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!

2024 Life Logs, Day 115: Two Wonderful Women I Love

2024 Life Logs, Day 115: Two Wonderful Women I Love
Date: Wednesday, April 24, 2024
Weather: Sunny; High Temp 56, Low 34 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

Today, after many years of waiting, my daughter-in-law Jo became a US citizen. Jo’s application was rejected the first time she applied, but this time she was successful. Congratulations, Jo! I just wish the citizens of Puerto Rico could vote for US President, but they can only vote in the primaries.

Tonight, I attended the League of Women Voters Candidate Night to proudly watch my daughter Heather field questions along with the other two candidates running for Select Board. A couple of the questions asked were particularly difficult, in my opinion, but Heather rose to the occasion.

So, I can go to sleep tonight and have sweet dreams about the two wonderful women I love.

2024 Life Logs, Day 114: Quashnet Trail Walk, Gardening, Soccer Practice

2024 Life Logs, Day 114: Quashnet Trail Walk, Gardening, Soccer Practice
Date: Tuesday, April 23, 2024
Weather: Sunny; High Temp 51, Low 40 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

Once a week my friend Olga Mitchell and I try to go for a long walk with Shadow. We all love the Quashnet River trail in Waquoit. If there are no other people on the trail, I can let Shadow off leash. He loves the freedom, but always stays close to me. Today we walked almost a mile before turning around, but we stopped for a little rest before heading back to the car to just soak in the quiet beauty of the area.

On the way home, we stopped at the nursery on the same road as the trail. Olga and I both bought some lettuce to get a little lead start on our spring gardening. I then came home and worked on getting hoses out of the basement and getting the watering system set up. The arugula I planted last week is coming up and the peas Ollie planted for me on St. Patrick’s Day are about three inches tall now. Right now we have been getting enough rain, but I want to get the watering systems working so that I can give them a little extra water from time to time. Slowly, spring is coming along. This evening I took Ollie to soccer practice. That was it for my day.

Today was my sister-in-law, Sue Cook’s, 90th birthday. Happy birthday, Sue!!! I hope you enjoyed this special milestone birthday.

2024 Life Logs, Day 113: Earth Day Number 54

2024 Life Logs, Day 113: Earth Day Number 54
Date: Monday, April 22, 2024
Weather: Sunny with a Cold North Wind; High Temp 54, Low 38 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

Where were you for the first Earth Day, Wednesday, April 22, 1970? I was teaching American History at an inner-city high school in Cleveland, Ohio, probably not focused on the environment. But millions of Americans, an estimated 20 million, attended events that day. Elementary and secondary schools, universities, and communities all over the country hosted events. Tens of thousands of people marched in Washington, DC, that day in support of a cleaner planet. Who started this movement? I had to look that up. It was a Democratic senator from Wisconsin named Gaylord Nelson. He was in Denver attending their Earth Day celebration and he said the following in his speech:
“Ecology is a big science, a big concept—not a copout. It is concerned with the total ecosystem—not just with how we dispose of our tin cans, bottles, and sewage. Environment is all of America and its problems. It is rats in the ghetto. It is a hungry child in a land of affluence. It is housing that is not worthy of the name, neighborhoods not fit to inhabit.
Environment is a problem perpetuated by the expenditure of billions a year on the Vietnam War instead of on our decaying, crowded, congested, polluted urban areas that are inhuman traps for millions of people. If our cities don’t work, America won’t work. And the battle to save them and end the divisiveness that still splits this country won’t be won in Vietnam. Winning the environmental war is a whole lot tougher challenge by far than winning any other war in the history of Man. It will take $20 to $25 billion more a year in Federal money than we are spending or asking for now.
Our goal is not just an environment of clean air and water and scenic beauty. The objective is an environment of decency, quality, and mutual respect for all other human beings and all other living creatures. Our goal is a new American ethic that sets new standards for progress, emphasizing human dignity and well-being rather than an endless parade of technology that produces more gadgets, more waste, more pollution. Are we able to meet the challenge? Yes. We have the technology and resources.”

But have we met the challenge? I’ll let you answer that. Tonight, I celebrated Earth Day 2024 by attending a showing of the 2023 film, Common Ground, at the Waquoit Congregational Church. I could have watched the film on YouTube, but I wanted to be with like minded folks while I watched it. It is an exploration of how to fix our broken planetary food production system. Farmers are interviewed that are implementing regenerative agricultural practices that they believe could save the world. It is worth a watch. Thanks to Falmouth Farming and the Falmouth Climate Action Network.

2024 Life Logs, Day 112: Jonah’s Soccer Game; Dinner with the Goldstones

2024 Life Logs, Day 112: Jonah’s Soccer Game; Dinner with the Goldstones
Date: Sunday, April 21, 2024
Weather: Mostly Cloudy, Windy, Cool; High Temp 48, Low 39 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

On Thursday I went to a luncheon where the dessert was angel food cake with toppings. Since Sam, Jonah, and Ollie all love angel food cake, I got the bright idea of making one from scratch for our Sunday night dinner. I have never made one before and it was easier said than done! I spent a good deal of my morning making one. It was edible, but it was more like angel food pound cake, not the desired light and fluffy. Among other things, I didn’t leave it in the oven long enough. But with enough raspberries, blueberries chocolate and caramel sauce, and whipped cream, anything can taste good.

At noon, I picked up Heather and Jonah and we drove to Hyannis for Jonah’s soccer game. It was winter coat and toboggan weather for those of us sitting in the stands. This was the first chance I’ve had to see Jonah play this spring, so cold or not, I was glad that I went. It was after 4 pm when we got home and time for me to get the fixings ready for a salmon poke bowl dinner. That was another first for me, but that worked out better than the dessert.

2024 Life Logs, Day 111: Campaign Stand Out Cancelled; Soccer a Go

2024 Life Logs, Day 111: Campaign Stand Out Cancelled; Soccer a Go
Date: Saturday, April 20, 2024
Weather: Overcast with Rain; High Temp 48, Low 39 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

Local campaign tradition in Falmouth includes Saturday morning stand outs along the main route through town in front of Stop and Shop. Candidates put their signs on the four corners of the main intersection in town and invite supporters to come stand out on the sidewalk holding campaign signs every Saturday morning during the last month before an election. Today was supposed to be the first Saturday, but the weather decided differently. Good friend, Olivia White, is a veteran of participating in these stand outs and this morning she came in her bright yellow raincoat ready for duty and filled me in on how to set up for these events. But the misty rain turned into a full out down pour, so we decided to cancel and try again next week. There were just three of us this morning, so we are going to rally the troops in hopes of getting more recruits for next week.

Spring Saturdays (and Sundays) are also soccer days. Jonah had a game early afternoon off Cape and the rain slowed down enough for that game to be a go. Then mid-afternoon, Ollie had a game at Falmouth Academy here in town. The rain had completely stopped by then. It was a good game. The other team scored first, and from that point on it went back and forth, ending with a final score of 4-3 in our favor.

My only other activity today was trips to the grocery store. Tomorrow I will go to Jonah’s second game of the weekend. This one is in Hyannis. Sam’s game is in Braintree, close to Boston, so I can’t make both games. Sam’s game is later in the afternoon, so when he gets home we will gather for a Sunday night family dinner.

2024 Life Logs, Day 110: PT Re-Eval, Meet the Candidate, Mingle & Mix

2024 Life Logs, Day 110: PT Re-Eval, Meet the Candidate, Mingle & Mix
Date: Friday, April 19, 2024
Weather: Mostly Cloudy, Some Rain; High Temp 50, Low 45 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

This morning, I had my PT Re-Evaluation. On March 22 when I first met with Matt DiBono, my physical therapist, he did an initial back evaluation. I had terrible balance issues. As I went through the re-eval, it became obvious that I have made great progress. To me the progress has seemed slow and subtle, but on March 22, I could stand on one foot and then the other for only one second each. And now, even on my bad right knee, I was able to make it for 20 seconds. I met or exceeded all the goals Matt set for me, so after two more sessions next week, back surgery PT will be done. I will continue to do the exercises at home to prepare for my knee surgery, and two weeks after that surgery, I’ll be back in PT again.

This afternoon, Lynda Onthank hosted a Meet the Candidate event for Heather. I didn’t count, but I think there were 20-25 people there. Lynda had everything set up perfectly and it was a great opportunity for Heather to meet new people. She gave an overview of why she is running for Select Board and then she fielded questions. Heather is an impressive candidate and was well received with this group.

Then I was off for an Encore Mingle & Mix at the home of Denise DeCoste and Sam Gutter. T

hey live in a beautifully decorated condo with a view of Buzzards Bay. I arrived late, but I was in time to watch the sunset. It was cloudy which made for a dramatic sky. The photographers in the group spent time on the deck trying to capture the beauty. Peter Baranowski got a great photo which he shared with me.

2024 Life Logs, Day 109: Lunch-In and Soccer Practice

2024 Life Logs, Day 109: Lunch-In and Soccer Practice
Date: Thursday, April 18, 2024
Weather: Cloudy with Periods of Rain; High Temp 48, Low 42 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

Making soup, taking that soup to a 5-course lunch feast, walking and playing with Shadow, then taking Ollie to soccer practice. That was my day. Lunch-In is a new Encore activity for me. There were six of us and we were assigned to bring the various parts of the meal. The food was fabulous, but the best part of these small gatherings is that I am meeting new people and really getting to know them. It took us three hours to eat all of that food. We finished up around 3:30 pm and that gave me just enough time to come home to go out to walk and play ball with Shadow and then go get Ollie to take him to his 5:30 soccer practice. We had periods of sprinkles throughout the day, but on our way to the soccer practice, it decided to get serious about raining. The practice went on with some very wet boys. Once they were all soaked, the rain stopped. I would have been freezing in those wet clothes, but Ollie swore he wasn’t cold. Youth.

2024 Life Logs, Day 108: Meeting Day

2024 Life Logs, Day 108: Meeting Day
Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2024
Weather: Partly Sunny, Cloudy Late; High Temp 50, Low 43 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

This morning was the monthly Encore General Meeting. The speaker was the historian from the Cape Cod Baseball League. I am not a baseball fan, but he was an engaging speaker. The best college baseball players from around the US come here every summer to play on the Cape’s 10 teams. The League was formed in 1885 and it is still going strong.

I came home for a couple of hours and spent most of that time baking and walking with Shadow. Then it was back out for an afternoon Exploring Public Policy meeting. Today the President of the Chamber of Commerce, Michael Kasparian, came to give us an update on the housing crises in Falmouth. We have lots of houses, but they are financially out of reach for most middle income families. It was an information-packed meeting and most of us left realizing we know so very little about our town system of government. Lots to learn.

2024 Life Logs, Day 107: Taco Tuesday

2024 Life Logs, Day 107: Taco Tuesday
Date: Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Weather: Sunny and Warm; High Temp 61, Low 43 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

By the time I got up, walked a mile with Shadow, took a shower and got dressed, it was time to drive to Falmouth Hospital for my physical therapy session. Last week I was told I was doing so well that I really didn’t need to continue. But today when I asked for clarification, Matt said that I will continue until one week prior to my knee surgery. He did say I really didn’t need to continue, but that didn’t mean he could release me early. I am happy about that as I feel my back is just now starting to feel a bit stronger. He gave me quite a workout today and gave me the go ahead to continue to work on my gardening projects, adapting the way I do things. He strongly recommended that I purchase a garden seat of some sort on wheels.

I went directly from PT to Añejo on Main Street for a Taco Tuesday lunch with friend Kate Eldred. I haven’t seen Kate since early November, and she had no idea I had back surgery since our last meeting. We had a great lunch and caught up on happenings in our lives. Then I was off to post campaign flyers on community bulletin boards for Heather. I drove to North Falmouth to start there and learned a lot as I went along. Some of the bulletin boards are outside, so I need to put those flyers in a plastic sleeve. This activity will continue Thursday afternoon. Tomorrow is a jam-packed day with a morning Encore meeting, an afternoon Exploring Public Policy meeting, and cooking to do for a luncheon on Thursday. I did get to spend some of the beautiful afternoon outside with Shadow, but there was no time to continue my gardening projects. Maybe Friday for that.

This week is spring break, and Heather and family left this morning for their mini-vacation. Today they visited a military museum in Worcester. Heather sent a photo of the boys standing beside a piece of the Berlin Wall.

Then they headed to Boston where they will spend the night. The plan was to have dinner at one of the boys’ favorite restaurants, Fire and Ice and then tomorrow have Boston Crème Pie at the Omni Parker. Heather and Sam will do a Tufts University tour and Jed will take Jonah and Ollie to the Museum of Science. They plan to be home by dinner time tomorrow night.

2024 Life Logs, Day 106: 100 Years Ago Today

2024 Life Logs, Day 106: 100 Years Ago Today
Date: Monday, April 15, 2024
Weather: Mostly Sunny and Warm; High Temp 63, Low 45 degrees F
Location: At Home on Lakeview Avenue, Falmouth, MA

One hundred years ago on Tuesday, April 15, 1924, my parents, Ollie Lillian Biggs and Hayes Winfred Martin were married. I always think of them on this day. Today was another special day here in Massachusetts. On the third Monday in April, Massachusetts celebrates Patriots’ Day. This commemorates the start of the American Revolution with the battles of Lexington and Concord. Years after that battle, Ralph Waldo Emerson penned the phrase, the “shot heard round the world” because he felt that the American Revolution had world-wide importance.

Today was special to me because it was the warmest day we have had this spring. I love warm weather, so I truly enjoyed this day. Olga Mitchell and I walked a mile and a half on the Quashnet River Trail, a favorite for both of us. We started out wearing light jackets, but it was so warm we had to take them off and tie them around our waists. Shadow was with us, and since there was no one else on the trail, I let him off leash for most of the walk. He enjoyed that freedom but stayed right beside me every step of the way.

At home this afternoon, I practiced “stand up” gardening. Trying to limit bending is a true challenge for a gardener. It is easy while I planted seeds in the elevated raised bed the Goldstones gave me for my birthday, but cleaning up the ground level raised beds is going to be more of a challenge. I saved that for tomorrow. The seedlings I started a few weeks ago indoors need to be transplanted into larger containers. I turned an old table that sits at the edge of woods beside my house into a planting table so I can stand up straight to do that job tomorrow.

Tonight, I spent time watching the commentary on the first day of the Trump “hush money” trial while I ate dinner and rode my exercise bike. I woke up with a hurting knee this morning, but it feels better after riding the bike. So, tomorrow I am going to start my day on the bike hoping it will take away the pain for the rest of the day.