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2014 incidents of piracy near Singapore. Source: IMB Piracy Reporting Centre

Engine woes in the Singapore Strait

The engine failed our test run, but it at least had the grace to wait until we were beyond the worst of the shipping traffic. With a few miles left to our intended anchorage the needle began to steadily tick up again. This has been the pattern: it’s fine, right up  until it’s not, and then the overheating happens […]

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Cooking with a Solar Oven aboard

We’re in the tropics. There is a lot of sun. We can cook with the sun. It makes sense, right? Still, you don’t see a lot of solar ovens on boats- and that’s too bad. 1. Your galley stays cool. This is an excellent feature for retaining the sanity of the primary cook aboard (moi) […]

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Top 10 signs it’s time to leave the island

We may not be with the fleet heading to Africa (this year), but it’s time to go. Here’s how to know when you really should move on to a new place: 10. Gooseneck barnacles reach the toe rail. 9. The latest charts show your vessel as a hazard. 8. Baby birds emerge from nests under the […]

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Passagemaking dreams

The unmistakable bellow of conch horns echoed around the bay yesterday morning as the 50′ sloop Love Song headed out, bound for the Indian Ocean. Next stop: Maldives, if they need fuel, otherwise- Mauritius! With a likely three thousand mile passage looming, their exit earned a salute. Love Song was the latest in a series […]

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Healthcare while cruising

Laughter is good medicine, but we do rely on more than fun Shuffling down the corridor of the hospital on Langkawi last week, I realized with a start that this marked the first time since leaving the US in 2008 we’ve sought out medical help for anything but routine or preventative care. I’m embarrassed to […]

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Normalizing the view of family life afloat

Most of the time, the general public really has no view, or interest, in our very different way of living. The events on Rebel Heart have changed that temporarily, the center of a swirl of media attention. It’s given the uninformed,  hiding in the anonymity of the internet, the mistaken impression that their opinions are […]

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Cruising costs, routine maintenance, and the 10% (15%, 20%) rule

What does it cost to go cruising? Most of these discussions focus on month to month living expenses. Do you eat out in restaurants or stick to the boat? Do you stay in marinas or anchor out? Do you send out your laundry or wash it in a bucket? What’s easy to miss in the […]

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Giant Map of Dreams

If a picture tells a thousand words, then a map is a portrait with countless stories to tell. Consider Cape Disappointment in Oregon, whose name on a map barely hints of the great and perilous journey of Lewis and Clark’s expedition. When it came to naming the place, a deflated Clark must have considered names […]

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How do you decorate a cruising boat for Christmas?

Photo courtesy of Lindsey Paris How do you bring the holidays on board, adapted to the cruising life? When we sailed south from Puget Sound in 2008 to begin for cruising adventures, our children were in the thick of the “holiday magic” years at ages 4, 6 and 9. That magic was very real, and […]

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Hauling in Thailand: part 3- lessons learned

The combination of low costs and skilled labor makes Southeast Asia is an appealing region for boat refits. Phithak Shipyard was all that and more. We learned a few things, and will give ourselves a few pats on the back- but there are a couple of things we’d change if we could do it again. […]

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