Since falling in love with the idea of cruising years ago, Lauren has had one dream: Go sailing aboard our own boat to clear turquoise waters — just the two of us — before having kids.
After two years aboard, sailing Lake Michigan, motoring down the rivers, sailing the Gulf of Mexico through the Keys, with several long stops at boatyards along the way to prep Soulianis for off-grid living & remote working, we’ve arrived in the crystal clear waters of the Bahamas — a real dream come true.
Music in this episode is by Johnzo West from from his brand new album “WAVES” dropping today 8.28.20!
Hope you enjoy!
Lauren & Kirk
FILMED: April 2019
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This episode features music from Johnzo West’s new album “WAVES” released 8.28.20!
0:00 Johnzo West – “Dawn Patrol”
5:30 Johnzo West – “Tropicali”
10:31 Johnzo West – “Sundaze”
14:32 Johnzo West – “Waves”
16:34 Johnzo West – “Loose”
19:16 Johnzo West – “Waves
19:42 A Himitsu – “Adventures”
We’re always looking for music! If you, or a friend, relative or acquaintance makes original music and would like to feature it on our channel, give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org.
by REV: https://try.rev.com/H2dsg — Use this link to get $10 off your first order!
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– So we made it, this is our first anchorage in The Bahamas.
– We sailed to a private island in The Bahamas for our third anniversary.
– We laugh because every year we forget our anniversary and find ourselves doing something pretty mundane. This year we got lucky. Private as of this morning, after two other boats that were anchored here last night left, and we’ve had it all to ourselves since.
– All day.
– And it’s pretty fricking nice. It was a bit of a slog to get here because we were trying to meet my sister and her boyfriend in Green Turtle Key and coming from Marathon, in Florida, it was 300 and some miles. And we were trying to do it in five days, trying to cross the Gulf Stream and make it around a bunch of islands. I mean, we’re traveling at how many different directions and somehow arrive in one piece, I think–
– We did pretty good.
– Yeah. For most of the time we thought we weren’t going to make it. And it wasn’t until probably yesterday.
– [Kirk] At like 5:00.
– We’re like, alright, maybe we can make this happen.
– And Kirk and I also decided that we’re never trying to meet anyone anywhere again. It was a certain degree of torture trying to cross the Gulf Stream to get here on time. And we both were, we were over sailing by the time we got to West End.
– Yeah. We haven’t been doing the whole sailing thing right so far. We need to slow down, not care where we’re going and not have places to be at specific times. But for us that’s been difficult while we’ve still been working.
– And the only reason we cared where we were going in the past was because we were meeting people. Like we met, we were trying to meet my parents, we were trying to meet Kirk’s parents in Florida, like three times over the last year and a half. And now meeting my sister.
– [Kirk] Meeting the previous owners right after we left.
– Yep, but the big overall marathon of getting ultimately to warm, beautiful, clear water has been because of me. That’s been my dream really, is to go cruising together, just me and Kirk, before we had kids. And we’re both in our mid-thirties, so the clock’s ticking. It has been a race to try to get down here, get a boat put together the way that it needs to, with all its components, so that we can do this. We can just hang out at anchor and–
– And not worry.
– And actually have power and not have all of our food spoil in the fridge and still be able to power our computers to do our work.
– [Kirk] Have shade so we don’t fry.
– Yeah, the Bimini. Kirk didn’t really have to go cruising before we had kids. It wasn’t like that was the be all, end all for him. So I’ve kind of been, I’ve been the pusher.
– But here we are.
– [Lauren] But here we are.
– [Kirk] You made it happen.
– [Lauren] And after we get to Green Turtle Key and we meet up with my sister, that’s it.
– The next thing that’s gonna push us will be a named storm.
– Yes, that’s true.
– Or maybe not quite a named storm. I don’t wanna be racing from a hurricane. The prospects of named storms.
– Yeah, like it should be.
– Yeah, weather.
– The only thing that should be pushing you around when you’re cruising is the weather.
– First landfall in The Bahamas, from an anchorage anyway. Last time we stepped foot on land was from a dock. That doesn’t really count, does it? Ack.
– [Kirk] That is sap.
– [Lauren] Yikes.
– [Kirk] Conch.
– [Lauren] Yeah. A little conch Christmas tree?
– It looks like it.
– So we’ve been in the water for about two months now. The last time we scraped the hull was probably about three weeks ago. It’s definitely grown a lot more in the last three weeks.
– [Kirk] All this growth was a little frustrating to see, but not totally unexpected.
– We think it’s because we were in Boot Key Harbor, in Marathon, where the water isn’t super clear. And so it’s really good for growth.
– [Kirk] We’re also pretty sure that we didn’t sand it down quite enough after application, a crucial step that exposes the copper powder to the water. Fortunately, you can always sand it down a little more during the next haul out. And as time went on, we saw less and less growth, meaning our routine cleaning every few weeks with a 3M scrub pad was doing the trick.
– [Lauren] If you’re wondering about flying a drone from a sailboat, it’s certainly the easiest when you’re not moving. A couple of retrieval tricks we’ve learned with our Mavic are one, turn the camera away from the boat. Fewer of its sensors will detect the rigging and cause it to fly away from you. Number two is actually to not hold your hand out like I am here. Instead, keep it down at your side until the very last second, because the drone sees it as an obstacle, and again, wants to fly away.
– [Kirk] Man, look at that water. So beautiful. All right, time to go sailing.
– Time to go sailing. I gotta finish cleaning up the kitchen and putting stuff away downstairs, and then we get to go see my sister.
– [Kirk] Yay.
– Yay. Waterline!
– [Kirk] Okay.
– Very protective, very–
– That was very nice.
– Pretty calm anchorage because–
– All to ourself.
– All the wind was coming from the north. It was quite lovely. A nice first stop in The Bahamas.
– [Kirk] Yeah. I’m gonna turn more upwind so we know what our point of sail is. Oh, it’s way into the wind. We gotta go 40 degrees more into the wind or we’re gonna be beating. All right, ready?
– [Lauren] Yeah.
– Okay, that’s good for now. Okay, that’s looking good.
– [Lauren] What did you say we need to do?
– We need to do like 132, but we can’t point that high. Go to like 145.
– [Lauren] Okay. I’m at 140 right now. Wait, should we put a reef in?
– [Kirk] I don’t know, what’s the wind speed?
– 16, 15.
– [Kirk] Are you weather helming a bunch?
– No, it’s actually all right, right now. It was just, when I was seeing 16, now we’re back at 12.
– Yeah. Three, two, one, set.
– This is the best. Sailing’s the best.
– It’s been a departure from two days ago.
– Oh my gosh.
– We spent all day yesterday at anchor, most of it working, but it was really nice to just chill. Today we’ve got a pretty easy upwind day. We don’t have too much chop, thankfully. We’re only doing 30 miles to get to Green Turtle Key. Got about a minute and a half before we have to tack so we don’t run into a headland.
– [Lauren] We were a little worried about going into the wind again, ’cause we had no idea what the waves were gonna be like here, but it’s pretty calm and it’s absolutely amazing. But they’re so practical and so nice and, like, good quality.
– [Lauren] We use ’em all the time.
– We haven’t even thought about ’em.
– [Lauren] Yeah, these guys right here.
– [Kirk] They’re frickin’ sweet.
– We got those covers when we were in Key West last year. We really haven’t taken them off. They’re so good for low latitudes. You often don’t want the sun streaming directly through your hatches, just way too hot. It’s too bright, especially in our boat because it’s such a dark interior, to have sunlight, pure sunlight coming through, it’s way too bright. So keeps the heat out, keeps the light out. We prefer to have the light coming through the port lights. So those covers are amazing. It had been six months since I had last seen my sister. She’s my only sibling and we’re pretty close. Of course, official greetings had to wait until the boat was taken care of. And filming naturally took a backseat. Though you can see her showing me the ring and me saying something like, are you serious? He couldn’t wait until we got here? He was pretty nervous and couldn’t wait. That’s okay, we don’t blame you, Chris. The coolest thing about Kelly and Chris’s Airbnb was that we could see Soulianis from the balcony.
– It’s frickin’ gusty down here. We just anchored probably in the most critical anchoring we’ve ever done. We’re about, I don’t know, less than a hundred feet from that boat there. We’re probably 200 feet from that catamaran up there. We’ve got about 50 feet until we’re on three feet of hard rock over here. And about 200 feet downwind of us is the marina and a ton of shallows in between. A fuel barge came in and they required us to be kicked off the dock, even though they’re moored way off the dock because they were gonna fuel up the marina. I think it’s actually fuel for the whole town. And we had to motor up into Black Sound here with, oh, it’s only showing 13 right now, but it was about 15 to 17 knots of wind all the way up here and then gusting into the twenties. And it’s very, very tight. I suppose, just to be safe with their maneuvering, it would be better to not be downwind of them. Now we’re just waiting for the fuel barge to leave so that we can get back to the dock. Motoring down the channel we could lean over the side of the boat and pretty much shake their hands. Everyone kept saying, oh yeah, you know, if you just go a little bit down there to that open spot, ah, you should have plenty of depth there. That looks pretty good. Basically get the away from our boat. It’s fine, they’re all trying to protect their boats. I get it, I’d do the same thing.
– You just want to say, we don’t wanna be here either. We know we’re too close to you. We don’t want to be this close to you. It’s only temporary, but…
– Then nice to just have like a big LED sign, like on city buses that says–
– Not in service.
– Yeah, not in service. Not staying.
– Not staying. This was our Goldilocks mission to find the best beach for the afternoon. This one was gorgeous, but much too windy. Yee!
– [Kirk] We’re gonna have to push.
– [Lauren] And well, there wasn’t actually any beach here. This one would do.
– [Kirk] You all right, Kelly?
– [Kelly] Yeah, I’m doing okay.
– Well, this is a first. There’s someone on the boat that might get sicker than me.
– [Lauren] Whatcha guys doing?
– Dragging a thing behind the boat. I don’t know if we can call this fishing, quite.
– It’s an attempt.
– [Lauren] So whadda you got out there?
– I dunno, what was that called, do you remember?
– Ah no, I don’t remember what it was called. It needs some weight though.
– Yeah, we needed to have a sinker.
– I’m optimistic.
– [Kirk] Chris is an avid hunter and freshwater fisherman.
– [Lauren] What are we gonna do when we catch this fish?
– Chris is gonna show us how to filet it.
– [Lauren] Oh, that’s cool. You know how to filet ocean fish?
– No, absolutely not.
– [Lauren] Take a wild guess at it?
– We’ll figure it out.
– [Chris] There’s meat somewhere, it’s gotta come off.
– If the piggies come running for us, we take this apple core and we throw it away from the dinghy. We want no piggie prints on the dinghy.
– They’re talking to each other. They’re having a moment.