Where has the time gone? The future seems to roll over us at 1000 miles an hour with little regard to our plans or desires. While I’m excited for the future and we have many exciting plans, we all continue to be plagued by the ordinary tasks of achieving or maintaining our everyday existence while our grand plans get the leftovers in terms of savings and energy and time. I wonder how many of our most sincere hopes for ourselves and our loved ones will succumb to the steamroller of time and the inevitability of wishing for too many things to occur in a finite window of available time.
And so we blink and find ourselves at the end of 2016. For Marge and I, this has been another year filled with many changes both great and tragic. On the difficult side of things, Marge’s Mother Angie Effinger passed away this last May after achieving the grand age of 100 years. This was not unexpected, but still a momentous occasion in the lives of so many within our family. While such an event is a solemn occasion to gather with family and friends, it was soon followed by the tragic and sudden passing of Marge’s Brother Greg Effinger in August from complications due to poor health and a failing heart. Greg died at home, alone, and from reports quite quickly and without warning. This loss leaves a hole in the Effinger family that only the passage of time can attempt to heal. It was very nice to see many of Greg’s friends turn out for his funeral and I dare say that he would have been amazed to see how many lives he had touched over the years and it would have made him happy.
We also continued to make tremendous progress in updating and outfitting our boat with new equipment this year and finally finishing our house. We began steady weekends of working on the boat in March tackling many projects that can all be seen in our YouTube Videos.
We took trips aboard Wandering Toes to Ontonagon and Houghton, Michigan in July, and to Duluth to see the Tall Ships Festival in August. It was very fun to get up to see the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and meet up with Jay and Di with guest JR on DiHard and to spend a few wonderful days with them having adventures in a new area for us. It was also a treat to be able to have my Dad aboard Wandering Toes with us to make the trip to Duluth to see the Tall Ships. I think that he was able to have a great time and seemed to really enjoy seeing all of the wooden beauties that showed up for the Festival. We got to make the first voyage with Dave and Leslie aboard their new boat Gypsy Spirit over Memorial Day and we got to spend another week with them in late August just bumming around in the islands.
We also tore apart our engine in September to fix an oil leak that had been bothering us for a year. With all of the projects we undertook and the time it took to get everything back into place one would have expected us to have a short summer. Time-wise, yes, but we made the most of our available time by putting 750 nautical miles under the keel and beating any previous records that we may have had in that regard. So we feel like we had a good year, but never enough sailing.
Many of these projects and trips have either made their way onto our YouTube Channel or are in the process of being edited. We got two new video cameras this year, and I think that it has helped to make our videos better even though we realized somewhat late in the season that we need to take much better care to keep the lenses clean as we ended up with some smudged videos. Whoops! We will try to keep getting better!
Our fall has been spent getting the boat winterized and put away, cutting, splitting and stacking 6 cords of wood for winter and getting a ton of general maintenance things done around the house and yard.
Marge has had a surgery on her hand that will keep her down for a while this month, but I suspect that she’ll fly through any physical therapy that she will have and hopefully be pain-free in her hand now. I know she has had her share of surgeries and sure hopes that she is done with them for the foreseeable future.
So as we finish up this year and begin to make plans for next, we hope that you all have also had a great year and been able to make the most of your time. We hope to be able to see as many friends and family as we can over the holidays and non-sailing part of the year. When we see you, make sure to tell us about whatever great adventures you have been having and help inspire us to keep moving towards our dreams.
I apologize for not having any regular blog posts these last couple of months. I guess I needed a break and time to just keep everything going. Not my intention, just the way things worked out. I will continue to keep writing and making videos to share, and we will try to keep making the most of our time.
Until next time!