When Spring arrived, we started
counting down to our departure date, which was pushed forward a few
times but finally set for Easter Sunday,
April 20. Our emotions were bittersweet as the day approached. We
were very excited to take the next step toward our "adventure retirement," but
sad to leave the great friends we made in California.
In March, we said good-bye
to our cat Beavis, who went to live with Rich's son Andrew in Kansas City.
Unfortunately, Beavis didn't get an escort to Kansas City, and Jan will never
forget the look on his face as they took him away in the cargo area of the
airline. However, he arrived safely, and both he and Andrew are happy to
The last few days before our
departure were a bit
frantic. From Marina del Rey, we were heading to Ensenada, Mexico, where we planned to
complete some carpentry boat projects. We purchased a fair
amount of the materials we would need for those projects and had them in storage. Determining how to fit
and secure all this stuff on Slip Away was a challenge, and we were
still figuring it out when some friends arrived to see us off on our departure
day. Everyone pitched in and we got the job done.
Our new pet - "Beavis II"
||Our friends were very good to
us. They showed up with bottles of
champagne, baked goods and candies. Our boat neighbors, George & Sue, even brought us a new pet - a stuffed kitty cat. Sue said she
knew how much we missed Ali and Beavis. Since the stuffed kitty looks so
much like Beavis, we call him Beavis, too. He sleeps on our bed just
like the old Beavis did, but he doesn't get sick when we go to sea. (He
also doesn't shed, use a litter box or require food!)
Several friends came to say
good-bye on our departure day - Brian, Steve, Jenny, Ed, Jay, John, Camille, Tim, Lisa, Tony, Mary, Chaz, Kara, Sara, James, Penny, Sam, George, Sue, Jean and Max.
We hugged them all and shed a few tears. In the late afternoon, we
shoved off for our overnight voyage to San Diego.
|As we motored out the main
channel of Marina del Rey, we heard someone call "Hey, Slip Away!"
We turned to look and our friends Penny and Sam had driven out to wave
Heading out the main channel of MDR
Zubenubi comes out to say good-bye
||When we got out into Santa
Monica Bay, we were greeted with wind, so we set the sails, turned off the
motor and set the auto pilot heading south. As we approached the
South Bay (Redondo Beach), we kept an eye out for Zubenubi, our previous
boat. John, Mike, Karon and Tim sailed "Zubi" out to say good-bye,
and they escorted us out toward Palos Verdes.
Slip Away under sail
Slip Away turns toward San Diego
**Many thanks to Max & Jean,
Penny & Sam and Karon & Mike for sending us the photos on this page.**
As we rounded Palos Verdes, the wind died, so we
started the engine and motored for a while. Jan slept from about 9 to
midnight, then Rich took a turn at sleeping. During Jan's watch, a
beautiful red quarter-moon rose right in front of her. At about 2:30
a.m., the wind started to pick up. Jan was eager to turn off the engine
and sail again, but she knew if she did, she would wake Rich, who really
needed to sleep. So she patiently waited another half hour until Rich
woke up, then we set the sails again and turned off the motor. With the
wind blowing at about 15 knots off our beam and fairly calm seas, we had a
wonderfully peaceful sail for a few hours. Unfortunately, the wind died
again, and we were back to motoring a few hours later, but we enjoyed it while
We arrived in San Diego the
next morning and were happy to find a slip available at the public docks.
We spent a week in San Diego getting familiar with the Shelter Island/Point
Loma area and made a trip downtown to get our Mexican fishing licenses and
tourist cards. Before we knew it, the week was over, and it was time to
head further south to Ensenada.
Our friends, Sam &
Tom, joined us in San Diego for a Sunday afternoon cruise of the bay.
Then, they sent us on our way to Ensenada. Again, we did an overnight
passage. Our southbound passage involved dodging a fair amount of
northbound traffic - boats that were heading back to the U.S. after the
Newport to Ensenada race the weekend before. At one time during his
watch, Rich counted 15 boats heading north, and most of them did not appear on
radar. We were relieved when when it thinned out!
We arrived in
Ensenada a little too early the next morning - around 5:30 a.m. - and spent an
hour motoring around Bahia Todos Santos before entering the harbor. We
had a slip reserved at Baja Naval, and the marina folks and our friend Steve
on Cadre (a sistership of Slip Away) helped us tie up when we
pulled in. Steve got us motivated to go to out for breakfast before taking a
well deserved nap. He also cooked dinner for us on Cadre that
evening. It was a nice welcome!