Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Hemp; For Environmental Victory

Chirren; (That's how our local Congressperson, Corrine Brown*says children. It sounds more learn-ned that way, hmmm?)

 ...Today we will mention the environment, and how we all need to do what we can to help preserve it for the fewtchums. I mean future.

Environment and ecology, hallowed be thy names to the new religious acolytes of the Earth Worshippin' types. If you listen to the squawkers from the media, you would think we were all living on a liferaft that is running out of flotation, I mean wood.

"Use hemp, not trees for paper..."

I visited Dr. Patrick Moore (Co-Founder of Greenpeace and the Author of the "Sustainable Greenspirit" site) and it seems he has become a more realistic environmentalist, in that he is not a Luddite, (unlike his former buddies at Greenpeace) but believes that we can do a bit more to keep things clean while enjoying the benefits of living in the modern world. Like clean and renewable Nuclear Power.

Click on the link and be prepared to read some interesting counterclaims to the rot we are exposed to everyday in the communist/collectivist media.

So endeth, our environmentalist  sermon.

I can hardly wait for November. We really need to vote common sense back into D.C.
*(I would never make fun of a real speech impediment, but this is a Graduate of the University of Florida  Florida A& M and Edward Waters College and the degree is apparently in Speech and Communications with a Masters in Education.  This Lady  represents Jacksonville in front of the House Of Representatives. Maybe she has pain issues and takes analgesics/prescription pain killers) Iowahawk made a translation picture:

Stolen from American Digest

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wow. Talent time:

Sometimes, we just forget the magnitude of talent that Jim Nabors has/had. 

I ripped this off from my old friend Gary, I know that a couple of you might enjoy watching this. Gary follows this blog and he
works hard to put his ideas on the innerwebz, so stop by and say "hi".

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Saturday End of Action Report

There was a vintage automobile drive in and fair at the Yacht Club, and the Spousal Unit decided to have her car participate.

I brought the car to a gas station auto detailer early in the morning, and after an hour and a half the Mercedes was in top form for showing. I drove home, gathered up She Who Will B Obeyed and our overnight bags and advanced to the Yacht Club. at 12:00 Noon, we parked next to some of the other participants.

All of these cars are owned by fellow members, and I am sure ours was the most inexpensive. But we held our own in the looks department especially since our car is a regularly used car.

That's the Spousal Unit and Wendy standing towards the back.

'59 Porsche

Sweetest car present, 1965 Ferrari 2.75, V-12

02 Ferrari

1973 E-Type Jag with V-12.

Our food and drink providers, Rosanna and the Charming Wendy.

There was cotton candy, corn dogs, burgers and other Fairground foods. Wonderful time, the club really knows how to throw down with the grub.

(I confess that I drank all of the Heinekins) Thanks!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Late night Friday

I was visiting the Exile in Portales and he had a nice artsy video with great music and dancing.

Cool tunes, but it got me in the mood for some Perez Prado. When I think of fifties, I always think of the classics like Dino, Frank and Bobby. But Cuban music was really hot back then, and all the musicians wore jackets and ties in Miami, of all places.

I hope you like Mambo, Number Five:

America; We are well and truly screwed.

This by way of Ace of Spades and Innocent Bystander:

Some idiotic, grabasstic piece of trash Democrat Politician in Milwaukee, who holds a College degree in "Human Services" (I wonder about the value of most of our so-called Social Workers) who passionately tries to argue why Milwaukee should boycott Arizona. Food and oxygen is wasted on that nice lady. I would gladly pay her airfare to emigrate to any Muslim Country.

I went over to one of my favorites; Jerry Pournelle and this is his latest;

The United States has still to find a new picture of its role in a more realisticallyconceived future, a future in which Liberal Democracy is not welcomed with open arms -- particularly not if brought in with Abrams tanks -- and a future in which the survival of the United States does not require a military establishment larger than those of the rest of the world combined. We have yet to coldly assess our national interests in China and the Far East; India;Pakistan;The Near East; The Middle East, and this hemisphere. As a result we don't have control of our own borders but we look to control the borders of Afghanistan.

Read Dr. Pournelle's site for the whole essay and weep that he is no longer involved in our Government. Dr. Pournelle and a team of thinkers worked for President Reagan in developing the idea and plans for the Strategic Defense Initiative.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

On the General McChrystal deal

Guys; Did I not say this about a year and a half ago???

Check out Blackfive (The Paratrooper of Love)

I had a long drawn out post about why the Good General had to be fired, but I got overwhelmed by events at work. So, a day later... everyone is piling on.

Sometimes, we hit the limits of our incompetence. Mine happened to be quite low on the food chain, so nobody got hurt. Others, like the great General, have huge impact on others.

I think that General McChrystal is a great American Warrior, but he had to do what he did for his own reasons. The President was right in doing what he did, because the Constitution requires it.

I have no hard feelings for either.

Just don't fruit the fargin' beer.  Ok?

And win this fu$%^(n war. Our future depends on it.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Friday, Finally.

Once again, we reach that fifth day of the week which free's most of us from the burdens of work, at least for the next 48 hours.

We have a noted artist living in our community, Cliff Leonard. Cliff Leonard has taken it upon himself to create clay art in the likeness of area Marines and Navy Corpsmen who have given their lives for our country. This from the Jacksonville Times-Union.

This picture belongs to Cliff Leonard and is used only as an example.

A great talent used for the betterment of us all.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Barco Sin Vela is FMC

(Full Mission Capable)

My good maintenance buddy, Nick, came in with the verdict and bill. New hoses were plumbed, an old pump rebuilt with new parts and installed. Burnt pump is rebuilt and placed in boat as Fully Operational Spare, stowed in the forward Cabin.

As for the spare; This is so I can just remove and replace an entire pump rather than just have to take it apart for the impeller. Saves on bouncing everything around for small parts, just remove and replace the assembly. Just like Naval Air.

There are extra hoses and the strainer was removed and placed in a smarter position for maintenance.

All this, for the princely sum of $443.00.

B O A T= Break Out Another Thousand!

$557.00 standing by for the nxt repair, or maybe we fill up the diesel tanks. Down to half tank (200 gals), so maybe that will be where we put the other five hundred.

I need to follow up on the gauge. Suspect Nick didn't feel like putting one in, just wanted a few bucks for the weekend.


Tonight, we had Ecuadorian Prawns and Rice, made with cumin and saffron for the rice. Very good! This is why we enjoy Janice coming over for a week, or so. Our meals become gourmet and we don't have to cook. Ah, the suffering we endure, Good food and great sailing stories.

So.... We can bring the Barco out, this weekend since the a/c is fully operational. It's nice to be mobile, indeed.

As the only person in this household who could be possibly "Next", I added this great video as I am just a hippy gypsy.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Beaujolais 2 has arrived

At 12:30AM, Janice showed up from Tahiti.

I am completely impressed that someone can wake up in a little island marina, bundle off to the airport and get to Jacksonville Florida in the space of sixteen hours. Unbelievable.

We have started the process of transferring over 27 pounds of gear needed for repairs for Beaujolais which include a couple water pumps, some stainless steel rollers, various connectors for plumbing and electrical wiring and such. I think the Spousal Unit will bake up a couple dozen snickerdoodles for the crew of Beaujolais, too.

This great world of travel has its problems, though; All that gear I described was going to cost about a thousand bucks to ship via UPS. The purchase price for the parts was about $750.00, which is half the cost of buying in the islands, any islands. But the equipment would be there in three business days, not unlike a passenger on commercial conveyance.

So we have that going for us. It was a better value to send Beaujolais' First Mate for R&R in Jacksonville than using UPS or DHL. Is America not grand?

Another pleasant consequence for having unplanned guests is the prezzies. Spousal Unit was surprised with a beautiful black pearl pendant, (saving Me from having to acquire one. It's all about Me, right?) which she is proudly wearing at this moment. Ah well, it's all good.

There will  be a flurry of activity this week in support of our distant boat and the weekend will be filled with dining and fun. Hopefully the Barco will have a generator.

Generator SITREP: Down for waterpump. This one, like the last, burned up from lack of free flowing water. The intake strainer will have to be moved and I requested that a temperature gauge be placed in view at one of the helm stations.

No trip this weekend, without airconditioning.

That is all! Have a great Wednesday.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I have a Uniform Picture

I was watching Alvin Greene stumble around his front room on tv, trying to find a picture of himself in uniform. So I looked at my Recruit Training book and found this little gem of myself, taken on the Final Inspection before graduation.

I was always wayyyy too serious. Needed to lighten up, for sure. This picture is no where near as nice as the one that Buck posted on his site, but it will have to do for the memory. Nobody believes me when I say I once looked like this.

That's my war face, if you were wondering... as much as a rebellious 17 year old might have.

Beaujolais 2 arrives at 2250, tonight.

Stolen From

Much busy-ness ahead, and we have a wine tasting at Yacht Club. Someone has to do it, so I shall.

I was checking out Extreme Ironing, Hilarious! Outdoor adventurers who really appreciate a creased shirt and trousers. Be sure to take a look at some of the wonderful images, especially the Pole Dancing lady who happens to prefer unwrinkled shirts.

Keep a close watch on our Scoundrels in Con-gress, keep your weapons and 782 gear clean and dry and have a great Tuesday.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Summer is really here

It was a great weekend, we refrained from the champagne on Friday night so we had clear heads for Saturday morning. The Navy Jax Yacht Club was celebrating 54 years of clubhood, we were going to show up to help the membership wine and dine.

We got aboard the Barco at 1300, I fired up the airconditioning and the generator and we were soon on our way to the base. About fifteen minutes later, I noticed a different tone coming from the engine compartment; Our Generator had failed.

Darn it! Now we had no cool air flow inside the Barco.

I decided to wait to repair until we were tied up at the Base where we could plug into shore power and have the A/C's chilling the interior.

We made a spot on approach to the dock and had the Barco secured alongside a power receptacle. We reveled in the shady "sundeck" as our friend Phil soon arrived to help us with the iced down beer. After two beers I decided to wait until Sunday to mess with the generator, the engine compartment was much too warm for my tastes.

A Regal 28' soon was making an approach to their dock, when a request for line handlers was received, and we went to help. Turns out the owner had just purchased this boat and he was a bit nervous about backing into his slip with a cross breeze and current affecting the boat's handling.

No problem; I jumped onto a Catalina 27 from next to his dock, fended off the Regal and directed the driver to make control inputs slowly and with precision. The NJYC team had our new member docked and secured in moments without any dings or drama.

The Naval Hospital hired a river boat to help celebrate the Hospital Corps' 104th anniversary, so we watched with interest as all the uniformed folks from the Navy and Marine Corps walking aboard the river boat. In fact, a cluster of Corpsmen came by the club to get out of the heat; As these young Hospital Corpsmen came to the club, we welcomed them aboard grandly.

I was eyeballing their dress whites, looking for the distinctive Naval Sea Cadet shoulder patches. Nope; These were real Sailors, they just looked too young. We gave them soft drinks and complimented their appearance and military bearing. Compared to their smartness and youth, we yacht clubbers looked like fugitives from Captain Ron with our disheveled slackitude.

After our guests departed, a number of us hovered on the west side of the club deck to admire the uniformed members walking to the boat. Soon, a Marine/Navy Honor Guard approached the boat with colors flying. All of us Navy Jax Yacht Club members present stood proudly and silently at attention as the Colors passed, apparently a Service Member's Remains were being carried to the boat for a spreading on the river.

We were silently standing as the ceremony went on, it was really beautiful to see our Nation's Flag flying proudly in the waning sunshine. They finally cased the Colors and we went back to drinking beer and talking about the spectacle we just watched.

I mentioned to one of the past Commodores how sweet it was to see the Flag flying, and I was sure that the uniformed folks on the River boat noticed that we weren't acting like grabasstic idiots while a somber ceremony played out on the waterfront.

After the River boat departed, we did indeed, begin skylarking around the clubhouse.

Taps was held at 2330 with those of us still present retiring to our respective boats.

Sunday breakfast was cooked and served by us members and after clean up, the Barco Sin Vela departed back for our berth in Pirate's Cove.

I called our Maintenance person to repair the generator, later today. It's better that way...

News we can use for this week;

I mentioned the Beaujolais saga ongoing in Papeete, Tahiti. There is an airport strike at the International facility which has caused the cancellation of many outbound flights. We got the call last night warning us that we will have at least one visitor, arriving tomorrow with Roger being a possible arrival in a few more days.

Good thing we have a freezer full of delectables and about 120 bottles of fine wine. But I think our guests will be more interested in using the almost unlimited water available for showers and laundry.

Have a fine week!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Report from Papeete, Tahiti

Got this email from my good buddy, "Roger",  a couple hours ago;

"DO you believe this?‏
From:Beaujolais (
Sent:Sat 6/12/10 8:13 AM
To those about whom I often speak....
Tonight, I am at the marina bar, it's happy hour and I am with people I know. I get introduced to a couple who after 2 hours of conversation say "hey, we know Darryl and Lynne"!!!
They are Lara XXXXx and Jason XXXXX. He races his J24 "Rush" and Lara sailed with Downing XXXX and Greg XXXX.
They said, "yeah, we know Darryl and Lynne XXXX, they are well known at the club". So, your reputation goes before you.... or not he├┐?"

 Harrumph. Friends from the UK, sailing across the Pacific, take an evening in the local Marina bar and strike up a conversation with strangers who happen to know the Spousal Unit and myself.

Not sure if I'm feeling a bit honored that we are a subject of some sort of international gossip  or just how neat it is that the Barco Crew is In-famous.

In French Polynesia.

As a matter of fact, I didn't realize that other members of our Yacht Club even knew who we actually are! I mean, we are pretty low on the Club's social food chain and we rarely branch out to chat with others. We socialize with about five other couples, and that's about it. 

Our Club's Vice Commodore is a fairly influential guy; Dan Marino works for him doing radio and TV advertising. Naturally, I have no idea of what the Vice Commodore looks like, since we don't run in the same circles.

That's what I mean about the Barco Crew being very insignificant, socially. If I was describing Solar System orbits, The Barco Crew would be somewhere out past the former planet, Pluto. But it is a very comfortable orbit.

We may have met Lara and Jason, but we don't remember what they look like. However we appreciate the kind words they evidently said. I bet they went back to their boat trying to remember what we look like!

Lot's of fun going on, for sure. All of us as people are about six degrees of separation from each other.

Just like that actor, Kevin Bacon.

Roger sailing Beaujolais on St Johns river:

Me, a few moments later:

Friday, June 11, 2010

Friday Fun: Political Style

I am in the wrong racket! Alvin Greene just won the primary in South Carolina for U.S. Senator. Nobody knew who he was, and his opponent was the number three ranking Democrat in the State House.  Mr. Green pulled out almost 60% of the Democrat vote.

Hand salute, and congratulations! Always glad to see a fellow enlisted person do good things outside the Service.

Oh, he left the Service involuntarily??? I would bet a buck that his discharge was a High Year Tenure thing, where he failed to promote to the next grade. Nothing dishonorable about that. Although the political talking heads are making considerable hay about the shortness of Mr. Greene's career.

Another scurrilous slander is that Mr. Green is facing charges. Since when is that a disqualification to hold Political Office in this land? In the Democrat Party?? Mr. Greene is innocent until proven guilty. I bet a lint ball that Alcee Hastings might agree. The "Honorable" Mr. Hastings was a Federal Judge who was found guilty by the Con-gress and Senate of these United States of taking bribes and was Impeached.


Yet the "Honorable" Mr. Hastings is a respected Con-gress person, well respected and all that.

If I knew how simple it was to suddenly grab some fame and not a little bit of political umph, I would consider a run for office. The only problem is that I don't come from some sort of protected political class, like a Boston Brahmin, or an "approved" so-called minority group. Like Ethiopian Hebrews. Nope. I have a normal accent and despite my respect and affection for Ethiopian Hebrew's, no one would mistake my facial features as being anything but me.

Alvin's own Party (Democrats) now have disowned him once it was discovered that Alvin Greene actually won the voting contest, fairly and squarely. The Party disowned him immediately and called for an investigation, accusing Mr. Greene of being a "Plant". After all, someone is always manipulating elections, ever since 2000.

At least Mr. Greene has not been found guilty of any crime other than winning his primary. And being a young man looking for a job, why not go big and dream Large?

He can't be a plant; looks human enough to me. I think the Democrat Party is angry that someone slid in there with out doing the normal stuff to get elected, you know, pay off the party glitterati with large quantities of "donated" monies. The other squawk is probably that the Democrat Party didn't realize that some folks will vote for the candidate they like, and maybe not the Candidate that has been properly anointed by the holy leaders of the Democrat Party. Maybe an outsider was the right choice.

So the Democrat's didn't believe this person would win, so they didn't investigate this person fully. Now, they accuse the opposition of using this good man as a tool. And now they want an investigation to exonerate themselves for the responsibility of not vetting this candidate. Perhaps some slimy Rethuglicans voted for this newbie out of spite.

But only Democrats could actually vote for Democrats. Hmmm. Did those good voters choose this candidate because of his looks, without studying the ballot closely for what each candidate stood for?

Just six short months until November, be sure to get the popcorn ready, let's watch a political party implode.


This just in from the Spousal Unit;

"Funny!  You should have also put something in about Corrine Brown hanging up on an NPR reporter when she was questioned about her position on her gerrymandered district!  The fun is beginning....
Then also in Florida we are likely to get a governor with no political experience, who has a lot of money he earned as a golden parachute from a hospital company that paid the largest fine EVER for defrauding the government.  He is 13 points higher than McCollum and Sink isn't even a serious choice so whoever wins the Rep primary will most likely be our next governor - you choose between a corporate crook or a career politician.... "


Sorry for the political comments, it's not my normal thing; But the fun is indeed, just beginning.

Stand By, For Heavy Rolls!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Thursday Fun

I got on a Kingston Trio trip, today. Here is their rendition of a fine sea chantey:

My Mom and Dad owned maybe seven LP albums in 1969-1974. 
Peter Paul and Mary, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and the Trio. Not a bad 
way to musically grow up.

By the way:
There is news on the horizon, I may either enjoy my current 
digs for the Summer (Not a bad deal) or I may make like a Wilbury and travel. By boat.

That was one of my favorites from my childhood. The 
Kingston Trio is definitely one of my all 
time favorites; I could be on the proverbial desert island with 
their music alone.
Ok, with some Classics, too. 

This is for all of us who are on the starboard side of forty. I hope the 

brunette in this video ain't the videographer's lost love. Because then we would have to pull
his "man card". 

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wednesday humor

This kid is taking a man sized pull on that bottle. Doh!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Tuesday Sitrep

Bummer of a Tuesday. I have a psychotic customer who has nothing to do but make life a bit wearisome.

That's ok. I will be happier and live better than her.

I'm sure some of you have some vexing characters who make your day to day living more of an existence than the park life we all aspire to.

Just imagine our opponents suffering an indignity. Perhaps like having a messed up first name. And  that person being laughed at by grammar school children, for having an uncomfortable moniker.

I feel better, already!

That is all. Have a great afternoon and evening.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Today is 66th Anniversary of D-Day

Take a pause for the cause, please remember the wet, scared and brave Men and Women who sacrificed their youth and lives to free Europe from Nazi tyranny. They were put ashore on some of the most hostile terrain on the coast of Northern France, literally on beaches that were joined to cliffs with no easy way on or off the shore.

I cannot imagine enduring such adversity, yet endure and persevere they did.

Watch the best tribute to these D-Day Soldiers ever made by a fine American;

God Bless America!

Exile in Portales: The Bad Ol' Days

Exile in Portales: The Bad Ol' Days

I didn't want to rip this off completely from Buck, but if you don't mind some salty language you can watch some great footage of F-4's, C-141, C-130 and Pan Am 707 launching and recovering at Cam Ranh.

Stay to the very end to hear the punch line.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Back for the weekend!


The Upper Peninsula was in the midst of a heat wave, temperatures actually exceeded 80°F! Fortunately, we brought two bags of long and short pantaloons, with matching shirts. And jackets. Oh yes; Jackets.

We were at K. I. Sawyer Air Force Base   International Airport after about five hours of travel, the attractive Finnish girl with a glorious tan had our Alamo rental car ready in about thirty seconds, and we were off for the metropolis known locally as Marquette!

Really; I think the whole process of rental car, grabbing bags and finding the terminal exit took at least five minutes. I really enjoy rural America, the hired help really want to help, and they are actually nice to us tourist types.


It was a fifteen minute drive to the Landmark Hotel, in the heart of downtown. Totally amazing, this was a gem of a Hotel, priced like a Ramada. They had a wonderful gourmet restaurant and a pub.

We entered our Lakeview room and found no fridge or stupid convenience bar. Instead, there were a bottle of red and white wine on the dresser, $15.00 each, if you drink them. Well, we took care of the white wine, I went to the ground and brought up a bag of ice and chilled that white wine, we concurred that it was a fine bottle.

View from room:

The Niece showed up about a half hour later, she was intending to catch dinner with us and ride to the Keweenaw the next day. The Niece has just finished her second year at Northern Michigan, the only bummer was that she received her first B grade ever, in Physics, no less.

The Niece's Grandfather had stopped by for lunch, earlier, so this would be her second real meal of the day. This meant we had to hop on down to the Hotel Restaurant.

We dined on steaks and chops, washed down with a fine Franciscan Meritage which we were pleased to see on the wine menu at an almost reasonable $78.00.

The evening was definitely moving in a positive direction, The Niece was animated and almost talkative to her ancient and well traveled, boring relatives from Florida. After dinnner, the Hostess directed us to the Pub where her husband was entertaining the small crowd.

Friday morning was beautiful, the sky was clear and blue and jackets were not required. We hiked to the water and checked out the local boating scene.

My ATM card was refused at the local banking facility. Huh??? I only had about ten bucks on me and a full day of traveling was ahead. I called the Credit Union asking for a status on my accounts; After all, I was in a far away land, and no doubt the recent activity may be construed as being out of character.

"Nope. All is copacetic and your accounts are good... By the way, would you like an auto loan?"


Gathered our pax for the Mohawk run, we were speeding West on good ol' Highway 41. The same road made famous by the Allman Brothers. Only excitement came not far from Baraga, a lunatic decided to pass the car behind me, us and the Tanker Truck in front, on a curve. Opposing traffic made them selves available for the soon to happen head on collision. Thankfully, the professionalism and attentiveness! of the truck driver avoided the collision by veering sharply onto the shoulder. I am sure the trucker neede a laundry stop after that maneuver.

I really hate selfish and stupid Maggot Farmer 's. They can't be content in just wasting their own miserable lives; No, they try to kill the rest of us who are being patient and safe.

Arrival at the family homestead in Mohawk was uneventful and we headed for the Cliff View Cabins and made our encampment.

The moment of truth came soon, and at 7:00 pm we were seated with the rest of Keweenaw County watching the class of 2010 graduate from Calumet High. One of the speakers was a graduate from 1948, he said, "CHS remains the best High School from before 1948 through 2010 and into the future!"

And he gave out five scholarships.

The crowd and the Grads were justifiably proud of their accomplishments. I really like the people of the Keweenaw peninsula. Once they know you can be trusted they will open up completely.

Of course, this is compared to the locals in my town, or more importantly, the Youf. (sp. int) Be they meth fueled or hate fueled, I always keep a wary eye out when out and about. Price you pay for living in the warmth of the sun, I guess. Keep your ammo clean and dry and your weapon oiled.

Saturday was the big party at the VFW. This particular VFW does not have a bar like the regular VFW's, so it is a pleasant place to use for parties. (What I mean is that there is not the usual heavy smoking that comes with most VFW's in these United States. I never visit VFW's for this reason, despite being a life member) All the usual characters came out for the great food and company in celebrating the Nephew's graduation from high school. Matter of fact; There must have been a hundred of these parties in the Keweenaw, and most people kind of float from one to another, getting full of great foods and loaded on free beer. Is the U.P. not great?

Some Saturday whine: Nobody would play horseshoes with me, I labored at the pits for a couple hours, practicing. Nobody would take up the irons so it was a bummer for me, I only get to play once a year. Darn it!

The family cleaned up the VFW and we dragged the rest of the keg to the fire pit at the Cliff View Cabins in Phoenix. We dined on the usual camp fire foods and sloppy joes, swapped tales of the Nephew's hunting and fishing exploits and had serious (As serious as it can get at 2330, on a clear night in the country, with beer) discussions of the future with the new graduates. Steve is off for Advanced Training with the Guard, followed by a deployment to Afghanistan in September. Mike will be heading to a Vocational School in Ohio, where he will become a Auto Technician.

The Spousal Unit and I retired about  Midnight, and fell asleep to the sounds of the rest of the family drinking and having fun. Apparently, the last went to their cabin at four in the morning.

Ouch. For them!

Sunday morning we crept to Slim's Cafe in Mohawk and had brekkies. Noon, we went to the land's end of the Keweenaw, via four wheel drive over some very questionable terrain. There was some fishing and a bit of sight seeing, mostly traveling rough roads. Jeep Cherokee's are very useful up there.

You are HERE:

I mean right HERE:

And this is what we saw and did:

Ore Ships on Superior with Spousal Unit.

Dad and Lad

It was a fine Sunday.

I went up to the Phoenix Bar to pay for our cabin, they charged us 200 bucks for three nights of a two bedroom cabin. Nice deal, I would stay there anytime again.

View of cabin with Spousal Unit and her Dad:

Monday morning, I was up at the crack of 0530 to fish with the Brother in Law. We grabbed cups of coffee and headed back to some place called Montreal Lakes. The Spousal Unit (Who has great doubts about my fishing talent) wished me luck, while sighing aloud, "I wonder if I will get fish for breakfast... Probably not."


About fifteen minutes later, we were on the side of an old road by a wandering creek, pulling the canoe off the pickup in a cloud of hungry mosquitoes. We pushed the boat into the water and Tom went off to park the truck.

I stood there, kind of holding the canoe in place while spraying myself liberally with Off bran repellent. I silently hoped it would work, because I was cold, miserable and really hating the sounds of the pests trying to fly into my ears.

Our honorable host was back about five minutes later and we pushed the boat underway into the cold creek among scrub bushes and grass. The Bug spray was working wonderfully as we baited our poles with night crawlers and a spinner spoon. As we paddled slowly, I cast out into the tannin darkened water, hoping for a bit.

About two minutes later I was rewarded with that wonderfully surprising sharp tugs on my night crawler. I tried to set the hook but was unsuccessful. Darn.

We continued around a bend and Tom called out that he had one on his lure!

He reeled it into the canoe and commented that he did not have a measuring tape to see if it was a "keeper".

I happen to know that I have seven inch hands so we used my hand to measure the fish. It was a keeper, so onto the stringer it went. We would not be "skunked" on this trip.

Night crawlers weren't doing their job as Tom reeled in another Speckled Trout. I was getting bites, but the worms were too big for the small mouths of the Speckies. I was offered the use of the lucky rod, which I accepted.

Next cast brought in a beauty, my first decent fish in years! The problem became that I kept pulling fish with each subsequent cast, so much that Tom was unable to rig his pole with a lure!

Being in a canoe, I would pull in the fish amidship, I was facing front so I had to twist back to land the fish. Tom would grab the fish, unhook it and put it on a stringer, while I casted for the next one.

It was fun for me, to say the least. The limit was five apiece, we had nine keepers on the string and the sun was getting higher, the bites became fewer. I suggested we get back to the house to clean and cook them, let's not be too greedy about getting more than we could eat.

Tom agreed, we paddled back to the launch site and pulled out of the water. It was 0815. Total fishing time was an hour and a half and we had almost the limit. What a great day!

The Spousal Unit was quite surprised at our catch, and we went back to Mohawk with her Mom, Dad and her Brother for a great waffle and fish breakfast. Memorial Day was having a wonderful start.

We departed at Noon for Grand Marais, where we had reservations for a motel on the water. Grand Marais is also the Mother in Law's place of residence, so she came along for the ride.

Did you know that many of Upper Peninsula roads are unpaved? They sure are. We drove about fifty miles on a dirt road from Marquette to Grand Marais. I drove that rental car a bit harder than I would my own, but the Impala held up majestically to the rough road.

We stopped by the painted rocks or Miner's Castle, don't remember the name.

Dirt road to Grand Marais:

The Spousal Unit's Mom wanted to show us her favorite spot in Grand Marais, what she calls her Beach Porch:

We dropped off Mother in Law at her place and went to our motel, on the waterfront across from the Coast Guard house/station.

No pool, no sauna, no ice machine, no clerk at the office. This was turning ugly.

The note on the window mentioned the keys were in the mailbox, which they were. We went to our room and found we were one of two occupied rooms. Oh well, that's how they roll in Grand Marais. They trust you until you prove untrustworthy. Very nice place, despite our disappointment with the inoperative parts of the facility.

Another view of the harbor:

We dined at the local microbrewery, the pizza was very good and the beer even better.

After dinner we walked to the fishing pier and watched the locals fishing for and catching whitefish. I took some great pictures of the sun setting at 2245 and wondered at what a full weekend it had been, me fishing that morning and us winding up in a very beautiful town, Grand Marais. We had some  more wine for about 30 minutes and called it a night.

The first two pictures are of a Memorial to two teen's who had a very bad day at the fishing breakwater.

The fishing Crew:

There was no remote for the TV. How did people survive thirty years ago?

Breakfast was held at the Train Car Diner (West Bay Diner) in the center of town, I mean village. Excellent food, a 1940's ambiance with good prices. I love these old diners!

Off to the Tahquamenon Falls, we were! Another fifty miles of dirt roads through a rural paradise, no other cars and me throwing a rooster tail of dust behind.

We got to the Upper Falls, which were the big ones. The park, like all the parks I saw in Michigan was clean, expertly managed and accessible to all. For six bucks. Did you know they have a Microbrewery at the Falls Park? Very civilized park they have there, oh yes!

The beer recommendation would be the Porcupine Pale Ale. I had two.

The Falls:

I shake my head at the great bargain and the bugs that immediately attacked. No problem, though. I am used to the flies and such, and besides; The Park is incredibly beautiful. My mind is definitely considering a relocation to the country of Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

The Lower Falls:

That thought bubble is burst by the Loving Spousal Unit, who reminds me that the sunny and warm weather is an anomaly, trying to trick us into moving to the Upper Peninsula. There are only two seasons up there: Winter and Next Winter. We just happened upon a fluke, a strange transient heat wave that would be gone in a flash. In fact, the tv weather people were concerned that people were being roasted alive without air conditioning!

More dirt road action including a phone booth and a gas station with added attraction, another car on our road!

Yooper Traffic Jam:

One more night was spent in our unmanned motel, we still hadn't checked in but found our room had been made up. Maybe there were invisible people running the joint and we were in an experimental station managed by aliens.

We departed for K.I. Sawyer Air Force Base, International Airport at 0730 the next day. In the next two hours, we saw only five other cars heading our way.


We dined on some crappy airport food and called it a vacation. Mother In Law was picked up by The Niece and they went back to Mohawk, while we waited for the next hour for our plane to Detroit.

Home at 7:00PM, we finally relaxed in peace. What a week, and I am looking forward to returning to Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

End of Mission.

Have a great weekend!