Wednesday, October 29, 2014

More interior pictures

So, here I am frantically packing up the apartment for yet another move on November 10th - 2nd move in only 1 year, 12 days, when I'm seized by the urge to write.  Writing is my "happy place", where I can calm down and be in the moment.  Thank you for being the audience!

So although these pictures don't follow any logical order (a mirror of me these days), I think you'll enjoy them anyway.  The lucky folks who will attend FLIBS tomorrow will get to see Olympia all tricked out with her staged decor, KKY pennant and over-sized US flag proudly flying from her extended boat deck rails.  I wish I could be there to observe the attendees' reactions when they see her.

Forgive me if I've already posted some of these pictures.  With this being the 200th post and literally 100s of pictures, I'm amazed I can post anything at all.  So here goes...

This is the back splash all sealed and ready to be cooked in front of.  You can bet I won't be making anything messy for a very long time.  I am absolutely thrilled with the final product.  The colors blend and enhance the warmth of the cherry rather than shout "lookie at me"!  The darker glass tiles perfectly pick up the stainless appliances.  Exactly the look I was trying to achieve!

At the suggestion of Tom B., I had the yard make Sunbrella covers for the guest beds.  This way, the beds will always look neat and stylish.  I just ordered waterproof, pillow top mattress pads as the first line of defense against anyone (god forbid) sweating in bed.  Next will be pillows and bedding - gotta get a move on this since I'm having 4 people stay aboard with me on my next trip in December!

Another pulled together, coordinated look for the guest stateroom.  The lamp shades are a lovely fabric that perfectly ties the fabric together.  Of course the pillows will be whisked off and replaced with standard bed pillows at the sound of the guests' first footfalls.

What self-respecting boat wouldn't have a nice, generous sized wine fridge?  The challenge will be to keep it filled to the brim!

Since the top of the fridge is the same height as the granite counter and since the unit is snuggled into a corner, it actually provides another surface on which to place something and keep it within comfortable reach.  This fridge was across the room where the steps are now in the earlier 55s.

The view looking aft is very pleasing to the eye, just like all of Olympia's other views...

Now that the plastic covering is off the settees, the look is much warmer and certainly more inviting.  The saying comes to mind - "this isn't your grandmother's couch"!  I anticipate the view aft will also be enhanced by beautiful cockpit furniture.  That probably won't happen for a few more months.  There are some other "high priority" purchases to make before that.

Though this posting was a quickie, I needed to get some pictures of Olympia to you.  I'll close out with two of my favorite pictures to date.  They say it all....

I still can't believe I'm actually seeing her in all her glory after so many long months!

I'm in love!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

More Interior Pictures

Whew, I finally got Tucker to bed!

We had the best day - son-in-law Tom dropped him off at the barn.  I had a great ride on Wiggles today - no antics or spooks, that's ALWAYS a good thing.  I was offering my picky horse his lunch al fresco in the paddock when Tucker arrived on the scene.  After dragging myself away from the barn, Tuck and I did some errands, then it was off to Bertucci's for pizza and ice cream.  Now that he's been bathed, read to, played trains with, Nana is taking some time to catch up.  Seems that's all I ever do - catch up.   But since I actually do, no complaints from me.

So I didn't get to tell you about my visit to Olympia.  I was practically speechless for a good part of the time - which in and of itself is legendary - but it's not often that I'm wowed out of my mind!  I accomplished a great deal and actually got to spend many blissful hours aboard.  Too bad it was with an army of workers, but I already knew that would be the case.

The sheer size of her, the rakish sweep of her mighty bow, the huge, tapering cockpit with rounded transom, her height, I could go on for days.  I will say one thing though, deciding to add the green sheer stripe to the bow was one of my more brilliant flashes of brilliance!  Well worth the extra cost.
Oh, and her name on the Portuguese bridge is not too shabby either...  There is some thought being given to adding the flourish to the Portuguese bridge - that flourish was on the other two boats - they will always be recognized as our girls.  It's a gold curlique with a star in the forward curl - the same star that dots the "i" in Olympia's name.  The design was Tom's and I love it.  I have plenty of time to decide.  Unlike the other decisions needed during the build process, these decisions can be made more leisurely - without any sense of urgency - nice.

Unfortunately, since Olympia was being readied for her first show next week - the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS), there were all sorts of people crawling all over her.  On Wednesday, it was almost comical - several people were removing the protective wraps and doing all sorts of polishing and cleaning inside, while a crew was waxing the outside.  Interspersed throughout the entire boat, including the roof and engine room was the electronics team, installing equipment, stringing miles of wiring, fiddling with dials and crawling around on the roof to select the best place for all the antennae (I took 4 years of Latin and got a 98 on the Latin Regents).

On Monday, my first glimpse of Olympia in the daylight, I climbed into one of the helm chairs and proceeded to work with several electronics folks to locate the best and most comfortable place to affix the screens and gauges.  Let me tell you, this is one very patient group of folks.  The initial tutorial was a bit rough - and extended....  We were only trying to identify the best location for things; we didn't even get into what those "things" actually do! least we're all still smiling!

Since you've been just getting peeks at the helm chairs, here they are!

Not only are they pretty and match the settee, but they are comfortable too.  What a bonus!!  They are outfitted in stainless to match all the other trim.  Another additional cost, but this is not the place to start economizing.  The pilot house is such a bright and airy spot.  It will be difficult to leave when one is not on watch.

The view out the helm windows is what inspires poetry about life at sea (what do I know, but it sounds good)!  Cripes, there sure is a lot of bow out front!  BTW, the Snow White Awlgrip paint on the capstrip extending to the beginning of the cockpit was another stroke of genius.  There is absolutely no way to get to the trim under the windows!  On the other hand, the teak capstrip on the cockpit was the way to go there.  It's very wide and adds the right amount of elan to this girl.  The windlass is awe-inspiring, at least to me.  It's quite big and certainly heavy-duty, that's for sure.

I mentioned insisting on having build outs done on the windows for blinds.  It was something I've seen in my mind's eye and I was not to be diverted from that idea.  Poor Tom, he finally threw up his hands and said, "just get the damn blinds and stop talking about them"!  That's the way things usually went when I dug in my heels about wanting something.  Tee hee.  Anyway, I'm so glad I hung in there - the blinds are fantastic!!! They add the perfect touch to the elegance of this boat.  I put them in all the right places - salon, galley, guest stateroom and pilot house.  There is not one wretched curtain on the entire boat.  I don't mean to insult anyone that has curtains, but I truly hate them.  Never even had them in any of our homes.  The one house that had them - well, I was taking them down as the movers were bringing in the furniture!

Sorry the picture is lop-sided - it would take me hours to figure out how to turn it around, so just tilt your head a bit....  That's looking to port.  I have another one looking to starboard that's right-side up....

I think you get the idea.  The blinds mute the light but in no way diminish the airiness.  Notice how the valance covers the headrail so that the look is smooth.  There will be 2 leather club chairs in this spot in a brandy-colored leather.  Those sliding doors under the windows are actually nice-sized cabinets.  On Serenity, the electronics equipment was in one of those cabinets, necessitating moving a chair when we needed to load a movie or dock our iPod.  This boat has a dedicated electronics cabinet just forward of the steps, in the wall that forms part of the guest stateroom.  I tried to get a picture of it, but there were so many wires in the way, I dared not even walk by them.

K, I've got lots more pictures, but I'm going to save them for future posts.  I want to show you the engine room without all the clutter from previous pictures.  I actually took pictures of each section of the engine room.  The plan is to read the owner's manual that Laura is painstakingly crafting and look at a corresponding picture - that's for when I'm actually not in the engine room, driving myself crazy.
I also have pictures of the guest stateroom with the Sunbrella fabric I put on the beds, the wine fridge, the stern, etc.

The bottom line here is that I am truly delighted with the way this boat turned out - so are many other people.  After all, this gorgeous design first appeared on paper - it had never before been seen "in the flesh", so there was a bit of a leap of faith here.  The end result has exceeded everyone's expectations.

I'm happy to tell you that from the first moment I stepped aboard, I felt a bond with Olympia.  I knew I would - eventually - not immediately.  It was as if all those months of uncertainty and all the care Tom put into selecting her central systems, came together at that moment.  I feel at home, that this was the right thing for me to do (many others I know would argue that point), and that a bright and exciting future awaits Olympia and I.  We are already a team and we won't let each other down.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

OMG! That's About All I Can Say!

On Sunday evening October 19th at about 7:20 pm, I came face to face with the subject of my dreams for nearly 2 years - Olympia and I met for the first time!

My dear friend Laura, met me at the airport and survived a 45 minute ride from West Palm Beach airport to Allied Marina in Stuart.  Can I tell you those 45 minutes were among the most incredible 45 minutes I have lived through in quite a few months?!  The sense of anticipation and excitement was palpable in the car.  I couldn't bear the long walk from the car, down the dock (she was at the farthest point she could be) to Olympia's slip so..... I closed my eyes and trusted Laura to guide me to her.

Once she was in view, Laura prepared me to open my eyes..........OMG, OMG, OMG!  I cannot even begin to tell you the emotions flooding through me at that point.  I really could not believe I was actually seeing this precious boat for the first time!!!  So much preceded this first viewing, such a major life change following the tragedy of Tom's sudden loss, so many wrenching decisions, the digging in to do anything to make this work, the support of so many incredibly wonderful people - new and old in my life - the worry and uncertainty of taking this life-altering step - all of that and more collided at that moment.

I can only tell you that all of the above made my meeting with this boat something I will remember to my last day on this earth.  It was some time before I could stop the tears, the shaking, the laughing, and feelings I can't even describe  - to summon the strength to step aboard for the first time.

As I reverently stepped aboard, Laura raced ahead to turn on the lights so that I could see Olympia in all her glory.  If you thought the pictures were beautiful, I have to tell you that the reality will blow you out of the water.  This girl of mine is stunningly gorgeous, magnificent, outrageous, elegant, warm, inviting, spectacular and so many words I can't summon at this moment.

Even with her protective wrappings and signs of much work in progress, she is a vision to behold!  The blinds in their build outs exceeded my expectations, the curve of the staircase, the rounded edges of the granite, the way everything flows, the back splash, the storage, the cherry, the EVERYTHING!  I am blown away by the workmanship.  Remember this is my 3rd Krogen and I am speechless with wonder!

Since we were on board nearly 2 hours looking around, we managed to get this one picture to sum up the evening's events:

 Since I stepped off the plane after a white-knuckle flight home a mere 2 hours ago, I am going to get ready for a very busy work event tomorrow.  I do promise some really nice pictures of the helm (electronics were being installed the entire time I was there), salon, staircase, galley, NAME, and engine room.  She is leaving for her show season debut tomorrow as she heads for the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show to be the belle of the ball.  Closing is scheduled for early December.

I AM IN LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Mast is up!

Before I head out for a momentous meeting with our dream come true, I wanted to leave you with two of the latest pictures of the commissioning process - the mast and galley backsplash.

The mast is a work of art - even at this stage...
(Looks like an ad for Garmin)

The galley backsplash exceeded my expectations. The material is a combination of Travertine and glass.  Trying to choose material and a pattern (or not) from a small sample for a space I've only seen in pictures required some intuition, a leap of faith and plain grit.  I think the end result speaks for itself....

I was rushing to find a picture of the helm chairs that were installed this week, but can't find them.  Heck, I'll send you a picture of me IN those helm chairs, much better than just the empty chairs I think.

Here goes folks.  It'll be show time in about 8 hours!  Please think of me.

Friday, October 17, 2014

More Offload Pictures

Sorry for the interruption.  Here's a continuation of last night's offload pictures.
While I was looking at some pictures, I came across Serenity's offload pictures.  Almost identical - eerie!

Olympia continues her progress from the ship to her natural home - the water!

She's on her way....

Though she looks like a toy boat here, you can appreciate her size when you look at the workers on the ship's deck.

               About here is where Gregg steps aboard for the rest of the trip down to the water.

Olympia is still tied to the Eris J while her engines are started and the iPad is set up to navigate in the absence of electronics.  I think this moment would qualify as the time when one prays that all goes well and that everyone has done their job to all the specs!

                                           Bow lines off!  Olympia is almost on her own.....

                                                     .....and next go the stern lines!

    Steady girl, you're on your own and ready to head for home and your very anxious new mom!

                                                   Olympia is on her way home at long last!

This part of Olympia's journey concludes a 15 month-long odyssey that was fraught with the most extreme of emotions - the ecstasy of signing her purchase agreement, the despair of thinking I would also lose her after losing Tom, the uncertainty of actually going forward with the purchase, back to the ecstasy of voiding the amendment to sell her - and now, the excitement of counting the hours until I actually see her for the first time.   For those of you who have followed this saga, I thank you for being there with your interest and good wishes.

 There is so much more to come, so stay tuned!

Olympia's Offload Pictures

So here I am!  I skidded over to the laptop at the sunny hour of 11 pm, but then that's about par for me these hectic days.  My plan was to pop over to the barn after leaving work at a civilized hour.  That did happen, but when I got to the barn the sight that I saw made me gasp.  My usual clean, silky-haired beast of a horse was a different color!  Closer inspection of this sight revealed at least an inch of dried mud firmly adhered to his "beginning of a winter coat" body.  2 1/2 hours later, he was clean.  Emphasis on him cause now that dried mud became airborne and landed on me.  Anyone who thinks it's glamorous to own and ride a horse should pay me a visit sometime, especially around 9:30 pm on a  subzero night when most sane people are warm in their homes.  I do adore that brat though!

So though a bit out of sequence due to my ineptitude in uploading pictures at times, here are Olympia's offload pictures.  As said earlier, this girl likes to make night statements in all she's done so far.  The initial pictures are in daylight, but the finale takes place in the dark - again!  One of my followers asked about my reaction to seeing her suspended above the water by a mere 2 slings.  Let's just say if I don't ever see another picture of her dangling, it will be too soon!

So as they say in New York, get on with it, girl!

Olympia patiently waits with her neighbors for her turn to get off the ship after 6 weeks at sea.  There were many "show" boats on this ship, all bound for FLIBS, the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.  That includes yours truly.

The drama queen is pretty much alone up on deck except for a boat in the background.  She is waiting to make her entrance.
Getting ready to go!

Up, up and away!  Even dangling from a harness, Olympia has class!

I'm going to stop here cause all of a sudden, it's midnight and I have a busy day tomorrow, actually today!

The next pictures are worth waiting for, with an exciting sequence of events.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Offload Pictures to Follow

Just wanted to let you know I got the offload pictures saved to my photo library.  They came in 4 separate emails from Tom B. with about 11 pics in each email.

It's too late to start now, so I just gave you a tease and hope to post the others on Wednesday or Thursday, social schedule permitting. Tomorrow is my monthly bereavement group meeting, followed  by dinner with my little group afterwards.

Got a report today that workers are like ants swarming all over the boat.  The helm seats and mast were scheduled for installation today.  Another part of the electronics team is working on snaking the miles of wiring for everything throughout the boat.

Someone took a picture of something and a very upside down, chaotic salon came into view.  So glad I'm not there this week!  I'd be underfoot with my Swiffer and army of cleaning stuff!  As it turns out, I should see quite a bit of progress when I arrive, including a cleaned up salon.

That's it for now folks.  More offload pictures will follow later this week.  Don't be grumpy cause you're gonna see some pretty fine pictures from yours truly next week!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Olympia is in her temporary winter home

I'm back!  Told you I had lots to do.  Finally settling down to write - and it's already 10:45!

 As an aside, Wiggles wasn't exactly jumping for joy when I arrived at the barn bearing carrots.  He had apparently just gotten his sweet, wet hay and found that far more interesting than me.  I least I didn't get his butt in my face.  That's the other reception I get, but he reserves that one for trips of a week or longer.

So before I share pictures of the fair Olympia in her temporary winter retreat (Allied/Apex Marina in Stuart), I have to tell you that somehow, I royally messed up the 45 offload pix Tom B. sent on Wednesday.  They are breathtaking, believe me.  Tom B. managed to take the especially thrilling sequence of Olympia being moved to the ship's rail, then being lowered into the water in several stages.  Of course the pix started in daylight, but ended at night.  Funny, Serenity's offload pix occurred at night, as did her Panama Canal transit.  These girls of mine are really so similar in many ways.

So without further prattling, here are the pix you've been waiting for.....

I don't know about you, but the sight of her actually in the water puts me right over the moon!  Olympia is even more imposing and beautiful than her other "land-based" photos.  She is now in her element and worthy of the admiration she will evoke from those who finally get to see the "real" Olympia after all these long months of waiting.  This week she may get her mast and antennae installed and really look like a proper ocean-going cruiser.

I couldn't resist this picture of Invictus on her way to the Rendezvous.  I took this picture of her from Betty's pilothouse on LiLi, right in the middle of Chesapeake Bay!  Even from a distance, I was awed!  Ironically, Invictus was our next-slip neighbor this past week.  Don't think I didn't take every opportunity to go aboard and just stare like a lovesick puppy.

I hope you enjoyed these photos and weren't disappointed.  I'll get all the photos my camera will hold when I'm there next week.  I also plan to be aboard in late January if not sooner, so if you're going to be anywhere near Stuart, please let me know.  I can happily accompany you on a tour of the real deal!

I'll get back to you with the offload pix as soon as I get them.

Olympia Arrived in Stuart!!!!!

Just landed on Long Island after 5 VERY fun and informative days at the Krogen Cruisers Rendezvous in Solomons, MD.  Got to "hang" with old friends and met a ton of new ones.

It was so hard to get a speedy signal at the marina (and since I was up at 7 and back in bed after midnight each night), there was precious little time to get anything not Rendezvous-related done.

Anyway, I do have some pictures of Olympia in her "commissioning" slip at Allied/Apex Marina in Stuart to share, but first......

I have to rush to the barn to check Wiggles, do a quick grocery shop (I only need stuff for this week, cause you know what's happening a week from today)  RIGHT?????????

Be back later and so sorry for the picture black-out interval.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

She's Here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

No pictures yet, but soon.

So despite my vigil at the laptop glued to the screen and toggling back and forth between the vessel finder and port everglades webcam links, I did not see my girl enter the waterway.  I had to give up at midnight, when I noticed that Eris J was anchored off Fort Lauderdale and no amount of silent urging was going to move her.  I thought I heard a webcam voice mention Eris J's name and I swore I also heard 0400 hours.

I set my alarm and was up at 4:10 am.  The cat and I dashed out of the bedroom to the waiting laptop.  When I clicked on vessel finder, I saw Eris J still off the coast, but now moving at 10 knots. Since I have an extremely busy day today, I headed back to bed and re-set the alarm for 5 am.  Sometime between the first watch and this one, Eris J sneaked into the port and docked!  Though I was disappointed to miss her arrival, the port is less well lit than the Panama Canal, so seeing her would have been difficult at best.  It seems this girl prefers night time activities from her recent behavior.

Now begins the waiting - and considerable emails to the patient KKY folks.  Last report is that KKY should plan to be at the port around 3 pm this afternoon.  Tom B. feels this might be aggressive, since there are other boats that have to come off before my precious little girl is set free.  When I asked if I could get a video of the offload, it was (patiently) explained to me that it is quite hectic once the offload begins.  KKY needs to board the freighter, then prepare to jump onto Olympia as she dangles from a crane alongside the ship.  Together, they are (gently) "splashed" for the first time and have to quickly move away from the ship
I'm glad I decided against witnessing that scenario.  It would be like your child going down the slide for the first time and realizing that they are high enough up on the slide to elude help if quickly needed.  Gulp.

Luckily for me (and everyone around me), I'm heading to the Krogen Rendezvous in Solomons, MD this afternoon.  The ability to concentrate at work can't even be feigned at this point.  Don't worry, I brought my iPad so I can send any pictures I get.  After all this waiting, do you think I'd just go off and leave you hanging around, waiting???

In between having loads of fun, I plan to sit in on every class offered this week and set my brain to "sponge" mode.  Oh this poor little brain has no idea what's about to be dumped into it!

So wonderful readers, thanks for your company to this point.  The fun and real pictures are just beginning!

Stay tuned.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Olympia is closer to home than ever before!!!!

Hi everyone, 

This came from Tom B. this morning:

"Here is the latest from the ship:

noon position
05/Oct/2014 12:00hrs LT   -    17:00hrs GMT
21*16 N  -  084*42 W
Wind: ENE  3  Bft
Swell : ENE  1.5 mtrs
Speed: 14.83 kn
Miles steamed last 24hrs : 356 MILES
Miles to go next port :  Port Everglades 464 miles

Eta Port Everglades 06/Oktober – 20:00hrs

Over the weekend we heard the off load may be Tuesday afternoon, but it more than likely will change, it usually does. We will let you know when we get some new information."

I would say a few woo hoos are in order here, don't you think?  Since this report was created at noon yesterday, I venture to say that she is about 7 hours away now.  Woo hoo again!

One of  my most loyal followers asked if I could share the link for the Port Everglades webcam.  Since I aim to please, here it is:

I'm going there now to be sure I can go right to the site at the pre-ordained hour.

Hang in there with me folks.  It's almost show time!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Panama Canal Screenshots

As promised, I've attached three screen shots from Eris J's transit through the Panama Canal.  These pics were sent courtesy of my dear friend, one of the two who stayed with me (albeit electronically) during last night's momentous event.

Even though I was on the high-res option, the pics are quite grainy.  The night transit didn't help things either, but we do have pics!

Eris J is in the east-bound lock with her "boat" cargo visible on deck.

More pics of Eris J right in camera range.  She pretty much fills that entire lock.

Someone described this event as a pregnancy: sonograms showing the unborn baby give a pretty good idea of how things are going and a vague glimpse of the baby's features.  However, no one is prepared for the flood of feelings once the baby is born and held for the first time.  I thought this was an excellent analogy.  I've seen a shadowy image of Olympia, seen many, many pictures of her during her build process, but I can't imagine what it will be like to actually see her and be in her presence for the very first time!

I'll send more pictures as I get them.  This update came from Tom B. this morning re: the ship's position and ETA:

Here is the latest from the ship, they are through the canal and headed north.

03/October/2014 – 02:45hrs cleared last lock
03/October/2014 – 03:15hrs pilot off
03/October/2014 – 04:00hrs sailed from Cristobal

Eta Port Everglades 06/Oktober  - 19:00hrs

Woo hoo!!!

I hope Monday will be a quiet day in the office.  I'll be busy at my computer screen - doing nothing work-related, but very much "Woo Hoo" related. 

Well friends, these last 2 days have put even my energy level to the test.  As of now I'm working on my 19th hour awake and starting to feel the strain.  As mentioned earlier, I was in the car before 6 am to get my friend to the airport.  

But, tomorrow is a new day, filled with the unknown and many new opportunities to make tomorrow even better than today!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

She's through the Panama Canal!!!

At about 10:13 pm our time, Eris J entered the Miraflores Lock on her way to Gatum Lock on the Atlantic side.  She's just leaving camera range as I send this post.

I sat glued to this computer screen for about an hour after rushing through a fairly decent game of golf (for a change) and dinner afterwards.  Got home in time to begin a barrage of texting my good friend in California and emailing Tom's dear friend in Texas as we waited for Eris J's bow to appear on the screen.

Words cannot describe the feeling as I laid my eyes on beloved, long-dreamed of Olympia for the first time!  It's too bad the torrent of tears blurred my vision for a bit.  Sharing it with good friends made this incredible experience all the more precious.

Both friends are very computer saavy and took screen shots of Eris J and her precious cargo.  As soon as I have them, I'll try to upload them for you.  Notice I said I'll try.  I might need to pay off a 10 year old, but I'll do what I have to.

Gotta run.  Taking a friend to La Guardia for an 8 am flight tomorrow.   Need I say more?

She's at the Panama Canal!!!!!!!!!!

Shhh...I'm at work, so going to be quick.....

True to his word, Tom's friend sent this report:

"Eris J is due to commence transit at 6:45 pm  (New York time).  Probably be an hour or two before she gets to Miraflores."

I'm guessing that the ship should actually be going through the Canal by 8:45 pm or so.

Wait til I tell my golf foursome that tonight's game will be a quick one, with not a lot of concentration from me.  That means double pars and sand traps for sure!  Oh well, bigger fish to fry!

Woo hoo!!!

Will keep you posted (literally) if I get any more updates.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

.....Still waiting but closer....

I don't know about you, but I'm just about out of my mind with anticipation!  The last report from the ship was noon yesterday and Eris J was 409 miles from the Panama Canal.  Okay, so we're down to triple digits.  I'm sure by now, the freighter has the Canal in sight.

My husband's dearest friend knows the ship's owners and confirms that she is pre-booked to transit the Canal on Thursday, October 2nd.  OMG, that's tomorrow folks!!!!!  The time of transit is one of the world's best kept secrets right about now.  My productivity at work has dropped along with each mile Eris J covers on her way here.

I figure that tomorrow will be a total shutdown except for the plans for Tom's memorial, the christening and reception, and of course the web of travel plans that those events entail.  I've already spoken to my sister in North Carolina twice in the span of 3 hours to coordinate our flights and figure how to work in a vacation for her while she's with me in Stuart.  My daughter will also be with us as well as friends Tom and I have known and loved since 1982.  As elegant as this girl is, there is not a stitch of anything aboard.  Except for my brief trip to see her in a couple of weeks, I'll be arriving just slightly ahead of my guests to try to outfit the boat with the most basic of creature comforts.  At this point, that would be sheets, pillows and towels.  I think there are a few sleeping bags in my storage cube that will no doubt be pressed into service.  I know everyone will be thrilled to be with me aboard this long-awaited dream and won't mind "roughing it" a bit (as much as one roughs it in such beautiful surroundings).  I'm guessing that a full wine fridge will compensate for the lack of other things.

So, although I had nothing really concrete to report, I felt like chatting - I don't want anyone to be guessing about the ship's whereabouts (though most of us are at this point).  In case you're wondering  what future posts will be about, not to worry.  The first posts after Olympia arrives will be filled with pictures taken with my very own phone camera.  Then you're going to hear about the plans for Tom's memorial, the christening and bash that will follow, including the menu and other surprises.  Once I've recuperated, we'll laugh together at my training stories - you can bet there will be plenty of stories and as many laughs.  Then we can look forward to my travel log in the spring as Olympia heads to Long Island, her summer home.  I'm hoping to make a good part of that trip at the helm (with my trainers glued to my sides - sides as in both sides, as in 2 other folks with me - always.

I thank you for your loyal patience and look forward to many more chats about my adventures.  I do promise to make you laugh along the way.

So, let's settle in and wait for the news of the ship's transit.  If Tom's friend can, he'll get the exact time, send me the link and try to get a screen shot from the Canal's webcam.   I promise (there I go again) to share whatever information I get.

Night night.