Stardate 11978.9

Captain's Log: Stardate 11978.9
It's been an interesting and eventful past couple of months, starting on Stardate 11959.7, where the Enterprise departed City Island, NY for the last time.

The day prior, I had taken some work colleagues out on a morning cruise, only to have some fuel problems with the impulse drive -- the primary filter was clogged with some Denebian slime and we had to be towed back in. After lunch, it was a hectic afternoon changing filters and accommodating the delivery captain and his crew with some of the nuances on the Enterprise in preparation for her over-1,400-mile journey. Thanks to the tireless efforts of Chris Cloe and preparation by Jim Schwartz, she was ready to go the next day under the temporary command of Captain Rick Brass, who usually helms the USS Imzadi out of North Carolina.

As we stood the dock watching her go, still somewhat excited over the upcoming house and office move, as well as the start of a whole new lifestyle, I admit I was a little melancholy about the end of an era on City Island with my CIYC friends, the brave crew of New Freedom and the end of EBYRA.

And then I thought, Fuck it. In a little over month, these people will be winterizing their boats and I'll still be applying sunblock.

Later that day, my father was out on his vessel, the Great American Nude, and was able to see the Enterprise pass under the Verranzano Bridge, go between Staten Island and Brooklyn, and venture out to the Atlantic Ocean, leaving New York behind.

Thanks to the SPOT transmitter Captain Brass bought aboard, as well as my own hidden GPS tracker, I was able to follow the voyage down to the South, switching back and forth between the ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway. In North Carolina, a passing fishing vessel was able to take this beauty shot:

The trip was not without its perils, including a week-long stop in Marathon for fuel polishing and a replacement lift pump, but I'm told the Enterprise was performing well. On that last day at sea, it looked like the arrival would be close to midnight and we just HAD to go out to see her arrive.

Now, just about 40 years ago (December 6, 1979, or Stardate 7993.2), a film hit theaters, which, to be perfectly honest, was not very good. But, in rare moments, had some beautiful sequences, such as this one, where a brand-new refitted Enterprise has departed space dock and is leaving Earth's orbit:

The ship -- The lighting -- the moment -- all beautiful. Perhaps a moment that will never be captured again.

That is, until my wife Ellen grabbed her iPhone and shot this footage of our Enterprise clearing the Venice Florida Jetty:

Add a little score from Jerry Goldsmith and we may have just topped it!

So now the Enterprise is at her new home, her slip at Venice Yacht Club:

She can sail here year-round -- and explore so many beautiful places like Tampa Bay, Clearwater, Siesta Key, Longboat Key, Naples, the Keys, and so much more. Her new home is well-maintained and the pool and tiki bar are just a few steps away. The club features a calendar stuffed with events and the restaurant is beyond delightful. The members are all friendly and more than welcoming.

Granted, some may be a little older -- For example, this was heard just last weekend being yelled from one table to another at Sunday Brunch: "You're here??!! I thought you were dead!!"

Perhaps it is sad that one person thought another had passed on, but, personally, I find it even sadder that I didn't get to use such a line on Richie Coar when I had the opportunity.

New friends. New adventures. New life. And, like everything else, we are excited to face it all. Boldly Going.

Stardate 11959.2

Captain's Log: Stardate 11959.2
Today, with the tide, the Enterprise departed City island Yacht Club for the last time, all to start her two-week bold voyage to her new home at Venice Yacht Club.

All systems appeared to be working well, and I believe Rick, Jim and Chris (the delivery crew) will have a pleasant trip to the Sunshine State.

Stardate 11954.2

Captain's Log: Stardate 11954.2

Phase Four complete.

Stardate 11952.8

Captain's Log: Stardate 11952.8

Phase Three complete.

Stardate 11945.2

Captain's Log: Stardate 11945.2

Phase Two complete.

Stardate 11927.9

Captain's Log: Stardate 11927.9
Long-range scan is complete.

Coordinates have been determined and course laid in. Navigation standing by. Helm standing by. Engineering reports the dilithium chamber is nominal, the core intermix is confirmed equalized and warp drive is standing by.

Clear all moorings on my mark and prepare for departure....

Phase One concluded.

Stardate 11908.2

Captain's Log: Stardate 11908.2
While there are still many, many things to be decided upon and ironed out, the Enterprise's long-range sensors are now focused on:

Calculations are being formulated now for setting a course at maximum warp. All hands, stand by.

Stardate 11892.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11892.6
This past weekend, the crew of USS New Freedom and I attended the 2018 EBYRA Awards Brunch at City Island Yacht Club to celebrate the winners of the Wednesday Night Race Series and the City Island Cup, and New Freedom was the proud recipient of third place trophies in each.

Not sure why they call is the "City Island Cup" -- seems more like the City Island Tray. Oh well.

Presenting the various awards were Commodore Todd Aven and various EBYRA Board Members, including Peter Trunflo, Richie Coar and the evil overlord himself, Vince Nanni. It's not often we get to see Vince since he moved to Stamford, but thanks to having a camera phone, we were able to get his photo for posterity:

Afterwards, since she was only a couple of blocks away, I did a quick check of the Enterprise -- All appears well for her winter slumber, which hopefully will be a quick one. Then back to sailing the final frontier.

In the meantime, especially before Stardate 11900.0, my best wishes to all for a joyous holiday season, along with a happy and healthy (and breezy) new year.

Stardate 11885.8

Captain's Log: Stardate 11885.8

The Enterprise is returning home.

Might as well announce what many have already known -- effective Stardate 11900.0 (January 1, 2019), the Enterprise is returning to City Island Yacht Club.

About ten years ago, we had moved to the Morris Yacht and Beach Club, and frustratingly put up with years of lousy communications, mediocre food service, pissy launch drivers (except for Joe and Alana), a dysfunctional group of board members, shitty attitudes and an ever-decreasing membership experience, all to save a few bucks. Recent events and a whopping property tax bill had me look at the numbers again, and even with the cost of winter storage at Consolidated, it just isn't worth it anymore.

And, despite the extra cost, I must say it was very nice to just bring the boat over at my leisure and not miss days at work being involved with the hauling, power washing, painting and launching. Ahh, to be civilized again.

I've had a few occasions since my return application was approved to be in CIYC, and, each time, I was joyfully welcomed by old friends with comments like "Welcome back, Edd. We missed you", and "It's about time. You belong here."

I almost forgot what it was like to be around boaters (racing and cruising) all with similar interests. A very good feeling indeed.

The Enterprise is back.

Stardate 11869.3

Captain's Log: Stardate 11869.3
The Enterprise has just returned home to Starbase One after a several-day voyage surrounding the 2018 C&C Northeast Rendezvous in Milford, CT. Here is my report:

For the first couple of days (City Island to Norwalk, then Norwalk to Milford) the air temperatures were categorized by the National Weather Services as "Unseasonably Warm" which, in our opinion, was the understatement of the year. In fact, I'd like to find the person who deemed that phrase, set their clothes on fire, and then ask them if they feel unseasonably warm. It was well into the 90's with enough humidity to make the real-feel over the 100 mark. It was like the sun was pushed a few million miles closer to the Earth.

Our dock space at Norwalk Cove Marina was in a prime location with a short hop to the ship's store and facilities and just a few steps to their excellent restaurant, Sunset Grille, where we joyfully dined on seafood and barbecue dishes, in air conditioning, overlooking the water. For an appetizer, we had Mussels Fra Diavlo, but it's possible the hotness of the wine/tomato broth was just from being outdoors.

That first night was woefully uncomfortable -- and no fan or portable air conditioner was going to help. I think I dropped five pounds in water weight alone, sweating enough to fill the bilge.

At least the second day had a forecast for an afternoon thunderstorm, ushering in a cold front that would drop the air temps by 15 degrees. After arriving at the wonderful Milford Landing Marina, we quickly moved indoors to an air conditioned conference room. As we watched the skies darken, we rooted for the storm to come. Dangerous lighting? Damaging winds? Fuck it -- we wanted it to cool off.

And amazingly enough, it did. It went from 91 to 74 in an hour. Sleeping will be better and then other C&C's will arrive.

The next morning, nicely rested, we woke to low 70's temps and cloudy skies - a wonderful day to enjoy Milford while waiting for the other C&C's to arrive. In true celebratory fashion, we dressed up the Enterprise:

Scheduled to attend were a total of seven members of the C&C Fleet: Hideaway (C&C 35 Mk III), Olivia Grace (C&C Landfall 38), Aries (C&C 34+), Knot Again (C&C 35 Mk III), Weatherly (C&C 35), Destrier (C&C 30), and, of course, the Enterprise. Regretfully, the skipper of Hideaway hurt his back and the skipper of Olivia Grace was suffering from some bronchitis, so they both had to cancel. But, one after the other, they all arrived:

The First-Annual Rendezvous Dedication Award goes to Destrier, the C&C 30 coming from Eastchester Bay, who, through upwind and strong tidal currents, took 16 hours to make the 44-nautical mile journey. Captain Charlie and his two sons didn't make it in time for our first-night pot luck dinner, but Charlie's wife, Mary Anne, drove up by car to provide some spicy sausage and peppers, and joined us for Captain Howard's (Knot Again) fantastic selection of great wine - he owns a New Jersey winery (and, we asked, he doesn't crush grapes in his bathtub overlooking Newark.)

The next day, we all got to walk into town and then tour each other's boats before the rain started coming in. At 4:30, we invited everyone on board the Enterprise for some pre-dinner drinks. More photos will be posted when I get them, but for now:

Thats Ray from Knot Again and yours truly -- notice the glowing warp core over his right shoulder

And yes, we had Romulan Ale -- as well as Andorian Rum and Klingon Blood Wine. Don't believe me? Here are the labels that were on the bottles:

To be honest, we never got to open the Klingon Blood Wine, which either meant that they were too scared to try it, or they really wanted to finish off more of Howard's Super Tuscan. Howard told me he brought several bottles along with him to the Rendezvous, and they were thoroughly enjoyed by all. So much so, that it was suggested that maybe next time he leave Ray at home so he can bring more bottles.

After drinks, we had our group dinner at nearby Archie Moore's, stuffing ourselves with beyond generous helpings of buffalo wings, chicken fingers, eggplant fries and cheese quesadillas.

Clockwise from left - Ray (Knot Again), Howard (Knot Again), Marie (Weatherly), David and Lori (Aries), Neil and daughter Maureen (Weatherly) and Greatest Wife Ever.

Sadly, the Destrier boys didn't join us, but they were planning a 4:00a departure back to the Bronx. Our plan was to leave around 8:00, possibly even passing them on the way back.

The next morning, we all departed on our schedules, facing some big waves, high winds and strong currents - At one point we hit 10.7 knots (Warp 10.7) in the surf but the Enterprise (and her crew) handled it well making for an uneventful voyage home.

We're already thinking about next year. We'll see...

Stardate 11861.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11861.6
Hmmmm . . .

Stardate 11829.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11848.5
Summer has finally arrived! And, thanks to the good work of the team at Doyle Sailmakers on City Island, the Enterprise has been fitted with a brand new Stack Pack!

No more sail ties. No more acrobatics by two or more people to flake the main. Now we just unzip, attach the halyard and hoist! And then, yeah, Warp Speed!

And when we're finished, we drop the halyard, the main falls into the Pack, zip and done! One person can do it all.

It's great to finally get to use the sail again that, to be honest due to all the work to raise and lower it, was not used once in the past two seasons. Super sweet!

Meanwhile, I'm still loving the experience of racing -- on someone else's boat! I'm now on my third season of EBYRA racing on New Freedom where the headstay has more sag than a Golden Girls cast reunion and the skipper drives with more S's than a seventh grader named Susan spelling "possessionlessnesses" in a Mississippi Spelling Bee.

(Yes, that's a real word. Look it up.)

Most of the team is still there, including Big Robb, who made it a New Year's resolution not to yell from the foredeck any longer (and which I'm now working to force him to break it.) C'mon windy days!

Speaking of EBYRA, there has been a major shake-up:

Espo. Gone.

The remaining three clubs of EBYRA held a vote to remove him from the organization and elected the Thin Man himself, Todd Aven, as the new EBYRA Commodore.

A surprise? No, not really. After all, John was nowhere to be found at last year's Awards Brunch, he's not a member of any of the City Island clubs, and he's probably spending more time in spandex biking shorts on trails than foul weather gear on the water.

But there's arguably bigger news:

Pope. Gone.

Apparently, the shake-up includes a impending resignation by baby-daddy Vince Nanni as the MYBC representative and famed EBYRA Curmudgeon. He's been there since the beginning. Whoa!

That all led to a text message from Commodore Aven -- can I come back to the EBYRA Board as the new MYBC rep? Sheesh! I suddenly feel like Michael Corrleone:

My initial internal reaction was NFW. I did my time and I did it longer than anyone. And it was brutal. I'd prefer a novocaine-free series of root canals. Thankfully, that decision is for the MYBC Commodore, who will probably never ask me and I can remain happily EBYRetired.

Besides, with less than 30 boats entered and with roughly 15-20 out on any given night (including the most beautiful wind-filled cool evenings), I don't believe EBYRA will be around much longer. I fear next year will be a Can One year or, quite possibly, the end of my racing career...

... which actually may be OK too. Between the batteries, bimini, Stack pack and more, I'm starting the love the cruising lifestyle. You know, exploring strange new worlds and new civilizations.

Stardate 11792.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11792.6
Yesterday morning, my wife and I took the shuttlecraft to Harlem Yacht Club on City Island for the 2017 EBYRA Awards Brunch, where several crews gathered to collect their pickle dishes, eat non-brunch-like food, and drink up on Chaika's running bar tab.

While it appeared to be a nice turnout of 60-70 people, I could not help myself to looking back at when we'd have 200 or more people at these things, and instead of two City Island Cup divisions and three Wednesday Night divisions, we used to have so many more (five City Island Cup divisions and nine Wednesday Night divisions -- 6A, 6B, 5A, 5B, 4, 3A, 3B, 2 and 1.) It's all a painful reminder of how the sport of yacht racing has diminished over the years.

And it appears EBYRA is barely interested. The awards ceremony is considered the celebratory event of the year and not only was there just one representative from one (City Island Yacht Club) of the three remaining clubs present, the group's commodore, who is supposed to be the host and emcee of the event, was nowhere to be found.

Maybe it's time to take EBYRA to a different level. Maybe they need a leader who will promote a race series to not only the so-called hardcore racers, but to entice entry-level cruiser participation and breathe new life into the sport. Maybe a new commodore who will reach out to the medium-level boater who feels left out and unrepresented. Maybe a commodore who could run on a platform of draining the Nanni-infested swamp and to Make EBYRA Great Again. #MEGA. What a cool idea!

Just as long as it's not me.

I've had my fill of broken-down committee boats, scary-low finances, wannabe sea lawyers, misinformed pontifications, and J/24 jihads.

But this log entry is not about a rant of EBYRA -- I don't think the webserver has enough storage to handle that -- but more about getting together with the great team of New Freedom and celebrating our two third-place finishes, as well as congratulate the other boats who scored as well or better.

Here's a photo of our intrepid crew after Captain Mark Lasser accepted the awards:

From left to right: "Little" Rob, Michael, Captain Mark, George, "Big" Robb and yours truly -- and suddenly I'm now painfully aware of where the term "Motley Crew" originated.

And before all you feminists chime in and say something like "It's all men", I say there must be a reason why they call it a cockpit.

After hearing a Div 5 captain thank his crew, especially his foredeck guy who doesn't yell and does everything the back of the boat needs with speed and zero complaints (imagine that Robb), we asked Mark where he keeps all of the awards he's received over the years racing New Freedom. Turns out he puts them in shopping bags and gives them to family, to crew, and even shared a story where an award platter was used to feed his dogs.

I guess that pretty well sums up the decline of yacht racing right there.

And here I was proud to have this in my house:

Before the day was over, someone asked me how was it that I actually looked younger than I used to. Without skipping a beat, my answer was: "I stopped racing the Enterprise."

Stardate 11778.1

Captain's Log: Stardate 11778.1
October signifies the start of many bad things to come:

First you have every snot-nosed kid in the neighborhood walking around town dressed as a Marvel or DC superhero looking for candy.

Then you have a day with family in which you stuff yourself with food. And, let's face it, after about an hour with these people, you remember why it was that you moved out in the first place.

And, before you know it, Santa's fat ass is all over television and store fronts.

Let's not also forget the months of cold air, ice, and snow. It's true, winter is my fourth favorite season, and it's on its way.

Of course, the event that sets this all off is this one:

Yesterday, at high tide, the Enterprise was lifted out of the water, brought to a spot in the parking lot between two other boats and decommissioned for the season.

It's a very surreal experience being on board during those first few moments when the slings under the hull lift up, tighten up with a eerie creaking sound, and then lift your boat out of the water 12 feet in the air. The failure of a block, a cable, even a metal pin, and the Enterprise would fall to certain destruction and most likely a pretty bad injury for me - or worse. Yet, the guys at the club yard have been doing this for some time now and the nervousness going through my head as we "floated" forward through the air was eased by thinking of a quote from the most recent movie -- something about "make it fly"....

It's an exhausting day between the docking, winterizing the engine, and power-washing layers of Eastchester Bay crud, seaweed, barnacles and brine shrimp off the bottom. In other words: Seek out new life forms... and blast them off my ship!

There's only a few more things left to do, like removing cushions, drain a thru-hull, clean the head and check the impeller, then the Enterprise waits for my ever-growing Spring project list to begin. While it is months away, I really hope the Stardate 11830's come quick so that we can once again launch, recommission and continue our explorations of the Final Frontier.

Stardate 11772.3

Captain's Log: Stardate 11772.3
The end of the season is rapidly approaching -- oh no -- and I'm making plans to haul the Enterprise for the winter, so, before hibernation and depression sets in, I wanted to take a few moments and recap the highlight of the season - the C&C Rendezvous in Greenport:

Stardate 11767.7
With the Enterprise fully loaded with all of our food, gear and clothes, we started our 9-day voyage, departing City Island (Starbase One) and set course for Norwalk Cove Marina. While the voyage was uneventful and the docking maneuver a little tricky backing into a slip, the day had two amazing highlights: the delicious dinner at the Sunset Grille and that we left City Island ahead of schedule because -- get ready guys -- my wife was ready to go early. My Wife. Was Ready. To Go. Early. At this point, every married boat owner is saying "No way. Can't be true." But it is. And not just 15 minutes early -- we were dropping the mooring a good hour ahead of schedule. Back off guys - she's mine.

Stardate 11767.9
We departed Norwalk ahead of schedule (I'm starting to see a trend) and made our way along the Connecticut shoreline to Milford Yacht Club, who provided us with a easy in-and-out dock space close to the harbor entrance.
I really like the Milford Yacht Club, but it seems like every time I go there, the pool and restaurant are closed -- It's the Tuesday after Labor Day! Still have two more weeks of summer on my calendar! Oh well. At least the launch service will take us on a 15-minute journey into town where you can find many good restaurants and stroll the shops.

Stardate 11768.2
I think I spent more time looking at weather radar this day than looking at the navigation. We knew, from day one, that there was an 80% chance of rain this day, so, with the rest of the trip forecasted for 70s and partly cloudy, we'd just bear with it. Luckily most of the heavy rain was going far north of us, so our voyage to Cedar Island Marina in Clinton was only slightly wet with a few passing sprinkles. On approach after the ultra-tight channel, we hailed the marina for dock space and assistance. Nothing. Switch channels and hail again. Nothing. We go past the fuel dock and there was nobody there. A quick look at the outer side of F Dock, which was my preference for the whole easy-in and easy-out thing, but it was jammed with mega yachts. We saw a spot on the inside outermost section and decided to go for it, which included a ultra-narrow u-turn spinning the 40-foot Enterprise through a 50-foot opening - and without any dockhands anywhere to be found, we were on our own. In no time we were tied up and connected to shore power. We then walked over to the office and not only told them where we were but also added, we're not moving. They apologized for not having any staff around (remember, it was drizzling so they all called in sick) and gave us a discounted rate. The rain started coming down later in the day, but dinner at Rocky's AQUA was fantastic nevertheless. Before going to bed, we watched STAR TREK Beyond in the captain's quarters. "Montgomery Scotty, you take my house and you make it fly."

Stardate 11768.5
As expected, the weather cleared by the next morning, providing us with crystal clear conditions for our next part of the journey. The plan was to get to Greenport a day ahead of the other C&C'ers and all systems were "go"! We left Clinton Harbor to experience some six-foot waves, which made for an uncomfortable first hour getting to deeper water. The winds were a westerly, reaching well into the 20s, but, thankfully, our course was east by southeast and we were not going to feel the full force of it all. With several boats expected the next day, most of them from father east, we wondered if the winds would die down enough or would it be too much for people. After going through Plum Gut at Warp 8.9, we were tied up in Greenport about an hour or so later. This was our first time here and, despite the super long walk to use the restroom and showers, the location could not be nicer. We were right in the middle of town, surrounded by water, a park, as well as tons of boutique stores and restaurants.
Then the emails started coming in - one cancellation, then another. The weather was just too much for some of these guys. And then, out of the blue, the co-organizer who has taken his boat to Bermuda several times, through the Atlantic Ocean, decided that he just can't handle the 80-mile trip through Block Island Sound and Eastern Long Island Sound. So, you know, no hard feelings but...

We had dinner that night with Captain Rob Gallagher of the USS Hanuman at Claudio's, probably the most famous eatery in the North Fork of Long Island. This was going to be the first of three nights here.

Stardate 11768.8
Other C&C's began to show up -- USS Aries, USS Hideaway, USS Harbor Lights -- as well as Captain Josh Muckley and his wife from USS Sea Hawk based in Maryland (they came by car) and, before you knew it, the Rendezvous has officially started. This day, and the next one, were filled with cockpit gatherings, informal boat tours, C&Cs (Cigars and Cocktails -- including the Enterprise's supply of Romulan Ale) on C&Cs, walking trips through Greenport, great food and great stories. It was a real pleasure hosting it all and showing off the Enterprise, including our new bedspread:
As night three winded down, we said our goodbyes and made sure to get some rest before embarking on our Voyage Home -- without any humpback whales or time travel storyline this time.

Stardate 11769.3
We left Greenport early for our longest leg of the trip (35 miles) towards Branford, CT, specifically the Bruce and Johnson Marina. Now, normally, this place gets rave reviews, but our experience was lacking. First of all, I asked for an outside dock (remember the whole easy-in and easy-out thing?) and even though they had them there, they gave me something pretty far in and, frankly, a little tight for a starship of our size. The dockhand was of little to no help pulling in, they had no ice, the WiFi wasn't working and there would not be any dock help until after 10:30 the next morning (Monday). What the hell is going on with marinas after Labor Day? Hello? It's STILL summer! Nevertheless, we met some nice people who owned a Nordic Tug 37 which got my wife into thinking about the possibility of trawlers as the next Enterprise. Uh oh. Despite the marina's a-week-past-Labor-Day's shortcomings, we were treated to a beautiful sunset:
And, our dinner that night was probably the best of the entire voyage, all at the onsite restaurant overlooking the water.

Stardate 11769.6
Thanks to a helpful, yet slightly late, dockhand, we left Branford without incident. This was our eighth day on the water and, just to be sure, I asked my wife if she'd prefer that we skip the next stop and just head on back home, which would only take an extra 3-4 hours. The weather was phenomenal and after a quick thought at how comfortable everything has been, she opted to continue on with the original plan. Next stop: Captain's Cove Marina in Black Rock, CT.
Captain's Cove is a fun place to be sure, usually with some live music and lots of people around taking in the sights. But, as you guessed, it was after Labor Day. So, despite not mentioning anything about it on their website, the restaurant was closed. As were the shops. Ugh. Still, we made the best of it by watching the college crew rowing teams practice and ordering a pizza delivered to the boat. We did consider some fresh fish instead:
I have to say -- I know the idea was to sample different seafood restaurants in each port, but having a hot pizza with my wife on board the Enterprise was a real joy. Easy as (pizza) pie and, honestly, a bit of a relief on the wallet.

Stardate 11769.9
As we passed Execution Rock Lighthouse on this, our ninth day, we reflected back at how nice a trip this was - and there was even one point, as we approached Hart Island,where my wife asked wouldn't it be nice to even stay a few more days and what would need to happen to make that so. I told her it was a great trip, but it will also be good to go home and sleep in a bed that doesn't also feel like an MRI. Nevertheless, I told her that if, once we got past Hart Island, City Island was somehow no longer there, we'd have to stay on board another night. I must admit that there was a slight amount of disappointment rounding Rock 46 and seeing City island's Belden Point, the Lobster Box and Johnnie's Reef Restaurant less than a mile away. Within a few minutes, we picked up the ultra-gross mooring lines, shut the systems down and packed up. On the launch ride back to the club, I looked back to the Enterprise, our home for the past nine days, and was really happy to have such a great voyage, spending time with my wife, exploring new "worlds", and making some new friends.

Captain's Log: Supplemental
I'm already planning the C&C Rendezvous for next year. Details coming soon, but, for now, check this out -- and crank the sound way up!

2017 C&C Northeast Rendezvous

Stardate 11724.4

Captain's Log: Stardate 11724.4
Spring is here! And I know not because the calendar says so, but because it's that time of year when this is on every boater's mind:

And no, this does not mean it's time to put Defender on Deside of Deboat when coming to Dedock.

You see, every spring, we have a list of things we need to buy -- bottom paint, tape, rollers, and any other gear that we need for projects to improve our boats, and it is every spring that there is a group of days where you can save quite a bit on those things:

The Defender sale! The Defender sale!

So, browser open and list in hand, it's time to add to cart, add to cart, add to cart.... Buy everything! And all at once!

Do I need this? Yes! Add to cart.

Do I need this? Oh yeah! Add to cart.

Do I need these? Maybe. Ah, what the fuck. It's on sale now. Add to cart.

Hey. That looks cool. Can I install that? Will it fit? Who knows. Add to cart.

And after about the 20th mouse click, I get this message from my Wells Fargo checking account:

Ah, no big deal. Everyone skips a mortgage payment now and then, right? And I hear people lived for a long time before we had things like electricity and telephones.

Totally worth it -- it's for the Enterprise, and it's time for sailing season to begin again!

Stardate 11717.5

Captain's Log: Stargate 11717.5

No, I'm not talking about a Romulan plot to replace/clone officers on the command crew, nor am I talking about that attempt by Klingon spies to lure the Enterprise into the Neutral Zone. No, it was Mother Nature, led by that asshole rodent, the Groundhog.

For well over a week, it was warm. Spring warm. 60s. Trees were starting to bud. Birds were flying around. The calendar said February, but the blue skies and temperatures said April. There was one day it hit the 70s. My car air conditioning kicked on.

And I was smart about it. I gave it a few days to normalize before I got too excited. But the warm days kept coming, and after some time, I fell for it and went out to the Enterprise:

Just beaming back on board was, in a word, GLORIOUS! As I checked systems (solar-charged batteries at 13.4V -- sweet!) and started my punch list of things to do before launching, I thought about how I was going to spend each and every weekend fixing this, building that and just enjoying the sea air.

I even turned on the warp core and connected it to my iPhone's Bluetooth connection. Great music drowned out the whirrr of the bilge pump. Spring is here! And it felt damn good. Until....

The next weekend. 30. Wind Chill at 17. Fucking cold again! Damn I need to move out of New York.

Either that or grab several aerosol cans and spray towards the ozone on a really high ladder.

If only global warming were real. If only. Fuck the polar bears, I want to go sailing.

So, back to waiting - checking my thermometer each day, the forecast each night and dog-earing pages in the Defender catalog. At least I can do some boat-related work in my home workshop, organizing all the parts I need to finish the autopilot and new "Big Unit" install, as well as fashion a new panel to mount instruments and voltage meters for the Main Power and Auxiliary Power banks:

Hopefully Mother Nature will cooperate in the coming weeks so I can get back out there, launch the Enterprise, and continue our voyages through the Final Frontier.

Stardate 11709.9

Captain's Log: Stardate 11709.9
Last night, Captain Dave, Ensign Dave Jr., and Lt. Kurt joined my wife and I for our annual Super Bowl gathering - and what looked like, after the first half, to be one of the worst games of all time turned into one of the greatest. Congratulations to the Patriots on an amazing comeback. A good time was had by all, to be sure.

However, I received some sad news this morning -- Art Karpf, skipper of C&C 35 Snow Goose, was found deceased in the water near his houseboat, Off-Limits, at the Glen Island Yacht Club in New Rochelle. It appears Art, 83, who has had many medical issues, had some sort of medical event and fell into the cold water.

Art sailed Snow Goose to many victories in the Eastchester Bay Yacht Racing Association, several of which against us on the Enterprise-A (but we did beat him once.) Some of the most well-known sailors in EBYRA are given nicknames -- for example Vince Nanni is "The Pope", John Esposito is "The Dick", and even I have been known as "Captain Kirk", though I have no idea why. Art was known by several as "The Wizard", either due to his Gandalf-esqe bearded look or his magical ability to to defy all odds and sail a 1970s-era C&C 35 to victories against boats that are much much faster. Perhaps it was a combination of both.

I last saw Art at the wake party for Tony Sklarew. We sat on the couch reminiscing of adventures long ago. On the race course, we were frequently adversaries, but there was always a mutual respect and camaraderie between us - something that I think has long disappeared in the racing world.

Eight bells Art. May your next voyage be filled with smooth seas and fair winds.

Stardate 11673.5

Captain's Log: Stardate 11673.5
This past weekend, Ellen and I hosted a celebratory sail on board the Enterprise for the captain and crew of New Freedom (a/k/a the Kotex Krew) as part of my thanks for welcoming me on their boat and a well-sailed racing season. Naturally, we wanted to make the voyage as special as possible, so we decided on a good supply of beer, Romulan Ale, and snacks and then finish it all off with a rock concert by none other than ZZ Top.

However, due to budget cuts, we only could afford to bring in Dusty Hill:

And then, unfortunately, we learned that without Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard, Dusty mainly belts out unamplified Irish sea shanties. Oh well.

Nevertheless, after seeing him on board and after an hour in the car the next day on the way to the Norwalk Boat Show with my trusty iTunes playlist, I can't help but make my first ever (and quite possibly the last) ZZ Top-themed Captain's Log entry. So, sit back, put on your Pearl Necklace and your Cheap Sunglasses....

We left the mooring just before 1300 Hours on a sharp, crisp, first-weekend-of-Fall kind of day. The idea is we'd motor out to the Sound, unfurl the headsail (engage the warp drive) and sail around for the day, no matter how far it takes us. Even if we sailed all the way to La Grange, we were not going to Doubleback.

The first to take the helm was New Freedom's Captain Mark Lasser, donning his brand new, very stylish, fleece jacket freshly embroidered with "New Freedom - 73" on the left chest.

We were all very impressed with the jacket, even the women on board. You know, cause every girl's crazy for a Sharp Dressed Man.

John helped with sail trim while Ben shared his tall tales of sailing through tornadoes on the world's fastest Catalina 30 (La Guardia Airport to Port Jefferson in five hours). I guess that's what happens love takes you downtown and you're just looking for some Tush.

Rob took some great photographs (as shown in this log) and Robb made himself right at home on the foredeck. There was one point when he tried to render the Enterprise's winches useless and tried to prove to all he's Bad -- and he's Nationwide.

Look at him go -- he must be some kind of Rough Boy.

A special thanks to my wife Ellen for all the help organizing the drinks, plates, napkins, snacks and more. I was especially impressed at her balance climbing over this and that while the Enterprise rolled over waves at Warp 6. In a nutshell, she's got Legs. And she knows how to use them. That's right, honey, Gimme All Your Lovin. All your hugs and kisses too.

We returned to standard orbit around 1700 Hours and passed around the rest of the snacks and, yes, it's true, Romulan Ale:

All in all, a great day on the water. In a few short weeks, the Enterprise will be decommissioned for the season and hauled for the winter. And, I've noticed I'm pretty much out of ZZ Topisms, except for, maybe, in late January of 2017 when I head to:

Stardate 11672.4

Captain's Log: Stardate 11672.4
It's been quite some time since I've posted another log entry, mainly due to the fact that the Enterprise has not been traveling all that much this season. Instead, we've been spending a lot of time making improvements and fixing some issues that have been on the to-do list for quite some time. The autopilot, or Steering Using Linear Utility, or SULU, has presented a few issues, but with a slight change in direction, I expect that to be fully functional by Spring and working seamlessly with a new "Big Unit" which it will communicate with. I've also installed a new 40-Watt solar panel and all I can say is, wow, what took me so long?

Simply put, the Enterprise is better than ever.

So what else has been going on? After months of wound care, I was finally able to start racing again. And, to make sure I didn't suffer any further issues with the leg, I chose to go with a non-spinnaker boat -- New Freedom.

No -- not THAT New Freedom. But, to be perfectly honest, after just one week of being back on the water, I did feel reborn, renewed and fresh. You know, kinda like this:

Maybe it IS that New Freedom. Those product development scientists at Kotex just changed the look from a panty liner to a Catalina 34:

Of course, it's all pretty meaningless when the entire Wednesday Night crew is all men and all old enough, including me, to have gone through our "changes."

New Freedom is owned and skippered by Mark Lasser, the self-proclaimed "Captain and Financier of the Maxipad" (see, it's not just me) and does a great job of making what is basically a '4KSB' into a competitive beer-can series racer. After one week on board, Mark graduated me to tactician and crew boss, so, much like before, I'm looking for puffs, going to school on Thin Man and Whirlwind, cursing the existence of Wuestwind and yelling at the crew to do things faster and better.

The best part? Every thing that breaks - every line that is frayed - every racing expense -- it's all on Mark now. If you listen carefully, every time something goes wrong on New Freedom, you can actually hear the little Spartan guy on my American Express card sigh in relief.

Though nothing will really ever compare to the crew of the Enterprise, the team on New Freedom is made up of a great group of people. They concentrate, work hard and have a good time. Although I considered, once the leg was back to 100%, getting onto a more action-packed spinnaker boat, I must admit that I'm having a great time with them.

So I'll get on my white horse and ride through the morning dew-filled sunshine in a newly blossomed field of daisies. If they'll have me, I'm staying with New Freedom next season and beyond.

Stardate 11648.6

Captain's Log: Stardate 11648.6
With repairs pretty much complete and plenty of gorgeous early-summer weather, we invited some new friends out to the Enterprise for an on-board lunch, a day sail and then a dinner at one of City Island's better seafood restaurants.

The first "problem" was that we brought enough lunch along for eight people. And they brought enough lunch along for ten. We also had a tremendous supply of wine, Lime-a-Ritas, Pina Coladas and Apple-tinis that I kept wondering when the other hundred people were going to join the four of us.

I think we were a few inches lower in the water that day.

After packing up the leftovers -- ALL the leftovers -- we went up to the bridge to prepare for departure. With a wonderful Easterly coming through, the plan was to use impulse power (the diesel engine) to clear the mooring area and take us to the mouth of Manhasset Bay, then turn south into the bay, let our brand new furler line go and sail off into the blue.

Our guests, Joanne and Murray, seemed to be loving it.

"Prepare for Warp drive," I said, lowering the revolutions on the engine and undoing the furling line. A quick yank on the sheet and out the sail came.

A moment of acceleration - that amazing feeling when the Enterprise is starting its jump to warp. Nothing like it in the world, I thought, as a wide grin showed on my face. Here we go!

And then, snap, the halyard on the jib broke and dropped the mighty sail onto the deck and into the bay. Now I know EXACTLY how Captain Stiles felt on his first voyage of the Starship Excelsior:

Three of us (my wife, Murray and I) did our best to get the sail back onto the Enterprise and stowed away while Joanne helmed the Enterprise at low impulse drive into the bay.

I went to the mast on the slim hope that the few inches of halyard at the top was somehow hanging out there, but, alas, the entire line was inside the mast. As I pulled out foot after foot through the exit portal, my wife asked, "How do we fix that?"

"We have to find someone to go up the mast, feed the line down and then fish it out of this hole here," I replied, feeling defeated and wondering how I was going to convince foredeck Captain Dave to come out and help me, or even LET ME, winch Ensign Dave Jr. up the mast. Ugh. May be a few days. May be a few weeks. Another delay to our sailing season.

And then, out of the blue, Murray said, "I'll go up."

"What??!!" We only met these people a month ago. "You can't be serious."

He was so gung-ho about it. "Yeah. I'll go up. Let's do it! How high is that, anyway?"

This was when I thought he'd back out. "Sixty feet."

"Great! I'll go! Hook me up."

But what really sent my jaw to the deck was when his wife said, "Yeah! Let's do it! Send him up!"

So, we went back to our standard orbit (the mooring) and, in no time, and with no signs of backing out, Murray was in the chair and going up the mast. Joanne was smiling the whole time and took some photos:

Who are these people???

We actually sent him up twice! The first time, at a little over half way, he wanted back down because the chair wasn't feeling right. And, once fixed, he actually wanted back up again to the top!

Unfortunately, the line was getting caught up a little up there and the consensus among the rest of us down below was to bring him down instead of trying some more (which usually works.)

And then, get this, he wanted to stay up there until it was done. Even after I called a rigger (who may or may not be able to get to it), he offered to come out anytime on Friday and go up again. Again! And his wife will come too to help. And bring food.

Who are these people???????

I guess we'll see what happens with the rigger and whether or not we'll try again on Friday afternoon (Dave, please report to the bridge.)

Either way, we'll be spending more time with them soon. In fact, Joann mentioned she won some free movie tickets and wanted to know if there were any good movies coming out soon that we wanted to see in July.