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I’m not much for cliché, actually, but one that comes to mind is the ole adage: sailor’s plans are written in sand at low tide. It can be most appropriate. Our plans to get off the dock by April 15th were destroyed shortly after I wrote about them in my last post.

Dear husband came in one afternoon after servicing the boat’s oven/stove and said: “I know this is going to break you up, Susan, but we are going to have to buy a new stove/oven. Go pick out what you want and get it on order.” It turned out that though the Force 10, four-burner stove’s stove top burners worked fine…the oven/broiler parts would not sufficiently heat up. I’m a good cook and not having access to a good oven wasn’t acceptable. So, off I went researching marine stove/ovens.

After much looking, I settled on a Dickinson brand, specifically a Dickinson Marine Mediterranean 3-Burner Propane Gas Stove With BroilerWe didn’t buy it from Defender but from Go2Marine. That was the upside…a new unit. The downside was that it was not scheduled to ship until this past Friday, April 17th…two days after our preliminary departure date. The good thing is that the unit has shipped and according to the tracking information it is in town and should be delivered today.

Other good news is that all of the things that were scheduled to be installed have all been done…AIS, SSB, VHF, stereo, chartplotters, repeaters, etc. As of today, this morning, there are only three things that need to be done. (1) The new stove needs to be installed…an easy task. (2) Our auto helm drive unit needs to have it’s mounting bracket redone…we have hired someone to do this. And, (3), our second A/C needs to be installed…dear husband is doing this. All three of these things should be completed by Monday or Tuesday of next week at the latest. Providing they are, that will then give us a week to take care of any minor odds and ends before provisioning and heading out on May 6th. Weather permitting.

The initial destination is still not determined but will almost certainly be either Key West or Tampa (and then on to Key West).

We don’t plan a big hoopla before departure. Though some might know our plans (they are certainly not secret), we anticipate just provisioning up one afternoon and leaving the next morning with little fanfare. We’ll probably head to the Galveston Yacht Basin the first day and spend the night…before departing very early the next morning to put as many of the offshore oil rigs behind us in daylight as possible.

We purchased a Delorme In-Reach Two-Way Satellite Communicator  so that we can be tracked, as well as send and receive text messages on the way. The Delorme product is similar to a SPOT Locator. If one would like to see how this works I will point you to Sundowner’s blog HERE.  I will post the links to allow anyone who wants to follow us both here on our blog or on my Facebook page before we leave.

Fun times ahead…hopefully with little drama, calm seas, and fair weather.

On a different note, all of yesterday was very sad for me. The 5 year old daughter of a local sailing family apparently slipped off of the dock and drowned. She was with her father at their boat when the accident happened. Though I knew of this couple because I followed their blog,  I’d never met them; our boats are at different marinas. The news of this tragic accident has shaken the entire yachting community here. I simply can’t imagine the grief this couple must be experiencing.  My heart and best wishes go out to them.



  1. Hey Susan….. Did you guys depart? Hoping all is well. Enjoy your blog.Richard

    • Hi Richard…no, we haven’t left yet. Strong SSE winds have made for exceptionally high tides that have prevented us from making it under the Kemah bridge. We have a roughly 72′ mast height to water. The bridge is listed at 73′ at mean high tide…tides are 2′ or so above normal…too iffy for us. The tides are subsiding, we are hoping to get out at low tide either tomorrow morning or Wednesday.

  2. oh best to you…. dammm tides…. always something. So many things to think of….. Have fun!

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