At long last. After what many people said was stupid, too expensive, impractical, or 'cheating', Constellation and I went ahead anyway, and I'm pleased to announce, we're happily floating on the west coast of the US. After a month-long delay by Nauti Buoy Marine out of Ohio in getting my boat to California, coupled with their terrible lack of communication, I can say one thing I'm happy about: Constellation arrived safe and sound. She may be late, and I may be stressed out, but, we'll make it, I'm sure.
So much has happened, I'm lost for where to start... Jack and I crossed the country, he filmed, I filmed, and we had a blast. The interior of the United States is beyond comprehension. What a big and beautiful country, full of friendly and interesting people. I can't write about everything, so this short video I shot will have to suffice:
After the epic cross-country trip, I landed in Berkeley, expecting my boat to be just a day or two behind me. So I waited, and waited... And waited. If it wasn't for the extraordinary generosity of Captain Ted, I would have been up a creek without a paddle. He lent me a lovely boat just down the road from Berkeley marina, where I was able to stay until the truckers actually got their act together. From coast-to-coast the generosity of America continues to shine through. I had someone email me the other day, and tell me I'm the luckiest person they'd ever met... And, I have a feeling they might be right. Thank you Ted, you're both a gentlemen and a lifesaver.
Fast forward a few weeks, and at long last, this happened:
Yes, I got to stand next to my boat. In California. It was a momentous occasion, having first proposed the idea back in Feb of 2008... I never knew whether it would be actually possible, and while it wasn't exactly how I had intended it to happen... It happened nonetheless, and here we are.
As soon as the truck arrived, Constellation was thrown up on the crane by Berkeley Marine Center, and I ran about preparing for a quick launch. I dabbed up the antifoul, re-attached the rudder with the help of friendly onlookers (it seemed everyone was curious about the pretty red boat with lots of stickers), I launched, and Constellation floated.
With Captain Ted at the helm and help from Berkeley Marina, we were towed over to our slip, to begin the arduous re-assembly:
With thanks to my generous uncle, whom I saw recently in Eugene, I have power tools to help me along... I also have my brother, who flew in from Melbourne. Remember the crazy bike that Lee Winters loaned me when I had grand plans of crossing the country? I couldn't register it... But, my brother can, so he's riding it to Alaska. If you get bored with me, try him out at www.ryanjaffe.com.au. My poor parents.
So, that's the abridged version of events... I'll try to update more often, but, I'll be off for Hawaii pretty soon. I'm already a bit late... For anyone that has written and I've not replied lately, especially those from the SF/Bay Area who wanted to visit and see the boat - Please email me again... I'm drowning in email. And for anyone that has my cell number, it is no longer functioning (waterlogged), after a small accident with a kayak ... ;)