April 15, 2009


The four of us have made a pretty big decision about a week or so ago but before we get there I need to share a few details that I haven't mentioned. When Artemo left Grenada and we watched as we left what we thought was our black cloud behind and we headed to Carriacou, we thought it was smooth sailing ahead. We were exhausted both physically and mentally at that point. When we found more problems on that first leg of the trip after the reno, it was more than a little devastating. We really felt defeated. All four of us. We began to talk about what the trip was suppose to be and were we all happy. We told the kids flat out that it was "Four in or Four out"! They said they wanted out and Graham and I were easily convinced. We were done. We all started to fantasize about our new life in Toronto. A new place near the kids friends, with all our things from Alberta. We even talked about getting a dog. Amelia started thinking about how she would design her new room and Alex was wondering about Jr High with his friends. Graham and I thought about life minus the stress and continuous problems. We thought about how great it would be to start fresh in TO.

We decided that we would sail to Antigua and haul Artemo out and put her up for sale. We decided that we would start enjoying the days more, even though there was still much work to do. Introduce a bit more balance. We also decided to try and just let the idea sit with us for a few months and "Decide not to decide". We realized how easy it is to change our mind and we wanted to wait til we were sure that we were done with this chapter of our life before we said it was so.

Turned out that this was the best thing we could of done. The pressure of "around the world" was gone and we also thought that we might only have a few more months of this life left, so we tried to soak it in. Then the strangest thing happened. Alex and Amelia were gone for the night to our friends Cheryl and Dave's boat and Graham and I had a chance to talk alone. Graham finally said it out loud that he thought we were heading in the wrong direction. Even if we decided not to decide, we could turn around and start heading in the right direction of the Panama Canal. As soon as he said it, I was excited. It totally seemed like the right thing to do. Over the past few months when times were good we would joke about who wanted to stay and who wanted to go. Amelia was pretty much up for anything. She seemed to sway whatever way the wind was blowing. Alex wasn't so easily convinced. He had already picked out his type of dog and was wanting off the crazy Perry roller coaster. Graham and I realized that if Alex wanted didn't want to continue then we wouldn't be.

Well the next morning Alex and Amelia came home. Graham and I were working on the floors and we didn't say a word to the kids about our discussion and out of the blue Alex says, "You know I could see myself sailing around the world." Graham and I stopped working and my mouth dropped. We told Alex and Amelia about our discussion the night previous. All of sudden our faces were all smiles and we were all saying, "Four IN"!!! So exciting, so very exciting. We had decided to turn around and begin to head towards PANAMA! We spent that night reviewing all of our options as a family and making sure that we really were all good with this new turn of events.

So here is the gist of what we have decided so far but please keep in mind that as with any plan, things change. Today (in like 20 minutes) we are leaving beautiful St Lucia and going for a 20 to 24 hour overnight sail to Grenada. We are going to sail down the windward side of the islands, to try and flex our sailing skills. We have had our life raft serviced and watched how it inflated and saw what provisions were inside it. We bought flares that weren't expired. We have our EPIRB. Amelia and I packed our ditch bag. We hooked up our hydrovane. We are deflating our dinghy and we are ready.

The plan is to stay in Grenada for a bit, then sail 3 nights to Los Roches and then to Curasco and then to Cartenga, Columbia!!! We hope to haul Artemo out in Cartenga and be home the first week in June for about 6 months. The kids want to go to school in our old neighborhood, so we will need to find a place from September to December in the district. There it is, our plan on paper! So are we all a little nervous about the sail tomorrow??? YES!! Alex said he wished he could just snap his fingers and we would arrive at the next destination. Wouldn't that be nice. The kids are hoping their friend Adam is still at the marina in Grenada. I will try and post a note enroute through the SSB. Who knows after 24 hours of sailing the plan might change :-)! Life is funny that way but for now it is "FOUR IN"!


  1. Are you going to come to Alberta for a visit? You could come for one week or two weeks or three weeks. Or one hundred weeks! I miss you!

  2. Its weird I was reading the first part of your blogg and I was getting excited for you a fresh start in Toronto. Then I read on and I guess I got scared as well.
    But your right plans do change and they can change daily. You have to do what feels right to all of you at the time.You really did have so many hurdles at the beginning of your trip its good that you could start to just enjoy life and the experience. Cant wait for your next blogg let us know when you arrive after your 24 hr sail. We will all be waiting.

  3. Four in....I love it. The adventure continues. Enjoy the sail!

  4. Sometimes the best plan is to have no plan!
    Love & miss you all.

  5. Rebecca, Sam and JulianaApril 15, 2009 at 12:19 PM

    WOW! we are excited for you (and us - we get to see you soon!)check facebook - i'll write to you there about housing!

  6. Hey, Very cool, I am glad you guys are going back, The Four-In thing is awesome. All it takes is a tenacious old lady to set everything right. You will enjoy TO for awhile and then get back to the adventure. It all sounds fabulous, even with the scary things.

  7. **A Note from Julie**

    It is 7:43pm and we are sailing beside St Vincent. We just finished dinner and an episode of MASH. The seas today were HUGE. Very big and winds of 20knots or above. It was a little unsettling to be totally honest. Right now the winds have died down a bit because St Vincent is sheltering us. Graham has been great. Very calm. We have been making great speed. We are running the motor right now to charge our batteries. We are hoping for a good night. I just hope the kids go to sleep and let Graham and I deal with whatever and then they wake up to the sunrise and happy faces! We are posting our position reports every so often. Julie

  8. JuWell we can see Grenada and guess what???? There is a black cloud over it! Too funny. Well we had lots of wind all night and of course what would an overnight sail be without a rainstorm or two! The kids slept until 1:30 and woke up like it was Christmas, all excited and smiling. I was on watch and Graham was sleeping. They came up on deck and joined me. They watched Reba and Planet Earth and I told them to keep watch for any lights ahead and I closed my eyes for a snooze. Rain came at about 3:30
    so they both went back to bed and Graham got up. I was a little worried that it might develop into a squall so we furled in the head sail for awhile. I went to bed and Graham got the wet watch. He never complains though. All happy when I woke up, laughing about the black cloud over Grenada. So now it is 6am, kids are still asleep. Rain is picking up. Sky looks a bit scary. We have about 4 more hours to go. Juliellie sent us another comment from their trip to Grenada

    Griff and Cheryl

  9. The last comment we left was from Julie et.al I put the comment into my comment. Work it out!!


  10. Hope you get to your destination safe & sound.Sounds pretty scarey to me!But then,I have become a chicken in my "old age" :) The 6 months spent in Toronto will give you all a bit of a break & the kids can see all their friends again too. And I bet the showers & air conditioning will be appreciated too. Take Care...Gail

  11. we made it safe and sound at 11:20am! The boat is a mess and we feel a bit groggy but we are all good. Thks for all the well wishes. We will keep you posted. Julie

  12. I hate work and want my life to be a big long vacation too.

    Can you make it "FIVE IN"?

  13. I bet that last comment was made by your mother. hahaha as she hadnt commented and I am sure she checks on you daily. I am so glad you made it through the rain and bad weather.

  14. No the five in was not me. I read the blog every morning and every evening. I am glad you made it safe and sound and wish you all the best on your trip. I miss all of you however and can't help wishing that you were here.