Nov. 11
Final Instructions.JPG (1085837 bytes) After having to wait an extra 5 days in Gran Canaria due to poor sailing conditions, Rich finally got some good news on the weather. Steve 1st Dinner.JPG (967493 bytes) We all would have our turn fixing dinner on the passage, but Steve was eager to fix his chicken stew for our first meal out at sea.
Dave Deflating01.JPG (490210 bytes) We all had our own way of getting ready to go!J   Here is Dave's way! Jas Leaving Gran Canaria.JPG (418975 bytes) Here I am on the bow of the boat as we leave land behind.   Gran Canaria was nice, but it sure is good to be on the way.
Ted's Presentation.JPG (496210 bytes) Once at sea, Ralph surprised us with a gift package and presentation from Ted who had been on Chimera on the 1st crossing to the Med. Calling Ted02.JPG (393356 bytes) Here is Jen talking on the phone as we still have some cell phone reception.  Very soon that luxury would be gone.
Reeling in Tuna02.JPG (1072147 bytes) We had not been out to sea more than an hour when we got our first bite on the fishing line.Unfortunately, this tuna did not make it onto the boat! How's the Book Dave.JPG (554844 bytes) After deflating the buoy, Dave needed a break from the excitement.  How do you like the book?
Nov 12
Victoria Approaching.JPG (1040996 bytes) Any guesses what everyone is looking at?  A whale sighting?  The sunrise?  The Victoria Secret Model boat?  Victoria05.JPG (1020434 bytes) It is actually another boat called Victoria.  It was a beautiful 130 foot sailboat also headed to the Caribbean.  This was the highlight of day 2 at sea and one of only 4 other boats we saw on the passage..
Nov 13
Rich on Course.JPG (1115001 bytes) Day three was an overcast day with cloudy skies.  Rich was prepared for rain with his foul weather gear.  Note the bananas on the mast. The Passage01.JPG (75338 bytes) Due to the inclement weather, we ate most of our meals inside this day.  Here is part of the crew eating cheese & crackers.
Nov 14
The Passage04.JPG (61229 bytes) Day 5 was another wet, rainy day.  I spent most of the day in the cabin reading.  That evening we did have a flying fish come crashing aboard Chimera. The Passage03.JPG (87886 bytes) To break up the monotony of the sail we did some fishing every day.  On day 4 we finally reeled in our first fish, a 10 lb dolphin.
The Passage02.JPG (70652 bytes) Though several hundred miles from land by day 4, this small canary visited our boat for a short time.  My Bunk.JPG (130134 bytes) Here is where I got to sleep as we were crossing the Big Pond!    
Nov 16
The Passage05.JPG (62422 bytes) The sun broke through on day 6.  Yahoo!  That put us all in a better mood.  It even inspired Ralph to tell a joke!  Here he is in rare form. The Passage06.JPG (72620 bytes) Pictures like this probably make it hard to believe that sailing across the Atlantic is hard work!J  Here Dave & Steve enjoy their books as they are off watch.
The Passage07.JPG (72584 bytes) Here I am looking a little ragged and shaggy, but still thoroughly enjoying myself aboard Chimera as we cross the Atlantic. The Passage08.JPG (71675 bytes) The day ended with a good meal in the cockpit.  Then we listened to Steve entertain us with his harmonica.
Nov 17
The Passage09.JPG (70827 bytes) As the weather improved, so too did the sunrises and sunsets.   On day 7, my first watch of the day came as the sun was rising.  The Passage10.JPG (64717 bytes) Our 7th day was a good day for fishing.  Ralph caught a nice dolphin.  Here he and Steve are enjoying the catch.
The Passage11.JPG (60969 bytes) In the afternoon, I reeled in this 53 in, 28 lb dolphin.   It was a fighter…Just ask Ralph about the mark on his back! The Passage12.JPG (78320 bytes) Here is the dolphin after we finally subdued it on the lido deck waiting to be filleted.
The Passage13.JPG (74751 bytes) From the ocean to the frying pan in less than an hour.  The fish we ate was definitely fresh.  The Passage14.JPG (75684 bytes) Nothing but ocean for many, many miles.  What a beautiful way to return home after a fabulous 6 months of traveling. 
Nov 18
Jas Sailing.JPG (1084744 bytes) One of the things that made the 1st ten days of our trip easier was having an auto pilot to steer the boat.  However, there were occasional times when we needed to steer. The Passage15.JPG (73796 bytes) This view is one we saw quite a bit of!J
The Passage16.JPG (69880 bytes) As the weather improved we began to see more stunning sunsets and sunrises.  Here is the sun setting on our 7th day at sea. The Passage17.JPG (69128 bytes) Bernie was reading up on body language!  What is your body language saying in this picture Bernie as you talk to Ralph?
Nov 19
The Passage18.JPG (70947 bytes) After 8 days and 1306 miles, we were way to Barbados.  We were given a beautiful day to celebrate the way point.   Here I am taking a break from reading. The Passage19.JPG (71526 bytes) With the sun shining and wind blowing, we got to do a little more with our sails.  Here Bernie and Steve make some adjustments to the sails.
The Passage20.JPG (71775 bytes) While Bernie & Steve worked up front, Ralph, Rich & Dave made adjustments to the mizzen. The Passage21.JPG (69562 bytes) To celebrate being way we poured some drinks and toasted the success we had so far.
The Passage22.JPG (70294 bytes) In addition to toasting the 1st half, we all received packages that our families had sent beforehand.  Steve & Jen celebrated with some of the contents of the packages. The Passage23.JPG (71712 bytes) Life is Good!!!!
The Passage24.JPG (70944 bytes) With his new journal, Dave found the motivation to record some of his thoughts on the trip thus far. The Passage25.JPG (74623 bytes) Though most of the crew did not like to play games, I was able to talk Dave and Steve into a game or two of Oh Heck! 
Nov 20
The Passage26.JPG (73252 bytes) Though the weather did not warrant it, I still wanted to wear my new beanie as the sun was rising on our 10th day at sea.  A beautiful sunrise. The Passage27.JPG (74927 bytes) As fabulous as the sunrise was, the sunset was even more spectacular.  Time was now really going by quickly on the trip.
Nov 21
The Passage28.JPG (69397 bytes) The whole crew was on deck early in the morning on the 21st as Jen announced that there were dolphins all around the bow of the boat. The Passage29.JPG (64353 bytes) We began the day watching the dolphin move gracefully through the ocean.  A few hours later, Ralph reeled in our first wahoo of the trip.
Nov 22
The Passage30.JPG (68651 bytes) We finally caught a tuna on our 12th day at sea.   The Passage31.JPG (78418 bytes) Unfortunately on our 11th day, our auto pilot broke down which forced someone to steer at all times.  Here is Jen taking her turn. 
Nov 23
The Passage32.JPG (74352 bytes) Apparently Ralph was not being fed well enough so he decided to lick the bowls this day!  Or else just one of his chocolate cravings.   I thought they were just in the middle of the night!:)  We caught you red handed Ralph! The Passage33.JPG (58726 bytes) Good thing it is not yet dark or the big “O” would be breaking the rules.  Are we there yet, Dave?
The Passage34.JPG (75472 bytes) It was a picture perfect moment so I had to get a picture of me in front of the sunset. The Passage35.JPG (72310 bytes) Another fabulous sunset lit up the entire horizon.  Here is Steve taking a moment to enjoy the setting.    
Sunset Tues 23rd01.JPG (1079311 bytes) Chimera has been very good to us throughout the trip.  Here she is preparing for another night at sea.

 

The Passage37.JPG (74758 bytes) We all found a different spot to see the sun go down.  Jen liked her spot on the bow, but was not so keen on having her picture taken!J
Nov 24
The Passage39.JPG (69994 bytes) Danger..Don't try this at home!:)  We had to motor as the winds were so light.  Unfortunately we didn’t have enough fuel to motor all the way to Barbados so here is Rich making some tricky adjustments to help the sails. The Passage40.JPG (79012 bytes) As Rich was flying outside the boat, he took a picture of the rest of the guys as we were back near the cockpit.
PICT0007.JPG (1199962 bytes) Here is the sun setting as the moon is rising. The Passage42.JPG (80828 bytes) I have had a lot of time to read in the first 13 days of the trip.  Here is the random group of books I have read so far since we left Gran Canaria. 
Thanksgiving
The Passage43.JPG (58697 bytes) Here is Steve as he shared with us a moment of inspiration that came over him as he read a wonderful poem that he wrote about the ocean.  The Passage44.JPG (66237 bytes) Though none of us expected to spend Turkey Day away from family, modern technology allowed us to make a quick phone call home on a satelite phone. 
The Passage45.JPG (76817 bytes) As Ralph prepared a wonderful Thanksgiving meal to make us feel like we were home, I kept us on course toward Barbados. The Passage46.JPG (74461 bytes) It was a fabulous meal that we shared in the cockpit.  Here is the whole crew ready to dig in.
Nov 26
The Passage47.JPG (75441 bytes) We thankfully had some good weather towards the end of the trip which enabled us to eat in the cockpit.  Here is our final meal of hamburgers. The Passage48.JPG (71518 bytes) Though not as spectacular as some of the sunsets we saw, the final sunset we saw from sea was very memorable.  Here I am taking it in from the bow.
The Passage49.JPG (44270 bytes) We could not have planned it any better as our final night at sea was accompanied by a full moon. The Passage50.JPG (71157 bytes) I joined the dark side watch for the final 3rd of the trip.  Hard to believe that this picture was taken at 3 am.  We had a good time on night watch.
Arrival Day...Yahoo!!!
The Passage51.JPG (68124 bytes) Can you see it?  After 16 days at sea with nothing but ocean, we finally saw land in the distance.  Here is one of our first glances of Barbados. The Passage52.JPG (76432 bytes) Here I am getting ready to take my first steps on land in nearly 3 weeks.  The legs were a bit wobbly, but oh did it feel nice!!
The Passage53.JPG (74328 bytes) True to form, Jen fixed us some fantastic smoothies to celebrate our arrival. The Passage58.JPG (130941 bytes) 16 days at sea can take it out of you.  Here is Bernie happy that he is not being woken up for watch in just a few hours!  Sleep well!
The Passage54.JPG (74086 bytes) Steve had the good fortune of being welcomed to Barbados by his family who were already here.  Here he shows how nice it is to be near family again as he walks with his daughters. The Passage56.JPG (75893 bytes) Here is the whole Klok family who still had a good time despite not having Steve with them for most of their family holiday in Barbados.
The Passage57.JPG (115347 bytes) Celebrating a passage without any major problems and in record speed (for the year), we celebrated with dinner and drinks at sunset at Cocomos! The Passage55.JPG (73647 bytes) Living in close quarters for 16 days, we all got along remarkably well.  Thank you Rich, Jen, Steve, Dave, Ralph and Bernie for wonderful memories and allowing this rookie to join you old pros!!!