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 223: Shopping and Cooking

2019 Life Logs, Day 223: Shopping and Cooking
Date: Sunday, August 11, 2019
Weather: Sunny; High 82, Low 62 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Today was a marathon shopping and cooking day. I love my dark chocolate, but to get the organic 88% dark chocolate bars I like, I either have to drive to Whole Foods in Hyannis or order them from Amazon. There was a sale at Whole Foods in Hyannis that made each bar $1.50 less than ordering them online, so it was well worth the drive. I also picked-up an order for Sam at Old Navy and spent time at Home Depot checking out washers and dryers. I have lived without a washer or dryer for over a year, but I think it is time to buy. Once I returned home, I spent the rest of the day cooking. I made clam chowder to take next door to Shirley and Doris and I just finished a batch of ratatouille that I will can to save the taste of summer for a mid-winter day. The week coming up is the last full week of Camp Oma as the Goldstones head to Maine for ten days next Saturday. When they come home, they will be here for two days and then head to the Outer Cape for a long weekend of camping. Then it’s back to school.

2019 Life Logs, Day 222: Woods Hole Stroll and Legoland in England

2019 Life Logs, Day 222: Woods Hole Stroll and Legoland in England
Date: Saturday, August 10, 2019
Weather: Another Perfect Summer Day; High 83, Low 58 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

The weather has been spectacular recently, but it looks like we are in for cooler temperatures during the coming week. Tonight I had dinner at Heather and Jed’s and as the sun went down and the temperature dipped a bit, Heather said it felt like fall. Oh, no. Not so soon! None of us are ready to hear that just yet.

Today was the Woods Hole Stroll and I hopped on the trolley to go down and take a look around. On this day once a year, the science institutions in Woods Hole open up to the public. You can walk out onto the Woods Hole dock where there are displays showing off all of the different kinds of submersibles and other cutting edge technology. The Marine Biological Lab highlights some of the live animals of the sea, while down the street at NOAA they bring in ‘not-live’ specimens of all sorts of fish for public examination. And waterfront Marina Park is filled with display tents, one of them being a WCAI tent featuring the one, the only, Heather Goldstone of Living Lab fame. Heather’s on-air popularity makes her a bit of local super star of the Woods Hole science world. So proud of her.

Going backwards, my day started with a series of text messages with photos from Justin. He, along with Jo, Ziggy, and Coco, were in Windsor, England, at Legoland. There were in a part of Legoland that I think is called Miniland, a showcase of recreations of world landmarks. Absolutely amazing.

2019 Life Logs, Day 221: Falmouth Swim Meet

2019 Life Logs, Day 221: Falmouth Swim Meet
Date: Friday, August 9, 2019
Weather: Another Perfect Summer Day; High 89, Low 63 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

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This afternoon, children who took swim lessons at one of Falmouth’s beaches this summer met at Massachusetts Maritime Academy for a swim meet. The students from each of the beaches competed in the Olympic-sized pool and Ollie was one of the students. Jonah and Sam could not attend due to their involvement in Scout and soccer camp this week, but Ollie proudly carried the Goldstone torch. And I was so very proud of him. When he first learned about the meet during swim lessons a couple of weeks ago, he was adamant that he would not compete. He has only been in a swimming pool a very few times in his life as we have no public pools here on the Cape and has never been in an Olympic-sized pool. But his swim instructor, Jacqueline, kept encouraging him and promised that she would be right there with him, so he finally decided this was something he really wanted to do. When we arrived and he saw the pool and all of the kids, I think he was terrified. There were no other kids from Menauhant in his age group, so he had to go it alone which made me as anxious as Ollie. But his older Menauhant friends cheered him on and when he completed his three competitions, he announced that this was one of the greatest things he has ever done. “It was awesome.” He is a tough little guy and declared after the meet that he will definitely compete next year. I give a lot of the credit to his instructor, Jacqueline. She obviously loves children and knew just the right way to encourage each of them. Thank you, Jacqueline!

2019 Life Logs, Day 220: More Fun at Menauhant Beach and Bourne’s Pond

2019 Life Logs, Day 220: More Fun at Menauhant Beach and Bourne’s Pond
Date: Thursday, August 8, 2019
Weather: Windy Beach Day; High 85, Low 68 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Menauhant Beach is on the Vineyard Sound. It is on one side of the road. A narrow channel connects the beach side of Menauhant to Bourne’s Pond on the other side of the road. While Ollie was having his last swim lesson of summer 2019 at the beach, good friend Peter Baranowski was heading across Bourne’s Pond with Bruce and Jane Woodin and their twin grandchildren, Aurora and Jasper, on a clamming expedition. Ollie and I were invited to join, but since it was the last swim lesson, we decided to decline the offer. Ollie was really torn as he LOVES clams and would love to learn about clamming from Peter, known affectionately as Poseidon to my grandchildren. Maybe another time. After the swim lesson, we did walk across the road to greet the expedition on its return. Bruce and the twins led the way with Jane and Peter behind. Peter was transporting a full basket of clams that was graciously shared with us. And I documented the occasion by getting a photo of the ‘clammers’ that Bruce labeled as American Gothic . . . Cape Cod style.

I headed home with the clams while Joey and Molly’s grandmother watched Ollie. When I returned, the wind had ramped up even more than earlier and the kids decided to ride the waves on body boards. The boards are light weight and kept flying into the air, but the sister of Jacqueline, the swim teacher, became a hero by staying with Ollie, Joey, and Molly and keeping those boards in control. The waves were as rowdy as the kids, so I stayed at the ready to go out quickly if needed. Thankfully no help was needed. I just got to sit back and watch joyous kids enjoying summer fun.

2019 Life Logs, Day 210: Day Filled with Fun

2019 Life Logs, Day 219: Day Filled with Fun
Date: Wednesday, August 7, 2019
Weather: Perfect Summer Day; High 87, Low 71 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Today was a perfect summer day in every way. The weather was beautiful—sunny and hot with just enough wind to keep you cool—and it was filled with fun activities. Ollie and I started our day at Menauhant with swim lessons. After lessons, Ollie played and enjoyed the surf with Jude, grandson of my next door neighbors, and Joey who lives next door to the Goldstones. Ollie is 7, Joey is 9, and Jude is 10. But the difference in age makes no difference at the beach. Kids manage to have a great time despite age differences. We only stayed until noon today as Ollie and I were headed to Woods Hole for the afternoon. We were meeting Jed and Jonah at the WHOI tennis courts at 3:30 pm, but in the hours in between, Ollie and I had lunch at Marina Park on the Woods Hole waterfront and then we visited the WHOI Exhibit Center where we bought a book about “flying deep” in Alvin. Ollie played in the full-sized model of the inner sphere, living out the adventures outlined in the book. Alvin is a 3-person research submarine that takes scientists deep into the ocean on explorations that was first launched in 1964. As we left the center, Ollie spotted a strange looking insect and persisted until he got a great photo. Then we headed to the tennis courts to meet Jed and Jonah. Ollie had requested a tennis date and I left with the three of them playing their first match.

This perfect summer day is in such complete contrast to what is happening in our country this week. As I watched coverage tonight of our President’s trip to Dayton and El Paso today, my heart ached for the people of those two communities. I am totally with the people of Dayton who started the ‘Do Something’ chant earlier in the week. I don’t know about you, but I certainly do not believe that assault weapons belong in the hands of anyone other than the military. Gun violence in this country is simply out of control and we do need to do something, anything as a starting point, to remedy this situation. If nothing happens before Congress reconvenes in September, I think we should all go to Washington to demand that our legislators DO SOMETHING NOW.

2019 Life Logs, Day 218: Wine Explorers

2019 Life Logs, Day 218: Wine Explorers
Date: Tuesday, August 6, 2019
Weather: Overcast with Periods of Rain; High 80, Low 66 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

It was an overcast day here with periods of rain. Heather brought Ollie over early this morning as I needed to be here. During a storm last week, old Verizon wires that once brought home phone service into the cottage were blown down and were hanging midair in my side yard. This morning Verizon was coming to remove the wires, but I needed to be home when they arrived. Verizon and Ollie arrived early. The wires were removed and Ollie and I had a relaxed morning. We decided not to go to swim lessons due to the threatening weather. And rightly so, as just about the time for Ollie’s lessons, the heavens let loose and we had the heaviest rain of the day. A little later, Ollie and I headed to Walmart to buy some Lego kits for a Lego challenge during his afternoon playdate with friends Raylan and Grayson. Once his friends arrived, I had an easy afternoon as the boys played without the need of any adult intervention. Heather and Jed picked Jonah up from soccer camp at 3 pm and once they got home, I headed home to get ready for the my evening out.

Last September I signed up for a Newcomers Wine Explorer group. I couldn’t attend the first event last October and then there was an email problem and I didn’t receive notices for a couple of months. So, first one thing and then another kept me from attending a gathering until tonight. My reason for joining this group was to learn more about wine and my education began tonight. The other members of the group are pretty serious about their wine choices, so I look forward to learning from them.

2019 Life Logs, Day 217: Busy Goldpebbles

2019 Life Logs, Day 217: Busy Goldpebbles
Date: Monday, August 5, 2019
Weather: Still Sunny, but Cooler; High 78, Low 65 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

There is only one Goldpebble in Camp Oma this week. Sam is away at Scout camp. Jonah is attending an all-day soccer camp at Falmouth Academy each day this week. And that leaves me with Ollie. We went to swim lessons this morning and spent the rest of the day at the beach. I left around 2 pm to run some errands and pick Jonah up after soccer camp and Heather came to the beach to be with Ollie. It takes a village. Ollie loves playing with Joey at the beach after lessons and today he got to play with Jude, the grandson of my next door neighbors. Jude and his little brother are here for the week and are in swim lessons. Thunderstorms are in the forecast for tomorrow, so we shall see if there are swim lessons. But rain or not, in the afternoon, Ollie has invited his good friends Raylan and Grayson over for a playdate. Then tomorrow night I have a wine group date. Last September I signed up to be a member of a wine group, but this will be the very first time I that I have not had a conflict and can attend. Not sure a wine tasting group is my cup of tea, but I’m willing to give it a go.

2019 Life Logs, Day 216: Sunday Brunch

2019 Life Logs, Day 216: Sunday Brunch
Date: Sunday, August 4, 2019
Weather: Another Sunny Day; High 82, Low 66 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I couldn’t write and post this log last night. When I turned on my computer, there was a message saying I needed to click a button to do security updates for Windows 10. I assumed this would take no more than an hour, but three hours later it was still going and I went to bed.

The big event of yesterday was a trip to the Boston area to meet my sister-in-law and her husband who are visiting from Florida. My brother died at the age of 33 when I was in my senior year of high school, but my family continued to be close to my sister-in-law and their three children. Sue was from Woburn, Massachusetts, and returned to Massachusetts with he children after my brother’s death. She remarried Brad Cook and he became full-fledged member of our family. Brad and Sue now live in Florida but come north to visit a few times each year as three of their children, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren live here. We met at the Brickhouse Café in Dedham. It got good online reviews and is close to a Costco and a Whole Foods so I could do shopping after brunch. The Café lived up to the reviews and we had a delightful time catching up on happenings in our lives. My niece Lynn joined us, but the other niece, Candi, had a prior commitment. Her husband Char was biking in the Pan-Mass Challenge, something he does every year, and Candi was working as a volunteer for the event. If you are not familiar with the Pan-Mass Challenge, it is an annual bike-a-thon that raises money for life-saving cancer research and treatment at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. So proud of Char for doing this every year. Hopefully I’ll get to see them soon.

2019 Life Logs, Day 215: The Last American Colony

2019 Life Logs, Day 215: The Last American Colony
Date: Saturday, August 3, 2019
Weather: Another Sunny Day; High 86, Low 70 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

I got a late start this morning on my continued process of installing the drip irrigation system in my garden. Instead of getting up early, I opted to sleep-in and move slowly once I did get up. And unfortunately, even when I did get going, I didn’t get too far on the project. I just didn’t have the strength in my hands to put the tiny parts together and I’m not sure why. On other days, I haven’t had this issue. So, I’ll try again on another day. When I came in for a late lunch break, I saw a text from friend Olivia White saying she and Terry were going to a 4:30 pm Woods Hole Film Festival viewing of a documentary about Puerto Rico called The Last American Colony. That sounded a lot more interesting than continuing to be frustrated with the irrigation system, so I responded that I would love to go with them. We met at a bike path parking lot and took the trolley to Woods Hole to avoid the lack of parking there. We got there early enough to stop and get an ice cream. Terry insisted on paying my bus fare and paying for my ice cream. Thank you, thank you! Reinforced with our ice cream treat, we got in line for the film. I had not read anything about it, so I was not sure what to expect. The film started with a shot from above of the vortex of Hurricane Maria. This immediately brought back painful memories and caught my attention. Then Juan Segarra was introduced and the rest of the film was his personal narrative. Juan was born and raised in Puerto Rico but attended high school at Phillips Andover here in New England and then went on to Harvard at the height of the Vietnam war. While at Harvard he decided that he will willing to die for his beliefs that Puerto Rico should gain independence from the United States. He joined Puerto Rico’s Los Macheteros to fight for freedom. I was introduced, for the first time, to the century long history of Puerto Ricans struggling to maintain their cultural identity while fighting to regain control of their country that had become a territory of the United States at the turn of the century. Los Macheteros waged a violent struggle and Juan Segarra was often at the center of this. He eventually ended up in prison and was eventually freed by President Clinton. His narrative was both informative and very moving. He no longer promotes violence but still believes that Puerto Rico needs to gain independence from the United States. He was in attendance at this afternoon’s viewing and after the film, he and two of the film makers engaged in a Q & A with audience members. I am still reeling from how much I learned about Puerto Rico through the 90-minute film and from the fact that I knew so little to begin with. And so glad Olivia sent me a text letting me know about this event.

Tonight my thoughts are with the people of El Paso and their sister city across the border, Juárez . . . and especially with the families of the 20 people murdered and the 26 people who were injured in a mass shooting in El Paso today. El Paso has been so proud of their status as a safe city. But today someone came into their community from outside and shattered that status. I do not believe that assault weapons should ever, for any reason, be in the hands of anyone not on active duty in the military. How do we ever reach a consensus on this and impose sane gun laws making assault weapons illegal for the general public?

2019 Life Logs, Day 214: Friday ‘Free and Easy’

2019 Life Logs, Day 214: Friday ‘Free and Easy’
Date: Friday, August 2, 2019
Weather: More Sun and Heat; High 87, Low 65 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

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This was Friday ‘free and easy’ style. When Mark and I sailed with a rally through Indonesia, the coordinators planned all sorts of wonderful activities for each of the islands we visited. But some days were designated as ‘free and easy’, and that was my day today with the Goldpebbles. Ollie and Jonah managed to do almost nothing and really enjoyed that for most of the day. Jonah did spend a couple of hours searching for the best soccer goalie gloves on my phone and finally found the pair he wanted to order—exactly the same pair he has now in a different color and larger size. But he really enjoyed the search. Sam completed a project he has been working on for me. Earlier he scraped and sanded the parts of the bike rack on the back of my car and today he spray-painted the parts with a couple of primer coats and then two coats of industrial-grade paint. This was a paid project and allowed him to make the final bit of money he needed to make. He was a very happy kiddo when the project was completed making him the new owner of Google phone. Ollie started to get bored with doing nothing in the afternoon, but our mid-afternoon trip to the beach solved that. We arrived at Menauhant at 3:30 and at 4:30 Heather showed up to celebrate the end of the week with Sam, Jonah, and Ollie. I left before Jed arrived, but in the meantime, the boys were enjoying having beach time with momma. On to the weekend.