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The Office in the Islands
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 279 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 07, 2014
In the far gone good ol' days of Bahamas cruising I used to love the fact that I did my work from my boat, not from an office in the US. But I soon realized that even in the Bahamas I had to go to an office. It just wasn't quite the same.
If you had to make a telephone call back in the day you usually had to find a booth on an island or go to what we called a BATELCO office. I preferred the latter, although there were a few problems.
First, the islands didn't have BATELCO offices unless there was also a village on the island. You had to sail to one that did. This was usually easy to figure...... Read More

Tom’s Tips About Island Communication
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 258 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 07, 2014
1. Whereas before there was often a question of whether you can call home from the islands, it's much more likely today.
2. Talk to your cell phone company about whether they have reciprocating service where you're going and whether your phone will work there.
3. Sometimes customer service personnel at US companies aren't very familiar with issues in the islands. You may have to call the phone service of the place you intend to visit.
4. WiFi hot spots, even from anchorages, are fairly common now. And there are boosters available that will improve your range for various types of commun...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale July 3, 2014
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 256 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 03, 2014
Special Announcements
East Coast: Hurricane Arthur Warning July 3 and 4, 2014:
Outer Banks of NC residents and tourists: Pay close attention to the warnings and evacuation orders. East Coast Boaters, please stay in port. After Arthur passes, pay attention to the USCG Broadcast Notices to Mariners regarding damage to Aids to Navigation and new shoaling notices and watch for debris in all waters. Swimmers and Surfers, please pay attention to the warnings and stay out of the water until the waves have calmed down.*
*Italicized text above and below indicates our comment or paraphrase. Pl...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale June 19, 2014
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 330 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: June 19, 2014
Special Announcements:
New Surf City Bridge Proposed, (AICW Mile 260.7) 65ft Clearance:
The purpose of this notice is to notify mariners, adjacent property owners, and government agencies that the North Carolina Department of Transportation proposes to replace the NC 50/210 (Topsail Island) Bridge at AICW mile 260.7 (34.430409°-77.549765°), at Surf City, Pender County, NC. Presently, in the closed position to vessels, the charted vertical clearance of the existing drawbridge is 13 feet above mean high water (MHW) and unlimited vertical clearance in the full open position, with ...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale June 5, 2014
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 310 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: June 05, 2014
Special Announcements:
Little River Swingbridge Fender Repair:
Mariners are advised that R. L. Morrison and Sons, Inc will be working on the Little River Swingbridge, Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (33.851550°-78.656357°), fender system starting May 27, 2014. R. L. Morrison and Sons, Inc. will have a work barge in the waterway between 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. and from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and from 12:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. With the barge in the waterway, a 30 ft wide channel will be available at all times. Vessels requiring more than 30 ft of hori...... Read More

The Good Fortune and Tragedy of the Steamship New Orleans
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 331 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: June 04, 2014
When we think of the early steamships, we think of the Clermont and even earlier creations. But there was one that fought her way through incredible odds and helped to change our country.
For centuries seamen have spoken of lucky ships and cursed ships. Legend and lore describe sure fire ways to cause one or the other. Changes in name, pursuit by an albatross, and departure on a Friday are but a few of the "bad luck" occurrences. There's one ship that not many have heard about. She had a remarkable life. You be the judge as to whether she was cursed or blessed.
The Steamship New O...... Read More

Tom’s Tips On Changes
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 307 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: June 04, 2014
1. If you're on the water you can't expect things to stay the same.
2. This doesn't include just weather. The bottom, the shores and landmarks change regularly, sometimes overnight. It's a fluid situation.
3. Some changes are rapid as from hurricanes. Some are gradual as from slow river erosion.
4. These changes mean that we always have to be alert to where the bottom is. Charts and GPS and Aids to Navigation are never enough. Learned skills and careful observation are still a part of the equation, like they were in olden days, when the steamship sailed down the river in an earthquake...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale May 22, 2014
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 359 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: May 22, 2014
Attention Snowbirds
Little River Swing Bridge Fender Damage:
Mariners are advised to watch for timbers partially attached/partially sticking out into the channel due to fender damage on the Little River Swingbridge (33.8515507°-78.656357°), Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Mariners are advised to transit the area with extreme Caution. (7th District LNM Week 19/2014)* The Bridge was closed to vehicular traffic on May 20, 2014 for repairs, but was expected to reopen same day. www.wjbf.com/story/25568911/little-river-swing-bridge-repairs-to-close-road-...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale May 8, 2014
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 491 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: May 08, 2014
Attention Snowbirds
Flagler Memorial Bridge in Open to Navigation Position for Six Months:
The Florida Department of Transportation has advised that the Flagler Memorial Bridge (26.718200°-80.044761°) will be placed in the open to navigation position for a six month period...from May 12, 2014 through October 31, 2014. (7th District LNM Week 17/2014) Details in Florida Bridge Section below.*
*Italicized text above and below indicates our comment or paraphrase. Plain text is copied from the Notices to Mariners or other sources given.
Nixon Crossroads Bridge, N. Myrtle Beach, Fe...... Read More

Boat Jobs
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 578 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: May 06, 2014
If you’ve done a boat job, no matter what it is, you know the ugly truth. They NEVER go the way you expect them to.
The Day that Mel got 3M 5200 in her hair wasn't a good day. Bad hair day, yes, but I'm not talking about bad hair days. I'm talking about bad boating days — the kind that have nothing to do with the weather, or even paying the boat bills. They're what almost always happens when you take on any boat job to make things "better."
5200 is really interesting stuff. I've been using it for years and I hope I'll be using it for years to come. This stuff redefin...... Read More

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