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 49—Reading, Cooking, Olympics

2018 Life Logs, Day 49—Reading, Cooking, Olympics
Date: Sunday, February 18, 2018
Weather: Snow Gone, Back to Sunshine; High 44, Low 29 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

When I went to bed last night after midnight, there was a blanket of white covering everything in sight. But by the time I got up this morning, the sun was shining brightly and there was no snow in sight. Heather and gang made it to DC by 6 pm, so the snow that fell between here and there overnight must not have been an issue. But with them gone, it was a lonely Sunday here. Sunday is soccer day in the winter, but instead of going to watch soccer games this afternoon, I read. I rarely have the time to read during the day, so this was a treat. I also spent time researching new recipes and then spent time in the kitchen cooking. I went out late in the day to go to the grocery store and to go feed Mortimer and Max, Sam and Jonah’s guinea pigs. Then I came home to settle in for a long winter’s night watching Olympic short program ice dancing. Thanks to the timing, I was able to sneak away from 9 to 10 pm to watch Victoria on Masterpiece Theater. But I’m back to the Olympics now and I know it will be well after midnight before the last skaters finish. I love the Olympics but watching requires many late, late nights.

It is going to be a warmer than normal week here. We will not get as warm as Boston, but the temp will be in the upper 40’s everyday for the next seven, sometimes hitting the 50’s. So, I’m hoping to get out on my bike for a few rides this week. I have not gotten a Spot message from Windbird, so I don’t know yet if they made it to the Dominican Republic today. Hopefully their trip hasn’t been too rough.

2018 Life Logs, Day 48—It’s Snowing

2018 Life Logs, Day 48—It’s Snowing
Date: Saturday, February 17, 2018
Weather: Sunny Day, Snow Late Evening; High 37, Low 33 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Just as forecasted, the snow here began at 9 pm. But as it snows overnight, the temperature is going to hover at just about 32 degrees F. So, it will be a wet snow and should end by morning. Heather and crew are headed to Washington, DC, tomorrow morning for winter break week with Jed’s mom. Heather has a speaking engagement at the Howard Hughes Research Center at Janelia in Ashburn, Va, just outside DC, on Tuesday. But for the rest of the week, the Goldstones will spend time enjoying Washington’s wonderful museums and spending time with Grammie Marty. Here’s hoping they have a safe trip down and a wonderful time while there.

Ahhh, technical issues. It does appear that my syncing issues with Google were resolved with the higher internet speed I upgraded to earlier in the week. So today I braved the next issue. My phone is a cheapie and has only 8 GB’s of storage space. That is ancient by current standards. So today I took Mark’s phone, which has 32 GB’s, to the AT&T store to transfer data from my phone to his. It was a long, painful experience, and still I had to drive to Heather’s afterwards to get more support, but I am mostly set for now. I was told that I will probably have to buy a new phone at some point in the near future, but I hope I am okay for now.

I have been following Windbird’s progress via Spot reports that they send, and it looks to me like they are about half way to the Dominican Republic. They should arrive there sometime tomorrow, so stay tuned on that one.

2018 Life Logs, Day 47—It’s Friday

2018 Life Logs, Day 47—It’s Friday
Date: Friday, February 16, 2018
Weather: Foggy, Then Mostly Cloudy
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

It is Friday and I don’t have a lot to report. I spent the day at home, had a great conversation with Ed and Lynne Kirwin, ignored computer and phone issues, and spent my evening at a Newcomers Mix and Mingle event. I was not very good at mingling with lots of people I have never met before, but I had some quality time with good friends Karen and Peter Baranowski. They recently returned from a two-week cruise on a 5-masted sailing ‘ship’ going from island to island from Barbados to the Grenadines, down to Granada, and then back north to Guadeloupe, Nevis, and even Monserrat. Another Newcomer who has moved here from New York City just returned from a sailing trip to Maui. She sails with a club out of NYC and they had a spectacular time. So, lots of conversations centered on sailing experiences. And then when I got home, I got another sailing update. There was a Spot report from Windbird showing that they left the Turks and Caicos today and should be in the Dominican Republic by Sunday. Once they are there, I will contact them to try and more specifically determine when I might be joining them. I ended my evening by tuning into the Men’s Free Skate Olympic competition and enjoyed that. And don’t tell anyone, but it looks like that uploading and downloading from my computer to the ‘cloud’ might actually be completed.

2018 Life Logs, Day 46—Continued Phone and Computer Issues

2018 Life Logs, Day 46—Continued Phone and Computer Issues
Date: Thursday, February 15, 2018
Weather: Overcast and Foggy; High 43, Low 40 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

This computer issue story is getting old. I’m tired of living through it and I know you must be tired of reading about it. So, I’ll give an update here and not mention it again until it is resolved. I started my day at the gym and when I left there, I went directly to the AT&T store to have them help me with my phone. Day before yesterday, I stopped getting emails on my phone because my storage was full. My phone has minimal storage, but the young woman at AT&T was able to help me delete enough things to allow the email to come through again. I never knew that I should be deleting text messages and phone calls. I guess I assumed those were kept for a period of time and then magically deleted. But not so. I need to do that. In the early afternoon, Heather met me at the computer repair shop to help ask the right questions about what is happening with Google Drive. Even the computer guy is not sure, but what he thinks is happening now is that everything on my computer is being uploaded or synced with the Google Cloud for a second time. He thinks it got confused because their shop uninstalled and then reinstalled Google Drive last Saturday to solve the issue of Google putting files in the recycle bin. Basically, he suggested that I just continue to keep my computer on 24-hours a day until Google has done its thing. Then we’ll assess and see where we are. Thank you, Heather, for taking time to come to help me understand what is happening. Once I got the computer back home, I noticed the uploading was slowing down, but I had to leave to pick Jonah and Ollie up from school and then go to a Women in Newcomers dinner out. When I got come, I called Comcast and got a very helpful young man who taught me how to go on the web and check the speed of my uploads and downloads. They, indeed, were not as fast as they should be. So, he reset my modem and then taught me how to do this. At the end of our phone working session, we had my internet speed considerably faster. Now I just have to be patient and hope for a successful conclusion. At least I have the Olympics to watch while I am waiting.

2018 Life Logs, Day 45—Happy Valentine’s Day

2018 Life Logs, Day 45—Happy Valentine’s Day
Date: Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Weather: Sunny and Cold; High 49, Low 37 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

It is not only Valentine’s Day, a day when we do special things for the people we love, it is also National Random Acts of Kindness Week. Who knew? Well, now I do and so do you. It ends on Saturday the 17th, so you have three more days to do random kind things that will make others smile. And the experts say that when you do something nice for someone else it boosts your mood because it makes you feel better about yourself. So, send a card, compliment others, help someone in need, clean up someone else’s mess, or just do anything else you can think of for someone else that is unexpected and kind. After reading about this, I sent flowers to my 102 year-old Aunt Ethel who is still healthy and able to live alone in her own home. I hope the red azalea I sent will brighten her day. I also sent a little money gift to Justin and Jo for Valentine’s Day fun as another random act of kindness. Tonight I got a wonderful thank you text from Jo. She promised that they will spend the money to have fun together as a family and she described her Valentine’s Day. Evidently Justin has his father’s romantic tendencies. This morning Justin used his chain saw to carve a slab of wood into a heart for Jo, and when he came home this evening, he had chocolate covered strawberries for everyone. Jo’s parents from England are visiting, so I’m sure they all really enjoyed that treat.

I had a lovely evening with Heather and family. My act of random kindness for them was to provide a sushi dinner which we all enjoyed. After dinner, I had offered to put the boys to bed and stay with them so Heather and Jed could go out for a Valentine’s Day evening together. But after dinner, they ended up working on my computer and phone issues. By the time we finished, Heather opted to stay at home, have a glass of wine, and watch the Olympics. We didn’t get any of my technical issues resolved, but we made some progress. So, thank you, Heather and Jed, for giving up your ‘romantic time’ to work on my computer. Once it was decided that they wouldn’t be going out for the evening, I headed home and followed Heather’s formula. I had a glass of wine and watched the Olympics. I really enjoyed watching the figure skating pairs’ final competition. There was so much talent, but I do think the right team won the Gold. While watching this, I got an email from my good sailing friend, Chris, in Australia. It was great to hear from her, but she ended her email with special thoughts about the school shooting in South Florida today. It breaks her heart, as well as mine, to think that children can’t go to school without the fear that something like this could happen to them. This DOES NOT HAPPEN anywhere else in the world. We are obviously doing something wrong in this country, and we need to get that righted. I can remember having a conversation with Chris and Geoff sometime in the past few years where they explained to me that there was a mass shooting in Australia in 1996 that immediately resulted in very strict gun regulations. Basically, the Australian government bought back all guns from individuals and there has not been a mass shooting there since—not one. So, there is something that we could do. But we, the people, have to have the resolve to make sure that our law makers make changes. We have to take control and stop letting the NRA make the decisions. Those who say that we just need to get better at dealing with these situations are just wrong. That is like saying that we need to deal with heart disease by prescribing more drugs. What we need to do is look at the root cause and deal with that. And with mass shootings, guns are the root cause. My opinion.

2018 Life Logs, Day 44—Update from Puerto Rico

2018 Life Logs, Day 44—Update from Puerto Rico
Date: Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Weather: Sunny and Cold; High 32, Low 27 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

I emailed Justin yesterday asking him about how things are going in their part of Puerto Rico. They were still without power the end of December when the solar was installed, but I hadn’t really heard any details since then. But this morning I got a long response to my questions from yesterday. Basically, due to their amazing resilience and the support given to them by family and friends, they are doing great. They had electricity restored for a few days in early December, but then it went away. About a week and half ago at their house, it returned again. So, they can now use electricity from the grid to supplement the solar. But the grid continues to go down, so they are very thankful that they have the solar. They have had running water since November, but it comes and goes as well. They hope to install a rain water catchment and solar hot water system on the roof when they can afford it. They still do not have internet and have no idea when it will return, so they are hoping to have satellite installed soon. Justin continues to be able to work, either by driving to and from Mayaguez every day, which takes at least 45 minutes each way, or working in local cafes where it is harder for him to focus on this work but he doesn’t have to face the commute. One way or another, he is able to work. After Maria, Ziggy and Coco never returned to school and Jo has been homeschooling them. For now, the kids don’t want to go back to school and Justin says Jo finally has a good rhythm with them. They just got official non-profit status and they have put up a website where you can read about what they are doing. Just go to http://fincamaravilla.com to check it out. When you go to that site there are pictures at the top. If you keep clicking on ‘Load More’ you will go through all of the photos highlighting life since Maria. Absolutely amazing.

My day was consumed with more technical issues. I went to Tai Ji this morning and to the gym late this afternoon, but in between, I dealt with continued computer issues, and now cell phone problems. I called Comcast tonight and had my internet upgraded to the fastest they have. If that doesn’t solve my issues, which I don’t think it will, I’ll have to go to plan B. Not at all sure what that is, but I’ll figure it out. In between dealing with technical issues, I shop for food, cook, and watch the Olympics. Life is good.

2018 Life Logs, Day 43—Happy Darwin Day

2018 Life Logs, Day 43—Happy Darwin Day
Date: Monday, February 12, 2018
Weather: Sunny with Temp Dipping Overnight; High 51, Low 22 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

I’m listening to Heather’s weekly Living Lab science program while writing this log and she opened her show by saying, “Happy Darwin Day!” Well, that got my attention. Who knew today was Darwin’s birthday. He would have been 209. I think only Heather knew that! Sometime in the 1980’s I read Irving Stone’s biographical novel of Darwin called The Origin and that started a life-long love affair. I was fascinated and decided that I just had to go to the Galapagos. In fact, that is the way Mark got me to sail around the world with me. It was my ticket to the Galapagos. I read The Voyage of the Beagle, Peter Nicol’s Evolution’s Captain, Darwin’s Finches, and I bought every natural history guide on the Galapagos I could find. Then, we actually sailed there and Heather and Jed joined us. I’ll never forget having lunch in the shady area behind Tortuga Beach with Heather and Jed while reading Darwin’s Finches. And while doing so, those finches sat on our blanket with us hoping for bits of our lunch. It was a dream come true for me. So, yes. Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin. And thank you for helping all of us look at the natural world through your eyes. And thank you, Heather, for reminding us of this day.

Warm Monday, cold Tuesday, warm again on Wednesday. So goes the weather, but the forecast states that tomorrow will be the coldest day in the next ten, so the moderate weather should return after tomorrow. I caught up with Sam of Windbird today and found that Windbird is stuck in the Turks and Caicos, with the only possible window in this month for getting out being this Friday and Saturday. Sam took advantage of the down time, to do a flying stint to Chili and is doing training in Atlanta on Wednesday and Thursday. But if the window really opens on Friday, he and Dawn hope to head to the Dominican Republic. I’m still hoping to catch up with them at some point, so I will keep following their progress and make a determination at the last minute when to fly down to either the DR or to Puerto Rico. It could be in a couple of weeks or nearer the end of March. All depends on the weather. Stay tuned.

I made my weekly veggie soup today. It is so easy to make and so nice to have as a fall back for lunch or dinner. I just chop a cup and a half each of onions, carrots, celery, and zucchini, sauté those ingredients adding thyme, salt, and pepper, then add my homemade chicken mineral broth, crushed tomatoes, and kidney beans. After that simmers for about 20 minutes, I add three packed cups of Swiss chard. Lots of veggies and so delicious.

And how about those Olympics? I am right now enjoying the end of the women’s snowboarding with USA Chloe Kim taking the Gold. A great addition to Red Gerard taking the men’s snowboarding Gold. And both at the ripe old age of 17! Go, Olympians. And you’ve got to love those Toyota “Start Your Impossible’ commercials. They get a Gold from me.

And by the way, my computer is still syncing with the Google Cloud. I don’t think this is good news.

2018 Life Logs, Day 42—Last Soccer Sunday

2018 Life Logs, Day 42—Last Soccer Sunday
Date: Sunday, February 11, 2018
Weather: Warm with Lots of Rain; High 51, Low 44 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Today was another day filled with watching the Olympics and the last of soccer Sundays for this year. Jonah’s game ended in a 1-1 tie with Jonah making the goal for his team. Sam’s gamed also ended in a 1-1 tie with Sam making the goal for his team and his best buddy Sebastian making the goal for the opposing team. We will now have a break from soccer for a few weeks. After soccer, the Goldstones gathered here for dinner. Heather was the last to arrive as she had an afternoon book club. By the time she got her, she had to wade through inches of water in the parking area. We got a lot of rain this afternoon and the weather is spring warm, not winter cold. We watched more Olympics together and then had dinner. It was so nice to begin the new week together.

I’m afraid I don’t have good news on the computer front. My computer is still syncing with Google Drive. Either I have a very, very slow internet connection or something has gone astray. I go to the gym for a class first thing in the morning and will then come home to figure out what to do next. Stay tuned on that one.

2018 Life Logs, Day 41—Enjoying the Olympics

2018 Life Logs, Day 41—Enjoying the Olympics
Date: Saturday, February 10, 2018
Weather: AM Sunshine, Then Overcast; Warmer with High 52, Low 43 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

This will be short because it is 7:37 pm and the coverage of Olympic figure skating and men’s downhill skiing begins at 8 pm. I’m aware that I can watch specific coverage on NBCSN, but for tonight I will watch NBC’s edited coverage. So, I will wrap this up quickly and sit back to enjoy my evening of watching. The jury is still out on my computer issues. The syncing process I described in the log I wrote earlier today is still in progress. Google Drive currently reports that it is syncing 25,101 of 50,087 items for a total of 459 GB’s. Both the number of items synced items and the number of total items have steadily gone up all afternoon. The young man at the computer shop told me this is a good thing. I just don’t understand it, but I will hope that by morning the process is done and all is well.

2018 Life Logs, Day 40—Google Driving Me Crazy

2018 Life Logs, Day 40—Google Driving Me Crazy
Date: Friday, February 9, 2018
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 32, Low 31 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

More specifically, it is Google Drive that is driving me crazy. I am writing this log a day late because I had to take my computer to the shop and leave it overnight. It is now Saturday and I obviously have my computer back, but it is still trying to resolve its problem. The young man at the computer shop doesn’t think my computer has a virus. He believes that the problem arose because of something that happened with my Google Drive. I pay for this service as it constantly, I thought, does a sync with what is on my computer and the Google “cloud”. Justin encouraged me to use Google Drive as the cloud storage services store my files and photos in a central location, the “cloud”, which gives me some backup protection in case I lose something. But the automatic syncing function has been turned off on my computer. When? How? I don’t know. And then for some reason, the syncing function went bonkers on my computer on Tuesday and started sending random files and photos to the recycle bin. On Wednesday and Thursday, I spent my time trying to back up files and photos on a hard drive in case the problem was a virus, but even that was more difficult than normal. And when I would restore the files and photos that were being put in the recycle bin, Google Drive just put more and more in there. Yesterday morning, I thought I had everything under control, so I left the computer and went to the kitchen to do a bit of cooking. When I got back to my computer about two hours later, the recycle bin was once again full. I finally panicked and called the woman who helped me with a computer issue this fall, only to find that she is in Hawaii. So, reluctantly, I headed to Cape Coastal Computers. I say ‘reluctantly’ because in the fall of 2016 when I had a major email catastrophe, I took my computer there and was less than happy with the results. When I picked up my computer this afternoon, I was told to keep it on until Google has finished syncing. This was done yesterday and during the night and when the process was completed this morning, the young man restored everything that was in the recycle bin, uninstalled and reinstalled Google Drive, and started another sync. It is not halfway there yet, but at least I can use the computer while this is happening. When the sync is done, the young man thinks things will be fine. But if I still have the problem of files and photos being sent to the recycle bin, he said he was clueless as to what could be causing it. At that point, if he is clueless, I don’t know where that puts me! I don’t even want to think about it. But for now, I will continue checking my documents for items that have been deleted through this process. I started with my Travel Logs yesterday and found that there are definitely missing logs as far back as 2005. I do have these backed up, but it is painstaking process to find the missing ones and replace them. Fun, fun.

I hope you loved watching the opening of the Olympic Games 2018 last night on NBC as much as I did. I had read that the event executive producer Yang Jung-woong said the “Peace in Motion” ceremony was designed to unfold like a winter fairy tale. And it did so beautifully. The only negatives for me were the commercials and the fact that our vice-president and the sister of Kim Jong-un were sitting just a few feet from one another, yet neither recognized the other. But at least North and South Korea acknowledged each other and their athletes marched as united Koreans. Imagine . . .

John Lennon, Plastic Ono Band
Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one