July 2020




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Friday July 10th 2020

I woke up feeling really jet-lagged and made up a grocery list.

Groceries were delivered in the afternoon and I realized I had bought far too much seeing as I don't know exactly what's coming up in the next two weeks. I'd also forgotten and how expensive food is here on Vancouver Island. Fortunately much of what I bought is dried food or canned and I'll use up the fresh food before too long.

I thought a while and then contacted the marina in Mexico and ask them to retrieve and express me my computer because it is my entertainment for the next 14 days. Unfortunately, I did not leave a key hidden on Baja Magic this time because workers will be disassembling the sails and the dodger and bimini and the marina could not find the key I had left with them.

It turns out that my Bavaria 34, Magic Moments, is still not repaired and is due out on charter so I spent time chasing down the part and learned it is being air freighted in and was supposed to appear sometime late Friday. Ben promises to install it Monday or Tuesday. He says it's a day's work for two men.

I asked when the boat can be in the water and he said Wednesday but MM needs to be in Powell River eighty-five nautical miles away for clients to board on Thursday night so that will be a bit of a stretch. That is fifteen hours of motoring or sailing.

I did that same trip the day I first bought this boat with the same kind of timeline so I know I can do it easily if I leave Wednesday morning.

I went nowhere today.  I was very tired and went to bed early.

Saturday July 11th 2020

Today I woke up feeling really jet lagged again and wondered if I'm coming down with the WuWHOFlu but then I realized it's probably just lack of coffee. I haven't had coffee since I got here and I usually drink a pot in the morning and then a cup or two in the late afternoon.

Coffee came with my grocery order but the stove on this boat does not work due to an apparent leak in the propane system that triggers the safety and won't allow it to turn on so I did not have coffee yesterday at all.

This morning, Omar brought me an electric kettle and after four cups of Starbucks coffee I'm my normal self. So here I am, self isolating again and being careful not to get close to other people. I'll be moving to a different boat but staying isolated all the while. I really don't know what the risk is if any but I must respect the regulations and some people are really worried about the virus.

There isn't much in BC so I want to help keep it that way. As much as I have watched this whole epidemic from the start I can't really claim to understand it or know what's best. I think that puts me in the company of all the experts because I don't think they know either. Whatever they're doing here in BC seems to work for them so I'm doing my best to fit in.

Before I came back to Canada I did make a point of phoning to consult the local RCMP about what was permissible and have been advised that sailing around in a boat is perfectly acceptable as a way to self isolate as long as I am careful not to make close contact with other people.

There appears to be a great deal of inconsistency in the rules and how they are applied however I do understand the intent behind them and feel obliged to protect other people from the risks whether they are real or imagined

I found it interesting that after leaving the airplane and going through customs I was free to wander through the airport and have lunch and then go to the boarding lounge and sit and board the next airplane next to a random stranger with no restraints but then on arrival required to lock myself down. I suppose it's very difficult to develop a regime that works in every case because Canadians have a right to return home however only a few major airports now receive international flights meaning that people must then take a domestic flight to reach their destination unless they happen to live in one of those few major cities.

Right about now I'm wondering if I was crazy to come to British Columbia and not go back to Alberta where I could be mowing my grass wandering around in my garden working on my furnace and generally living my normal life instead of being cooped up on a boat. I've been promised lots of teaching and skipper work when my quarantine is over and deliveries while in quarantine however and that was the incentive to come here

The afternoon went by quickly and I am settling in. I managed to get the stove working so that is a bonus.

Sunday July 12th 2020

> I wondered what had happened to you. Good to hear it is nothing major.

Yup. I'm still around.

I'm at the point where I have no understanding of this virus or the social responses at all.  I've heard and seen so many conflicting so-called facts and opinions that I am at a total loss.

I find myself in quarantine on an island with only three known cases. I'm signed up for 14 days of imprisonment basically although there may be some latitude and I'm checking to find out how much there is.

In a place where there are only three known cases I can understand extreme caution. I'm not worried personally but I'd hate to start an outbreak. This end of Vancouver Island is known for being populated by the "newlywed and nearly dead" so with so many old folks people are very wary.  Of course, I am one of the ones I should be worrying about, being in my eighth decade on the rock.

It's funny. How I feel about this is different from how I felt in Mexico, Texas, and Seattle.

Jose sent me this.

Hi Allen,

I know we are all suffering virus fatigue, more than the virus, but once in a while I find intriguing reports. This one from one of the cruise ships suggests to me that there could be a slow burn epidemic driven by asymptomatics, producing more asymptomatics, which are likely missed by the "tests" unless they happen to sample them at the time when their "Cp" values are low. A lot of interesting info in the supplementary appendix.

Natural History of Asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 Infection

Enjoy the change...


Here are some interesting articles.

Illiberalism Isn’t to Blame for the Death of Good-Faith Debate

How deadly is COVID-19? A biostatistician explores the question

In Canada, the cases of COVID-19 and deaths are declining. Here's the story behind the numbers

A giant volcanic eruption and another deadly pandemic are among the 'catastrophic' disasters that could devastate the world economy in the next 10 years

> Glad to hear you made your trip. Missed the note on your laptop but caught up after catching it on reread. Good luck with the repairs and isolation.

It looks as if I just got out of the Baja in time.
“Ya no hay médicos ni enfermeras disponibles”: BCS estima colapso hospitalario ante aumento de contagios de COVID-19

It sounds as if the hospitals are filling up so I'm glad I'm not there to make things worse in the case that I might get it.

I'm realizing now however I may have made a strategic error relying on Colin's ideas. I should rather have flown to Alberta and spent time on my property there doing things that need doing and then flying out here at the end of my quarantine.

Oh well. I count myself lucky regardless. So far, even in quarantine, life is never dull and I figure everything happens for a reason. I'm waiting to see what it is. We'll see how I feel in eleven more days.

This is a very interesting article. Read it and see why I am confused. Frankly it corresponds to what I have thought but I'm no expert.

Coronavirus: Why everyone was wrong
The immune response to the virus is stronger than everyone thought

But then there is this

Getting Covid-19 twice:
Why I think my patient was reinfected

Monday July 13th 2020

From Brian:

Are you allowed to go to Alberta now, and spend the remainder of your quarantine there?

My cousin's household caught the Covid-19. (I haven't been told how they caught it. I'm assuming it was a doctor's visit, but I'm speculating.)

My cousin Paul and his wife Danielle are unable to have children. They have adopted 3 boys. Justin is 22 or 23, autistic, mentally retarded, and has health issues. John is 14...not the brightest bulb in the box, but otherwise normal. Jackson is probably 12...he's diabetic and has an insulin pod glued to his arm to give him regular insulin.

My cousin's wife is around 45, close to 6 feet tall, and morbidly obese. She had the stomach surgery a couple years ago. I'm guessing she used to weigh 450-500 pounds...I'm guessing she is probably 300-350 now.

Danielle has been posting updates on Facebook.

June 26 - I feel crappy, oh so crappy. Headache, snotty, coughing up icky stuff.

June 29 - Day 6 of feeling like I go run over by a bus...

July 1 - Well Justin and I have been sick for over a week, with headaches, body aches, sinus congestion and drainage, and extreme exhaustion. Only low grade temp. Now both john and Jackson are showing signs of the same thing.

July 3 - Well its official.....test positive.

July 7 - My reward for finally feeling better? A mountain of laundry, a house that looks like a tornado rolled through it, and a mountain of dishes to wash.....I'm feeling the need for a nap already.

July 8 - Well, looks like quarantine just got extended another 10 to 14 days. Now Jackson's down with the same symptoms. At least we'll all have had it and hopefully be done with this crap. Paul's still healthy and going to work everyday.

July 10 - Today has been an emotionally rough day. I've been sick and stuck in this house for well over 2 weeks, and it's really getting to me. John and I are covid free now, but we have to wait for Jackson's to clear before we can really go anyplace or visit anyone. That wont be until mid next week. Even short trips to local stores don't really help. And I'm sure no one will be interested in us visiting, even then.

Very interesting report. Thanks. Seems being morbidly obese is not a death sentence after all. The more I read the less I understand.

As for my situation, as I understand it, I cannot leave this boat without permission. From whom I am not exactly sure.

Last night I found a contact number to call to clarify my position because actually I'm a delivery captain and that's the reason that I came back here rather than Alberta so I'll call and find out today.

Actually this lockup isn't too bad so far other than the fact that this boat has big windows and could be a greenhouse if it gets really warm and sunny. I've been jet-lagged and slept a lot but now am more perky and my opinion may change. We'll see.

There are a lot of things I can do to keep myself occupied including working on my Spanish which I've sort of neglected although living in La Paz I was using it a lot and found I was quite amazed at how much I know and how much I don't know.

The challenges presented by this virus remind me of when tracheal mites first appeared and then, later, varroa.

Because all these things are difficult to detect and the direct and indirect effects are not fully understood we saw and see a wide range of responses and opinions, all firmly held and enunciated as truth.

Those responses serve mostly to outline how differently people think. Some people are very risk-averse and other people are risk-seeking. Some think in shades of grey, degrees of probability and certainty, and many dimensions. Others think in black and white and value rumour over evidence.

Some wish to control others with draconian regulation and enforcement and some believe that people should govern themselves with common sense, cooperation, and minimum interference by governments.

Here is something interesting:

Florida sets one-day record with over 15,000 new COVID cases, more than most countries

However, buried in the article is this: "Florida reported a record amount of testing, with nearly 143,000 results announced on Sunday compared with an average of 68,000 for the prior seven days."

Hmm. Of course they have "a record number of 'cases' " . If you do a record amount of testing you'll find a record number of cases. 


(Some comments came into the forum)

Well, maybe leaving my computer behind was a good thing because we're getting a discussion going here.

What is really interesting is that I am getting almost exactly opposing viewpoints from very intelligent people with apparent facts to back them up.

As I say this is why I am so confused personally. I understand both sides.

My personal policy has been to stay out of the way and not go looking for trouble but at the same time not be paranoid about it because for all I know I'm one of the people whose immune or maybe I've already had it. Also, if I die I've had a good run and I'm past my best before date.

I could point out that the severe secondary effects and amputations are only evident in an extremely small and almost disappearing percentage of actual hospitalizations in comparison to the total cases but that is no consolation if you happen to be the one to draw the short straw.

People are absolutely horrible at figuring out odds and that's why lotteries exist. I think if you polled people to see who buys lottery tickets and who does not you would find it is the same people who don't who say this bug no big deal and those who do who think they might get the bug and suffer severe consequences.

Some people focus on the most unlikely outcome and make decisions on that and others say "full speed ahead and damn the torpedos". Both strategies work often enough that both perspectives have survived over time and are well represented in our populations. I'm a mix of both.


There is no way of saying who is right. Chances are everyone is wrong, at least in part. The totality is always unknowable.

Jose sends this by email.

Thinking there is a growing body of evidence accumulating that "asymptomatics" are not very infective, or infective for a short period or at least not important drivers of the really serious part of the disease (the exposure and critical doses of virus of older and immuno-compromised people).

Somehow everyone got fixated on "cases" and keeping those down. It is a very simplistic model, sort of like particle diffusion in a high school science project. And somehow keeping the particles from spreading or blocking them with things like masks is the way to keep people healthy.

Sadly the mask thing has become a political statement. If you wear masks, you are part of the responsible crowd, if you don't your are an ignorant "Trump person". When probably the only true benefit of a mask is for highly infective coughers in close quarters to stop exposing vulnerable people with high doses.

That commentary you posted from the German retired immunologist was very good at pointing out possible weaknesses in the current arguments for lockdowns, masks, etc.

One other thing I know is that the real number we should be looking at is so-called excess deaths. There have been bumps but for the most part last I looked the figures were quite level which suggests that covid has being cannibalizing the numbers for other mortalities.

In other words deaths that might have been ascribed to other things are now ascribed to covid and also covid is knocking off people who might have been taking down shortly by other morbidities.

We can also never discount the effect of the bounty that is placed on reporting covid deaths by hospitals.

So I'll be interested to see what the latest excess death numbers are because they will tell the real tale. I've heard it said that the covid deaths and injuries are about on a par with similar trauma and death caused by automobile traffic. Does anyone know if that's true?

Here are the excess deaths data

I haven't really spent a lot of time analyzing it (a little difficult on a phone) but there does appear to be a small increase over the historical but not nearly as large as one would expect from the noise the media is making.

This is why I wonder...

Tuesday July 14th 2020

I woke up at 2 a.m. and was itchy and a bit stuffed up with a tickle in my throat and thought oh my maybe I've got the bug.

I got up, drank some water, took a couple of Benadryl and an aspirin, and went back to bed. Next thing I knew it was seven and I'm just fine.

This is day five of my isolation.

First thing, I looked at this forum and wrote an article regarding what could be becoming an argument in hopes I'm heading off conflict and in hopes that we can all get along and that nobody will feel attacked or rejected. I very much value all points of view, observations and experience to try to understand this unique and unusual point in history.

If there's one thing I have learned about this it is that what do you think and what you believe depends very greatly on where you are and who you are. What I thought and felt in Mexico is quite different from what I think and feel here so it's not surprising that we're going to have some disagreement. That disagreement can be very constructive or it could ruin this forum. Let's make sure we are supportive and constructive and let's examine each point of view, study, anecdote, and opinion without getting heated. ----

Today Ben is supposed to install the new drive into Magic Moments and the boat should be launched late today or tomorrow morning. At that point the plan is that I board that boat and take it to Powell River.

What happens then is unclear. My gear is all on board Cassiopeia and Cassiopeia is out on charter somewhere in Desolation Sound. I don't know when she returns to dock because the website does not show that detail. I do need to recover my books and supplies for my teaching which starts when this 14 days is over and they are under the forward bunk on that boat.

Am I in quarantine or am I not? I'm not sure. However I intend to observe isolation and social distancing for that period of time and wear a mask where appropriate.

I have tried to contact the authorities to clarify my status and what leeway I have but it's almost impossible. After over an hour on the phone yesterday my call was dropped. In my conversation with one agent she expressed surprise that no one has called me to confirm the details of my isolation. That would have been most helpful because reaching them is hell.

So I can either go on the phone and go through the telephone maze again and take a chance on talking to someone after a long hold or go on the assumption that if I act in good faith and don't expose other people that I will be on side.

I am not at all comfortable with the fact that the government has not contacted me to verify my isolation, as apparently they are supposed to do. I've made every effort to contact them from calling the RCMP before I came back to Canada and calling both the Federal and the provincial lines dedicated for this purpose for clarification.

At any rate, today I'll monitor the progress of the boat repair and organize my things to transfer to that boat. And wait.

Tuesday July 14th 2020. Continued

I got a call at two that the drive is in and the boat will splash at 230. Wow! That means I get a day's head start over what we expected. I can be at Gabriola by nightfall or maybe Nanaimo depending on when I leave and the tides.

So I packed up and am sitting here waiting. Vern will bring the boat alongside, leave, and I will board with my things and head out. I have until about nine to find my overnight anchorage. That reminds me. I'd better make sure the ground tackle works before leaving.

It's seems tomorrow I'll be bucking strong winds on the nose but the next day promises following winds. We'll see. Forecasts are often wrong.

I'm starting to feel really good about this. It's three now and no sign of Vern or the boat but I'm feeling this will all work out. I'm looking forward to transiting a favourite backyard. The Sea of Cortez is fabulous but this place has been home much longer.

Tonight I'll be anchored in one of my favourite spots. I'm guessing Clam Bay and I'm starting to get excited. I'm guessing I won't be swimming but maybe... After all it is July.

At 340 I called Vern and he is on his way. With luck I'll be out of here within an hour.

Vern arrived and tied up alongside then left in his dinghy. I move my boxes across, untied, and headed out.

The boat is running well and makes surprisingly good time. Seven or eight knots seems to be a good cruising speed. This is a new prop since the last time I was aboard. At that time the boat shook horribly and thus the new prop.

Since this boat is the same size as Baja Magic I'm surprised at the speed difference. Maybe Baja Magic needs another propeller. The prop on that boat is an expensive feathering prop but 5 knots is about max for motoring.

The trip became routine and as I had intuited Clam Bay turned out to be the best location for anchoring for the night.

I dropped anchor, had supper and went to bed.

Wednesday July 15th 2020

I woke a little after 4 and checked the tides. It seems I can make the morning slack quite nicely at Dodds if I leave by 5.

I had breakfast, tidied up, then routinely checked the engine and the transmission. Surprise, Surprise: there is no oil on the transmission dipstick and this is a brand new transmission. It's probably not too serious but I don't want to take chances. I won't go anywhere until I get advice.

The transmission sounds normal and there is no oil slick near the boat so I am guessing the techs did not completely fill the transmission. This has happened before with Cassiopeia and no harm came of it. I guess there can be air bubbles trapped until the boat has been run a bit and the oil level then drops. I've found no oil on the dipstick in cars occasionally and after filling the oil they seemed to have suffered no ill-effects.

Regardless, I am not going anywhere until I contact Ben for advice, seeing as he just installed this new transmission on warranty, so I have two hours to kill sitting here in this beautiful calm bay. I should check the water temperature. Last year I swam here in July or August.

I also should launch the dinghy as I'll probably run through the cut to a marina and buy oil once I get advice.

Thursday July 16th 2020

Rouse Bay: I woke up at for and went up to look around. The night had to been reasonably calm and the boat had not moved much.

I had been up several times to check during the night because I was not sure exactly how much swing room I had.

Even though the depth was good this morning, I was concerned about the the falling tide. If I miscalculated I could be stuck there and worst case stranded tipped over on one side

My charts we're not in agreement about the depths and so in order to stop worrying I decided to leave.

I had breakfast and coffee and by 4:40 I had raised anchor and was underway.

The sun was still below the horizon and there was a bit of a haze but the visibility was good and I started for Powell River.

Overnight, the wind had shifted to the south as predicted giving me following seas and a tailwind. Following seas can be awkward as the waves toss the boat side to side as they overtake and pass ahead but the motion is tolerable.

My ETA for arrival at Powell River is 9:30. Once I arrive I really don't know what happens next. Colin has been very busy and has not provided me with many details. I assume that Larry will be there to greet me.

Well motoring along I decided to look into splitting this thread and it doesn't look as easy as I thought. Where is first went off the rails was the mention of Trump and the regurgitation of mass media exaggeration and selective reporting. This discussion is about presenting interesting facts and viewpoints and not dogma

I am not going to fall into the trap of trying to address each and every every bit of questionable information fallacy or exaggeration because that's an endless mug's game. Let's just drop it.

I don't think I'm going to be able to split this thread using my phone and so I'll leave this thread as is as an example of how how thread can accidentally get hijacked and go very wrong.

Let me repeat that I value all the contributors and hope we can stay away from hot button topics and moralizing that leads to fruitless argument and get on with presenting interesting articles and factoids.

Let's face it. You guys will never convince one another of anything by arguing so let's stay away from politics and religion at least on this thread. Please.

I arrived in Powell River and I'll be staying on the boat tonight

Friday July 17th 2020

Well. I slept well on Maverick and woke at 8. That means I slept almost eleven hours, understandable after the long day outdoors and poor sleep the night before.

The comments have stopped which is a relief but also a little disappointing. I enjoy some feedback but I don't enjoy pointless conflict.

This question is very much like the philosophical, moral, and legal question which is illustrated by the case of a car running out of control and the driver having a choice of either running into a school yard full of kids or mowing down an old couple on the crosswalk.

It's a question that is impossible to answer without abandoning logic and retreating to dogma, and one which has kept theologians, philosophers, legislators, and lawyers occupied since the dawn of time.

One most interesting current example arises when designing software to drive cars totally autonomously. Currently each driver is responsible for each decision and no manufacturer wants to take responsibility for the decisions that a driver currently has to make on the spur of the moment, due to the inevitably of massive and interminable lawsuits.

A good example is the case where a truck driver on a downhill rounds a curve and had seconds to decide whether to plow through a group of ignorant gawking tourists in; the middle of the road on the bridge right ahead or drive the truck into the river. We had a case not long ago and the driver chose to sacrifice himself and his load.

Would people want an algorithm to make that choice? Maybe. Maybe not. Would you know when you got 'behind the wheel'?

I don't want to open the topic for more dogmatic debate but merely point out that on questions like this even the best minds can't agree. Without making value judgments there actually may not be a solution and thus the tendency to fall back on dogma.

With this virus and others like it we're faced with a bad situation where people are going to die regardless of what we do, and regardless of what we do there's going to be a harmful effect on the economy and people's livelihoods--and their assets and their futures. It comes down to whose ox is going to be gored.

Let's leave it at that

News for today: Cassiopeia has a plugged up drain on the forward wastewater tank which is backing up the toilet and the boat has to go out on charter later today. We have an appointment at 11 to go to the pumpout but there's a boat blocking the access.

So, Larry may have to shuffle boats some more. I just moved on to Maverick but may have to move back off and if I do I guess it'll be onto Cassiopeia. I can think of worse things.

This is day eight of my self-isolation after returning from Mexico and I am not noticing any signs of the virus. However, as I have promised, and I'm required to do, I m being very careful to avoid contact with people. Doing the anti-social distancing thing and I do wash my hands often and wear a mask where there's risk of getting close to others.

Assuming we can reach the pump out I will maneuver Cassiopeia over since Larry does not feel competent to do that and Larry will ride over on the foredeck and do the pumping out so that we're not close to one another and then we will return here.

After that I'm clear to leave as soon as the tide rises enough that I can get out past the other boats and I will dawdle along and isolate somewhere along the way back to Sidney. I'm planning on taking three days. That will take me to day eleven. If the pumpout doesn't work out I don't know what we'll be doing.

The pumpout worked out and we cleared the blockage. That good because the charter means a few boat bucks toward the costs of owning and maintaining the fleet.

It is good for me to get on my boats once in awhile because I noticed the steering is feeling a bit tight. I poured a cup of ATF down the shaft.

I had instructed a maintenance service to do that but of course he had a better idea, ignored instructions and used a grease. I think he was peeved because he would have preferred to charge me six grand to tear it all apart and rebuild it.

I got back to Maverick and look at the battery level again and realized I really can't go anywhere until I charge this battery. So I hunted around and found a cable that fits because the one that belongs with this boat was left in Sidney.

Then I talked to my mother. she's worried because the lawn sprinkling service wants to charge her $800 for a new pump. I think she knew something was wrong. Any new pumps I've ever bought are about 200. I phoned the sprinkler service up and had a chat with the guy. What a sleaze. Anyhow I told him to find a more reasonable option and get back to me. Then I phoned my brother who is actually in charge of things like this but of course I got his answering service.

So now I'm sitting here on Maverick waiting for the battery to charge and I tried to come back in. Believe it or not although the voltages up the state of charge on the battery is down. I think I'll be here for the night. That's fine

While charging the batteries I had a long nap. When I woke the tide was up and I could leave so I made preparations, untied, and motored out of the harbour.

By then it was six and I had no idea where I was going with about three hours until dark. I like to be settled at least an hour before last light so that meant I need to find a choice to anchor within twelve miles max.

Sturt Bay on Texada Island was not far but I wanted to make some distance and I don't especially like that anchorage so I settled on Thunder Bay on Sechelt Inlet and turned south. The wind was light so I furled the Genoa after a brief try at sailing.

Maverick is a really nice boat and very roomy for a thirty eight footer.

Looking at the wind predictions and the charts i decided to try Frolander Bay seeing as it did not require traveling out of way and it looked to have the right depths and clearances from shore and obstacles.

I anchored in fifteen feet of water and then consulted the tides. Seeing as the drop will be twelve feet by ten tomorrow I figured I'd better plan on leaving sooner since I reckon to draw at least six feet. I then checked the depth sounder calibration and found it measures from the surface not the depth under the keel meaning that the bottom clearance was risky even if I planned to leave early. What if the engine did not start or I was sick?

Bottoming on a falling tide is embarrassing at best and can lay the boat on its side, worst case. It is taking a smile to get used to five meter tides after the Baja's four feet or sp. Aldo, mixing metres and feet can be dangerously confusing.

I pulled up the anchor and moved out to deeper water and am now seeing a twenty five foot reading and that makes me feel more secure.

Although this is a nice anchorage there is little to no cellular Internet here.

The sun was setting and I went to bed early. I've discovered that listening to my Pimsleur spanish lessons on a timer on Audible is a good way to fall asleep and that is custom lately. It keeps other thoughts from keeping awake and seems to help with my adaptation to the language.

Saturday July 18th, 2020

I'm up at 0530 after a good night's sleep at anchor in this quiet bay. We hardly moved.

This is day nine and so far no flu. Five days to go until I am in the clear.

I have to deliver this boat to Vancouver sometime before long but await instructions.

There is no cellular Internet coverage here in this bay so I'll be incommunicado until I get out and into Malaspina Channel. Otherwise I have an unplanned day ahead.On the meantime I have nothing to do but sail around and explore.

I raised anchor around 7 and motored out of the bay and pulled out the genoa. The wind is very light but it is going my way. I'm only making less than two knots but that's fine because I have nowhere to go and lots of time to get there.

I could raise the main but this is a conventional rig and that amounts to work. Moreover I see farther down the channel there is a lot more wind so as soon as I get fully canvassed I might have to reef. just the same I should do it just to stay in practice I guess.

It's 9 now and I'm moving at 4 knots which is just fine. I was below making a stew seeing as there was nothing in sight and there aren't any logs floating around today. When I came up I was surprised to see a couple of cruisers go by so I guess I should pay more attention. What if they were below cooking too?

Moving at 4 knots one doesn't really expect to see a lot of traffic go by. It's not like flying a 747 at about 500 knots where if you spot a dot on the horizon coming your way it's passing you within a minute. Out here in the middle of the channel I expect to see anything that's going to come close at least 5 or 10 minutes away but time passes very quickly when we are busy with a distraction. It's a lesson I never seem to learn.

The day is turning out to be beautiful and I'm thinking I'll probably go check out Lasqueti and Jebediah Islands again and the areas around there. I'm still waiting to find out when I have to be in Vancouver.

I checked the scheduling for Cassiopeia online and was surprised to find the boat is suddenly booked until the end of September.

I put in a call to Genny to find out what's up. I am planning to use the boat in the middle of September and that time slot is never ever booked so I'm going to have to find out what's happening. Apparently with his virus going on and people not wanting to travel the idea of getting out and isolating on a boat a long way from everybody else is becoming very popular. I guess that's a good thing.

I got word just now. I don't have to be in Vancouver until Tuesday. That's perfecto because it gives me today Sunday, Monday, and most of Tuesday to self isolate out here on the Sunshine Coast. I have enough food to last me I think. That will take me to day 12. Then I have to somehow get to Sidney again while staying in isolation to pick up my computer and a few other things. Who knows? Every day is a surprise

Now just coming up on noon I'm halfway down Texada, making maybe two knots. I aised the main and I was surprised how easy it was on this boat. Now I'm running wing-on-wing with almost no wind. I'll be out here awhile by the looks of things unless I decide to start the engine and go exploring.

I started the engine and motored into Anderson Bay. On the way in I heard a bang and Coquille touch bottom. That's not good but at least it didn't stop the boat or cars a big bump. I consider myself lucky. That was bad luck but the good luck was no serious damage was done.

I scouted around in there and noticed that everyone was using stern ties. There were no rings on the rocks so I would have had to launch the dinghy and I decided since it wasn't even two yet that I would continue on to Lasquti Island and explore some more.

Conditions for dead calm as I motored south but when I rounded the southern tip of Texada Island the wind was quite strong so I raised sailed and crossed to Squitty Bay. I looked at going in but found the charts were very inaccurate and the tides were very low so I continued on. After an hour and a half or so I decided on a little Bay called Boat Bay for the night, went in and anchored.

I had supper then watched Barney Miller onYouTube for a while and did some more Spanish on Duolingo. I'm not very happy with Duolingo but it works for me along with other things.

I set the anchor alarms and I was in bed by 10.

Sunday July 19th 2020

I woke up after midnight to the sound of a halyard slapping on the mast, then one of the alarms went off too so I got up and went up top to check the halyard.

Out here, away from the light pollution of civilization, the skies are ablaze with stars. Looking due north, I noticed what looked at first like a streak of northern lights but I thought we don't see northern lights in the summer much if ever and realized what I was seeing is a comet.

I recalled vaguely hearing something about a comet in the news so I looked it up and sure enough this must be NEOWISE which is reported to be seen in the northern sky.

I stayed up a little while did little bit of Spanish and noticed my internet had quit but I have now found an easy way to restore it and the process only took a moment or two.

Buying the large package of 8GB somehow is always refused but Telcel offers me 1.6 GB for a hundred pesos which is about seven Canadian dollars with one click. So that means I'm renewing five times more often but without the kind of agony I've gone through in the past trying to get my credit card accepted.

I went back to bed and slept well until about 8 when I got up and found the sun already shining in the portlights. The day is reasonably warm by Canadian standards. This is July. I'm wearing my long underwear and socks so I'm warm enough. By afternoon it'll be hot enough that I'll be stripping down to the minimum, or less, if I'm out of public view.

The wind is howling in the rigging and this would be a perfect day for a fast run downwind but I'm thinking I may stay here in this nice sheltered bay for the day seeing as I have several days to kill. I have internet here to keep me entertained and I can catch up on a few things. I have run out of eggs and I'm down to the last of my chicken but I have lots of other food so I'm good for a few more days and probably to the end of my isolation period. Oh yes, I almost forgot. I'm out of beer too.

I do have to return to Vancouver on Tuesday so I have to figure out how to continue my isolation after returning this boat because according to my reckoning I have two more days to stay away from others after Tuesday.

I'm assured I'll be provided with another boat and it would be really nice if it wants to go back to Sidney but I'm also told that they will have work for me after my isolation is over so I could be staying in Vancouver the two days or they could send me to Powell River or Sidney. I could be teaching lessons or skippering out of Vancouver or delivering another boat. At this point I just don't know.

Yesterday was feeling a bit depressed and a bit oppressed by the communications I've received and have not received from the government about isolating. The expectations seem to be somewhat nebulous and subject to interpretation with occasional stories of draconian arbitrary and capricious enforcement and fines. According to the email which arrived a day late, yesterday, I'm supposed to be receiving robocalls and perhaps personal calls from whoever is managing this but so far I have not heard from them and it would have been really nice to hear from them early on to clarify things instead of my having to try to chase them down and go through long telephone mazes and eventually being dropped at quitting time.

Some aspects of this seem to be pointless and it has been revealed that in fact some 80% of arrivals in Canada are exempt due to being truckers or ship's crew or airline crew or involved in some essential service. Whether I actually qualify or not is something I tried to clarify by making phone calls with very little luck so I figure I'm in a gray area.

Just the same I am isolating and being careful. I also I'm wondering how they calculate the days.

I arrived on a Thursday at about 11 a.m. I got an email yesterday that said they send that email out on day eight. By my count yesterday was day nine. Who knows how the government thinks or if it actually does?

By my reckoning for me today is day number ten (Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday) and Thursday at eleven o'clock measures out to exactly fourteen days since arrival in Canada.

I came across a really good article about safety in Mexico today and will share it here. The article shares far more insights than the heading suggests.

Is Mexico Safe for Expats? Mexico Safety | Mexico Crime Stats https://www.mexicoonmymind.com/is-mexico-safe/

I'm wondering if the water is warm enough for swimming. I have a thermometer here somewhere. I also have my shorty wetsuit and my snorkel gear here so swimming shouldn't be too bad as long as the water somewhere around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Around here it can be more like 50 Fahrenheit so I like to check before I go in.

I don't expect the snorkeling around here to be particularly good. I'm not expecting to see coral but I would see crabs and maybe lobsters definitely starfish.

As for the reef fish I see down south I don't expect to see any here but who knows? I actually haven't done much snorkeling here in the Salish Sea largely because of the water temperatures, and in summer when I swam it was off the boat in deep water. Here I'm fairly close to shore so we'll see what the day brings.


It's ten now and the tide is all the way out. The wind has dropped down to nothing so this may not have been a great day for a downwind. My anchoring worked out well. The boat has stayed in position very nicely and not approached the other boat or the shore.

I like to keep an open mind about various things and I came across a very interesting article here.

For Seattle’s cop-free protest zone, tech is both a revolutionary asset and disastrous liability. https://techcrunch.com/2020/07/18/for-s ... liability/

This one strikes me as being a bit one-sided but it is a worthwhile read for perspective.

Does tech have the guts to deploy its resources against police brutality?

In my opinion the real elephant in the room is how people are sorted in two and sometimes more groups without their consent by media and many so-called gurus and the public falls in step. There's an old expression, 'Divide and conquer'. If we're being divided we should look and see who's trying to conquer us.

For example, I have never agreed to be classed as white and I don't think of myself as 'white'and I try to avoid using the 'w' word even though these days it seems to be a totally socially acceptable racial slur when other racial epithets are taboo.

I wonder how many people who get into identified as black or so-called African American these days wish to be classed as such or treated as part of a group.

From what I can see a large percentage of the 'people of color' are at least partly and often mostly of Caucasian heritage. Fifty years ago and more people talked about 'colored people'. For a while this faded but now we are expected to talk about and identify people of various ethnicities as 'people of color'. How far we come?

I think this is a real travesty and the cause of are a lot of pointless grief. We saw where this leads in fairly recent massacres in places like Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, both places where people who were happily getting along and even intermarried with other groups were suddenly forced to identify with one faction or the other and then incited to mindless and pointless violence. It's just a Shot Away. We are seeing this happening in North America right now.

Is Obama Black? What makes you think so? His skin or his actions?

Then here is a surprisingly good article about free speech from The Guardian, of all places. Maybe sanity is returning to public discourse.

It's the powerless who suffer when free speech is threatened | Freedom of speech https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... threatened

my little incident yesterday got me thinking and I began a magazine article that I will try to peddle to one of the yachting magazines out here on the west coast. Judging by the quality of their articles I think I stand a pretty good chance of being published and I write copiously anyhow as you have probably noticed if you're reading this.

Years back (2002) I used to write for Bee Culture but I quit when I started getting assignments. I'm only good at writing about what I care about and when I care about it. That pretty much describes me generally. I can't do anything unless my heart's in it. I never really could work just for the money and I've often worked for nothing just because I liked the work or the people.

Frankly, that's The Secret of My Success. Do what you love for people that you love and don't worry too much about the rewards. They come from surprising places.

That last article was starting to get a bit long so I thought I'd start a new page. I'm in the saloon (main cabin) of this borrowed sailboat writing this. I'll work on my article a little more later but right now I'm taking a break.

I should count the words in that article and in the magazines, too because writers are paid by the word and magazines like a thousand or maybe three thousand words depending on the type of article.

I thought I'd look this up online to see and boy have things changed since I was writing for magazines. This article is most interesting.

What is the Optimal Content Length? - Here's What the Science Says . https://youtu.be/RbmS3tQJ7Os

Everyone is writing for the internet now and it seems the audience's attention span is really short. Recommendations in other articles that come up in a Google search are to make articles as short as 100 or 150 words.

I find that shocking. I'm also uncomfortable with the tendency to make videos rather than write articles in text. I consider many videos to be a waste of everyone's time because it is very difficult to scan for what's worthwhile and pass over what is not. I suppose reading is becoming a lost art

The wind is picking up again now and the day is warm but not hot, at least not hot enough to inspire me to go swimming yet.

A little while ago and made a salad. I thought I'd better before my lettuce gets too brown. It's over a week old and it's actually still pretty fresh but I can't count on it lasting much longer.

I have been posting much lately in the way of articles but I had sometime today so I thought I would offer a few. I have pretty much given up on the mainstream media but Zero Hedge always has some interesting stuff. You have to use your brains when you're reading it though because as with everything the writers are talking their book. Aren't we all?

Europe Uncensored: An Online Warning Shot https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/ ... ing-shot[b]

Face Masks Mandated By UK Government Specifically Say They Don't Protect Against COVID-19 https://www.zerohedge.com/political/fac ... covid-19[b]

The Clown Cars Are Fully Loaded And Dr. Fauci's Leading The Parade Stockman is a good read but it tends to be pretty windy. I wouldn't blame anyone for quitting before the end. https://www.zerohedge.com/political/sto ... ing-parade

Face Mask Usage By Demographic https://www.zerohedge.com/political/fac ... emographic

This one is a must to read The Sordid History of Scam Science https://www.aier.org/article/the-sordid ... m-science/

And here is a sad tale. I've never worried on Mexico but maybe the times are changing.

'After a 20-year relationship, I'm giving up on Mexico'

https://mexiconewsdaily.com/opinion/aft ... on-mexico/

I'm thinking now that maybe I'll leave with first light tomorrow morning or whenever I'm ready then head south. I have one more full day and an overnight before I have to be back in Vancouver.

The sun is setting and I'll be in bed before long after maybe another Barney Miller or two. But first here's a bedtime story from a reader. ...

A few mornings ago I was puttering in our small storage building where we have confined our tv, with an antennae that captures a dozen or so stations for free. I turn it on if I remember while there mostly to confirm the low quality of almost everything beamed to the masses. One of those really horrible morning "news" shows was on, I think it may actually be called "Good Morning America".

The hostess happened to be interviewing Bill Nye, the Science guy in his demo laboratory, think he is Canuck. Bill was complaining of how anti science attitudes were making things so much worse for the virus response. Then he proceeded to do a couple of demos- one of the effectiveness of various masks by blowing into them with a candle in front. And then something on aerosol particle diffusion by puffing some kind of powder into the air and making it pass through a laser beam.

Nothing on the biology of the virus, infective doses, detection limits by the various tests, history of interactions of parasites with humans, importance of the immune system, improvements in patient care.

That would just not be showy enough I guess...

Sleep tight

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