MW Mobile Blog

For friends, family and the random search engine visitor. This blog started as an experiment in mobile blogging from my Palm TREO 600 700 Prē HTC Evo,Samsung 5. Now it serves as a simple repository of favorite activities. Expect bad golf, good fishing, great sailing, eating, drinking, adventure travel, occasional politics and anything else I find interesting along the way including, but not limited to, any of the labels listed here...

Friday, December 7, 2018

Golf on the Island - Cedar Valley Golf Club

 Doug gets out of a trap... eventually 
We had plenty of time to discuss many topics during our two weeks before the mast, including comparing notes on our golf games. Having determined that we were compatible bad golfers, Doug suggested we try to get in a round on Antigua. Kim took advantage of some local connections and we scheduled a tee-time at Cedar Valley Golf Club.


Jim planned to play with us, but when it was time to depart decided he would rather spend the day relaxing on the boat and cleaning up Morpheus (cough... hangover... cough). Doug and I hired a driver and pressed on. 


Cedar Valley Golf Club is an unpretentious public course situated in the highlands of Antigua offering some spectacular vistas. It's not Country Club level of maintenance, but still as good or better than some of the muni tracks I play in San Francisco. The Clubhouse is a little rough around the edges, but the staff was friendly, the rental clubs were good, and it was a fun track to play. 


Our tee time was at 10:00, which means we were playing the heat of the Caribbean day. I was reminded of the Noel Coward song that  "Only Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun". OTOH, Doug and I pretty much had the course to ourselves for most of the round.

Some pics from the day...

Doug on the 1st hole fairway.
I am pointing to my tee shot in the far distance.



At the turn... I was kicking Doug's ass

A local resident of the course

A fun day. The final score is not important, but it should be noted that Doug has now joined the very exclusive, very small set of golfers to share the distinction of losing to me over a round of 18 holes of golf. 

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Eating and Drinking to Excess in Antigua
(not necessarily in that order)

 Local brew at Jolly Harbor Beach 
I an not sure whether this is a sailing thing, or a Morpheus thing, a personality quirk on my part, or All Of The Above, but it happens every time. We are safely ashore after a passage, and an eating and drinking binge proceeds apace.

Mudslides?  I think. Falmouth Harbor? I think.
Moreover we start drinking things that we know we should not be drinking - sweet drinks, dessert drinks, multi liquor abominations, designer "house specialties"  that virtually guarantee a killer hangover and, inexplicably, often in combination the same night.  It happened after our arrival in the Azores on our first transatlantic passage, in Cabo with the arriving race crew, after returning to San Francisco from Hawaii, and other instances that I didn't blog and/or prefer not to recall. I think I can count 3 of my top 5 worst life-to-date hangovers to the day after a Morpheus landfall.

So, with lessons still not learned, for this post we will simply get this over with and document some of the food and drink consumed in the days immediately following our landfall in Antigua.

We'll start with Flatties Flame Grill. Since the beginning of the passage, Jim has been enticing us with tales of all-you-can-eat-ribs at Flatties.


We were a day late for the the Tuesday night special, but we made up for it with two dinners at Flatties in the next 3 days.


Make no mistake. The food at Flatties is great. The ribs are great...


... but the Espedata is even better.


As much as we enjoyed Flatties, the culmination of our arrival was the official crew celebration dinner. The winner of the Morpheus Arrival Pool gets to choose the venue. Despite some question about the integrity of the pool winner qualification process, Kim was declared the winner of the pool.

I beleive we are toasting Gibb, our weather guardian angle and crew member in spirit,
despite his missing the arrival time be over 3 1/2 hours.  
Her selection of the relatively new Italian eatery Incanto in English Harbour was inspired, the meal was fantastic and, as consequence, all subsequent pool recount challenges were dropped.






Good call Kim. The meal was awesome. I have loosened by belt.
For the rest... these pics happened in Jolly Harbour, Falmouth Harbour, and English Harbour over the days following landfall, but I cannot tell you exactly when and where ...

I'm pretty sure this was Jolly Harbour Resort, and I think this is a gin fizz. 

Brews on the Jolly Harbor Beach were the order of the day (see top pic)

At some point we were coerced into a round of pile drivers (I think) that we did not need at "The Admiral's Inn" under the watchful eye of Admiral Horatio Nelson in English Harbor.




Then we were coerced into another round that we needed even less.


Brews at the bar...


... and mudslides at a table in Falmouth Harbor.


This is Jacqui O's on the beach near Jolly Harbor...


... and, as I recall, this is our server - "Priscilla".


It's a great spot for sunsets on the beach and whatever the hell is in this "signature drink" is that I am consuming in these pics.

It wasn't all formal food and drink. There are a lot of casual eateries along the walk between Falmouth and English Harbor. We were not disappointed in any we sampled. We'll conclude with one standout - Roti Sue ...


I had the beef, Jim and Deb had the chicken.  A local delicacy, at a local roadside institution, served with local beer and local hot sauce...
 And it's really really good. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Land Ho! - MW Morpheus Log Day 15 -12/05 3:45 PM Antigua Time

 We made it!
Tenerife to Antigua Summary Stats (per Captain Jim FB post):
Miles Traveled: 2,840 Nautical Miles
Miles To Go (to Antigua): 0
15 Days. Downhill all the way.
Average winds 17-25 knots.
No injuries other than one bruised and scraped forearm.
No boat damage other than a trash compactor that stopped working.

Official 2018 Morpheus TransAtlantic Crew Celebration Portrait
Passage Speed Records:
  1. OTTO CHEERLEADER AWARD: Jim on watch when Otto the autopilot hit 18.0 knots early on 12/03
  2. HUMANS DON'T NEED NO STINKING AUTOMATION AWARD: Kim hit 17.8 knots driving the boat while Otto was in a timeout for bad behavior later on 12/03
Quotes of the Day:

 "Land Ho!" said MW upon joining the Kim and Deb coffee klatch at dawn, in the cockpit, while still  about 60 miles out, looking around and pretending to see land.


"Bullshit." said Kim & Deb simultaneously. They weren't buying it.

Sailing:
Otto was back in control as we complete the home stretch to Antigua. Humans continued to experiment with Otto configurations, but with winds in comfortable ranges (16-20 knots) and the sails back in our standard downhill unreefed wing and wing configuration, Otto was doing fine. Some humans just wanted to take the wheel in anticipation of getting into Antigua early.

Captain Jim took a poll to revisit the decision of whether we would be mooring tonight with immigration tomorrow or going for the dock and immigration today. The results were decisive: Go easy, get a mooring, swim, and wait until tomorrow for immigration.

Arrival:

Kim was the first to spot Antigua. Earlier, Doug made a dubious claim of spotting the low-lying Guadaloupe island of La Desirade off our port beam.


This claim was unsubstantiated. I think he was hallucinating.


Actual time of landing per our Boat Pool rules, was 3:45 PM  local time which Captain Jim claimed made Kim the winner of the Boat Arrival Pool.* With that, Kim won the Triple Crown of Open Ocean passages - Fastest Drive Time (for a human), First To Spot Land, and Winning the Arrival Time Pool.

Kim kicks ass. 
Navigating the tricky shoals and reefs surrounding Antigua required the combined efforts of everyone on the crew, including Deb at the Nav station, Kim on the IPad next to Jim at the Helm, Mike and Doug watching buoys and depth.


We arrive in Falmouth Harbor during the Antigua Boat Show and one of the most egregious displays of ostentatious wealth any of us have ever seen. Those boats sure are pretty though.



 Picked up a mooring, raised the quarantine flag, and went for a swim.



Checked the prop to see if we collected any debris along the way.

 No Problem

Until we clear Immigration in the morning, we have to stay on the boat. But we have plenty of libations to celebrate. Kim and Deb broiled a giant rib steak served with garlic mashed potatoes and we enjoy a family dinner in the salon.




Happy to be here. Sad because the crew will soon disperse.

We have arrived.
Food:
Breakfast - Cereal
Lunch - Leftovers
Dinner - Monster Steak and Potatoes while moored in Falmouth Harbor.

+++++

My intent is to cross-post daily logs to MW Mobile Blog and Jim & Deb's Morpheus Sailing Blog while en-route from SailMail. Due to the technology limitations, these will be short, text only posts. I'll backfill pictures and video once I am home again. Eventually.

+++++

PostScripts - This post is the first non "SailMail" post after arrival. There were a lot of complaints from the Reader about the abrupt cutoff of blog posts on Dec 4 without any closure to the story. We are endeavoring to rectify that oversight in post production, starting with this post.

*A protest has been filed with the race committee over disparities in the rules regarding the time zone of record used in the Antigua Arrival Boat Pool Calculation.