Chip Ford's 1974 Catalina 22 Restoration Project
Sail #3282  l  Marblehead, Massachusetts

The never-ending project to fill my hole in the ocean while bailing it out

Preparing for Season 05

- Page 27 -

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86-year old Dad and me off Misery Island.  (Sep. 5, 2005)

Diane at the helm with Dad. (Sister Diane could really learn to sail with a couple more outings!)

Dad and Diane from above. (She's a natural.)

This weekend I sailed down to Scituate on the South Shore. I came across two behemoths underway, the first was this freighter that gave me a considerable number of blasts of its horn as it speedily approached from Boston Harbor through the "precautionary zone" that makes up almost half my cruise to Scituate.  (Sep. 10, 2005)

It was a beautiful sail down with a northeast wind blowing at about 12 knots. By the time I reached the mouth of Scituate Harbor's breakwater and lighthouse it'd switched over to east at about 15 and I sort of surfed in between the stone breakwater in four-foot rollers. The next morning I left at 7:00 am only to turn around outside the breakwater at the sea buoy and run back in four-to-five foot short swells, a first for me. By noon the seas had died down and at 1:00 pm I gave it a second go.

It had calmed considerably to two-three foot seas; the wind, initially still from the north, changed to the south before I reached Boston Harbor and Marblehead at 6:00 pm, when I surfed into the harbor again. Along the way home I came across the second behemoth of my trip -- a humpback whale that crossed my bow and swam alongside apparently checking out Chip Ahoy. Unlike my last encounter with one off the Maine coast last year, as soon as I spotted it off my port bow I leaped below and dug out my camera. But, by the time I was shooting photos it was off my starboard beam, spouted once, flipped me its massive tail, and sounded in 100 feet of ocean.  This wasn't the best photo I thought I'd shot -- but it's the only one that came out!  (Sep. 11, 2005)

With annual "Talk Like A Pirate Day" arriving tomorrow, September 19th, some in the discussion group are warming up already. "Iron Harry Flint" (Bayard Gross of Connecticut) and I "Red Tom Flint" have exchanged Bridgeport, Conn. for Fall River, Mass., and he thinks he got the better deal with the U.S.S. Massachusetts, "Old Mamie," docked there. But I've still got Marblehead, "Birthplace of the American Navy," thanks to General John Glover of the 14th Continental, whose Marblehead crew ferried George Washington across the Delaware to defeat the British. And "Old Ironsides," the unsinkable U.S.S. Constitution, is still commissioned and docked in nearby Charlestown Navy Yard, so we be still in righteous shape, aaarr.

The Salem Harbor side of Marblehead (taken from Pioneer Village, Salem) the day after Tropical Storm Ophelia just missed us, passing 60 miles south of Nantucket. Earlier this week I went out and "battened down the hatches," in preparation removed everything of value that I could carry back to the dock and home.  (Chip Ahoy on its mooring is labeled.) Though heading up the coast right for us, at the last moment early yesterday she veered off to the northeast and out to sea, losing strength over the cold water.  (Sep. 18, 2005)

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"The Village Street Fleet" -- Sailing Season 2005 is over.  Wally, Gerald and I hauled-out Chip Ahoy at the Winter Island ramp on Thursday (Oct. 20), trailered it home, and parked it alongside Wally's "Carpe Diem," which will winter in my yard too.  Once they're emptied of their worldly belongings, we'll move the two boats (and my dinghy, "Chip Mate") to the side of the house and cover them for the duration.  My "new" Chevy Blazer is on the left, put on the road the day after we used the Ford Explorer one last time to back into the ocean and pull out Chip Ahoy.  With the miserable weather we've had for the past few weeks, more rain forecast for this weekend and into the foreseeable days ahead, and Hurricane Wilma due off the coast on Wednesday, we're out none too soon.  (Oct. 22, 2005)

Well this was certainly abrupt, early, and unexpected -- today we got our first snowfall, and October isn't even over yet. Leaves are still on the trees and our boats aren't even covered yet! I hope this isn't a precursor to things ahead . . .  (Oct. 29, 2005)

See:  "Covering Chip Ahoy"

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It's never-ending ... but Sailing Season '05 is over!

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