Anyone remember the bugle?????????

Our marina and slip is very close to a United States Coast Guard Station. This gives me an opportunity to listen to the crew get their orders over the ships PA system and also hear the the bugle play Reveille in the morning as the flag is raised and Retreat in the evening as the flag is lowered by the color guard. The date of my father's birth is February 4th and that also happened to be the day he was laid to rest in Kirkland, IL with the Veteran's home of Genoa performing the military rites at the grave side with bag pipes and bugler playing taps. I surely should have posted this on February 4th but this will just have to do.

Many of you that had the opportunity to spend the night in my father's home were treated to a Loud and healthy version of Reveille from his portable boom box at the very moment that he thought it was time for you to get out of bed and come to breakfast. He thought it was quite amusing and always enjoyed the effect it had on his sleeping guests. There were times that he would wake me or someone else up a bit earlier just to bare witness to his lil' gag. It was certainly the little boy in my ol' man...... The annoyance of the abrupt awakening was soon forgotten as Dad always had a huge hot healthy breakfast on the table consisting of ham, bacon, scrambled eggs, biscuits, jams, orange juice, coffee and more. He would be in the kitchen, sometimes wearing a very goofy hat, and welcome his sleepy eyed guests with a big smile, a hug and bountiful breakfast. I am so lucky to have these wonderful memories brought back to me twice a day as I listen to the bugler at the Coast Guard station. It is a bitter sweet moment in the day. I still miss him deeply and will always be grateful for all he has done for me and so many others. But the bugler brings me great joy as it allows me to remember the essence of the man that I called Dad.

And so it is with great joy that I share this part of my current home port with you and leave you with this poem about my father to remember his birthday and in honor of his life and service to all of us and his country.

My Dad, My Friend

A man, a soldier, a husband,
a father so grand, my friend.....

A father means so many things
When he's a man like you....

You gave to me through who you were
The gift of what i am.........

You gave me love you gave me strength
You showed me what is real....

The love you shared with mom each day
I too will give to one some day.....

All I know and all I feel
You have taught me well....

Your love will live through the lives I touch
to all those that I know.....

Your life will not conclude with death
nor will it end with mine.....

Goodbye my friend
My dad

You will always be with me!!
Until the end of time....

Blog post way over due...................

I am a bit overwhelmed by the number of people that have sent us an email asking that this blog be updated. We sincerely appreciate the interest. No excuses! We have been very busy working lots of hours to get our finances in order after a several month hiatus to get Mary Rose ready to sail and then sail her to the new home port. The Admiral has started her new job and has worked very long hours. She has already made a positive impact in her new job and management is very happy to have her highly developed skills and exceptional work ethic in their unit. The captain has been busy with "Handy Man" work that came by way of Craigslist.com. I am booked out at least three weeks now and more coming this way. In addition to regular work for $$$$$$$$$$, we started some extensive maintenance projects on Mary Rose.

The first project completed was the all natural teak decks. Much of the caulking in the seams was loose and we replaced close to 50 or 60% of the seams and 100% of the outside seams of the teak deck. For the reader that have boats I will give some details. The rest of you can skip this part. The process is quite involved and requires...
1. Removing loose caulk.
a. a screw driver with a 3/16 head bent to a 90 degree angle at the tip was recommended by Teak Decking System (TDS). They call it a reefing tool.
2. Sanding the grooves after the caulk is out.
a. 80 grit sand paper wrapped around a wood paint stir works well for this.
3. Increasing the depth of the groove if needed with a router.
a. a 3/16 router bit in a Rotozip tool was perfect for this.
4. Cleaning the grooves with acetone.
a. a clean rag wrapped around the wood paint stir and soaked in Acetone worked well.
5. Placing a strip of fineline masking tape in the bottom of the seam.
a. this keeps the caulk from sticking to the bottom of the groove the next time it needs to be replaced.
6. Masking both sides of the grooves with great precision.
7. Filling the prepared groove with caulking obtained from (TDS)
a. this must be done very carefully as air can be trapped and cause additional problems
8. Remove the masking tape once the new caulking cures slightly so the caulking is not disturbed.
a. I found that temperature and humidity had a great deal to do with how long to wait for the tape removal.
9. Wait 24 hours and then sand the seams with an orbital sander and 120 grit paper.
10. Wait 2-3 weeks for the newly sanded wood to weather and then then seal the entire deck with Simco natural teak deck sealer.
This process took all of our free time for two full weeks. Teak Decking Systems in Sarasota, FL has a great web site with lots of helpful information. http://www.teakdecking.com/

We worked hard as there was a Westsail Rendezvous on February 16 and 17 in none other than Boca Grande at Charlotte Harbor. If you have read the earlier post then you will remember that Boca Grande was where we were making a night landfall when we were hit with a healthy squall. Well of course we had to go back and show off our new girl....Mary Rose.

We were honored as a great sailor and friend, Mike DeGeorge from Kansas City, join us as we sailed to Boca Grande. It was a great trip and I will add a post in the near future on that trip. In short it was about 180 nautical miles over four days. The day we returned my daughter Shannon and her two children came to go sailing with us on Tampa Bay. We had a blast and I will post more on that also.

So to sum it up we have been working our butts off at work and on the boat and also have managed to get in some extended sailing time.

We will make more frequent updates to this blog as we now know that there is an interest.