I unhooked from the seat.

This is not a swashbuckling, harrowing tale. This is just life at sea. Once things were settled, I went to sleep and EW went back to reading his Jack Reacher novel. It is my goal not to provide swashbuckling, harrowing tales. Boring is good.

Currently at 34 26.8 North and 48 36.4 West

Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?

Does anybody really care?

We care. We care because we like to sleep. I've never thought of myself as a person who likes to sleep, now I find myself checking the time and thinking, "I can go to bed in an hour." "I can go to bed in 45 minutes." You get the idea. We have three rules at sea: 1. Stay on the boat. 2. Drink plenty of water. 3. Get plenty of rest.

We've sailed beyond sunrise and it's impacted my sleep.

To recap: The laptop and the log book are "programmed" at UTC; formerly known as Greenwich Mean Time, UTC is the time of the world clock. We are sailing toward UTC Land. Our bodies and the ship's clock are set for Atlantic Standard Time -- the time in Sint Maarten, which was congruent with the rising and setting of the sun and worked for our watches. Our watches are as follows:

6P to Midnight
Midnight to 6A
6A to 10A
10A to 2P
2P to 6P

We each get two day watches of rest every other day. This works great for us and many thanks to S/V Aurora for the idea.

Now that we have traveled for over almost two weeks, the sun is rising at 3 AM and that is just wrong, so we need to gradually get our bodies and our clocks all over to UTC. I brought it up a few days ago and EW has been pondering it. I was going to rectify the situation by an hour yesterday and actually changed one of the analogue clocks before I figured out that I would have to shorten EW's time off, not give him an extra hour. Since I want to stay on the boat,(Rule 1) I decided not to make that decision unilaterally, so I let it go and left one clock at the (soon to be) new time of one hour ahead.

Are you confused yet? We were, and it just gets worse. I realized that while the laptop is now on the same UTC time as Nimble Navigator and our GPS, this Sailmail program has UTC at one our later. One of these is wrong.

This morning, I was off until 6A AST but the bright sun streaming into the hatch woke me shortly after 5. I got up and made coffee to discover that EW had been trying to wrap his brain around changing the time. The discussion, during which one participant was waiting for coffee to perk and the other was ready to crawl into the sea bunk, was interesting.

EW: The IPad won't give me a time for where we are now.
B: Maybe you need a land mass. What time is it in Iceland?
EW: It doesn't have Iceland.

A moment of quite contemplation. I felt sorry for Iceland.

B: We need to go four hours ahead right? I set the kitchen timer one hour ahead yesterday - just so you know.
EW: I changed the laptop to UTC so it's the same as the Nible Navigator.
B: We just have to figure out how to do the watches and when. I think we shorten a watch by an hour, so the person off loses an hour of rest.
EW: If a train leaves Chicago, going 50 miles an hour...

We decided that we'd each lose an hour of rest on one of our two-rest period days. EW went down at 6 AST - which is now 7 on the boat and I'll wake him up at the new 10, which used to be 9. We'll give it a couple of days for us to settle in and then I'll give up an hour. That should put us more in sync with the sun. As we get closer to the Azores, we'll have to adjust another one or two hours -- depending on which UTC clock on board is correct.

Seriously, does anybody really know what time it is?

There is no jet lag at sea. But there is math. I could never figure out those train problems.

If a sailboat leaves Sint Maarten on the 16th of June and averages 5 Knots per hour .... it won't pass anyone. Trust me.

Rhythm

There is a rhythm out here. Actually, there are many rhythms out here.

The waves.

The wind in the rigging.

Our sleep patterns.

Our watches.

Listen to a sea chantey and you will hear the rhythms of a boat at sea.

We still have very light winds, and the swells have lessened, so while we aren't moving as fast as we'd like, we are moving toward our goal, comfortably, inexorably, consistently. We reached a milestone this morning and are finally north of Bermuda and over 600 miles east, with just over 1200 miles to the Azores.

We have had close encounters of the large ship kind and are delighted with the Nimble Navigator program that allows us to use AIS information from the VHF radio to plot those ships right on the same chart with which we navigate. The program tells us the name of the ship, how large it is, where it's going, it's course over ground, and it's speed. When I went off watch at midnight, I told EW that we had two "targets". One would pass 12 miles to our starboard and cross our bow well ahead of us. The other would come within a mile or two. A very loud ship's horn sounds on the computer when a ship is within 3 miles -- in case we aren't paying attention.

Of course EW paid attention, and turned the computer's audio down so I could sleep. He watched the ship, first on radar and the laptop, and later as the lights came into view. He knew it would pass us to starboard, but also knew it would be fairly close as ships go.

As it neared he heard a voice on the radio, "Hello? Hello?" Not very nautical, but then we don't broadcast AIS information so he had no way of knowing the name of our boat. EW responded and they had a conversation. The boat had 21 crew from the Phillipines, and EW's new friend wanted to know how many we had on board and whether we were in a race. (Later, EW was a little insulted when he realized that if we had been in a race, and we were the first boat the Australia Maru had encountered, we would have been the last boat in the race.) Regardless, they had a pleasant conversation, didn't hit us, and this AIS system works. Life is good aboard La Luna.

This trip has emphasized our need for solar panels as we are using fuel to charge the batteries. Gramps is a great wind generator, but does squat with 6-8 knots of wind. Ah well. Going is much better than waiting for the perfect. Going is a more perfect life than not going. Going is good. I may actually this crossing thing. Don't tell EW yet, OK?

(Today's happy post brought to you in part by Shower Day. Woo Hoo!)

Life at Sea with EW and Me

EW said that we'd know when we were in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean because there's a line. I keep looking for it, but it's a few days out.

The other day EW asked this unanswerable question: "You know how when we get ready to dive into the water we take a big breath of air? Do you think flying fish take in a big gulp of water before they jump into the air?"

We decided that was Voyaging Deep Thought.

He also was a bit miffed that I had mentioned the shower issue on the blog, but he didn't tell me right away. In the manner of married couples everywhere it came out after a sharper conversation. Usually I am very mindful of not crossing the line between blogging and our privacy. I like to say this is a truthful blog but not a tell-all blog. I still don't plan to tell all, but this time I just laughed at his concern, and replied thusly:

"Are you kidding me?! Number one, you even introduce yourself as "The Topic", so my posting about you is no big surprise. Number two you've got me out here in the middle of the damn ocean with NO ONE else within miles and you think I can find something else to write about?" He had the grace to laugh. We both did. -- And that is when he told me that we weren't in the "middle of the Atlantic" because we hadn't see the line yet. I do love that man.

There isn't a lot to write about. We aren't heeled over much so that part is comfortable, but we will have 5 and 6 foot swells that cause a roll, which makes any task interesting. Just now my hands followed the laptop as it slid four inches to port. Every batter, yogurt mix, or bowl of milky cereal left unattended for two seconds will always slide and slop over. As chef and galley slave I admit to smiling often this morning as I sat drinking coffee in the cockpit while EW made bacon and eggs below. I heard a lot of grunts, groans, and a few choice words. Afterward, he had the grace to praise me for making muffins, pizza, and yogurt from scratch while under way.

Seriously, there are many women and men who are much better at this than I am, and have written the cookbooks to prove it. I bow down to them.

Cheers! From North 30 22.07 and West 055 79.55. We are officially farther east than I've ever been before.

EW is my captain and he approved this post.

We are Voyaging

This morning I told EW that this cruising life was "interesting". He knew that wasn't necessarily a good thing, but chose to focus on my terminology. "We aren't cruising. We are voyaging."

You might ask what the difference is, as did I. "Voyaging is what you do to get to places where you can cruise."

Oh. Well voyaging is different and "interesting" and certainly not for everybody. Yesterday I wasn't sure whether or not it was for me, but 6 hours of sound sleep changed my perspective. A bit.

This is one of the few times in life where you hope for boring. Boring means no major breakdowns, big storms, grounding, collisions, pirates -- you get the idea. We don't have to worry about groudings or pirates out here, and we've only seen one distant tanker, two birds, and a floating ball since we left the Caribbean Sea. Boring is good but it's .. well .. boring.

I requested "interaction" time with EW for the rest of the trip. This is truly a solitary experience, as not only are we the only two people out here right now, but we have opposite watch/sleep times and few times together for conversation. We read a lot -- both on watch and some off. I am working on building writing time into my "schedule", and as the chief cook and bottle washer at least 2 - 4 hours of my off watches are taken up with chef and steward duties. EW reads and sleeps off watch and has done a couple of small boat maintenance things -- by choice.

This is a solitary experience.

The other day while exploring why I so willing agreed to do this, I asked EW why he wanted to cross the Atlantic. He thought for a while and provided two answers, "For the solace and for the challenge." I can accept that. The challenges for me are different that his, and this forced solitary confinement certainly provides one the opportunity to think and reflect. We know nothing of what is going on in the world right now, and not much about what is going on with friends and family, and I have to let that go and focus inward. (Not my best thing -- right Rhoda and Lynnelle?) I usually do my best thinking out loud.

Still, I do love the Cruising life, and while I don't live Voyaging so far, I don't hate it either. We have a phrase aboard La Luna usually spoken in the cockpit over cocktails during a spectacular sunset, "This does not suck." Clearly, at those moments "does not suck" is an understatement. Right now, that's all I can say about the Voyaging life -- "This does not suck." (Sometimes it does come close to sucking, however.)

Still happy to be here and looking forward to the Azores. And a restaurant. And wine. And people -- lots of people.

After we shower.

As of 2:00 PM AST\1400 AST\1800 UTC, on June 21, 2014, we are at 25 48.173 North and 59 36.978 West.

Good morning. I couldn't get a clear channel to send this on the 21st, so will try again today, the 22nd. EW set the whisker pole this morning. The process needs work, but ultimately we are able to go just off the wind on our preferred course with the jib held out on a pole so it catches more wind. EW has hopes that we can hold this all the way to the Azores. It's possible. This whisker pole is another thing on a long list under the title of "EW's Master Planning". He had a whisker pole on his list for La Luna long before we took off and was delighted when sailor, pilot, and photographer extraodinaire, Jack Nordby offered us a pole he no longer had use for. EW paid to have it rigged for the boat and for the boat to be rigged for the pole, and there it hung for over 4 years, unused. Before we left Sint Maarten, EW spent an afternoon tweaking and fine tuning, and greasing pole and mast parts, and now we are sailing to the Azores, sailing mostly downwind with the sails hardly flapping. Life is good. I do love EW.

You Call THIS Paradise?

Hmmmph!

Things are going well. It took me a day or so to get back into the swing and to begin to believe the auto-pilot would work. Last night I didn't notice a wind shift and first blamed Casey for failing, then had to apologize to both him and EW -- to EW for getting him up half way through his watch. Ah well.

We did take that tack to the east, going about
70 miles, thirty back to our intended course, the rhumb line, and 40 beyond it. We ended up traveling a bit south as well, but more to the East. We tacked while EW was up due to my error and are steaming along at 6-7 knots under the jib and a reefed main. We are heading North, about 30 miles east of the rhumb line and that's great. I'm looking forward to getting the new grib files when I send this to see whether we have successfully avoided most of the no-wind zone to the north west. Fingers crossed.

There are some things I don't like about crossing oceans. We certainly are isolated. Just us. Lots of sea and sky and us, though we did see a tanker passing three miles behind our stern last night.

The waves and wind are big enough that we get the occasional dump of water across the deck, so no hatches are open below. I'm hot and sweaty and making quiche the other night nearly melted me into a puddle. I hate that.

Would someone please make a head (toilet) lid that will stay open under way long enough for me to sit down? So far, gravity has won 70 per cent of the time. I hate that.

We are hot-bunking it, that is one of us sleeps while the other stands watch and we use the same bed. No issues there, of course except for the lack of air. EW tends to get settled and not move for much of the night, so when I slip into the sea bunk, it is to go to sleep on sweaty sheets. Not too fond of that, either.

We both showered on Monday before leaving Sint Maarten and I had expected to shower again today. Every other day is normally my limit. EW had the 6-10 AST watch, while I slept until 9, awaking slowly and thinking about when today I would take my much needed and well deserved shower.

Turns out EW "forgot" to tell me that he has planned for two showers a week and thinks Mondays and Thursdays are good. I am not pleased. I am really not pleased. I stink. My hair is greasy. EW stinks. His hair is greasy. We have enough water to take a light shower every other day. Our tanks were full when we left and hold 200 gallons. We have 35 gallons in jerry jugs and another 5 in drinking water. We don't have a water maker but it just moved higher on my list. I absolutely know that we will arrive in the Azores with lots of left over water because EW won't let me shower more.

Knowing I wasn't happy, when he went down for his morning nap he asked if he was still my favorite husband. "Yes, but only because there's no one else out here to choose."

Other than that, things are great. We are currently at 19 49. 8N and 62 32.6 W.

Aromatically yours ---

Gee, This Looks Familiar

We left Sint Maarten for the second (and hopefully last time this season-knock wood)on Monday at 11:00 AM AST. Currently the ships watches are following AST time, but the log is UTC. Right now, it's 8:00 AM or 0800 in 24 hour time, and I have another two hours for my morning watch. EW is sleeping. When I wrote in the log, I entered 1200 as it is noon at the master clock across the sea.

This fascinates me. As we sail east we'll gradually alter our watches so that by the time we get to the Azores we'll be acclimated to that time zone. There is no jet lag when sailing.

However, we aren't supposed to be going east yet. We are supposed to be heading mostly north with a slight east to it. Just like on our aborted trip a few weeks ago, the winds are pushing us northwest. I have three day old grib files and will download current ones when I post this. At that point we'll decide whether or not we want to tack to the southeast. There's a bit of weather - a high and low dancing with each other north of here and it's sucked all the wind out of the area. It looks as though if we get 100 miles east, we'll have a better shot at good wind that will take us north.

As for the boat. She and Casey the auto pilot are doing great. We certainly got rid of a number of annoying gremlins during our test cruise and subsequent repair time. We'd like more wind for the wind generator and really miss having solar panels right now, but other than that things are fine. I slept most of my 6 hours off watch, so feel rested. Last night I made quiche a la Mandy from Secret Smile. It was delicious, but makes a lot. EW will have quiche for lunch for a few days.

We have fresh pineapple and bananas on board and lots of cheese from St. Martin. (That's the French side.) Life is good at sea. Our position is 19 30.9 North and 063 40.7 West.

Oh! And the title today is courtesy of EW, who said, as I went on watch to at 1800 last evening, "This looks familiar. I think we've been here before."

Cheers!

Micky D's

Just a quick note to say that we will leave Sint Maarten for the Azores.  Again.

Happy Father's Day to all Dads and Grads out there. EW worked his tail off today to get us ready to go -- including going with me a final trip to the Grand Marche store to replenish the foods we've eaten in the past two weeks.  He wants you to know that we got bacon. (Three pounds of bacon.)

Right now we are at McDonald's. Really. Becasue they have good free WiFi, and the folks watching the World Cup are quieter than the folks watching the games in the nearby bars. I've come off the boat wihtout my reading glasses and will blame all typos on that.

We have about three hours of stowing and cleaning to do tomorrow morning, and are then out of here. The anchor won't fall off, the auto pilot is working perfectly -- and Brad and EW discovered two problems that caused the failure. Those items are fixed and we're good to go. I'll be posting without photos as we cross. Expect to hear from me about every 3 days or so.  

We have a new smart phone and have signed up for a Voip service. Boy, technology almost left me behind in only three years. Once I figured out that the hard phone needed a soft phone, I got it working, so one day soon, you may see our Maine phone number in your caller ID. It will be us.

Right now, EW is checking the weather, and it looks great. All systems are go. That brings to mind one of my favoirte moments from Sint Maarten.

I was ashore with the handheld, running errands, buying a phone, and getting a few groceries. He agreed to retrieve me from the Yacht Club dock whenever I was ready. So I called him on Channel 10 -- the channel used by the cruisers here in Sint Maarten. "La Luna. La Luna. La Luna. This is Lunah Landah." No response. "La Luna. Lan Luna. La Luna. This is Lunah Landah." EW replied. "Lunah Landah. This is La Luna." I had the radio volume down too low and didn't hear him. So he called me again, and I called him again. Everyone on the net could hear us calling each other. During a pause , one cruiser got on the radio and said. "Houston, we have a problem." 

May all your problems be that small, and may you laugh at least once a day.

Cheers!