Thursday, July 22, 2021

Surreal Sunset—You'll Never Guess What Caused It

Sunset, Eleuthera, Governor's Harbour mid-April 2021
Sunsets are our favorite shared moments when cruising. It's time to take a deep breath, release the worries of the day, sip a refreshing drink, hold hands and let Mother Nature bring on the show. IMHO, as a connoisseur of sunsets, there is no better place to see a sunset than over the water.

We were hoping for a glimpse of a green flash,  which occurs when the atmosphere causes the light from the Sun to separate, or refract, into different frequencies. Viewing them is a balancing act as it's unsafe to stare at a setting sun, and yet green flashes are fleeting; they last only a second or two.

We're among the lucky—we've seen green flashes—more than once. However, that eve, like nearly every night on our 2021 Bahamas trip,  cloud banks on the horizon obliterated the possibility.

Yet what we saw instead was magnificent in its own right, evoking a sense that felt more planetary, seeing this from another world than an everyday sunset on our own humble little blue marble of a planet. 

La Soufrière, St. Vincent photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

We thought it was La Soufrière, St. Vincent's actively erupting volcano, about 1200 miles away.

Nope. Instead, it came from a source at least four times as far—dust from the Sahara Desert. It's an annual Bahamas atmospheric invasion, blanketing the skies in a milky whiteness; those particles amplifying the sunset's colors.

I remember the 2012 summer we first started cruising and my surprise at the vivid red sunset we saw in the San Juans, lit by particles from wildfires in Russia, over 4,000 miles away.

In yesterday's news. New Yorkers were suffering from air quality issues due to the U.S. West Coast: California and Oregon fires, over 3,000 miles away.

Both the weather and the Coronavirus pandemic are stark reminders of our interconnectedness, whether we like it or not.

Location Location

Herons, egrets, pelicans and pigeons are prolific in Fort Pierce City Marina,
where s/v Gallivant is docked.

We are currently house-sitting in the same town where we are selling our boat, Fort Pierce (Marina), Florida at 27 27.039N 16 21.19W. This post is a retrospective of our time in Governor's Harbour, Eleuthera, the Bahamas in April of 2021. My logbook is on the boat, so I will update this post with our lat/long for Governor's Harbour, Eleuthera when I can check our logbooks.

I'll give an update on what's happening where we currently are in my next post.

Friday, July 9, 2021

Update on Our Boat Sale

Now is not the time for us to leap.
We're taking in the view and sitting tight until the place and time are right.
Photo by Karol Stefański on Unsplash

Back when I used to work in corporate America (Hewlett-Packard), I remember when our group was a person short and we were driving our manager crazy about it.

"Why do you keep asking me about where I'm at on the hiring process?" she asked, perplexed and exasperated. She tended to keep her plans close to the vest. "I'm still trying to figure out what skills I'm trying to bring to our team."

We explained even knowing that helped. That having some idea of whether we were covering for a week, a month, or much longer made a difference on how we went about it. We took away it would be a while so we needed to own the cover, not just band-aid it. Five months later, our manager made a great hire.

In a sense, when it comes to this blog, I am a bit like that manager from my days of yore. When it comes to selling a boat, I too play it close to the vest. But at some point, radio silence needs to be broken.
Selling our sailboat isn't this dramatic
but we're still feeling stuck between two worlds.
Photo by Michael Shannon on Unsplash
We're still in limbo.

We got an appealing offer a few weeks ago, sight unseen.  The buyer was so interested in closing quickly, he was willing to accept our recent survey (from a very reputable surveyor—yay Ceal!) and even the haulout. 

We were excited but nervous. 

Excited because . . .
Oooh. Ahhh. The excitement of an attractive offer on our sailboat!
Photo by Jordan Ling on Unsplash
Getting an offer with few contingencies meant we could move on with our life. We envisioned taking that summer trip up the east coast by car or camper since we weren't doing it by boat.
We didn't want to be more than a day or so away from the boat, in case we needed to be on tap to answer questions and potentially captain a sea trial. We're reluctant to make any offers on a place to live until our boat sells.

Nervous because . . . 
Yes, I definitely bit my nails to the quick waiting to hear back
after our sailboat showing.
Photo by Sammy Williams on Unsplash.
What buyer is willing to make a sight-unseen offer with so few contingencies—even in a tight boat market? Though we've heard boat inventories are still about a third of what is considered normal and we don't see much comparable to our boat on the market.

Yet despite photos and a walk-through video, there's nothing like the real thing. He came, he stepped aboard, he didn't like the layout and reneged his offer—the boat-seller equivalent of a mail-order bride whose groom decides she's not his type and bows out before the wedding but after the invitations were drawn up and ready to pop in the mail. No sea trial necessary; just . . . no.
We felt . . . jilted. You know . . . Love me. Love my sailboat. Love me not.
Then again, we were jilted by someone we didn't know and who didn't know us. Weird.
Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

We were bummed. 

A few days ago tropical storm-hurricane-tropical storm Elsa passed by. We understand this is not the time of year Florida is the top where-to-visit pick, even for boat buyers. After all, we tried to buy remotely before we realized we needed to go to Florida and spend some time looking, after seeing what else was out there online, across the country. But we also know that across the country, there's not much else out there as nice as our boat in its category. We're willing to wait for the right buyer, even if it means living in limbo longer, and not spending the time we'd hoped to spend exploring the eastern seaboard this summer.

Interest is picking up on our boat. It's just a matter of time. We got kinda spoiled on our previous boat sales, which took only a few weeks from when we posted them for sale.
We've still got as much time as it takes to sell our sailboat—within reason.
It will take finding the right buyer to take her on the adventure she deserves.
Photo by 
Jordan Benton from Pexels

For those of you (still) hanging in there, wondering what the heck we're up to—thank you! 
Thank you added to
Photo by 
Jordan Benton from Pexels
Until I have something solid to report, would you like to see . . .
For example, the story behind this place, just outside Nassau, Bahamas is fascinating in a sordid way.
  • more flashbacks from the Bahamas? I do have some good stuff I've yet to publish. Or 
  • would you prefer to learn what we do to keep from climbing the walls while we wait—like the awesome 3-day kayaking trip I took? Or 
  • What makes Fort Pierce quirky?
  • More about my book on our travels? Click here if you want to get on the list to be notified of when it's releasing.
  • not much unless another no-news month goes by just so you still know we're alive?
Want to learn about where I was to get this recent photo?
Location Location

Our boat is at Fort Pierce City Marina, 27 27.039N 16 21.19W. We'll be house-sitting, nearby.