Monday, December 24, 2012

Thursday, November 15, 2012

QE2 and fuel efficiency

Interesting fact.  According to Snopes, the QE2 does not get 6 inches per gallons as rumored.  It actually gets between 40 and 50 feet per gallon.  If we assume 50, then it uses 105.6 gal to go a mile.  Top speed is 32.5 miles per hour then  3432 gallons per hour.  Fuel capacity, according to Cunard is one million gallons for a 7500 mile range.  Doing the math the fuel weighs about 8,000,000 lbs.  If they pay $3.00 per gallon, that is $3,000,000 for a "fill-up" after 230 hours of travelling (9.5 days).   

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Sandy and Keyport

While Sandy pounded the Keyport fishing pier (lost the shack) and 5 boats rode it out on moorings,

our fearless leader was painting the bottom of Harmony in Florida.  BUT from now on, the yard has to do it...DEA strikes again.

Letter to some cruising friends.

Bob and Judy,
Good to hear from you. Florrie has gone back to NJ to sing at a friends wedding and is dealing with the aftermath of the hurricane. Our condo did OK and the little boat we bought is fine. The dinghy we kept at the condo has disappeared. The yacht club, 1/2 block down lost the launch driver's shack and Freezer at the end of the dock and a lot of boards. Boats on the hard in the main boatyards got slammed and lifted off the jackstands by a 14 foot tidal surge. Looks like dominoes. Some friends had major damage to their houses but no one lost their life, There were five boats who decided to sit Sandy out on the moorings fully exposed to the wind and waves and all are still there. We did lose a lighthouse in the middle of the bay. Nothing but a rockpile and cement slab left. It seems really strange that Florida did fine and NJ got hit by the hurricane. I am sure you are aware that the Bounty, a replica used in the movie, was lost at sea along with her captain and one of the 16 crew. They had gone out to weather the storm at sea. and were about 90 miles offshore of the Outer Banks of NC.

I am still in St A and waiting for the guy to come and give the heat exchanger an acid bath. Although only the port engine needs it now, I will have them do both. I have learned that this what you have to do on a catamaran, It is the last thing on the list although, last night, the toilet decided to quit and will be my job for today. Oh Joy! If they get the engines working, I will leave tomorrow and go down the ICW to stage at Vero for a crossing.

Your boat, Greenstone, looks fine. Right next to a working generator. We did have some electrical problems over the summer here so the dehumidifier didn't do much. I need one that will turn itself back on after a pause in the power. A little mildew but not too bad.

Last night was interesting, It was almost dark when I heard a "who, who whooooo" from outside. I went out to scare the pigeon when a hugh owl flew away from the top of my mast and flew over to the top of a mast of a boat on the hard. Of course, he returned later to my boat but only for a short while. I hope that doesn't mean anything about rodents on the docks.

Hope to see you down the "road".

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Catamaran Harmony has electricity.

HOOOOO HA!   I am not sure that any non boater would understand the JOY when an engine (in this case the generator) starts up after two days of trials, sweat, tribulations, trips to West Marine and autoparts stores, prayers, threats, swearing, cuts and bruises.  I say again HOOOOO HA!   One lesson: go to the autoparts store for filters.  Cheaper and have more stock then West.  They also had the 12v 25watt navigation lights I needed while the "marine" store did not.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Keyport after Sandy

These are pictures of Keyport after Sandy taken by Florrie and put on her facebook page.!/photo.php?fbid=3790384117458&set=a.3790383797450.2142622.1212773617&type=1&theater

Friday, November 9, 2012

FW: Before and After Satellite Views

absolutly amazing..!!!!!!

Absolutely Amazing Satellite Views of our Area
Before and After Hurricane Sandy
Click on the Link Below

One of my crew, Nancy Smalling found this on the RCYC website - you can sweep across the pictures to see before and after views. Keyport (Pedersen's marina) is among the images.
 Steve Fronapfel
"Nancy found this on the Richmond County Yacht Club site. Move your mouse across each image to get side-by-side before and after views.

Pretty amazing technology/software to be able to compare these images with the sweep of a mouse." -  Paul B. McKeefry

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Hurricane Sandy

One reason to be thankful that we are already in Florida and not one of those whose insurance will not cover them below Cape Hatteras before Nov 1st.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Cocktail time

Just an idea for a appetizer.

St Augustine

Uploading the dink from the car to the boat.

Day before Hurricane Sandy.  Just
starting to build up.

Pumpkin carving at River's Edge
Marina in St. A.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Overnight with kal and brian aboard Serenity in Merrit, NC.

Now in SC

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.6

Friday, October 19, 2012


I am SO tired of aching with this &^*#(*&@^&^%&!!!!! thing on every night!

We leave for FL starting tomorrow - should get to St Augustine by Tues AM. We look like Tobacco Road - or The Grapes of Wrath - or the Clampetts!!!!! Yarrgghhh! xoxoxo Will answer emails when I can. Love Ya'all. F

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I hate hotmail

have not resolved it so set up a new email address at
florrie.and.lew  at

Friday, July 6, 2012


My hotmail account was hacked and you may have received an email from me with only a link.  DO NOT OPEN!

Sorry about that.  I have changed my password and, hopefully, that will have taken care of it.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

New boat

We left Harmony in Florida so I found a little (25 foot) catboat (Freedom 25) for a bargain price.  Something to tool around with and easily single hand when I am not repairing it.  My son, Jimmy, and a friend George helped me bring it down the East River from New Rochelle and the three of us have also been doing the Wed. night local races.  Unfortunately, the boat doesn't point worth a @#$% and is the smallest and lightest in the fleet which means we come in last.  We do just fine downwind and even passed one of the larger boats last night.  But then we rounded the mark and watched him sail past us to leeward.  Oh well, I can still go out for an afternoon.  Maybe if we could find a race that is downwind for the entire course....

Fishing registry in New Jersey    Here is the link for a registry for New Jersey salt water fishing if you ever want to drag a line as you go by or dive for lobster.  It is free and if you get caught fishing without it, it is a $300 fine.  The same may just be true for other states and there is a national registry for a fee of $15. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Home again

Yep, we're here and it is an adjustment.  Long pants and sweaters.  Ycccchhhh!  Anyway, Harmony is on the hard in St. A .  It took almost a week to get her ready for a possible hurricane and the humidity and the possible varmits (mice cockroaches and spiders) famous in Florida.  Then windward at 70 mph.  Florrie drove around the parking lot at 6 mph just to get an idea of our cruising speed first.  Stopped off to see Brian and Capt Kal in NC, niece Linda Lew, Raj and Niala. Gareth. Liss and Jeff on the way. So we are home and slowly adjusting to things like unlimited hot water, cars, tv and a king sized bed which feels much to big.

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.4

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

On the hard

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.4

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Heading Home - Almost


It's Tuesday and we're at the St. Augustine Marine Center about ½ mile down the river from Riverside, where we've been for the past week.  We get hauled onto the hard tomorrow morning, for 6 months.  Everyone on this dock is SO transient…  waiting a day or two to have their boat hauled or something fixed before they go home or keep sailing.  Riverside Marina was a "neighborhood" of familiar faces, even though people moved on from there, too.  We have at least 2 more days before we can head for home but this has been a Most Productive stay in Florida.  (We left Green Turtle Cay on April 16 and got to Cape Canaveral on the 18th.)  Now, five years of collected "stuff" has been looked at, sorted, thrown out and/or is on it's way home.  Finally I feel like this is a more doable kind of lifestyle.  Even though the 2 weeks on either end for getting the boat "commissioned" or "de commissioned" is tiring and a bit hectic, at least we can leave clothes on board and enough food to get us through a day or two before we actually get to a grocery store.

St Augustine has been the BEST place to do all this.  The old town and harbor are full of fascinating things to do and see.  They make a fabulous break from the hum-drum of sorting, packing, cleaning, etc etc.  Also, on this dock we are practically in the marsh.  There are so many birds I forget what they are all named.  And every now and then some dolphins "sneeze" by.   LOL!  We've seen more manatee this trip than in all the other trips combined.  By the way - did you know that manatee can't burp?  That's one of the reasons not to give them fresh water.  Not only does it lure them to the boaters (which is dangerous) but they swallow air with the fresh water and it can build up in their system and kill them!  That is second-hand info but came for one of the EPA-type people.  Just thought I'd pass it on.

We haven't kept up with the Blog this year but it has been a wonderful winter.  This is our fifth season of being snow birds and it is beginning to feel very good!  I guess we've found our "Harmony" after all.  Hope to see you all again, soon.
as artist 
Florence Bramley Hill

Friday, March 23, 2012

FW: L-Dock Friends


The "Mature" women at the table are, left to right, Liz ("Chief's Lady"), Karen ("Mskoki"), Mary Lynn (and Scott, "Zingaro") and me ("Harmony"). The younger women are daughters of some of the boaters with their husbands. Sitting up on the other table is Tom from "Chief's Lady". All are really fun people to be with - particularly by the beach on a sunny after noon drinking frozen mango daiquiris. Patty ("Honeywind") took the picture.

Monday, March 12, 2012

FW: logopictures

We are at Great Guana...home of Nippers and Grabbers (wonderful beach bars) and Florrie is painting the dinghy with logos.  See her work on the link below.

as artist 
Florence Bramley Hill

Monday, February 20, 2012

Electrolux Stove

When you need a part for your stove you get:
"Thank you for contacting Electrolux Major Appliances. The appliance is too old for us to assist you."

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Cruising: fixing your boat in exotic places

It has been a day and a half! Last night, while I was cooking my dinner and charging up the fridge on the generator, I noticed what appeared to be smoke in the galley and aft cabin. Must be the generator! It was the only thing on. So I turned it off and went into the port engine room where it is housed. Smoke and steam everywhere. Filled up the radiator and tried it again...yeah, that worked...smoke everywhere. OH SH*T. Too hot to work on now so I went to bed. Next morning back in the engine room and noticed that there was no water coming out of the exhaust. Must be the salt water system so I started tracing it. Strainer...OK next link OK...Next link ... a piece of plastic in the line, must be the impeller. Took off the impeller housing (fun job) and there it was...looked OK but one flange missing. About 1/2 hour to get the impeller out. Found 5 spare impellers on the boat. Wonderful! Even looked like the same size. Wait a minute, these good impellers all have a key fitting while the generator fitting is different. Won't work!!! (add a few choice words here) Talked to Simon on Senerity...he had some spares but they also needed a key...Off to Robert's marina and next to George in the house next door. Lo and behold, after some searching, he found one that just might work. Back to the boat to try it out. It fit!!! after a wee struggle. Fired up the gen and looked over the side for water being pumped out. Nothing, I mean Nada. Went outside to feel for pressure, NADA! Back to the engine room to hear the bilge pump going madly and lots of water in the bilge. Maybe, just maybe, it was pumping but not going outside. Holy Smoke...that was it. Generator on...water pumped into bilge. So the impeller is working anyway. Traced the exhaust backwards only to find a hose had come off under the generator and behind it. Could it have been in a harder place to get to? Anyway, I tell myself that this in not rocket science and put on my knee pads and cushion the top of the generator so I can lean on it without cutting myself and about 45 minutes later, the hose is reconnected. Fire it up...why not...and away it goes. Water shooting out the exhaust outside the boat. YAHOOOOOOO. Total work hours...4. Cost...$37.00 for a new impeller (Bahama prices but what are you going to do?) So how is your day going?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Cruising life

Hidden Crab in Bita Bay

Even though we are on a mooring in Black Sound, Green Turtle Cay, we are up before the sun. Florrie curls up on the aft bunk and writes. I am listening to Chris Parker, weather guru, on the single sideband radio (AKA SSB or short wave radio) and having my first cup of coffee. If there is Internet, we both are on our computers (sometimes sending notes to each other). Slowly we get ready for the day. Yesterday we did some boat jobs and then went for a bike ride with some friends. Bida Bay for a picnic lunch then on another 1/2 mile and back. Some time during the day we tend to have a nap. We watched some of the Giant game last night but couldn't stay awake for the end. Too bad...giants in overtime. Florrie will be flying back to NJ on wed for some family business and then return in a week. Right now we are lucky. Good Internet, warm during the day and cool at night, fridge working, dinghy hanging on and life is good. Knock on wood!
The picture was actually from last year in Marsh Harbour.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Green Turtle Cay

When last we left our adventurers they were just getting out of sight of land in a balmy breeze. But things change. The wind and waves were both forecast to be light and from the West. An easy trip. Once again, Man plans and god laughs. The wind picked up to about 15+ from the Southeast, close hauled and almost on the nose. The seas picked up from the Northeast...right angles to the wind...and got somewhere about 3 to 4 feet. Of course, at night everything seems double so it felt like 30 knots with 8 foot waves. Our intrepid Captain thought it was a fine sail but the Admiral was not happy. Oh, she did wonderfully well with 2 hour watches and was never seasick at all. We got to the banks about 9 PM and thought about anchoring but it was too rough so we continued on. By 6:30 we neared the top of Great Sale Cay and stopped, watched the lightning in the sky in front of us and waited for Chris Parker, weather guru, on the single sideband radio. He forecast that the wind would be light and from the north. Well light it was from the southwest until we got to Green Turtle at 3 PM. Dinghied ashore and went to customs to check in. Back to the boat, towing a Canadian Dinghy that had broken a sheer pin on the coral because the town dock didn't have a deck following hurricane Irene, back to his anchored boat.

The Island obviously suffered a lot of damage from the hurricane but is getting back to normal. Still see a loss of trees and shingles on the roofs of houses. We are on a mooring at Donnie's Boat Rental in Black Sound and snug as a bug and well protected from the fronts.
Florrie took lots of pictures and they can be found on Facebook. look for Florence Hill.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

On our way

We left vero at 7 this morning with the current against us as we left Ft. Pierce and headed for the Bahamas. Very light wind from the west and a 1/2 foot slow rollers behind us. About a half knot current against as we are 5 miles off shore and we are motoring.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Cold front in florida.

It is 8:30 AM and 34 degrees.  Nuff said.

Published with Blogger-droid v2.0.2