At Last! We Have a Departure Date.

It’s official, in 170 days, we’ll point Felicità south, bound for Cabo San Lucas. We’ve opted to join the Baja Haha, an annual rally where cruisers headed for Mexico all depart San Diego on the same day. It’s a 750 nautical mile trip from SD to Cabo and will take us 12 days.

Tim was fairly neutral about our joining the rally, while I felt pretty attached to the idea. My rationale had nothing to do with safety or leveraging the rally organizers as resources–both reasons that some people opt to join the ARC in the Atlantic or the Pacific Puddle Jump in the Pacific. The trip to Cabo is fairly straight forward (go south-and then turn left when you don’t see land). It’s less complex than most of the blue water miles we’ve done. Plus, we just did the trip with our friend, Onno, last year.

So, why my attachment?

First, by joining the rally (and spending the money to join), barring anything catastrophic, we have a specific date that we have to depart. The reality is that there will always be one more (or 10) thing to do. One more part to order. One more email to send. At some point, we just have to go. So, Halloween 2022 it is!

The second reason is the anticipatory/celebratory element of the rally. We’ve been explicitly working toward this day for 4.5 years and implicitly for decades. While this moment is understandably not a big deal to most people who are not us (and, is a little bittersweet for some of our friends and family), for us it’s a BIG FREAKING DEAL. It’s going to be super fun joining in on the festivities in the week leading up to departure and to join the parade of boats as we all exit San Diego Bay together.

And, finally, there is the social aspect. The rally organizers host four parties. One in San Diego, two along the way, and a final party in Cabo. So there will be lots of opportunity to meet fellow cruisers (lots of boats already entered) who we’ll likely bump into (hopefully, not literally) while we cruise through Mexico over the next couple of years.

Not to mention the fact that our great friend, Michelle and her mate, Mike, will be jumping on as crew. Michelle and I met in 2016 on an offshore training passage in the Caribbean. And then, Michelle, Tim, and I sailed from Maryland to St. Thomas together. In the years since that trip, we’ve both met our sailing mates with whom we made big sailboat purchases. Michelle and Mike are the proud owners of a Caliber 40 that lives in Galveston, TX. She’s a great shipmate and we’re looking forward to getting to know Mike!

Only 57 projects left on the list. That seems like a lot, but we’ve completed 134 projects — probably more that never got written down. And, even more noteworthy is the fact that all major projects are complete.

This time next month, I’ll be back in San Diego and the shakedown sailing begins!


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Meet Gretchen & Tim

Meanwhile, over on Instagram

#reunited with his true love ❤️
One boat goes into storage and the other one comes out of her winter home. Tim is reunited with his favorite boat, Sprinkles, our #rhodes19 🔹 Time to get her tuned up for racing in Chicago and New Orleans. #sailing #sailinglife #dingysailing #onedesignracing
The mighty crew of Felicità has made it home to the North Woods of Wisconsin. 🔹 We visited family and friends in Arizona, Nevada, and Colorado 🚗. Celebrated my nephew’s graduation 🎓, got haircuts 💇‍♀️, did some big repairs to the Volvo 🤑, and managed to dodge Covid even though we had a close call 😷. 🔹 We have lots going on this summer, but for now we’re happy to sit still for a minute. And before we know it, it’ll be October and time to return to our girl ⛵️ . #homesweethome #wisconsin
‼️ Auntie brag alert ‼️ One of the reasons we hauled the boat out so early in May was to make sure I was in Colorado to watch my favorite nephew, Beres, set foot into his next chapter. @templeuniv , you’re lucky to have this fine young man headed your way! #goowls #templeuniversity #thefutureisbright
The Hoover Dam tour is well worth the trip. 🔹The only thing that was SUPER weird was the complete lack of acknowledgement that the water levels are dropping to drastic levels. #nothingtoseehere 🙈🙊🙉 #hooverdam #waterreclamation #nowater #lakemead
I’m making Tim do tourist stuff today as we make our slow way home to Wisconsin. 🤣 #hooverdam #visitingmom
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