We are Mark and Judy Handley. We have been writing about our experiences on this website for almost eleven years now. For six of those years, we were sailing around the world on our 42-foot sailboat, Windbird. During those six years and the five years since our circumnavigation, we have posted a log almost daily. We lived aboard all of those years and loved every minute. But we have now sold Windbird and are living in a harbourside apartment in the town of Falmouth, Massachusetts, on Cape Cod. The website title has been tweaked just a bit to reflect our new status, “The Voyage of Windbird . . . and Beyond.” We decided not to change things totally because we want to leave the three and a half thousand daily logs and all of the accompanying photos on the website for anyone who might be interested. But for those who would like to continue to follow the current “Voyage of Windbird”, her new owners have a website that will chronicle the adventures. We are proud to introduce you to Sam and Dawn Weigel whose blog “Weigels on the Water” can be found at: http://wotwater.blogspot.com/

NOTE: Due to Google upgrading Picasa to Google Photos, many of our old photos are now broken.  We are actively working on fixing this – thanks for your patience!

2018 Life Logs, Day 21—Happy Birthday, Sam

2018 Life Logs, Day 21—Happy Birthday, Sam
Date: Sunday, January 21, 2018
Weather: Sunny; High 50, Low 29 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Sam turned eleven today and the theme was drums. This year Sam is playing drums in the school band and this morning Heather and Jed unveiled a new drum set-up in the basement. Then this afternoon, my present to Sam to was to take the whole family to New Bedford to see Yamato perform at the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center. Yamato is a percussion ensemble from Japan. They take the ancient art of taiko drumming into the 21st century. We had read that taiko drumming is a physical, as well as a musical experience, but we didn’t really know what to expect. There are nine drummers, some of who also play other classical Japanese instruments with a modern twist. They move and play the drums together as if they are one. Think sitting cross-legged on a bench suspended in the air and leaning back and coming up like doing sit-ups while playing huge drums in front of you, and then leaping in the air, down to the stage to start playing a new set of drums and not missing a beat. For two hours, no words are spoken, but they communicate completely through body language. In addition to be incredibly talented whether playing tiny hand cymbals or gigantic drums, they are funny and they include audience participation—something for everybody. All of us really enjoyed the show, but at intermission we were a bit sad to find out the Patriots were losing to the Jaguars. Then at the end of the show we checked our phones and found out the Patriots pulled out another win. So, we were doubly happy—great show and the Patriots will be in the Superbowl. Woohoo!!! I picked out a sports pub in a bit of a shady part of town for dinner (didn’t understand the location when I chose it), but it turned out to be a great place to watch the Vikings-Eagles first half while enjoying good food with a Portuguese twist. If you saw the opening of this game, you were probably as overwhelmed as we were. A retired Navy officer singing the Star-spangled Banner was spectacular with the back drop of an American flag big enough to cover the entire football field. And then a bald eagle soared across the field. Maybe this happens all the time, but for those of us who watch very little football, this game opener was dramatic. Minnesota got off to a great start, but that was it for them. It will be the Patriots against the Eagles in Super Bowl LII. And to top it all off, it was sunny and warm today with a high temp hitting 50 degrees F, so I went for a two mile walk by the ocean this morning. It was a good day in this part of New England.

2018 Life Logs, Day 20—Sam’s Birthday Weekend

2018 Life Logs, Day 20—Sam’s Birthday Weekend
Date: Saturday, January 20, 2018
Weather: Warmer with South Winds; High 45, Low 31 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Oh, my. They grow up so quickly. My oldest grandchild, Samuel Ellery Goldstone, will be 11 years old tomorrow. I have a hard time believing it has been 11 years since Mark and I flew home from New Zealand for his birth. But it has been 11 years and Sam is growing up. I went to Heather’s late morning to help with some birthday projects. Sam’s party with friends was tonight, but he will get his birthday present from mom and dad tomorrow. He doesn’t know it, but he is getting a full drum set. So today the basement needed to be cleaned out to make a space for drumming. I made a run to take things to the swap shop at the city dump and to take cardboard to be recycled. Jed had to drive off Cape to get the drum set and then he had to go to work in Woods Hole, so I returned to help Heather clean out the basement. I had a dresser that belonged to my family stored in the basement room where the drums need to go, so I got that in my car, along with boxes and bags of more things that need to be donated. By 3 pm, we had the basement looking better than I have seen it for a long time, so I took off with my carload to go to the donation bins and then home to unload. It was then time to return to pick up Jonah and Ollie to take them to dinner. Sam’s request for a party this year was to have four good friends come for dinner out and then an overnight. He requested that little brothers not be a part of the dinner and not be in the same for the overnight. Fair enough. So, I was to take Jonah and Ollie to dinner. Sam requested that he and his friends go to the British Beer Company and yesterday he told me he thought I should take Jonah and Ollie to the same place, just not the same table. Growing pains. You love your brothers and want them close by, just not too close! Fair enough. Jonah and Ollie agreed with the plan, so we all went to dinner at the same place and had two completely separate experiences. You can make reservations for six or more, but not for three. So, when we arrived, Sam and crew had a table in the main restaurant, but it was going to be a thirty-minute wait for Jonah, Ollie, and myself unless we wanted to eat at one of the high tables in the bar. At first Jonah didn’t like that idea, but when we went in and sat at the table to wait, he decided it was a great idea. We could watch all the games on the tv’s and we had quite an interesting dinner conversation about football. Even Ollie was quite knowledgeable about football teams and we all discussed who we like and who we don’t and why. It was a fun evening and after a quick run on the beach (across the street from the BBC), we returned home for the opening of presents and birthday cake. We all got a kick out of one of Sam’s presents, a book called A Manual to Manhood, touting how to cook a perfect steak, change a tire, impress a girl, and 97 other skills you need to survive! Like his dad, angel food cake is Sam’s favorite, drizzled with chocolate, so that was the birthday fare.

Tomorrow, Sam’s actual birthday, will be a continuation of the festivities. My gift this year is an ‘experience’—tickets for all of us to attend a performance of a Japanese drumming troupe called Yamato. After Sam’s friend leave tomorrow morning, he will get his drum set gift and then mid-afternoon we will head off-Cape for the Yamato drumming experience.

Amidst the birthday celebrations, I watch with disbelief at our government shutdown. I support the Democrats in their insistence on a clear and free deal for DACA, but I just don’t understand why this couldn’t have been settled before now. And I applaud those who turned out for the women’s marches around the country today. My heart was with all those who gathered in Cambridge. I stayed up very late last night watching what was happening in the Senate chamber leading up to the midnight shutdown of the government. You could see, but not hear, what was happening on the floor, and I could see clearly that our Massachusetts senator, Elizabeth Warren, was in the fight to the end. So proud to have such a strong female senator representing Massachusetts. And Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Maggie Hassen of New Hampshire were right there with Elizabeth Warren.

2018 Life Logs, Day 19—Swedish Dinner with Friends

2018 Life Logs, Day 19—Swedish Dinner with Friends
Date: Friday, January 19, 2018
Weather: Another Sunny Day; High 34, Low 30 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Our Newcomers Dining In group met tonight at the home of Karen and Peter Baranowski. Karen inherited her Swedish cooking expertise from her grandmother and we were the lucky recipients of a wonderful dinner tonight. We started with appetizers provided by Bruce and Jane Woodin and Terry and Olivia White. Bruce and Jane brought a fabulous baked brie with blueberries in a golden crust. We pretended the blueberries were lingonberries to make it Swedish. Olivia and Terry brought baked cheddar cheese and olive balls, not Swedish but delicious. Then Karen and Peter served the main meal of koldomar (Swedish meat stuffed cabbage), köttbullar (Swedish meatballs) in a wonderful yogurt and fresh chives cream, raggmunk (Swedish potato pancakes) with more of the yogurt and chives cream, and fresh applesauce brought by Midge and Bill Frieswyk. The dinner was spectacular. I provided the Swedish Tea Ring as dessert. I think we all left stuffed and happy. We won’t meet again until late March, but I will look forward to the friendship and culinary delights.

2018 Life Logs, Day 18—Powerful Movies

2018 Life Logs, Day 18—Powerful Movies
Date: Thursday, January 18, 2018
Weather: Sunny Day; High 36, Low 22 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Wow! While in Nashville, I went to see The Darkest Hour. What a powerful film. But today I went to see The Post and found it equally powerful. If you are not familiar with this movie, it is about the role of the Washington Post in publishing The Pentagon Papers in 1971. The New York Times first attempted to publish but were stopped when a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order. The Times complied, but then the Washington Post stepped in and was able to get the job done. Nixon tried once more to stop this, but the Supreme Court of the United states upheld the right of the newspapers. Washington Post owner and publisher, Katharine “Kay” Graham, is played by Meryl Streep, and Washington Post executive editor Ben Bradlee is played by Tom Hanks, both giving strong performances. If you haven’t seen the film, you might not want to read the final paragraph of this blog. After you go to the movie, which you should, you can come back and read the next paragraph. After the movie, I went out to dinner with the Women in Newcomers group and that summarizes my day. Now back to The Post.
At the end of the film, Ben Bradlee quotes part of the opinion of Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on this case and I think that in these times those words were the truly award-winning part of this film, “In the First Amendment the Founding Fathers gave the free press the protection it must have to fulfill its essential role in our democracy. The press was to serve the governed, not the governors. The Government’s power to censor the press was abolished so that the press would remain forever free to censure the Government. The press was protected so that it could bare the secrets of government and inform the people. Only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government.”

2018 Life Logs, Day 17—Learning New Things and Planning Away

2018 Life Logs, Day 17—Learning New Things and Planning Away
Date: Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Weather: Overnight Snow, Rainy Morning; High 37, Low 21 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

My day started with an email from my son encouraging me to dig those plastic baggies out of the trash because throwing them away is the worst possible scenario for the planet. My purpose in throwing them away was to save myself, but, of course, the planet is more important. So, I dug them out and stored them away far from my kitchen. Justin, thanks for the reminder.

I then went to the gym to find that I was the only person there for this morning’s Tabata class. I guess the overnight snow scared people away, although by the time I went to the gym the snow had turned to rain. Being the only participant, I relieved the instructor of her duties and headed home to exercise on my own. Then I spent the rest of the day listening and watching online health series and doing a little planning for the next couple of months. I continue to learn all sorts of new things on the health front, and there are so many things one could attend here in Falmouth and the immediate area that you have to look carefully at the offerings and make your picks. And I am still trying to figure out if and when I will travel to Puerto Rico to visit with Justin and family and meet up with Windbird. Windbird is still in the Bahamas and has to make her way south to the Turks and Caicos and then on to the Dominican Republic before heading across to Puerto Rico. That route is called the ‘Prickly Path’ and traversing it totally depends on the weather. It is now looking like early to mid-March, rather than late February, might be the right time for that trip. But it could end up being mid to late March. I need to check in with Justin and Jo on the change in timing and then just wait and see.

2018 Life Logs, Day 16—Time for Action

2018 Life Logs, Day 16—Time for Action
Date: Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Weather: Sunny; High 35, Low 29 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

There are lots of things that are just not normal in our lives these days, but this afternoon when I was reminded of one devastating statistic, I was shaken. Did you know that we have lost 50 per cent of all wildlife on our planet in just the last 42 years? Why? Probably due to toxic chemicals in our environment. We are literally killing ourselves, and we are doing nothing about it. It is time for action. We can’t solve the big issues, there are things we can do immediately. Vote with your money. Buy only organic. That will mean that you are not buying foods laden with chemicals and not buying GMOs, genetically modified organics (foods). This will immediately be better for you and better for the environment. Get rid of all BPA’s (plastics) in your world—no more plastic water bottles, no more Styrofoam cups from Dunkin’ Donuts with plastic lids that drip BPS’s. No more Saran Wrap, plastic food containers, or Ziploc baggies. I threw all of mine in the trash tonight. Very hard to do, but very necessary.

2018 Life Logs, Day 15—MLK Day Reflections

2018 Life Logs, Day 15—MLK Day Reflections
Date: Monday, January 15, 2018
Weather: Overcast, Spitting Snow Early Afternoon; High 30, Low 23 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

We all do things in life that we later regret, and one of those things for me involved Martin Luther King. In the fall of 1969, I began my career as an educator by taking a job teaching American History at Glenville High School in Cleveland, Ohio. I had spent the previous year, my first year out of college, working as a personnel manager for the Clifton Division of Litton Industries hiring screw machine operators in a shop just outside Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. My college degree was in speech (radio and television communications) and education (high school social studies). But I wanted to try my hand in the business world. I hated it, and thus took the teaching job in Cleveland the following year. I chose Cleveland because my sister lived in nearby Akron. I didn’t choose Glenville High School, but she chose me. It was a school with 3,000 black students, 150 white teachers, 150 black teachers. There had been riots in the neighborhood in the summer of 1968 after MLK’s assassination and seven people were killed. There were riots in the school in the spring of 1969 with various groups demanding that Black History, not American History, be taught in the school. Unaware of any of this, and desperate for a job, I accepted the job as American History teacher at Glenville in the fall of 1969. Needless to say, it was an ‘interesting’ experience and I had to learn quickly to survive. At the end of my first year, the job of Audio-Visual Coordinator and teacher of radio and television programming opened up. It required a Masters in Communications which I didn’t have, but I begged the principal to give me the job. I said I would immediately enroll in a Masters program at nearby Kent State to meet the requirement, and somehow I got the job for the 1970-71 school year. Can’t tell you how happy I was to no longer be teaching American History at that time in that school. Part of my new position was running a closed-circuit radio station in the school providing school, local, and world news every morning, providing student programmed music during the lunch hours, providing audio-visual needs for the classrooms, and being in charge of all special programming for the school. Black History Month in 1971 was a true learning experience for me. I knew nothing of Black History, but by this time, I had Black History teacher friends who took me under their wings. And part of my job, I was in charge of the reel to reel tape of Martin Luther King’s speech that he gave to the student body of Glenville on April 26, 1967, a year before his death. This had been played, in its entirety, every February since his assassination and I played it in February of 1971 and 1972. I left Glenville in January of 1973 to take a job in public television, but I took that copy of the MLK reel to reel tape with me. I knew there was a copy in the school library and I was certain that there were a few other copies floating about. But I was young, the message on tape had resounded with me in a profound way, and I selfishly wanted it with me. Then I met Mark and my life changed. In the spring of 1974, Mark and I sold everything we owned, including that reel to reel to reel tape, and we took off on our life adventures. I have regretted many times selling that tape, but I was elated tonight to find in an online search that in 2012, the library copy of the tape was discovered by a Glenville teacher and that speech is once again properly recorded in history. Because of that discovery, I am now able to share with you the final words of that speech that meant so much to me:

“And I close by quoting a beautiful little poem from the pen of Langston Hughes, where he has a mother, talking to a son. With ungrammatical profundity that mother says, ‘Well, son, I’ll tell you: Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair. It’s had tacks in it, boards torn up, and places with no carpet on the floor — bare. But all the time I’se been a-climbin’ on, and reachin’ landin’s, and turnin’ corners, and sometimes goin’ in the dark where there ain’t been no light. So boy, don’t you turn back. Don’t you set down on the steps ’cause you finds it’s kinder hard. For I’se still goin’, boy, I’se still climbin’, and life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.’ Well, life for none of us has been a crystal stair, but we must keep moving. We must keep going. And so, if you can’t fly, run. If you can’t run, walk. If you can’t walk, crawl. But by all means, keep moving.”

I was young then, not much older than some of my students. And those words that MLK spoke to the students of Glenville High School rang true in my ears. I took them literally and I’ve been moving ever since. There are many other speeches of his that are more eloquent, but none were so personal to me. Thank you, Martin Luther King, for your words of wisdom that have stuck with me all these years and for everything you did and said in the name of humanity.

I have other friends who have probably never heard the MLK’s exact words that have kept me moving all these years, but they also keep on moving. My dear friend Linda Stuart of Concord, New Hampshire, and her husband Mike, took off in 2014 to bike around the world. In their blog dated yesterday, they posted their photo in front of the sign in Ushuaia, Argentina, saying “USHUAIA—fin del mundo.” They have reached the “end of the world” or at least the end of the bike path to the southern most point in our world. So proud of them. Congratulations, congratulations!!!

Here’s what Linda said when she saw the mile post sign saying that New York is 10,600 km from Ushuaia. “I laughed when I saw this sign . . . We took the crooked path, I guess, with 33,521 km on our bikes and that does not even count the few planes, busses, and ferries we were on. Regardless, we enjoyed our journey (most days anyway) and I am already looking forward to new countries and new places.” From the ‘end of the world’ Mike and Linda are hoping to get on an excursion boat headed to Antarctica. The prices they were quoted yesterday were quite high, but hopefully they will find somehow find a deal. In any case, they have achieved what few others have done–riding the length of California from San Francisco to Mexico to Central America and all the way through South America to Tierra de Fuego on a bicycle. Unbelievable!

I really enjoyed having the Goldpebbles for an overnight. I had to get them home by 10 am as Jonah had a play date with friend, but we enjoyed our short morning together. They evidently woke up and played very quietly as I did not hear them until 8 am. I don’t know if I was exceptionally tired or if they were exceptionally quiet. But they were enjoying their screen time on Granddad’s tablet and phone when I got up. Ollie had Justin’s guitar out and was playing it very quietly. So cute. We then had a big breakfast and headed home. I love having them for overnights and hope we they come back soon.

2018 Life Logs, Day 14—Delightful Sunday

2018 Life Logs, Day 14—Delightful Sunday
Date: Sunday, January 14, 2018
Weather: Partly Cloudy; High 25, Low 22 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA
My only plans for today were to take Jonah, and maybe Ollie, to a see Paddington 2. Ollie made the decision to stay home and have some one-on-one time with daddy as Sam was going to be spending the afternoon at a friend’s house. I picked Jonah up at noon and off we went to the movie. We both really enjoyed it. As Jonah pointed out, there were some scary scenes, but not too scary, some sadness, some comedy, and a wonderful tour of London. As soon as it was over, I needed to get Jonah to Olympia Sports to buy him a new pair of indoor soccer shoes and then get him to the community center for a 3 pm indoor soccer game. Indoor soccer started after the first of the year, and since I have been out of town, I am just now catching up on the new year activities. Jonah’s team won their game and he scored all three points for his team. Happy Jonah. Jed and Ollie joined us, and the friend Sam had been with for the afternoon was playing in the 4 o’clock game, as was Sam, so his parents delivered them. The boys enjoy going to the community center as they can play ping pong, air hockey, foosball, and pool in between soccer games. I invited Jed and boys to stay in town and have dinner at my place, and then I found out Heather was getting home sooner than expected. So she joined us as well. And then Ollie decided he wanted to spend the night with Oma and Sam and Jonah joined in. There is no school tomorrow as it is Martin Luther King Day, so we enjoyed the evening together. I got the boys in bed in time for me to settle in to watch the beginning of Season 2 of Victoria on Masterpiece Theater. It was a delightful Sunday.

2018 Life Logs, Day 13—Weather, Food, and Wine

2018 Life Logs, Day 13—Weather, Food, and Wine
Date: Saturday, January 13, 2018
Weather: Cold Returning; High 56, Low 16 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Today 56 degrees for the high, tomorrow 27 degrees. That’s about a 30 degree drop in 24 hours. But 27 degrees for the high is more normal for this time of year. I think we all enjoyed the break from the extreme cold, but back to normal is okay.
I spent my day futzing about in the kitchen. I got out my juicer to make carrot and celery juice for a soup recipe. And I poured through cookbooks, paper and online, to look for new, healthy recipes. I drove over to the Goldstones to check in with Jed and the boys. Heather is out of town for the weekend and I wanted to see if I could be of help. But the boys were busy, busy, busy today outside playing with friends in the warm weather. But with the 30-degree overnight drop in temperature, I’ll check in again tomorrow to see if anyone wants to go to the movies with me to see Paddington 2. But if the boys are still happily playing outside, all the better.
I spent my evening attending the Newcomers Winter Wine Tasting. I’ve never really been to an organized wine tasting event and tonight was fun. I’ve designated 2018 as my year to learn more about wine. I have been a life-long beer drinker, but since there is nothing at all healthy about drinking beer, I’ve decided to investigate red wine. Wine has higher alcohol levels, but red wine has resveratrol which is healthy for you. But to get enough resveratrol, you would have to drink gallons. So maybe it makes no difference, but I shall investigate. Tonight I learned that the first known winery was in Armenia over 6,000 years ago. It seems that as long as there have been humans, we have been fermenting something or another to make an alcoholic drink. I will enjoy 2018 searching for the ‘healthiest’ of the options!

2018 Life Logs, Day 12—Weird Weather

2018 Life Logs, Day 12—Weird Weather
Date: Friday, January 12, 2018
Weather: Rain and 25 mph South Winds; High 57, Low 53 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Just talked to my sister in Tennessee and they had freezing rain and a little snow today with a high temperature in the 20’s. We had a high of 57 degrees F here today with fog and rain. Weird weather.

It was a quiet day here. I finally finished winterizing all the windows and drove to Hyannis to pick up my new glasses. I got back in time to go to my 5 pm Friday evening class at the gym and am now relaxing with a glass of wine. After my experience with the news yesterday, I think I’ll skip checking-in on today’s happenings and just go to bed and read my book.