1 LiveBloggin' the ICW: February 2018

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Wally? Hello? Wally, you here?

Hi everyone - yes, I'm here. Been real busy and you're going to love love love the reason I haven't been blogging lately...I'm just finishing up my first book! Yes!
I signed the agreement just after the New Year and am now sourcing the photos for this project, which is tentatively named 'The Un-Adult, A-Rated Wally'.
This book, to be published by Seaworthy Publications, is a compilation of some past work and will contain 16 stories, some published and some blog posts, and several never before published gems - gems in my opinion anyhow, even if I couldn't get some short sighted editor to agree with me, much less pay me for the piece.
Here are some of the chapter titles: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Boat Show, A Visit to Yeehaw Junction, Pitchpoled!, Cuba's North Coast, Zen and the Art of Furler Installation, Paradise - Kiss it Goodbye, and more!
This anthology will be available by this summer, and I'll happily sign your copy! So yes, I'm jazzed about this.
Best of all, I'm also working on a second book, one that will be mandatory for anyone travelling on the ICW. Stay tuned for more information on both titles.
In addition to writing, I'm also doing a Coppercoat epoxy bottom job on Gypsy Wind. This product, which takes a considerable amount of preparation to apply, will give me ten years before I have to do a bottom job again.  Mind you, after all this work, it'll be ten years before I want to do it again!
Be watching for an upcoming article on this product in Cruising World. Given the legislation that many jurisdictions are putting in the way of anti fouling products, you may well want to consider this product for your own boat.
Once that job is done, (in the next day or so), and a couple of other minor maintenance jobs, I'll be back in the water and on my way to the Bahamas. And let me tell you, after two months of being on the hard at Green Cove Springs, I can't wait! I can only handle so much fun. I need to go sailing, and soon.
Some Sail to the Sun ICW Rally news - we finished the Rally in mid December in Miami. Before arriving there, we had some amazing fun times in Charleston, Windmill Harbor on Hilton Head, St. Mary's Thanksgiving Cruisers' Potluck, Fernandina Beach... Then there was the premiere full day seminar at Cocoa, which featured Fatty Goodlander as keynote speaker, plus Pam Wall and several other top notch speakers.
Members of this year's group are now in the Bahamas, Mexico and throughout Florida and the Keys. I hope to catch up with a few of them in the Abacos very soon, it was a great trip south.

The Sail to the Sun Cocoa Cruising Seminar  in early December was a huge hit, with over 100 in attendance for a very long day - from 9 pm until after 7, with lunch, dinner, drinks and a lot of great cameraderie. We'll be doing it again, so don't miss out!
We'll have a professionally produced video of the entire seminar's presentations available very shortly - be watching, as it is an amazing cruising resource, with over four hours of Fatty's incomparable wisdom, plus another six hours of great stuff from Lee Chesneau (weather), Mike Gianotti (electronics), Pam Wall (Bahamas and Gulf Stream) and yours truly (Cuba).
Special thanks to everyone who made this amazing event happen, and especially the folks at the Historic Cocoa Village Association, and Brad Whitmore, who basically put this all together. Great work guys.
This year's Sail to the Sun ICW Rally registration is now well under way, with several boats signing up at the Toronto Boat Show. This year's brochure is now available, you can email me at this link for a copy. If you're going south this fall, don't hesitate to sign up, as registration is limited and you don't want to miss out.
Along with all of our usual great events, such as this year's new Rum Distillery tour, we're going to add an African Lion Safari in 2018. That's what I love about the ICW - there's always something new, and this year, I found a game park just a few miles off the ICW.
Now that's almost as good as seeing a full sized elephant beside the ICW in the Myrtle Beach area - no kidding! Here's the photo in case you think I'm kidding you...
If you want more information on the 2018 Sail to the Sun ICW Rally, you can check out the website at www.ICWally.com - or contact me directly for more information at Sail to the Sun ICW Rally. This is year 5 - can you believe it! - and I've got some special events planned to celebrate, including a reunion of the four previous events, plus this year's group. Stay tuned for details.
Ok, that's it for now, but I promise I'll blog more regularly from here on in - I have had a lot going on, and sometimes, you just have to take a break. Like Mom said, 'absence makes the heart grow fonder'. That didn't seem to work with Lori Lynn Green, but we were in grade seven, so who knows?
Final comment - be watching in Cruising World for some of my upcoming articles, including an update on Cuba regulations, East Coast Hurricane Holes and more.