1 LiveBloggin' the ICW: Where's Wally?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Where's Wally?

Well, if you want to know, I'm in hiding! Yes...hiding, and if you look at Wally's Weather Widget on the right hand side of the page, you'll see why. The winds are (again!) back from the south, and as you can see, Wednesday's forecast is for 30 - 35 mph winds, and waves to 11 feet. 
That's bad enough when it's at your back, but I'm heading south, straight into them. No thank you very much...I'm tied up to a dock protected from all that wind with nice hot showers about 30 feet away, grocery store about 70 yards, and the laundry and the pub is in between them. If this isn't the perfect bad weather location, I don't know what is. 
Ok - there's one better and that's the free dock in front of the Hooters, in Jacksonville FL - but other than that, this is pretty darn good.

A lot of ocean sailors pooh pooh Great Lake boating as not being difficult - what I've got in the diagrams here might make them rethink their opinions. 
Below is the wind graph for tomorrow - that bright green you see? Them are 25 - 30 knot winds (a knot is 1.15 mph)... I'm at the tip of that peninsula you see about center page. Where I'm going is to Sarnia, at the bottom of the lake (and the page). It's about 150 miles away. Now you see why I'm in hiding?
Wind speeds on Lake Huron

This second graphic shows wave heights for the same time period....that orange colour right about where I am now? Those are three metre waves - for those who don't speak metric, that's about 10 feet. And those are average wave heights. At least one third of all waves will be significantly greater - and I don't want to discover what 'significantly greater' means!
 The yellow is 2 - 2.5 metres and as you can see by the arrows....they're right on the bow, and they don't even begin to subside for about 75 miles down the coast, where they turn into mere 5 - 7 footers. I know, I know, I'm a big chicken. But at least I'm not being a turkey this Thanksgiving.

Wave heights on Lake Huron
So what have I been doing to keep myself entertained throughout all of this lovely weather? Well, I just wrapped up another story for SAIL Magazine about how to handle your dinghy flipping over while you're snorkeling for lobster, and put together a video for it as well which, if my editor approves the soundtrack (it features the Jaws' soundtrack!), ought to be very entertaining.
But the highlight of the past weekend was at the local Legion - I popped in for a quick brew there on Friday evening, and was talked into being the DJ for the following night. Oh yes, you didn't know that was one of my talents, did you? 
So come Saturday we were rocking the house and I got quite the education from the kids at the pub. Since I last dj'd, technology has wrought some wonderful things. For example, rather than all those fancy electronics - turntables, cd players, amps, etc., it's possible to actually run two big speakers - with the iTunes app on your smart phone. 
Yep, it's that easy - so every time the kids had a request, I'd take their iPhone and plug it in to play their song - because for sure, I not only didn't have that music, I'd never heard of the songs or the groups.
Then someone showed me that you could not only play the song, but you could also bring up songs from YouTube on the internet with the video, so that if you had a hookup to a screen, you could broadcast the video along with the music. Talk about cool! Not only cool, but I got paid for the evening. Life is good! 
The other weekend highlight was a visit from my good friend Gord, from Toronto. I cooked up some fabulous steaks, getting them just right and after our night at the Legion (Gord shot pool), we sat up, drank beer till four in the morning and basically solved the problems of the world. I'm sure you noticed how much better things were on Sunday, right? You didn't? Hmmm....more beer maybe?
I even managed to get some boat work done on Sunday, sewing up a torn seam in the mainsail. I'm planning to put together a new video on making a mainsail, using the Sailrite kit, as a follow up to the repair video you can see here on the site. The repair has lasted two years (thank you Kathy!) which is what we were told to expect, and now it's time to replace that sail.
So - now you know Where Wally is. Stay tuned...