Welcome to The Voyage of Windbird . . . and Beyond.  My name is Judy Handley and I live on Cape Cod in Massachusetts.  For six years of my life, my husband Mark and I sailed around the world.  I documented that story, one day at a time, in this blog that was then just called The Voyage of Windbird.  Those daily logs from 2005 to 2011 tell the story of our circumnavigation.  While sailing, my daily logs were sent via Ham radio to the internet to appear on this blog spot each morning.  My son Justin made that happen, and to this day, I don’t understand the process.  But it was like magic.  I would sit in the cockpit each afternoon around 4 pm and summarize the day’s activities.  During the evening when the conditions were just right for sending radio emails, my husband would send the log.  The next morning my son, my daughter, other members of my family and good friends would read the news and know exactly where in the world we were and what fun we were having.  

After almost 6 years of traveling, we sailed into Woods Hole on Cape Cod.  We continued living aboard for the next five years and I wrote about that, adding ‘and Beyond’ to the title of the blog.  Then shortly before Mark’s death in 2016, we sold our beloved Windbird and my travel logs became land logs.  At this point, I had written a daily account for each and every day for 11 years.  I fully intended to end the blog at that point, but when I wrote that news in a log, I got many responses saying that I really needed to keep posting.  At the same time, I realized that I couldn’t stop writing.  Summarizing each day had become a permanent part of my life and I will probably continue writing until I can no longer.  These postings reflect the ordinary, and sometimes the extraordinary, days in my life and I would like to invite you to join me on my journey.

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!

2021 Life Logs, Day 23: Day with Ollie

2021 Life Logs, Day 23: Day with Ollie
Date: Saturday, January 23, 2021
Weather: Mix of Sun and Clouds; High 33, Low 19 Degrees F
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Now I remember why our bodies are designed to have children when we are younger. I had a delightful day with Ollie, but I am tired.
Part of that is because we took a walk with Heather and Jed mid-afternoon and went further than we intended due to taking a wrong turn. I think we were out there walking for two hours and it was cold and windy. Just being outside in the cold saps your energy. We started our walk at Peterson Farm and checked out the sheep in the fields. Ollie and I will try to go back every month in the hopes of seeing baby lambs. We walked around the fields and into the woods where Ollie enjoyed climbing on the rocks along the way and Shadow had a great time pulling us along. Jonah and Sam went on an all-day outdoor Scout outing today. When I took Ollie home tonight at 8:30 pm, Jonah was just getting into a hot bath trying to get warm. I assume Sam was upstairs taking a hot shower. But other than being cold, Jonah said they had a good day.

2021 Life Logs, Day 22: Educating Oneself, A Lifelong Commitment

2021 Life Logs, Day 22: Educating Oneself, A Lifelong Commitment
Date: Friday, January 22, 2021
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 44, Low 25 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

This afternoon, I hopped on my exercise bike and turned on the TV to catch up on the news while I biked. It was announced that Greta Thunberg, the young climate change activist, would be coming up in the next segment, so I was excited about that. I saw her in the interview with the Dali Lama a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to hear what she had to say now that we have a new administration in this country. The interview was great, but she was still ‘selling’ the same message. “Educate yourself about climate change. Educate, educate, educate.” This reminded me that I need to go back and watch the five films on Climate Emergency: Feedback Loops. Here’s the link if you are interested: https://feedbackloopsclimate.com/. And this afternoon Heather reminded me that I need to actually read Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming. It is on my coffee table, but it has not been read.

The past eight days, I have been watching a docu-series called the Longevity Roadmap. I do want to summarize what I learned for you, but there was so much information and I need to watch some of the programs again this weekend during the replay. Then I’ll write my summary. I have also been watching a series of short programs each afternoon on winter gardening. It was not the best I’ve seen, but it did get me into sprouting lentils. They will be ready tomorrow to incorporate into a couple of new recipes that were shared, so I’ll let you know how that goes. I’m reading Obama’s autobiography which is a “deeply personal account of history in the making” and this week I have been glued to the TV watching history happening before our eyes. So, for sure, I have been doing my part to continue the lifelong learning process these past two weeks.

Tomorrow I am taking the day off to be with Ollie. Jonah and Sam have an all-day Scouting activity, so Ollie and I are going to do some special things together. One thing we are going to work on is making a nice walking path for me and Shadow in the woods on the street side of the property. This morning at 6:15 am when we went out for his early bathroom break, we almost ran into the neighborhood coyote in the woods on the water side of the property. We were way too close for comfort. I’ve known the coyote was around, but this is the first time that I saw him. He quickly ran away when Shadow barked, but I think I’ll avoid walking on that side late at night and in the very early morning. A new path, free of briars and low hanging branches, is definitely needed!

2021 Life Logs, Day 21: Happy Birthday to Sam

2021 Life Logs, Day 21: Happy Birthday to Sam
Date: Thursday, January 21, 2021
Weather: A Mix of Sun and Clouds, A Few Snowflakes; High 38, Low 29 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I woke up this morning feeling an unbelievable sense of relief that there is a new administration in Washington, but it was almost as if I had an inauguration hangover. Was this really true? Are Joe Biden and Kamala Harris really our new President and Vice President? Or was I dreaming? I shook my head and turned on the TV to make sure all was well. Whew! It is not a dream.

I started my day with my exercise and walking rituals, watched a couple of docu-series, and before I knew it, it was almost time to go pick up Ollie at the end of the school day. A little before that, I got a phone call from Heather preparing me for some bad news Sam’s received today, on his 14th birthday. This is a remote school week for Jonah and Sam, so Sam was at his friend Robert’s today. Sam and Robert are both drummers and had both just submitted their video auditions for the position of drummer for the high school jazz band next year. Yes. Sam is going to be in high school. They found out today that Robert got the position. It was unfortunate that this news had to come on Sam’s birthday. He is disappointed but seems to be handling it okay. But then tonight when I went over for Sam’s birthday dinner, there was more bad news. Just before dinner, Ollie went up to feed the guinea pigs and came back downstairs saying Jonah’s guinea pig, Max, was laying on his side. Heather and Jed headed upstairs while Sam and I stayed in the kitchen. The news we heard was not good. Max was obviously struggling to stay alive. At first Jonah headed to his bedroom, but then he decided he wanted to say goodbye to Max. He was a brave little boy and held his guinea pig and then everyone came down to the dining room. Max was resting for a bit and Heather kept going to check on him. None of really felt like eating dinner, but Sam heated up pieces of the duck breast that he loves so much and he ate standing up in the kitchen. Heather came down to try and get Jonah to eat. And eventually, Ollie, Heather, Jed, and I ate a little. But there was no sit down celebratory dinner. Sam opened a couple of presents and that distracted Jonah for a bit. Eventually, Heather took Jonah back upstairs and when she came back, she announced that Max had died. When Jonah rejoined us, Sam cut his own birthday cake and brought Jonah the first piece. Brothers can fight like crazy, but in a time of need, they are there for each other. And even though Sam had a very disappointing day and his birthday dinner was derailed, he handled it all really well and did enjoy opening the remainder of his birthday gifts at the end of the evening. So Happy Birthday, Sam. So hard to believe my first born grandchild is 14 years old!

2021 Life Logs, Day 20: A New Day in America

2021 Life Logs, Day 20: A New Day in America
Date: Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Weather: A Little Snow, A Little Sunshine; High 38, Low 20 Degrees F
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Even if the joy only lasts one day, the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris ushered in a much needed new day in America. I saw someone post on Facebook that the transfer of power felt like having a 243 pound gorilla lifted off our shoulders. I couldn’t agree more. From early morning to late evening, it was a an uplifting, joyous, hopeful day in our nation’s capital and around the nation. I heard my favorite politician, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, say tonight that today was a 10 out of 10 win-win for her. I feel the same way . . . a new President that is empathetic and kind and willing to dedicate his soul to the healing of our broken country . . . a new Vice President that is the first woman, first African American, and first South Asian to hold that office . . . a powerful 22 year-old national poet laureate whose words stole the day . . . everyone attending the inauguration wearing masks . . . three previous Presidents attending the inauguration and giving the new administration their full support . . . Lady Gaga singing the national anthem and bringing me to tears (I never, ever thought that Lady Gaga could make me cry!) . . . J. Lo singing a medley of songs and then addressing the nation in Spanish with the last lines of the Pledge of Allegiance, “Una nación, bajo Dios, indivisible, con libertad y justicia para todos” (One nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all) . . . the new Vice-President swearing in three new Democratic Senators . . . the President signing fifteen executive orders, one of which is rejoining the Paris Climate Accords (drumroll) . . . the first press conference of the Biden administration with Press Secretary Jen Psaki pledging to bring “truth back to the American government” . . . an evening ‘virtual’ Celebrating America concert with everyone from Jon Bon Jovi to Yo Yo Ma that ended with a fabulous fireworks display. And this happened while most of us were holding our breath anticipating a possible act of violence. Thankfully, that didn’t happen. It was quite a day and I don’t remember ever feeling this proud to be an American.

2021 Life Logs, Day 19: The Dark and The Light

2021 Life Logs, Day 19: The Dark and The Light
Date: Tuesday, January 19, 2021
Weather: Partly Cloudy; High 41 (felt much colder), Low 28 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

It feels a bit like living in a Star Wars movie. We have the Dark Lord and we have the incoming Light. There is very little we know for sure these days, but barring some sort of cataclysmic act, the Dark Lord flies away from the Mother Ship (my name for our nation’s capital) tomorrow morning. Hallelujah! The Light arrived this afternoon when Joe Biden and Kamala Harris flew into Washington and presided over a very moving ceremony honoring those who have died from Covid 19. When the 400 lights lining the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool came on representing the 400,000 of us who have died from the coronavirus, it was both sad and beautiful. I lit my candles, lights all over the country came on, and bells were rung. A national acknowledgement of what has happened since the first case of Covid was discovered in this country one year ago tomorrow was long past due and I felt so proud that this was the very first thing that our new President and Vice President did when they arrived in our nation’s capital. I will spend my day tomorrow watching the inauguration. It certainly is not going to be anything like past inaugurations, but then nothing these days is like it once was. Thankfully, we are a creative people, each of us figuring out how to negotiate life these days, and hopefully the inauguration tomorrow will reflect that creativeness.

Otherwise, my day was filled with watching a couple of docu-series episodes, one on health and one on winter gardening. I exercised, walked with Shadow, picked Ollie up after school, and spent an hour and half at the skatepark with Ollie and Jonah. I spend most of my time in the car reading while they practice their trick moves on their scooters, but once in a while I am asked to come video them in action. I love watching them and enjoy the extra time to read. I am currently back to reading the first volume of Obama’s memoir, A Promised Land. Really enjoying it.

2021 Life Logs, Day 18: Words of MLK

2021 Life Logs, Day 18: Words of MLK
Date: Monday, January 18, 2021
Weather: Partly Sunny and Windy; High 44, Low 27 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Dr. Martin Luther King’s speech at the March On Washington in 1963 still rings in our ears. The vision of an America where freedom rings. But in his later years, as was pointed out by Joy Reid on MSNBC tonight, King “painted a much less rosy picture of America, a country that then, as now, was driven by what King called the triple evils of racism, militarism, and the neglect of the poor. So much so, that King’s words are as relevant today as when he spoke at the National Conference for New Politics in Chicago in 1967.” I could not find the text of that speech, but I attempted to transcribe what I heard on The ReidOut tonight. Here is my transcription of part of that speech. Chilling.

“The white backlash of today is rooted in the same problem that has characterized America ever since the black man landed in chains on the shores of this nation. This does not imply that all white Americans are racists. Far from it. Many white people have, through a deep moral compulsion, fought long and hard for racial justice. Nor does it mean that America has made no progress in our attempt to cure the body politic of the disease of racism. Or that the goals of racism have not been considerably modified in recent years. However, for the good of America, it is necessary to refute the idea that the dominant ideology in our country, even today, is freedom and equality, while racism is just an occasional departure from the norm on the part of a few bigoted extremists. Racism can well be that corrosive evil that will bring down the curtain on western civilization . . . some 26 civilizations have risen upon the face of the earth. Almost all of them have descended into the junk heaps of destruction that decries that the fall of these civilizations, according to Gandhi, was not caused by external invasions, but by internal decay. They failed to respond creatively to the challenges impingent upon them. If America does not respond creatively to the challenge to banish racism, some future historian will have to say that a great civilization died because it lacked the soul and commitment to make justice a reality for all men.” MLK, 1967

2021 Life Logs, Day 17:  Football and Goldstones Over for Dinner

2021 Life Logs, Day 17:  Football and Goldstones Over for Dinner
Date:  Sunday, January 17, 2021
Weather:  Partly Sunny and Windy; High 42, Low 37 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

This afternoon I watched the Cleveland Browns play the Kansas City Chiefs.  I was cheering for the Browns as my family members have been die-hard Browns fans for over 40 years.  They didn’t win today, but just as it was time for me to get dinner ready, the game got quite interesting.  The Goldstones were coming to dinner and I got so interested in the game that I forgot to make dessert.  But Heather brought a dessert treat, so it worked out fine.  I didn’t have to cook the whole dinner as I bought pulled pork and coleslaw from Wicked N’ Wood.  This is a locally owned, outside business, so I felt good about doing my part to support local businesses and giving myself a break from cooking.  But I did make the buns and mac and cheese to go along with the pulled pork.

The Goldstones arrived and we had a nice dinner together and then watched a movie.  Princess Bride, from the 1980’s, is a favorite of Heather and Jed’s, so we watched that.  I saw it in the late 80’s, but I don’t remember appreciating the humor as much as I did tonight.  It is an irreverent fairy tale and has enough action to keep both kids and adults interested.  I now realize it is one of those movies that you have to watch over and over to really appreciate all of the humor.  Once Heather and family left, I continued my television watching binge.  I watched Sunday night Masterpiece Theatre and then CNN special on Kamala Harris that I had recorded.  I enjoyed learning more about her past and really look forward to her inauguration as the first female Vice President.

2021 Life Logs, Day 16: Rainy Saturday

2021 Life Logs, Day 16: Rainy Saturday
Date: Saturday, January 16, 2021
Weather: Rainy, Clearing a Bit Mid-Afternoon; High 53, Low 34 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Actually, it didn’t rain all day. But overnight and this morning it was very stormy. The rain stopped in the afternoon, but other than a very brief moment when the sun tried to break through, it was a dreary day. I wish I could say I took advantage of the day and got a lot of things done that are on my very long inside ‘to do’ list. But I did not. Instead, I just enjoyed life. I worked on my current jigsaw puzzle. I can spend a half an hour and place very few pieces. But I persist. I rode my exercise bike while watching more depressing footage of the siege on the Capitol last week. I got a text from Heather saying that the Christmas present I got for Sam that just arrived late yesterday was quite a hit with Sam, as well as with Jonah and Ollie.
Since it took almost two months to get two little sets of magnetic sticks and balls, I ordered more today as there are just not enough pieces in the two sets I did order to build more complex things. Sam will get an ‘I Owe You’ for his birthday next week. I went to Heather’s to pick up an Amazon package that was delivered. And I came home and made leaf pie and broccoli potato soup. Somehow, that filled an entire day.

I did take two long walks with Shadow. As soon as the rain stopped, we took our first long walk. It was quite windy and still wet, so I decided to put the sweater on him that Ollie and I bought him for Christmas.
I had never even tried it on him and it is a bit too short in length. I think he looked a little silly, but it did protect him a bit from the wet and the wind. I think I am just not a ‘wear a sweater on your dog’ type of person! While on our second walk, we took time to visit the swans down by the dock and I realized that I didn’t know what kind of swans they are. So, when we got home I did a little research and found that they are Mute Swans, identified by their bright orange bills and a distinctive black knob on their foreheads. The Mute Swan (Cygnus oor) is not native. They are a Eurasian species that was introduced and now breeds in the wild in some areas, the upper reaches of the Eel River being one of those areas.

I also watched the third episode of a new Mark Hyman docu-series called The Longevity Roadmap. Mark Hyman is my health guru. The program I watched today focused on The Functional Medicine Approach to Cancer. Yesterday I watched the Functional Medicine Approach to Heart Disease. I have watched many of Dr. Hyman’s programs in the past, but not so much in the past year or so. I was amazed at the amount of new information that is being discovered through scientific studies and observations by doctors using a functional medical approach to treating their patients, especially regarding the role of insulin resistance. Basically, what they are finding is that a huge percentage of heart disease can be prevented with a few simple habits—staying your ideal body weight, exercising, not smoking, sleeping well, and eating a whole foods, nutrient-dense, plant-rich diet. Those same habits can also help to prevent cancer. So, I’ll keep riding that exercise bike, walking with Shadow, and striving to incorporate more and more veggies in my diet. And since quality sleep is so important, I’d better quit writing and get to bed!

2021 Life Logs, Day 15: Where to From Here

2021 Life Logs, Day 15: Where to From Here
Date: Friday, January 15, 2021
Weather: Mostly Sunny; High 46, Low 34 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

If I am still reeling from last week’s attack on our democracy, how must Joe Biden feel? He is doing a great job of trying to lay out a path to get us out of all of our current crises—the pandemic, the collapsing economy, and the attack on our democracy. To say that it is overwhelming doesn’t quite do it. Where to from here? I guess we just proceed by putting one foot in front of the other and hope we don’t find ourselves at a standstill, or worse yet, moving backwards. I have faith that we will make it, but it is going to take monumental strength to lead this nation forward. And it is going to take a cooperative effort on both sides of the aisle. But first we have to survive the next few days leading up to the inauguration of Biden and Harris. I constantly find myself holding my breath. It would be so helpful if the Republicans could collectively put this thing to rest by issuing a unanimous statement of the truth. That the November election was a free and fair election with no fraud. But the likelihood of that happening is nil. My daughter-in-law Jo sent me a link to a 10-minute video that I would like to share. It is by Matthew Cooke. If you are like me, you have never heard of him, but he is a successful director of documentaries. The video is titled, “Wake-Up Call for Republicans.” I will insert the link here, but in case it doesn’t work, to give you a flavor of what he is trying to get across, he ends by saying, “For the former Republican Party who called themselves patriots. This is your wake-up call. Your nightmare of a brainwashed, radical, anti-American movement trying to destroy the country . . . was you.” Ouch. Here’s the link. https://www.instagram.com/tv/CKE44CxAIoQ/

2021 Life Logs, Day 14: Celebrations the Covid Way

2021 Life Logs, Day 14: Celebrations the Covid Way
Date: Thursday, January 14, 2021
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 47, Low 34 Degrees
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

There is a lot of negative in our lives these days, but it is heartening to know that we can set that aside for short periods and enjoy celebrations in a new way, the Covid way.
Today was friend Terry White’s 80th birthday and the 1 pm celebration was organized by a member of our Dining-in Group. It was a car parade which, when it was first proposed, I thought was a rather silly idea for adults. But I have to admit that it was wonderful. Thank you, Midge, for organizing this. There were about ten cars that arrived in a gathering area, some with helium balloons that I also poo pooed and still do, others with banners, and at the appointed time, we all drove through Olivia and Terry’s u-shaped driveway. They had been alerted to come outside to the driveway and we went through, each car stopping to give birthday wishes to Terry, wearing masks of course.. It only took a few minutes, but you could feel the warmth and friendship that was exchanged. Happy 80th birthday to Terry!

I started my morning by attending a monthly Falmouth Newcomers meeting on Zoom. The speaker today was Terry and Olivia’s daughter, Sheri. She is the Lead Systems Engineer for the Ocean Observatories Initiative at WHOI (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution). This means that she goes out on the research vessel Neil Armstrong a few times each year to maintain arrays of moorings and autonomous vehicles in the North Atlantic, the North Pacific, and off the coast of New England. These moorings gather scientific data used by my many scientific institutions. It was a really interesting presentation, and the timing was perfect as Sheri was able to wish her dad a happy birthday while giving her presentation. The only other highlight of the day was taking Jonah and Ollie to the skatepark after school. When I went to pick Ollie up today, I took Shadow with me. So when I dropped Ollie off, Sam wanted to know if he could take Shadow for a run—Sam on his skateboard and Shadow pulling. Shadow has had his harness on since Monday’s run without it, so I told Sam to give it a go. All went well. And then Jonah and Ollie wanted to go to the skatepark.
I haven’t been there for a while and I enjoyed watching the boys. Even though the weather was mild, Shadow and I stayed in the car and watched from there. Some of the other parents don’t wear masks, so staying in the car is safer for me.