San Diego has been our short-(er, long-)term stop-off and stomping ground through the fall. We left San Diego mid-September after getting Pangaea settled at Harbor Island West Marina and flew back to Seattle to get our affairs in order for our longer departure to come. We moved out of our rental house, stowed our stuff in storage, farmed out our pets to unwitting friends and family members, and spent precious time visiting all before saying our farewells. Ben had an interview with Customs and Immigration and passed with flying red, white and blue colors. In celebration of his new citizenship, we taught him the secret handshake and made him recite the Pledge of Allegiance (feeding him the lines, of course).
Mid-October we drove Ben's truck south to San Diego, visiting Natasha's family in Newport, and Mary's in Eugene, OR en route. It was fun to see the new additions (Benjamin and Iris), checkout Natasha's and Charles' newly acquired veterinary hospital, and tour Mary's and Ryan's new home and property. How cool! Our truck was loaded to the hilt and our shocks were toast so we gas-guzzled and bounced our way south.
So, now here were are! We have been splitting our time between life aboard on the boat, and late nights and sleep-overs at Kristi's and Lili's place in Crest, in the hills of east San Diego County. Fun times: visiting with my mom on her week-long visit; late-night chats with Kristi and Lili, soaking in Kristi's new jacuzzi on a deck overlooking a canyon, with a view to sunset and stars; side-trip to Mazatlan to see vet school friends; cavorting with dogs; decorating and landscaping with Lili, harvesting; crossing items off our list of things to do. Less fun times: sanding; varnishing; window-mounting; toilet installation; evacuating Kristi's home from California's fires of the century; getting the truck towed; getting the truck towed a second time; making lists of things to do.
Sadly we lost Wolf to his 2-year battle with cancer in November. He had accompanied us on our drive to California, and settled quickly into life on a sailboat. We knew his time was near, so we cherished every moment we could have with him and, when he was no longer comfortable, we let him go. He rests now at the foot of a boulder at Kristi's and Lili's place, overlooking the canyon. We were lucky to have him in our lives. We love you Wolf!
Now we're heading into crunch time, madly dashing about to finish boat-related projects, arrange our affairs and plan for destinations ahead. Christmas is soon to come, and go. And with the approaching New Year, we'll be off....!!!!!
Special thanks to Kristi and Lili for support, companionship, sleeping accomodations and creative inspiration.
Love to all of you!