It doesn’t get better than this.


Silver Girl in the Bahamas-last year

Warm sun, low humidity, a 15 knot westerly. Eyes closed, almost asleep in the cockpit, water slapping the hull, the wonderful slightly sour smell of salt air. (Only in Charleston do they call this the smell of pluff mud.) Absolutely nothing to do until dinner time. We are on Silver Girl, in Daytona Beach, FL. Boy, I could easily stay, at least a few days. Even if we don’t sail, this is slow-down time. The heart beats slower and the body moves slower. Days since our return from San Francisco have been filled with activity and finally today-just down time with perfect in-between seasons weather in Florida.  Other times Silver Girl has taken us to the Bahamas but not this past winter. Perhaps next year. Where is your favorite wind-down place?

Ed on Silver Girl anchored out on Grand Bahamas bank

We knew this would be a quick but necessary trip. We drove as far as Charleston yesterday. Laughter and lunch with Ann and daughter Ann-Bicot. Delivered a book to Ann. Then a drive out to Goose Creek to pick up our stuff that Dennis brought back in the Studebaker trailer.  A few books took some wear when a fast-moving semi caused his trailer to fish-tail and the trailer and tow vehicle end up in the median. No harm to Dennis and crew but a box of books went spilling across the trailer. A small price to pay for all he has done and been through. If we can order new book jackets, all will be good as new again. Back to Charleston and met our son Mike and his wife for dinner at another of Charleston’s great restaurants. If you’re headed this way, try Cypress, on Bay St. We both recommend it. Great food, ambience and service.

We did have one black cloud over our otherwise fun and fast trip. We got a call yesterday, just 20 miles out of Charleston, our life-long friend, Jim Ingram died. Jim taught Ed his first year in graduate school, was his dissertation advisor and eventually brought Ed back to UNC-Chapel Hill as assistant dean of the graduate school under his deanship. Both left administration and went back to teaching economics together. Jim was 87, and while a bit fragile, his death was sudden and unexpected. Dinner with him always included lively discussions of politics, world events and the economy along with whatever else was going on. We will miss you, Jim. Fortunately, Jim was at our party that launched our book and our World Rally. He had been following our blog as well. This is how I’ll remember him.  

So, everything seems to be in order here. Ed is running the engine (marine diesels are loud, obnoxious beasts) and most likely we will head home again tomorrow. Can’t think of reasons to stay-except for the great weather and peaceful feeling of a sailboat. But there are no repairs to make and we still have much to do before China. Met up with Mary Crabtree (already nicknamed St. Mary since she navigates for Jack in his open Model A) while we were in Goose Creek. We discussed the essentials of clothing and hair cuts. We will both take along one skirt for those what-ever occasions. Soon to have a conference call and that will determine the direction that packing and planning has to take.

Waiting for the road to Paris,


P.S. If you haven’t checked out the website, Senior Correspondents, click the link on our blog. You have to be over 60 to write for them. Lots of interesting stuff.

About ejhowle23

Authors and adventurers, participated in the World Race 2011, an automobile rally from New York to Paris, crossing three continents and 14,000 land miles. Following much the same route as the setting for our debut novel, The Long Road to Paris. This blog describes our own adventures and challenges. And now you can follow our Bahamas sailing adventure that provides the setting for our second novel, Night Watch. Our rally, the African Safari Challenge, crossed five countries in South Africa in May 2014 and in 2015 we participated in the second Trans-American rally this time from Nova Scotia to San Francisco. Spring of 2016 we travelled 28 days around Australia with friends from previous rallies and in the fall participated in our most exhausting rally through Argentina, Chili and Peru- the Rally of the Incas. We were awarded the Against All Odds award. We're still not sure if this was for us or our car. Stewball never broke down and we hardly did. We will soon take on Iceland as a self-drive tour and in the fall of 2017 we will participate in the Odyssey Italia and then back to Africa for a do-over (almost) of the Africa Safari Challenge.
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5 Responses to It doesn’t get better than this.

  1. Laurie Horn says:

    Sorry about your friend, Jim Ingram. Nice that you have so many fond memories. My favorite wind-down place at home is in the recording studio or at a gig. Travelling- my favorite is Negril, Jamaica.

    • ejhowle23 says:

      Everyone has a favorite place that makes the heart beat slower and the body move gently. Glad to hear yours. Jamaica, love it too but a bit far for a sail, we choose Bahamas.

  2. TBC says:

    So sorry to hear about Jim. I know how much you enjoyed his company. What a wonderful last meeting with him at your gala.

    Meanwhile, enjoy Silver Girl. It may be several months before you get to see her again.


    TBC and Arnie

  3. Susan Attermeier says:

    Jan and Ed-

    I have been following your posts every day – you are having WAY TOO MUCH FUN and I thank you for cutting me in on it. What a network of friends you have built up with the VW people – everywhere you go there is a welcoming committee!

    Here in Orange County things are really popping – the 17 year cicadas are entertaining us!

    Susan A

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