Go Back   Cruiser Log World Cruising & Sailing Forums > Regional Cruising > Pacific & Australasia > Regional Discussion Topics
Cruiser Wiki Click Here to Login

Join Cruiser Log Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-29-2010, 01:02 AM   #1
Ensign
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1
Default

Hi All,

I am not a sailor, just a landlubber scientist...

I've been trying to put together the course of David Crosby in his song "Southern Cross", lyrics of which are here.

I think this must be around Tahiti, and I googled hard to find a picture of the course he describes(?), but I came up empty.

Maybe I'm obsessing on a song I love, together with my dreams of being an 18th century sailor. But if anyone could draw a diagram of the sailing described in this song, complete with arrows for idiots, I would be much obliged.

Mike
__________________

__________________
KnightAshore is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2010, 02:53 AM   #2
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

Avalon, I assume, is Avalon Bay, Santa Catalina. The song talks about the beginning legs of the the Coconut Milk Run across the South Pacific. First stop is usually the Marquesa Islands (Iles Marquises); then through the Tuamotu islands (Archipel des Tuamotu) to Papeete, Tahiti. A bit over 3,000 miles.

I can't post a picture, it's too big a scale. Just Google "French POlynesia" pull up a map and zoom out, and out, and out to get the whole picture.

Great song. Great trip, too.

Fair winds,

J
__________________

__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2010, 12:08 PM   #3
Admiral
 
MMNETSEA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,067
Default

Hello Mike,

From one scientist to another :-

"Stephen Stills with help from Richard Curtis and Michael Curtis. Stills explained: "The Curtis Brothers brought a wonderful song called 'Seven League Boots,' but it drifted around too much.

It was later that Stephen who reworked the song to give meaning to the love he had lost and valued so much - rhetorical in it's depth but the images of his boat journey to the islands under the Stars of the Southern Cross give that special feeling that one enjoys on the night watch, when one is alone.What he said about the song "I was given somebody's gem and cut and polished it." In fact, the course that Stephen's boat took during that memory was probably incidental - it may have been the fabulous southern stars in their billions that light up the southern sky, and when you are on a boat, on your own, in pitch darkness with only the sound of the sea slipping past -- Magic! What memories can be invoked ?Southern Cross.jpg
__________________
MMNETSEA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2012, 10:04 PM   #4
Ensign
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Home Port: Portland, OR
Posts: 4
Default

I do sail a bit, although haven't for a while due to a back injury. However, I like to plot courses I would take if I could. This is one of my favorites to think of. If you go to google maps. Get directions from Faaa, French Polynesia (Sofitel Tahiti Resort) to Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia. Faaa is the nearest city to Papeete Bay that they speak of. Now, they must be sailing from new zealand? Because they're sailing a reach to the trades (tradewinds). The wind is actually curving up near new zealand, so they could be sailing SE on a reach, headed for the trades. (A reach is sideways to the wind, fast sailing). At the bottom of this reach, they would hit the trades, which at that point in the ocean are blowing nearly E to W. This would put them on a reach to papeete (faaa) and like they say in the song, on the same heading as the marquesas islands. That's why he says downhill run, because they would be sailing fast again. So if you draw an imaginary line from marquesas through faaa, and then have them heading SE from new zealand or even new guinea until they hit that line, then turning port (left), they'd be headed straight toward those two island groups. That's my very best guess. (remember, I said guess. LOL) I know it's been a while since you posted, but hope you get this. Hope you get out on the water sometime. -Tom
__________________
SailorWithoutABoat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2012, 01:22 AM   #5
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

Good, this made me revisit the song and my memories. From New Zealand anywhere East is a nasty beat, no reach, just hard on the wind. I've only met three boats that sailed from NZ east, two to French Polynesia, the other back to the US! Hard, hard work.

The trade wind route is from East to West, and the milk run from north of the Equator, and what most boats follow, is leaving Mexico or California, running on a reach to the Marquesas, then on to Tahiti, the rest of the Family Islands, and then on across the S. Pacific. (Faa is downwind and west of Tahiti).

In rethinking this song, Avalon may not be in Santa Catalina. It might be Avalon in Australia! It makes more sense in that case.

MMNETSEA did us all a favor with his picture of the night sky and the Southern Cross. What a wonderful sky it is.
__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2012, 08:56 PM   #6
Moderator
 
redbopeep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Home Port: Washington DC
Vessel Name: SV Mahdee
Posts: 3,225
Default

Actually, it was Stephen Sills who brought this song to us. It is about a trip he actually took following a divorce according to Wikipedia. It would be interesting to know about that particular trip.

On our way back down the coast in the fall of 2010, we enjoyed an end tie in the Santa Barbara harbor with the Crosby-owned schooner Mayan directly astern on another end tie. Lovely Alden schooner she is.

Fair winds
__________________
"Do or do not. There is no try." - Yoda

What we're doing - The sailing life aboard and the Schooner Chandlery.

redbopeep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 05:14 AM   #7
Ensign
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Home Port: Portland, OR
Posts: 4
Default Neat

That would be interesting. I wonder if he did much sailing afterward or if it was just a one-time thing.
__________________
SailorWithoutABoat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2013, 08:05 AM   #8
Ensign
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Home Port: Lihue
Posts: 1
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeanneP View Post
Good, this made me revisit the song and my memories. From New Zealand anywhere East is a nasty beat, no reach, just hard on the wind. I've only met three boats that sailed from NZ east, two to French Polynesia, the other back to the US! Hard, hard work.

The trade wind route is from East to West, and the milk run from north of the Equator, and what most boats follow, is leaving Mexico or California, running on a reach to the Marquesas, then on to Tahiti, the rest of the Family Islands, and then on across the S. Pacific. (Faa is downwind and west of Tahiti).

In rethinking this song, Avalon may not be in Santa Catalina. It might be Avalon in Australia! It makes more sense in that case.

MMNETSEA did us all a favor with his picture of the night sky and the Southern Cross. What a wonderful sky it is.
I am with JeanneP regarding the reach. I would think that route would be hard into it the whole way. I have never done it and not sure I would try.

But it almost HAS to be Avalon in Australia and not Santa Catalina. The lyrics give it away:

In a noisy bar in Avalon he tried to call her (assuming he did not get through to the girl). Then the next line:

'On a midnight watch I realized why twice you ran away'.
To me that means he tried to call from Avalon (Australia) , gave up and headed east on the boat. At some point on a 'midnight watch' it hits him what went wrong.

Those midnight thoughts about 'cheating lying and testing'.
What a great song!

I guess the fun part is that it can mean whatever you want it to depending on where you are in life when you listen.

To me that is a definition of a great song.

Same thing with Jimmy Buffet and Margaritaville. You hear what you want to hear depending on your mood or situation.
__________________
mglover10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2013, 07:05 PM   #9
Moderator
 
redbopeep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Home Port: Washington DC
Vessel Name: SV Mahdee
Posts: 3,225
Default

Thanks! for your thoughts on the song
__________________
"Do or do not. There is no try." - Yoda

What we're doing - The sailing life aboard and the Schooner Chandlery.

redbopeep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2013, 01:25 AM   #10
Ensign
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Home Port: Portland, OR
Posts: 4
Default Thank you

You all seem like such a great group of people. I've loved reading your insights into my questions about the song and glad I could bring some happy memories back for some of you. Be safe and enjoy whatever you're doing. Sincerely, Rick
__________________

__________________
SailorWithoutABoat is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Do you know David and Jan on POLAR BEAR? Jodie General Cruising Forum 4 04-24-2012 07:20 AM
Hello From Southern Ca InNeedOfTheSea The Tavern | Welcome Aboard 0 02-13-2010 11:14 PM
Considering The Southern Pacific Route delatbabel Regional Discussion Topics 3 01-15-2010 10:44 PM
Southern Ireland Jerry_Skoll Regional Discussions 1 10-19-2008 08:09 PM
Seeking David Tunick aboard NIGHTWATCH Jack Tyler General Message Board 1 12-06-2006 11:59 PM

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

RV & Travel Trailer Communities

Our RV & Travel Trailer sites encompasses virtually all types of Recreational Vehicles, from brand-specific to general RV communities.

» More about our RV Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


All times are GMT. The time now is 06:36 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0