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Sacramento, California, United States
so salty pieces of coral from surfing Hawaii in the 60's and 70's getting reef pounded living in my body fall through my skin from time to time!

sailing to Oahu

Jimi Hendrix was playing on Oahu. I had never sailed. Surfed Mexico, California, Hawaii! Aw, how hard could it be to sail 90-110 miles from Kauai to Oahu? Piece of cake, right? Remember it was the 60's! This is so bad. We thought we were looking at Kaiena Point,Ohau, knowing we weren't going to make the concert! But at least we were in site of Oahu-wrong! Coy, who had never sailed before, me,who had never sailed before, jeff and Abbott etc. We were looking at the sleeping giant on Kauai! We had done three-sixty's in the night! We sailed on the only tri-marran I've ever sailed on ( except later ) in my life, missed the concert! It was at the Waikiki Shell Ampitheater ( Moon eclipsed . We finally made Nawilwili Harbor! The Skipper tried to give us his boat saying, " It's trying to kill me"! We watched him go stark raving mad not even realising that had we got caught in the channel current we were on our way to Japan! Remember it was the 60's and we were going to see Hendrix. I left out some of the good stuff but I will make up for it later!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Proper Course: Tillerman's Top Ten Blogs of 2009

Proper Course: Tillerman's Top Ten Blogs of 2009

ahhh Fanning Island (atoll)

What a strange place! Shaped like the letter C we sailed into the mouth of the C. What I would learn later is that inside a lot of atolls in the Pacific Ocean are lagoons. Shallow, colorful and filled with unique life forms that defy descriptions. The entry ( the gap that makes a c a c ) between tides is in stasis. Great diving until the ebb or flood creats a current kind of like when you flush your toilet in your very own bathroom ( head-nautical)! Try and swim-motor against that! Really. In fact, the four-hundred and fifty people on Fanning Island have pier-end port-0-pottys that drop directly into the inside of the lagoon. So the out going tide is one big toilet flush. I heard you go UUUHHHHHHH! Don't do that. All mordern sailboats now have a "y" valve that is locked when you are slipped! At sea you may pump human waste through hull but not in port. Chum? When you are on a sailboat with 8-10 people aboard it requires a lot of pumping to get all the waste underboard-outboard so you may begin the same process again on the manana! The reason I am spending time with this crap is that Mark and I surfed perfect four foot waves just outside of the entry into Fanning. We had brought our surfboards and happened to catch a great little swell which Judy, Marks young lady, took some pictures of. It reminded me of small Bobo's on Kauai. If you weren't careful your fin would touch bottom and there were a couple of spots where you had to use the face of the wave to go above and around a reef obstickle. Reef sharks were plentiful but it didn't bother one of the guys off of Ginseng, Ben's boat! He body surfed with Mark and I. No kidding, sharks o'plenty! Reminded me of Pakala ( infinities ) on Kauai! Maybe if we're lucky Judy will send me one of the pictures she took that day and I'll post it! I'm sure the poop in the water at Fanning killed Ben. He was a Congressional Medal of Honor holder from Korea. Special to me because my parents were married there and I was conceived in Korea. Had to mention that. Ben got a staff infection. Mark got a similar infection. Ben died in American Samoa. The infection had entered into his bones and they could not quench the fire and it consumed him. His boat "Ginseng", that he had built with his own hands sold ( I heard ) for 25 large! Mark lived. To this day I'm sure Mark survived because Mark had Judy to insist that he apply proper medication and because Mark had surfed and was very aware of how damaging coral infections especially in the conditions I have mentioned above can be! Mark had surfed Mexico and survived Montezoma's Revenge!!! He didn't rebel against medicating a cut that seemed so small having a wisdom and a sense of self-survival that I beleive Ben didn't have or had forgetten! He actually said on Fanning, " It's just a small infection, it will pass!" Shoot, Fanning's only access to the outside world is a barge that brings supplies three times a year from Tarawa! The island's radio isn't as good as Sea Rover's Ham!! Shiza! I liked Ben but could not have sailed with him. Kindest and wisest man you could ever speak with on land but he kept us awake at night belittling in very loud phrases his crew day in and day out. I'll bet you even he was surprised that it was staff infection instead of Davey Jones that got him and of all places, Pago Pago, Samoa.

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