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Old 11-30-2007, 08:35 PM   #15
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Good to have you with us Paul. Welcome aboard.

It is not often we get a new member who has been the subject of a forum discussion. In fact, I can't recall it ever happening in the past.

I was sorry to read of your problems and, at the same time, quite amazed that you wanted to share them with the world at large. I am not at all certain that I would have been man enough to have done the same thing.

One thing I do know is that Cruiser Log is about encouraging people to go cruising and to make a success of it. To be perfectly frank, we derive benefit from the experiences of others; both good and bad. Indeed, they should be discussed as it is all part and parcel of the learning curve. We always try to achieve a friendly debate, learn from our own and others' mistakes and do all this with a modecum of humorisms and a large dose of empathy. It is very seldom that we don't succeed to achieve these objectives.

I think we are fortunate to have you join us and I sincerely hope that you will become a regular contributor to these boards.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 12-01-2007, 02:08 AM   #16
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Thank you all for your kind words. I decided early on that one of the primary aspects of this voyage would be the blog and that it would be no BS. Naturally there have been limits where other's feelings and privacy are affected, but I see no reason not to be perfectly frank, especially now it's essentially just me. There is no shame in untoward events occurring in one's life, unless perhaps they have been brought on by one's own moral failings. I don't really think this has been the case in my story, although I am no paragon. Certainly I believe that The Mate and I gave it our best efforts to make things work. And I think happier times will come for Blue Stocking and me. It's just part of the whole story.

Some of my blog readers have given me very satisfying feedback about the value of my writing to them. I haven't ever made a living specifically as a writer (although that is basically what a lawyer is, which, sadly I must admit is in my history) but I like to do certain kinds of writing. If one combines that with a satisfied or at least engaged audience, what could be better.

As I told someone at the Jumble Sale at the Cruising Club this morning, I didn't plan things this way, but I am getting a richer experience as a result of the setbacks we've had.

Paul
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Old 12-02-2007, 02:03 AM   #17
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Thank you very much Paul. I really respect you being so honest about your feelings and thoughts. You really gave me so hope for myself. Myself i suffer from a few mental problems (Depression, Bi Polar #2 and Agrophobia) just last month i setteled a very long legal battle that gave me the funds to get my first live aboard boat. I do not want to get off track here. But after i read your post i had the feeling my dream can come ture and that the fear that comes with the move can be over come. I wish you the very best and please stay strong it is your life good or bad you decide how to live it. I hope to read more.

John
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Old 12-02-2007, 02:47 AM   #18
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Dear John,

I think I'm going to print your post out and frame it! We are all so much stronger together than any of us is alone. Stay with your dreams! I'll keep writing. It's slightly addictive (but in a good way? LOL).

Paul
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Old 12-03-2007, 05:49 PM   #19
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Paul,

You sound in great spirits! That is good stuff, and uplifting for all of us too. I once myself filled 200 pages of thoughts, and photos. I was going through the same problem. Seperation from my lady impacted me like nothing else.

One day I went to work, and like a mad man started printing pictures from my PC. I would cut them out, and staple them to the wall. I found myself staring at hundreds of pictures for days. One day I just started writing, and it took place for nearly everyday for a year. IT BECAME ADDICTIVE, and eventually it set me free. I later realized I was teaching myself to appreciate what I had, and not worry about what I had lost. Some time later that empty hole was filled, and I was a much smarter man for everything I went through.
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Old 12-04-2007, 04:54 AM   #20
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I decided the fairly dark post has served its purpose and I have lightened it up, mainly by shortening it. Don't want to scare potentially helpful people away, after all!

Thanks to all.
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Old 12-04-2007, 05:49 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueStocking View Post
I decided the fairly dark post has served its purpose and I have lightened it up, mainly by shortening it. Don't want to scare potentially helpful people away, after all!

Thanks to all.
Thanks a lot Paul , but keep us up to date on your sailing activities.

Regards

Richard
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Old 12-07-2007, 02:37 PM   #22
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HI Paul,

Just dropping by to say hello. I was wondering if you have formulated any kind of a plan to get sailing again? Possibly you are tossing ideas around? Let us know what your up to, and take care...............
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:34 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by imagine2frolic View Post
HI Paul,

Just dropping by to say hello. I was wondering if you have formulated any kind of a plan to get sailing again? Possibly you are tossing ideas around? Let us know what your up to, and take care...............
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:29 AM   #24
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I was struck by the earlier post where someone said you are either one or the other: the well-budgeted, prudent middle class cruiser (which is what we were, although at the leaner end) or a resourceful, low-budget crew with the skills and attitudes acquired through life to live cheaply, operate a cruising boat on a shoestring, and find ways to earn wherever one finds oneself. I've been smashed out of the first category and I don't (yet, anyway) have the skills, attitudes or experience to succeed in the second.

It now seems to me of course that I did it all wrong, but it seemed to make sense much of the time as I was working toward the actual voyage.

My greatest fear is that something will happen to the boat (requiring money I don't have) or to my own health so that I am unable to get the boat out of NZ. It will then inevitably be seized for taxes or sold for a pittance. If you've had a biggish boat on a smallish budget you may know what I am talking about. In that event, my bluewater career (at least as an owner) will be finished.

So I'm considering, and preparing for, an option many might view as outlandish (outwaterish?) . I think I will head out of here in about 3 weeks, go north around the tip of NZ (less than 100 miles) and head across the Tasman Sea for the Bass Strait. I'll sail around Australia on her southern shore and angle north into the Southern Indian Ocean tradewinds, hoping to reach Durban by March. No stops in australia if I have any choice, because I have neither the time or the money. March is not too late to get around the Cape of Good Hope and to Capetown. If I pull that off I'll head for New England where I have a mooring, can get work, and have children to re-connect with and a divorce to negotiate. If all goes well, it will be 15000 miles in 5 to 6 months-a very conservative 80 to 100 miles a day. But not a hell of a lot of land time. And a really long time to be underway, especially alone. Still, not at all unprecedented. I honestly don't know if I have the inner resources to succeed at this, but I want to find out. I'm pretty sure BS is up to it.

People generally associate the south edge of Australia with the Roaring Forties (intense, continuous westerlies.) But actually, in the summer, easterlies prevail due to the highs that tend to form several hundred miles offshore. (You remember they go counterclockwise down here) Their southern edges are part of the Roaring Forties, but the northern edges are milder, at least in the summer. Fronts come through, with strong headwinds, and there is a head current, but I think I can make it with patience and determination.

I have bought and am installing a Sailomat self-steerer, the type that actually turns the steering wheel the power from a pendulum oar (like one of the original production self-steerers, the Aries). If this works on BS, my chances are much improved. No doubt it is possible that I will be knocked back to NZ, or have to give up in Australia, but, as I say, maybe I'll make it too. Many here say that what I am planning is more difficult than I think, but I think some of this is conventional wisdom and the result of the freak Boxing Day Storm debacle which decimated the racing fleet in the Sydney-Hobart race some years ago. Well anyone who headed out into that forecast and weather map, pretty much got what they deserved, I think. The reason this race is scheduled at this time is that the weather at that time is generally benign (comparatively) in late December. I've been watching the Gribs (on Ugrib) for several weeks now, and what I am seeing is fairly gentle weather and only rarely strong headwinds, which one could wait out by heaving to.

If I'm headed for disaster anyway, which seems likely, I'd rather be sailing than sitting at anchor worrying about it!

I had pretty much been hoping to take this route before things broke down in my personal life. The differences, that make this a bigger adventure than planned, are that I intend to do it alone (unless a truly capable crew turns up--not too damn likely within 3 weeks) and without stopping, at least until South Africa. I am completely consumed with the determination to carry out this circumnavigation and I will not let go of the boat voluntarily (like by selling it or abandoning it here by flying home) as long as I have the sheer physical strength to continue and BS is reasonably seaworthy, which she still is, with a few repairs and mods to be accomplished over the next few weeks.

By the way, if you are wondering why not go north around Australia--this is both the cyclone season in that region and across the northern Indian Ocean and also the northwest monsoon season--headwinds all the way. Not feasible. The risk of cyclone exposure is unacceptable in my opinion. At this season I could also go east--stay in the forties and ride the westerlies to Cape Horn. This is somewhat shorter, but the chance of really awesome winds and seas for much of the route, not to mention ice, and cold weather, daunts me. Maybe someday, in a smaller, tougher boat, although at this point it's hard to imagine how that will develop.

Until I leave NZ, I will be open to possibilities that make staying sensible--like a real job. But I really doubt that is in the cards for me.

So wish me luck and follow the blog. I'l try to keep it up as I go. I can't post here while I am at sea. The wifi just doesn't reach that far!
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:45 AM   #25
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May I suggest that you have a serious look at the Indian Ocean page on the WIKI - with particular regard to weather (cyclones) for your planned timing.

Whatever you do, I wish you the best of luck and please let us know here how you're gettin on.
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Old 12-14-2007, 10:34 AM   #26
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Hi Paul,

I would like to wish you luck with this venture.

Also, you have probably already been there but if not take a look at the pilot charts of the Indian Ocean, downloadable here free of charge

All the best // Stephen
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:44 AM   #27
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Thank you very much Stephen, that is a great site. A lot there than just charts.

John
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:55 AM   #28
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....and as Lighthouse said, stay in touch. We are routing for you
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