Greetings from San Diego

We returned to the boat in LA on the weekend and wrapped up outstanding projects. You saw the pile that had grown by the back door.

Started by slicing the Veeberth foam mattress and dressing with the new covers.

In the daylight Sunday we tackled the installation of the Irdium Go fixed antenna. This thing makes the new boat tracking possible. Running the cable through the crowded stern tower and through the cabins to the saloon settee back was a wire pulling challenge. But it’s a good looking install and is working well so far.

This Irdium satellite communicator is now reporting the boat’s position, so if you’d like to follow Ravenswing’s progress, please go to top page, find the Tracking link in the black bar under the boat photo, and read the easy instructions. You should see us get rolling on Monday morning.

Got the reacher-sail turning block straps made from UV resistant car seat belt material, color matched of course.

Here’s a nice little “keeper” to hold the anchor in place on deck. Traded some boat parts with Mike Leneman on our way through town. Very nice to visit him and Kristie and Calypso.

We’re also pleased to have added 20% more solar (500watts) with these new panels on the dodger. We now have three charging circuits: 200 watts on each float deck and this 100 on the dodger. The three groups now complement each other re: shade, and since they are independent we’re much safer vs the prior all-serial config where one panel failure brought the system down.

Jim flew in and we departed San Pedro at 4:30am to do the 100 mile sail to San Diego by dusk. Nice idea, but accidentally driving in to the kelp bed off Pt. Loma (just excruciating inches from the SD channel) hung us up two hours. We had to shut down the motor and de-weed 20+ times, plus lift both foils. What a major mess, solved only by Jim lying in the forward net pushing globs of kelp with the boat hook away from the prop area and me driving us forward at a half knot. All while Navy helicopters buzzed overhead doing some big night exercise. Crazy evening. At least the middle day was blissfully pleasant 8-10kt sailing in a mild breeze.

The Baja HaHa team organizes a lovely anchorage in Glorietta Bay at Coronado Bay. We’re steps from the Hotel Del!

TacoCat is doing a great job as our new car. It’s really good to have followed Drew’s lead on this little ship. Since we leapfrogged over catamaran Brizzo who spent a night in Dana Point, we had the chance to invite their crew for dinner with their San Diego arrival. Beth and Damien enjoyed a pretty darn good pork & veggies stir fry AND they let us celebrate Bella’s 8th birthday with them, on Halloween no less!They promptly left the country and are settled in at Ensenada tonight. It’ll be great to connect again in La Paz and stroll through neighborhood Christmas lights :)

We took yesterday afternoon off from voyage prep chores to tour USS Midway. I’ll have to come back here with Griffin. The docents do a great job bringing it to life.

We sat in Primary Flight Control…Engine room 3 (of 4) was thoroughly explained by Pete. He knew all the details of steam generation, propulsion and fresh water making. So I inquired what job he did aboard… well he retired in 1999 from a long career as captain of numerous Navy ships such as destroyers. Now he’s a great historian. We also got first hand explanations of the catapult jet launching from a pilot who had 300+ takeoffs from carriers. You actually lose your vision for about a second as the plane hurtles toward the deck edge. Oh boy.

We’ll wrap here tonight with a poignant photo. Jim’s with a rare Corsair, important because his father was a naval aviator in WW2, a Corsair pilot, and in peacetime later had buzzed his folks place in the Gilroy orchards to tip the wings and wave to his kids. When he was reassigned to the new Banshee jets, he tried one more flyby of the family place and the neighbor dairy cows stopped producing! That was the end of that.

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