About Me

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Singapore
I am owned by Pauline and Mark Blasky. My hull was built at the Duncan Marine Yard in Taiwan and launched in Dec of 1980. It is a William Garden design based on the Pixie Design and called by Duncan Marine a Freedom 45. They are the fourth owners and have owned me the longest. They have done extensive refitting to me including replacing my entire deck structure and rig. My masts are roughly 10% taller than original and now are made of aluminium as opposed to the original wood ones, which, though pretty, were always problematic. You can read more about me under "MORE ABOUT SARI TIMUR"

December 31, 2015

Happy New Year's Eve

Position N  26 d 48.57
        W 066 d 11.03

Time 08:45 EST

Well, we will be spending a sober New Year Celebration but hey it doesn't get much more beautiful than this right now.  Of course it is subject to weather and that is subject to change.  Our grib files from yesterday showed a pretty heavy blow to the north of us.  We have enough wind that we are considering shortening sail a bit more but are loving the speeds we are ticking off right now so while visibility is good and the seas are favorable, we will keep pressing on.  Most important we are getting that much coveted southing in.  A little west of our course line but once the trades kick in we should be able to pinch a bit to make up the difference.

Here is to everyone celebrating the end of 2015 and we wish you all a very good 2016.

Hello you Merritt Islanders

Position N  28 d 46.09
        W 066 d 00.77

Time 10:30 EST 30 Dec  course due south.

Hey all you Merritt Islanders if you look just about straight east right now we are about 775 nautical miles away from you.  Our chart plotters are all over the place with timing our arrival, anywhere between 4-8 days.  Most probably somewhere in the middle depending on when or if we hit the those trades.

December 30, 2015

Sailing Again

Position N  30 d 12.00
        W 065 d 24.22

Time 11:30 EST  course 220 degrees True

Well, during the posting yesterday the weather was abating from being slightly uncomfortable which was also exaggerated by the fact we were trying to point as high as we could due to Bermuda.  Anyway the winds kept receding all day and just after 5 PM we turned on the engines.  This wasn't all that unwelcome as we didn't run them for 4 days and we were getting tired of warm drinks, and now that we are in reasonable temperatures again it is nice to have a cold drink every now and then.  The winds continued to die all night, just after midnight you could see the reflections on the sea.  As the sun rose this morning there were ripples in the water, this time with a bit more east in its feel.  They have kept building, and by 10:35 we were able to turn the engines off.  The wind is still building and our present speed is back up to over 4 knots.  The big plus is we can head more south, though a bit west of south right now but that is ok.

December 28, 2015

Bermuda Triangles

Position N 32 d 00.84
        W 65 d 48.45

Time 28 Dec 12:00 EST
Course 175 d finally!

We are finally south of Bermuda.  We got to look at it twice but both times we were far enough away to not make it out.  Mark was desperately looking for Jacqueline Bissett in her wet white T-shirt.  That life size poster of her taped to the wall from the movie The Deep,
kept him yearning for life while in traction for six weeks back in 1977.  Oh well he couldn't get to her then either!

Anyway the reason for the title is the wind gods were playing with us.  We were going to make the south end of Bermuda and we had a wind shift.  We carried on for a bit longer than we probably should have, thinking we were fine dipping between the main island and the banks to the south.  But night time came and the charts mentioned this area as a caution area with fish traps all around.  Dark and no steering is not the time to play maneuvering games so we threw a huge tack in and basically went way wide to avoid any more wind shifts.  We could probably have done a shorter tack but with no steering it is a two person maneuver to do this so we only wanted to do it twice.  Anyway our track has two large triangle shapes on it, ok maybe it looks more like an hour glass with the course line filling in the blank side of each triangle.  But hey we are near Bermuda, there has to be a triangle somewhere!

December 27, 2015

a missed post

Now that we hit land and could see our emails etc noticed we sent one of the posts to the wrong email for Laura.  Here it is below.

Position N  33 d 11.27
         W 066 d 32.26

Time 09:30 EST  27 Dec Course trying to go higher than 155 degrees to miss Bermuda.

We are still sailing, so our diesel is still fairly intact, when, or if, we hit the doldrums. Or if we get some more head winds.  Last night it was touch and go for a while if we would have to crank them up or not.  The wind dropped off to nearly nothing and backed as well.  So for a while we were heading straight for Bermuda at slow 2-3 knots.  It is now under a hundred miles away but we will get "a lot" closer on present course unless the wind gives us a favorable shift.  We may end up tacking for a short while.  We do need to fire up those engines for a while later on anyway so that might give us the extra insurance to clear Bermuda.  The solar panels are just shy of keeping up with our consumption and that is with the fridge off.  Not sure why as it has a huge solar array.  But then again the sun is so far south at this time of the year, with the boat almost heading south they do not really get the exposure they should.  But our drinks are getting warm so some diesel sacrifice might be in order for a couple of reasons.  We can't pull into Bermuda for ice or diesel as we discovered we have no chart.  Oh well without any steering cable it is probably a good thing to stay at sea.

December 26, 2015

Where are we going?

Position  N34 d 33.93
          W67 d 41.50
time 09:30 EST Boxing Day


The day dawned beautiful, sunny with blue skies and white fluffy clouds.  And we are heading for Bermuda.  Bermuda?  Wait a minute, aren't we going to the British Virgin Islands?  Well, that's the heading we can hold right now, sailing with the main and genoa.  Will hope the winds change as we get closer to Bermuda so we can change tack and head for the BVI.  The temperature is definitely warmer now compared to when we first started out.

Christmas Aboard

Position  36 d 09.14 N
          69 d 25.00 W

time 09:30  trying to steer a course of 150 degrees or as far south as possible.

Well Merry Christmas everyone.  The weather has moderated quite a bit and we are making a reasonable heading.  The seas are still a bit lumpy but getting better all the time.  We have three reefs in the main which is still a very big sail and a full genoa going at present.  The last time we set the main we tempted fate and that is when the big winds started coming.  But today we figured hey its Christmas the weather should be fine, and so far two hours in it has been.  We have sailed a lot of the way but mainly under headsail alone.  The main is pretty big and cumbersome but once set sails well.

Just before we left Laura and Steve's, Laura handed us two bags of presents - a his and a hers, to be opened on Christmas.  We will post pictures on this blog when we get to internet but now all we can do is describe it.  The two bags were pretty enough and they could have been stuffed with old newspapers and we would have been happy but we opened them up and found lots and lots of small individually wrapped presents.  Great fun ripping open package after package to find some gift or other.  Thank you Laura and Steve.  We also received a Christmas card from mom, at Laura's.  As we had already left she scanned it and emailed it to us so we could open it up on Christmas day as well.  Sorry Aunt Anita the chocolates you sent were devoured before we even left North Carolina but they were good.  Same goes for Aunt Kathy's Cinnamon rolls, but hey at least they made it to NC, well most of them!

Anyway it is nice to know we are so blessed with people who care about us.  And with just over a thousand mile to go we hope Neptune also decides to shine on us gracefully.  Mom, sorry we missed Midnight Mass this year.  Couldn't get the priest to make a boat call!







For those of you trying to follow us on AIS, don't bother.  We can receive but not transmit.

December 24, 2015

Crossing the Gulf Stream


Position 37 d 04.62N

         071d 25.65W

Time 0900 24 Dec

 

Happy Christmas Eve, well hopefully you guys are.  We are still bashing East with a very strong wind from the south (the direction we want to head).  We sailed the whole way across the stream.  Or at least we think we are pretty much across.  We are still picking up some residual current but not with as much strength as before.  We think this current could be partially due to the south wind.  So the idea is to get as much easting as possible before tacking and hoping to pick up a wind from another direction at the same time.  Actually the traditional way to do this route is to head almost to Bermuda and then pick up the trades and head straight into the BVI.  Hopefully we do not have to go that far but at present it looks to be the case.

December 23, 2015

At Sea


Position 36 d 30.80 N
        74 d 06.78 W

Time 11:30 EST 23 December

Well a few dramas so far to report.  Part of it is trying to make a schedule at this time of the year and part of it is dealing with an unknown boat.

The first drama is as we were leaving the Chesapeake, in the narrows around Cape Henry, we got the call from the Virginia Pilots alerting us a large vessel was coming up behind us.  We agreed to stay south of the channel and work our way behind him once he passed.  It turned out it was a large navy hover craft carrier and he got up behind us and stopped.  This meant we had to keep rounding the cape in the shallows and wait for him to get moving again.  Normally no issue but just as this was happening a line squall came through.  The Coast Guard said it was packing 45 knots.  We don't have wind instruments but it felt every bit of 45. Anyway the storm abated, the ship left and we continued on our way through somewhat lumpy seas trying to clear the affects of Cape Hatteras and the Gulf Stream while a south wind was still blowing.

The winds were rather iffy after the storm so we were switching between sailing and engines when we could sail we are but when it is too light we turn on the engine.

At nine o'clock last night the wind lightened too much and the autopilot couldn't cope.  As we turned on the engine and tried to steer back on course we noticed the steering system wasn't working either.  Anyway once there was some speed on with the engine going the autopilot could cope again so we continued on our way trying to figure out what was wrong with the steering wheel.  It was a bit baffling so we called the agent and sent him and the owner an email.  As it was now after 9:30 PM the agent was not answering his phone or email.  We did leave a voice message and let him know would call this morning.

Once we got him he suggested that we had hydraulic steering as well and the wheel being so high up would not work if we were lose on fluid and worse the autopilot would soon drain as well.  A bit of panic set in as we scoped the system out a bit more.  We confirmed that it was unlikely we had a hydraulic steering system as there was only one line running in that could be hydraulic.  And it didn't look connected to the autopilot in any way.  We described the unit to him and he was able to confirm that it was a cable drive system.

So we are still heading south well actually more east until we cross the stream and keeping our fingers crossed that the autopilot stays working.

It is nice to know that new boats also have problems.

December 22, 2015

We are away

We left Hampton this morning at 0900. A squall hit us at Cape Henry and made that nasty piece of water even nastier. However we are making easting now. More later.

December 20, 2015

We Arrived in Hampton

Wow what a cold night.  We arrived this morning at Blue Water Marina.  The temps overnight were in the low negatives Celsius.  Burrrr Cold!  Even the dock worker who came to grab our lines and check us in was wrapped up like the Michelin Man including balaclava.  It warmed a little this afternoon and is really supposed to warm on Wednesday.  We are trying to get out of here as soon as we can though.  Tomorrow the winds are down and from the south.  Ideal for getting out, but they intensify by the evening and will be against us for over three days, according to tonight's forecast.  We will check again in the morning.  Might be better to hold one more day.  Problem is we are now paying marina fees so more incentive to get out of Hampton early.

Houses across the river from us

part of the marina with the main building

we think this is the Hampton University campus


December 19, 2015

Left Annapolis

We left Annapolis today and are heading to Hampton, Virginia to refuel and spend tomorrow night or so waiting for the weather to settle across the  gulfstream.  Right now the weather window looks to open Monday.  If it opens early we will just head out after refueling.  It is cold today, pretty thick ice on the mud puddles this morning.  We are sure we will be cold slogging through this tonight.

December 16, 2015

Delayed

We ended up needing a new anchor windlass fitted.  By the time it was in and we were refueled it was too late to leave before dark.   There is a nasty front hitting Cape Hatteras and the Gulf Stream on Friday and Saturday.  So we are staying put here at least until Friday watching the weather.

This is our ride south.

The Fountaine Pajot Helia 44 Catamaran

December 14, 2015

Snowing In Seward

We just heard there is a foot of snow just dropped on Sari Timur up in Seward.  Here in Annapolis it was beautiful today but the front has just moved in, the wind is blowing, the rain is starting, and the temperature is dropping.  Brother in law Tom Riley is coming to meet us for dinner.  He had to be in Baltimore for work and since he was close we are getting together.

December 13, 2015

Just Left Steve, Laura, and Jacob

Wow a week went by really quickly, but at least we had fun.    Jacob was still in the hospital when we arrived.  He had to have his gut reopened.  He had surgery a few years back and some scar tissue was causing problems with his intestine.  We got him out of the hospital on Tuesday so we got to go up and see what Appalachian State up in Boone, N Carolina is all about.

On Wednesday we went with Laura into downtown Charlotte and got to see what that looked like.  She works for Wells Fargo so we also went to the WF museum in the lobby of one of their buildings. Of course right now Charlotte is happy because Cam Newton and the Panthers have a 13 and 0 start.

On Saturday we went down to Steve's family get together near Columbia, S. Carolina.  We met many of his family at Laura and Steve's wedding last year.  Great food and fun company.  Then we came back and had a bonfire down by the lake.  The weather has been unseasonably warm.  The temps  yesterday and today have hit the high 70's.  It is hard to believe it is nearly mid December.  Anyway we hope it holds for a few more days until we get the boat out and heading south.  We do know it is forecast to get cold by next weekend.  So we are eager to get moving.

The Settlers Cemetery in Charlotte

One of the historical facts found in downtown Charlotte

downtown Charlotte

the Museum of Modern Art in Charlotte
the Wells Fargo Stage Coach at their museum

Steve's family Christmas get-together

more relatives
Steve and Laura, taking their chance at the lottery

December 9, 2015

We Are Doing a Delivery

We are heading to Annapolis on Sunday to pick up a new Cat and deliver it down to Tortola.  We hope to meet the owner, who is a friend of ours from Guam before we depart.  But he has a tight work schedule so may not be able to fly in before we go.  Anyway we have hired a satphone as ours is still up on Sari Timur and will post position updates here during our trip.  So keep watching the blog.  In the meantime we are enjoying our stop in Mooresville, NC visiting with Laura, Steve, Jacob and Bianca.

December 7, 2015

Visit with the Vladikas

After Merritt Island, we drove north to visit with Uncle Bob and Aunt Kathy in Deland and Michael and Erika in Deltona.

Michael and Erika just welcomed new daughter, Veronica so we got the meet her as well as her almost 2 year old sister, Victoria.

We had a really great time catching up.

Thank you for the breakfasts, dinners and especially the cinnamon rolls which Aunt Kathy made for our road trip.  Those cinnamon rolls are yummy and we finished one tray on our way to Laura's.

Erika, Victoria and Michael

The Vladikas of Florida

yummy home made cinnamon rolls

November 27, 2015

Sight Seeing

When the Kennedy Space Center was started years ago, they purchased a large portion of land to have as a safe zone during launches.  Most of that land has been left wild and is a refuge for a lot of Florida's wildlife.  While we are here, Uncle Mike and Aunt Anita decided to show us this area.  We saw lots of birds, manatees and even a reasonable sized alligator.

a snowy egret

bunch of coots

roseate spoonbill

alligator, well only its head was seen

We had so much of a good time that we decided to visit the actual Space Center the next day.  A lot has changed since any of us saw it and we spent the entire day there and still didn't see it all.  We highly recommend going to both places if you are in the area.

the entrance to Kennedy Space Center

the rockets

the fuel tank for the Atlantis

the Atlantis

the launch pad

the capsule

the tourists

with the astronaut

astronaut in space

track for the crawler

November 24, 2015

Jensen Beach and Stuart

As we said, we spent a couple of days in Jensen Beach and Stuart.  This is where Mark went to school back in the late 70's.  A lot has changed but amazingly a lot have stayed the same.  This part of Florida has done well to preserve some of the older look.  We spent one afternoon wandering around the Confusion Corner (confusion because 8 streets and 1 railroad come together) area of Stuart, not too mention catching up with Terry and Charlene.

downtown Stuart

Confusion Corner

Confusion Corner

Charlene and Terry

Sammy the dog, 16 and a half years old

November 20, 2015

Visiting

We just spent a couple of days staying with and visiting with Mark's cousins John and Lauri.  Today after we get our tags for the car we head north to Jensen Beach to stay a couple of days with Terry and Charlene, then a bit further north to stay in Merritt and see everyone up there, Blasky and Sobols.    We missed some on the way down.  Then after Thanksgiving weekend we will head up to Deland and see the Vladika side of the family.  Michael and Erika are expecting their second and we still have not met the first so we figured we better get up there soon.  After that we are not sure, we have a couple of balls up in the air and it is how they come down that will decide our immediate future.  But we might head up to the moonshine state if everything goes right.

It is great to be able to catch up with so many people.

November 11, 2015

Our New Old Wheels

We got tired of paying rental rates so we forked out the cash and got a Nissan Rogue.  We like it so far.  It is a 2012, so hopefully will last us a few years.  It has cameras to stop us from bumping into things, a roof rack, leather heated seats, and a sun roof.

Here are some photos of it.



November 6, 2015

Mark's Turn

While at the Job Fair yesterday, Mark applied for a job.  It required a USCG Radar endorsement.  So since it looked like we needed a bit more time in Lauderdale and a course was running next week, he booked it.  He had already done the MCA one but as in most things USCG, there is no international cooperation.  Oh well, hopefully it will help.  Pauline gets to play chauffeur and general researcher/errand person next week.

November 3, 2015

Friends in Coconut Grove

On Sunday we drove down to Miami to see friends of ours, formerly from Guam, who currently have their boat at the Coconut Grove Sailing Club just south of Miami.  We had a very pleasant day with them, catching up as well as a chance to leisurely enjoy watching boats.

Thanks Tom and Pixie for having us down there.

October 31, 2015

Enjoying our time in Fort Lauderdale

We are taking the time while we are here in Fort Lauderdale to also have some fun and catch up with people, restaurant hopping and visiting.  We have been dining out a lot and catching up with people in the area, not too mention being able to watch the Rugby World Cup matches.  Tonight we went to John and Lauri's house for dinner (great homemade conch chowder and deserts) and football on TV.  John is Mark's cousin, notice any resemblance? Tomorrow it is down to Miami to see Tom and Pixie, friends of ours from Guam.

At the Bubba Gump Shrimp Restaurant

Pauline, putting herself in the shoes of Forrest Gump

John and Lauri Sobol

October 30, 2015

Pauline finished her courses!

So proud of Pauline! She finished her 2 weeks of studying and passed all her courses with flying colors! She now has certificates for Superyacht Hospitality, RIB Master, Fire Fighting, Emergency First Responder, Radio & VHF. With her previous First Aid On Board Ship and Coastal Skipper, does anyone want to hire her?

October 18, 2015

Are we snowbirds?

After Steve's visit, we got busy getting Sari Timur ready for winter.  By Thursday 1500 hours, we were as ready as can be.  We drove up to Anchorage to have dinner with Steve and then to the airport to board our midnight (Alaska time) flight to Orlando, Florida.

After a transfer in Denver, we got to Orlando at 1330 hours (Florida time) on Friday.  We drove to Merritt Island to spend 2 nights with Aunt Anita and Uncle Mike.  We have not seen them since summer of 2014 and it was really great to see them again.  We had a home cooked dinner with them and Aunt Trudy.

On Saturday, we went to Yen Yen, a Chinese restaurant we had been to during our last visit in 2001.  We had a really nice visit with Jeff and Linda, Madison and Aunt Anita and Uncle Mike.  And the food was yummy!



On Sunday, after mass, we drove to Jensen Beach to spend a few hours with Terry (Mark's friend from college) and Charlene and their kids, Dustin and Avery plus their partners.  Dustin has just became a daddy of a cute little boy.  And nice boiled shrimps too, thank you Terry.

Then it was time to drive down to Fort Lauderdale to check into our accommodation.  We met the host and got to know him better during dinner.

Pauline starts her classes tomorrow for the next two weeks, while Mark will be looking for work.  Nothing is cast in stone until Mark finds a job and Pauline gets her certification and land a job too.


October 11, 2015

Another Visitor

We just had Mark's cousin Steve Sobol come for a visit.  Mark and Steve have only met each other a few times in their lives but always enjoy getting together.  Steve does a lot of projects in Alaska so hopefully this will be the first of many visits.  We also hope to bump into his mom next weekend when we head to Florida and his brother when we hit Ft. Lauderdale.

We went to the Alaska Sea Life Center with him and out to Exit Glacier.  It was raining when we got there, so we will have to hike up the glacier next time when the weather is better.  We also took Steve out by the bike path to show him the whale and the sea otters.  The whale was a bit too far away to photograph but at least he saw it


Steve and Exit Glacier

October 4, 2015

More to exploring Seward

Well we rode the bike path again last night.  And I guess the other day was nothing special, as the whale, seals and otters were there again.  This time the whale was even closer to shore.  I don't think much more than 100 feet, or else it was a very big whale!  We also confirmed it was seals not sea lions.

October 2, 2015

Exploring Seward

Seward is a pretty little town with lots to do and see even after October first.  Yesterday the sun was out so we took the bikes for a tour of the town, parts that we hadn't been to yet.  It is true many shops in Seward close for the month of October, if not for the entire winter.  But there were still plenty of shops open to go around and look at and as we have found elsewhere in Alaska, the shop owners are rarely too busy to just stop and have a chat with you.  Pauline learned some neat knitting tips from a yarn shop!  There is a very large sea life center which we didn't get to before it closed for the day but Seward has a nice bike path along the waterfront that starts just outside of it.  We think this is also where the famous Iditarod Trail starts.  This is a famous dog sled race to Nome about a thousand miles away to commemorate the original trail that brought many of the original gold hunters and settlers to the northern and interior parts of Alaska.

As we were riding and enjoying the sites we found many other spectators out and about.  Within feet of shore, we had at one time a sea otter, a whale and several seals (although to be truthful we are not sure if they were seals or sea lions, we are waiting to go to the sea life center to confirm how to tell from just their head).   The whale just gently cruised the coast in front of us as we watched.  We lost sight of him just after he passed close to the marina entrance.  We are pretty sure he didn't go into the marina as it shallows up right before the entrance.  That was quite a distance from our vantage point but would have been a great shot with a long lens if we had it.  We could see Sari Timur right behind his tail flukes as he sounded that last time.

We have booked our tickets to Orlando and will be heading down to Ft Lauderdale where Pauline has a couple of yacht courses booked and Mark hopes to find work.  We are not sure if that will pan out or not but we hope it will as this would fill a void in the cruising kitty and give us the references and experience to work during the winter months while we are exploring N. America.  For you Florida followers we will make it a two night stop in Merritt Island to see and stay with relatives.  We also hope to stop in Jensen Beach for lunch or non alcoholic drinks as we have to be in Ft Lauderdale before dark on Sunday.  We will have to see the rest of you north of Orlando on our way back.  Not sure when that will be.  Probably March if we are successful at finding work, November if we are not.

September 22, 2015

Seward

Position N 60 d 07.064
              W 149 d 25.876

Sept 21, 2015

We didn't stop in Porcupine Bay but managed to make it all the way to Seward.  We did see our first ice bergs on this trip.  Not up close as we were in a hurry.  But fairly impressive just the same.  Also they are not far from the marina so next spring maybe we will take a closer look.

These two photos were taken on the same day, maybe a couple of hours apart but look at the sky.

this glacier flows down to the bay
zoom in and you can see the bergs.  they are pretty big through the binoculars


Anyway Seward is our final destination for the year.  We are still not sure if we are going to put the boat on the hard or in the water.  Will know more about that in the next few days, after we get a better lay of the land.  We also do not know yet what our short term future holds but we will be here at least until the middle of October.  We have heard from Mark's cousin, who has to go to work in Anchorage in early October and has suggested we all meet up for a beer.