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!

2019 Life Logs, Day 279: Fun and ‘Deliciousness’ with the Goldstones

2019 Life Logs, Day 279: Fun and ‘Deliciousness’ with the Goldstones
Date:  Sunday,October 6, 2019
Weather:  Mostly Cloudy with Some Sunshine; High 70, Low 62 degrees F
Location:  At Home in The Cottage. East Falmouth, MA

Sam, Jonah and Ollie came over for dinner yesterday evening and spent the night.  We didn’t do anything special, but we did have fun.  Last night after dinner the boys talked me into letting them watch Home Alone 3 and we all found the silliness very funny.  This morning the boys got their 30 minutes each on Mark’s tablet which is a special treat, and then we played games, played Legos, and went down to the dock for a little water play.  Somehow having water battles was more inviting than seriously kayaking, but I just let them go at it.  We didn’t have lunch until 1:30 and then I took them home to get ready to go to what they call pick-up soccer.  Somebody decides to invite other friends and their parents to come to the field to play soccer.  Heather took the boys and played the whole game with them, and Jed came a little later.  It is grant writing season and he needs to spend what seems like every free minute writing and revising.  Then tonight, Heather invited me to dinner as she was fixing Afghan kaddo (pumpkin) with a tomato and ground beef sauce and yoghurt.  We first had this years ago at Helmand in Boston and since then about once a year during pumpkin season, Heather fixes it as a special treat.  It was delicious.  Thank you, Heather.

2019 Life Logs, Day 278: Fiddles, Soccer, and a Goldpebble Overnight

2019 Life Logs, Day 278: Fiddles, Soccer, and a Goldpebble Overnight
Date: Saturday, October 5, 2019
Weather: Sunny with a Cool Breeze; High 63, Low 40 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Cottage. East Falmouth, MA

It definitely felt like fall today, so it was a great day for Harvest Fest where Ollie performed with the Sonnay Fiddlers.

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He looks so tiny compared to the other kids as he is at least five years younger than anyone that was playing today. I am amazed the number of songs he can play and he is still three months shy of taking lessons for a year. Needless to say, I really enjoyed watching him play. And I left the Harvest Fest after Ollie finished his last song and went to see Sam play soccer. His team won their game today and they were very happy. The fall season has been tough for them, so I was so pleased to see them enjoy their win today. Jonah was busy all day today, but I didn’t see him until 5:30 pm when Ollie, Sam, and I picked him up from his friend Luke’s house. I then brought the three boys home with me for an overnight with Oma. We had steak and calamari for dinner and then watched a movie together. What fun!

2019 Life Logs, Day 277: Home Again, Home Again

2019 Life Logs, Day 277: Home Again, Home Again
Date: Friday, October 4, 2019
Weather: Mix of Sun and Clouds; High 60, Low 40 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Cottage. East Falmouth, MA

What a wonderful week . . . meeting Lynne Kirwin in Philadelphia to visit and tour with Kevin Russell and Claire McKellar . . . driving to the Nyack, New York, area to spend the night with Lynne and her friend Jane . . . home for a night . . . going to Kittery Point, Maine, for the Celebration of Life of Rick Kole, husband of good friend Leslie Kole . . . spending time with many friends from my teaching days in Concord, New Hampshire . . . spending the night with long-time friends, Tom and Detta Porat . . . stopping to have lunch with my niece Lynn in northern Massachusetts on my way home today . . . and having happy hour and dinner with friends Bruce and Jane Woodin once back here on the Cape. Now it’s time for a good night’s sleep in my own bed. I love visiting with friends, but there is no place like home.

2019 Life Logs, Day 276: Celebration of Life

2019 Life Logs, Day 276: Celebration of Life
Date: Thursday, October 3, 2019
Weather: Mostly Cloudy; High 52, Low 42 degrees F
Location: At Home with Detta and Tom Porat, Greenland, NH

The drive to Kittery Point, Maine, went smoothly on this cool fall morning. I drove from home to Kittery Point, Maine, for Rich Kole’s Celebration of Life. It was avice t a restaurant called The View, and indeed, it offered a beautiful view out over the Piscataqua River and on out to sea. It was a wonderful to be with my friend Leslie, and other teaching friends from our days at Beaver Meadow School in Concord, New Hampshire. Our principal, Roger Brooks, was there as well as Detta Porat and Cheryl Dolin. We listened to stories of Rich’s life told by his two brothers and his daughter Jessica and son-in-law Tom while eating delicious food and drinking wine in Rich’s honor. It was just as he would have wanted it.

After the celebration, I went home with good friends Detta and Tom Porat where we had more delicious food and talked the night away. I’ve made new friends, but kept the old, one is silver and the other gold, as song that I learned in Girl Scouts as a child good. Good advice and good friends.

2019 Life Logs, Day 275: New York to Cape Cod

2019 Life Logs, Day 275: New York to Cape Cod
Date: Wednesday, October 2, 2019
Weather: Overcast Turning Rainy; High 85, Low 49 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

On this unusually warm October 2nd, I made it home from New York, picked Ollie up from school and took him to meet Heather for his violin lesson, and then came home to get ready to leave again in the morning. Short as my visit home is, it is always a good feeling to get home and sleep in your own bed for a night. I can be glad to be home, but that does not take away from the wonderful time Lynne and I had in Philadelphia. Kevin and Claire were such gracious hosts. They moved off the boat and slept in their Roadtrek motorhome in the parking lot next to Pier 3, letting Lynne and I have the boat for sleeping. But we did spend our evenings together on the boat sharing stories. Chris and Georgette, who live on the boat next door, joined us for part of each evening and Claire and Georgette elicited sailing stories from Lynne and me. It was so much fun to back on a boat in a marina, sharing stories with other sailors. We enjoyed answering the questions about our circumnavigations:

What were the most fascinating things you saw? (That was a new question for us.)
What were your favorite places? (The most commonly asked question.)
What were your most interesting experiences?
What were the scariest moments?

And Philadelphia was so much fun. Despite the fact that I have blisters on my toes from walking seven and a half miles each day while there, we loved seeing the city sights. The old town historic district was my favorite, but Kevin and I had a great time on eclectic South Street at Tattoo Mom’s where we ate $1 tacos and walking along Penn’s Landing on the Delaware River. During the visit we walked to Chinatown, visited the Reading (railroad) Terminal Market, walked to Rittenhouse Square to have a fabulous organic vegan lunch, and walked through the streets of Society Hill with its million-dollar brownstones. Everyone was friendly and I did feel like I was in the City of Brotherly Love. Philadelphia is a great city to visit. And I just once again want to say a big thank you to two of my favorite people in this whole wide world. Thank you, Kevin and Claire.

Tomorrow morning, I leave very early to battle rush hour traffic around Boston in order to get to Kittery, Maine by 11:30 am to attend the Celebration of Life for Rich Kole, friend of mine and husband of my good friend Leslie. After the celebration, I will go home with two more of my favorite people, Detta and Tom Porat. I will spend the night at their home in Greenland, New Hampshire, and then head home on Friday. On my way I’ll stop to have lunch with my niece Lynn in Chelmsford, Massachusetts and make a couple of shopping stops before getting home again.

2019 Life Logs, Day 274: Philadelphia to New City, NY

2019 Life Logs, Day 274: Philadelphia to New City, NY
Date: Tuesday, October 1, 2019
Weather: Beautiful Day; High 73, Low 70 degrees F
Location: At Home with Lynne’s Friend Jane in New City, NY

Today was another beautiful touring day in Philadelphia, this time with Kevin. He returned from his 24-hour business trip to Los Angeles early this morning, slept a couple of hours, and then walked back to the historic district with Lynne and me. We went back to the Ben Franklin Post Office so Lynne could send a letter with the special post mark and then we walked to the National Constitution Center. Once we went in, we realized it was going to take more time that we had to do the tour, so instead we headed to The Bourse. This is a food court in the historic 1895 building that was once a stock exchange. It was remodeled and opened in July of last year. The name ‘bourse’ is used to refer to a stock exchange, especially in certain European cities and now in Philadelphia. We chose the first food stall we came to as the Hawaiian Poké bowls sounded delicious . . . and they were. We had five categories to choose from, with many options in each category, to build our own bowl. We all chose to have sushi grade ahi tuna on organic salad greens and had some combination of green onions, garlic, seaweed salad, edamame, carrots, cucumber, sesame seeds, and I had wasabi aioli dressing with mine. It was delicious. We then walked back to the boat to get Lynne’s things as she was heading to New City, New York to stay with a friend and start her visit with other friends and family in Nyack. Claire was leaving for Cold Springs on Long Island for a conference, so that left Kevin and I to visit and tour a bit more. We walked the waterfront down to South Street and then walked through a funkier part of Philly. We stopped at Tattoo Mom, a kicky little bar with lots of vegan food choices, to have $1.00 tacos and a beer. We solved all the world’s problems, walked back through the Society Hill area of Philadelphia, back to the historic district where I got to see the old Customs House, and then back to the boat. By the time we got my things to the car, it was 6:30 pm and I headed to New City to spend the night with Lynne and her friend Jane. I had met Jane before, but it was so gracious of her to invite me to spend the night. This makes my drive home tomorrow much shorter and I will avoid the early morning Philadelphia and New York City traffic.

Both Lynne and I had a fabulous time staying aboard Merganser for a couple of nights and truly enjoyed touring Philadelphia with Kevin and Claire. They are the perfect hosts and are so much fun to be with. I’m so lucky to have such wonderful friends.  Thank you, thank you!

2019 Life Logs, Day 273: Happy Birthday to Heather

2019 Life Logs, Day 273: Happy Birthday to Heather
Date: Monday, September 30, 2019
Weather: Overcast; High 72, Low 63 degrees F
Location: Aboard Merganser, Pier 3 Marina, Philadelphia, PA

Happy birthday to my baby girl. Well, not quite a baby anymore, but she will always be in my eyes. I got a phone call from her this evening and she reported that she had an absolutely lovely day.

Kevin flew to LA in the wee hours of the morning for a business meeting and will be back in tomorrow morning. So, Claire took Lynne and I on an all day historic tour of old town Philadelphia. According to Lynne’s FitBit, we walked 17,280 steps or 8.15 miles today. Whew! It was quite a walking tour. We hit all of the historic places in old town starting with Ben Franklin’s grave stone in the Christ Church Burial Ground. It is just a huge granite slab covered with pennies that people shower upon it. It was ironic when we ended the day in the Ben Franklin US Post Office. In between those two Ben Franklin landmarks, we walked by the Quaker Meeting House, the US Mint, the National Constitution Center, and the Independence Visitor Center. It was late morning by this time and we wanted to make an appointment to see Independence Hall. We were told that the first reservation available for a tour was at 3 pm, but we had much more we wanted to see, so that time was fine. We walked on to see the Declaration House display and then walked to China Town, and on to visit the Reading Market, one of the largest and oldest public markets in the country. We walked through what is now Macy’s, but was once Wannamaker’. There we saw the largest fully functioning pipe organ in the world as well as the bronze Philadelphia Eagle. We walked in and around the Philadelphia City Hall which is quite an impressive structure, and then we walked on toward Rittenhouse Square which is the heart of the city’s most expensive and exclusive neighborhood. We were all getting hungry but not sure where to eat when Claire literally looked up and saw a sign that said, “Organic Plant-Based Food.” We couldn’t resist and had a great lunch. It was nearing the time of our Independence Hall tour and there just wasn’t enough time to walk back, so Claire called an Uber and we were there in minutes. The Independence Hall tour was definitely the highlight of the day. We had a great guide who showed us the West Wing which served as a Court complete with a juror’s box and a defendant’s box where the defendant had to stand during the trial . . . thus the term ‘stand trial’. In the East Wing we got to see the room where the Founding Fathers wrote both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. As we walked back toward the waterfront, we ended our tour by walking through the place where Ben Franklin once lived and visited the US Post Office that bears Franklin’s name. It was a wonderful day.

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Tonight we visited aboard ‘Knock on Wood’, the boat owned by Chris and Georgette that we met last night. We had another fun evening together with Lynne and I telling boat stories. It has been so much fun for us to be staying aboard a sailboat once again. More tomorrow.

2019 Life Logs, Day 272: Cape Cod to Philadelphia

2019 Life Logs, Day 272: Cape Cod to Philadelphia
Date: Sunday, September 29, 2019
Weather: Mostly Sunny; High 81, Low 63 degrees F
Location: Aboard Merganser, Pier 3 Marina, Philadelphia, PA

There was more traffic than I anticipated on a Sunday, but I made it to Philadelphia just before 3 pm and then Lynne arrived about 45 minutes later. We spent time finding places to park our cars on the street rather than paying the $20 per night parking lot fee and then we headed to the marina to enjoy the rest of the afternoon with Kevin and Claire on Merganser. It had been a sunny day turning cloudy mid-afternoon, but when we got to Merganser the sun came out. We had a lovely time sitting at a picnic table at the end of the dock having appetizers and talking. A couple from another boat joined us and enjoyed the farmer’s cheese, made by Kevin today, along with sliced tomatoes and basil. And Kevin really enjoyed the Lebanon bologna that Lynne brought to him from Amish country in Lancaster. She drove from Michigan to Lancaster yesterday to visit with family and I told her that if she wanted Kevin to love her forever all she had to do was to bring him some Amish Lebanon bologna. So she did. Lebanon bologna is a type of cured and smoked beef sausage that is fermented. It is similar to salami. And it made Kevin very happy.

We had dinner at the City Tavern where our nation’s founding fathers ate, drank, and made merry while forming our new government. Today’s Tavern is a replica of the original that was established in 1773, but the original building, but the staff still wears period costumes. Before dinner, I had a sampling of beers made from recipes from George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and Alexander Hamilton. Ben’s was my favorite. I had Chesapeake crab cakes for dinner, Lynne had Brook trout, Kevin had turkey pot pie, and Claire had a West Indies pepperpot soup. All delicious. When we got back to Merganser, we invited the couple we had met earlier to join us as we shared sailing stories. Tomorrow is tour day. So, Philadelphia, here we come.

2019 Life Logs, Day 271: Another Soccer Saturday

2019 Life Logs, Day 271: Another Soccer Saturday
Date: Saturday, September 28, 2019
Weather: Another Beautiful Day; High 74, Low 52 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

It was another soccer Saturday. I didn’t get to see Ollie play today because his game was at the same time as Jonah’s, but Ollie reported that he made all four goals in his scrimmage, a ‘hat trick’ to rival Jonah’s from a couple of weeks ago. He was very proud. Jonah and Sam both played tough games today. Neither of their teams won, but they played hard. Sam always plays defense and Jonah switches from goalie to forward to defense. Slowly, I am learning more about the game and I do really enjoy watching them play. Neither of their teams have more than a couple of kids on the bench, which means they have to play the entire game with only a couple of rests. Sam now plays on a much larger field, so lots of running and harder for me to get close-up photos. But today I got one of Sam throwing the ball in and one kicking the ball. Even though Jonah was wearing a head band at this coach’s insistence, he’s is still the wild-haired kid on the field. Such a contrast to his good buddy Luke with his black hair.

Tomorrow I am off to Philadelphia. I lived in Philadelphia for a year when I first got out of college, but I don’t think I ever toured the town. I remember driving by Independence Hall while I lived there, but not touring. A few years later Mark and I visited Philadelphia and went to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. So I am looking forward to going there to visit with Kevin and Claire, meet up with Lynne Kirwin, and see the city as a tourist. It should be fun and the weather looks cooperative.

2019 Life Logs, Day 270: Bike Ride and Newcomers Mix and Mingle

2019 Life Logs, Day 270: Bike Ride and Newcomers Mix and Mingle
Date: Friday, September 27, 2019
Weather: Continued Beautiful Weather; High 73, Low 54 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

The beautiful and warm summer-like weather continued today. The weather this week has been just spectacular, but the frenzy of Monarch butterflies that seemed to be everywhere yesterday were no where to be found today. Do they know something we don’t about upcoming weather? Maybe. But more likely it is just time for them to head south to Mexico.

I have not been on a bicycle other than in the gym since my knee surgery. My PT person told me not to ride on the road for at least five months as it takes that long for nerves and reflexes to mend after surgery. She explained that the automatic reflexes for what to do when you have to stop and hop off the bike take time to return and without them, you risk falling over. Not a good idea for the new knee. I wanted to ride with the Newcomers bike group today, but at the last minute, I realized that I should really try riding around the neighborhood first to make sure I was ready for this. So I rode up and down and around streets in this neighborhood and practiced getting on and off the bike. It worked just fine, but I realized just how much out of shape I am. Tiny hills were challenging. So I hope to continue riding 3-5 miles in the neighborhood for a few weeks before rejoining the bike group. But I have to say that it felt great to be biking again. In the afternoon, I delivered a meal to Terry and Olivia. Olivia was released from the hospital yesterday after her knee replacement. When I arrived, the PT person was there working with her. I waited for him to finish and we visited a bit. I wish her the best in the recovery process. Then tonight I went to a Newcomers Mix and Mingle. It is always nice to visit with people you know and meet new people. Tonight I met a couple who are originally from Great Britain, but are not Falmouth residents. While talking the husband, he mentioned that his wife loves to garden. When I then followed up and talked to her, she convinced me to join the local Garden Club. Not sure I need another activity, but she made it sound to inviting!

Tomorrow is another soccer Saturday and early on Sunday morning I head to Philadelphia. So looking forward to meeting up with Lynne Kirwin and visiting with Kevin and Claire.