We started the circumnavigation sailing from Newport Beach to San Diego, surrounded by dense fog, Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry” blared through our Bose speakers. Leg one was underway.
The previous night I had beers with my best friend from when I lived in Newport, Max. We went to Malarkeys, an Irish Pub that was popular when my dad ran around “The Peninsula” 30 years ago. We were catching up over Pacifico served in glass milk jugs, and I realized that this is probably my last time socializing with someone my age until French Polynesia. We had a great time, but my 0530 wake up for 0600 departure came a bit too soon.
Our initial plan was to leave straight from Newport Beach to the Marquesas Islands, but my dad and I decided to hop down to San Diego first since the wind was forecasted to be more favorable further south. We had 72 miles from Marina Park on the Balboa Peninsula to the San Diego Yacht Club. After two weeks of cleaning, inventorying, acquiring spare parts, and forgetting to eat lunch because we were completely engrossed in projects, we were itching to get moving.
ELO’s “Mr. Blue Sky” was next on the playlist, unfortunately, mother nature doesn’t always cooperate. It was grey, cold, and misting, wet enough to be annoying, while still not requiring foul weather gear. We hoisted the main sail for stability, but our engine was generating all of the wind. Although, the sailing conditions were poor, the fishing conditions were great. We just stocked up at the Angler’s Center so we had new lures, a billy club, and new line we wanted to try. It turns out, the lures were defective because we didn’t catch any fish, but it could also have been from the pod of 100 dolphins scaring the fish away. Dolphins at the beginning of a trip is a good omen for the journey ahead, so I will take that trade off.
We finally arrived at 4pm to a navy escort. An aircraft carrier was exiting the channel and we were on a collision course. The patrol boat had three 50 caliber machine guns and five sailors (which I think is a confusing thing to call motor boaters in the Navy), but it was plenty for us to steer clear.
We docked effortlessly at the San Diego Yacht Club and my rinse down of the boat commenced. Some things never change. We are leaving tomorrow afternoon, as the forecast looks decent. At this point, we just want to get out on the open ocean. If you wait for perfect conditions, you never will leave. We are already sick of the traffic, shopping, and charging all of our electronics. Check back tomorrow for our last post until we get to French Polynesia! Cheers