A Puffin! Adventure / Light is My Spirit - Art is My Church


6.25.18  / Morro Bay @ the Sun and Bun Bakery /  David Delany 

Nice old shop here in quiet Morro Bay. We pulled in on the Puffin at 9 p.m. After we docked at the Yacht Club I walked over and saw they were still open “We sell a lot of ice cream.”  said Erica the counter girl.

We left Santa Barbara in the  predawn dark yesterday. The 30 hours leading up to departure we're all raucous: bus ride down from Oakland “Oh my God, shut the fuck up!” exclaimed a black woman at her wits end listening to two Latinas motor mouthing at 4am. I laughed. I had “slept” all the way to Santa Maria!

Santa Barbara is memories. Robinson and Sunny are dead. Merche is home in Spain.  Ted and Brendan met me at Brophy's, then Stuart arrived with family. They took me to Val and Eric's for dinner with Claudia. Claudia got me back to the Puffin around 9 p.m.

Captain Chris steered us out of the harbor. 1st Mate Slavek arrived the day before from St. Louis.  Chris sleeps in fore birth. I took the birth midships, at the dining area and Slovak sleeps astern past the galley. The head is next to the galley. The boat’s space flows well. The wood interior and thoughtful details are comforting. We motor then sail toward Point Conception, soft southerly winds at our back


Slawek Przemyslaw & "Puffin" Capt. Chris Hall


The Puffin / Alden 44

The Puffin Cabin Interior

We see dolphins! They are swimming alongside us, diving under and around us then again coming right at us! Hero's!  Calvary, black and off-white, sleek and powerful. A joyful sight! I was in heaven. Dolphins are heros! I was high as kite, then I got SICK.

My coffee came out then nothing but dry heaves. I was useless, weak. Slawek suggested I look to the shore. I concentrated on the approaching Point Conception. It was a friendly, ineffectual crocodile to me. I took the Dramamine with a sip of water. It came up into my mouth and I swallowed it again and again. Finally, it went over the edge too. I was falling like a stone. Being born again. Into the sweet, new form. The sea was rough at this point. Hell is being sick on a rough sea.  CRACK!!! ... the backstay snapped, well partially. It must have calmed after that. I crawled into my bag below and didn't come out until we motored into Morro Bay. I have rested, walked around, recovered. It looks like we could be here for a while. Maybe I bus home from here. it's an adventure, shit happens.

Refills are free at the Sun and Bun. The help is friendly. We are safe. The morning is foggy as it should be. My face is a little sunburned. The phone is charging. I'm looking forward to seeing the video of the Dolphins and such.  

The best thing about an adventure is what it does to you. You change on the molecular level. Last night I felt like a caterpillar crawling into the chrysalis. I dreamed that I kissed Mina, sweet Minabird. I held her face in my hands. It was so small, like a doll. We were kissing when I woke up.

I got here at the Sun and Bun to order sticky buns. Sticky buns stick to your fingers and you lick them. Butterflies and moonbeams... okay enough of all that, let's see what's on the phone.

6.25.18 Morro Bay

Recovery, Repairs, The Sun & Bun Bakery.  

6.25.18 / Monday Afternoon / Anchorage at San Simeon


San Simeon Anchorage

The guys removed a useless satellite antenna to reveal hardware they used to tighten the backstay. We  disembarked for San Simeon (4 hrs.) Then next leg is Monterey (14 hrs.) Either my molecules have rearranged or Dramamine really works. I felt fine riding the 6 foot swells. We passed along the California coast, arrived at San Simeon Anchorage at sunset. The shadows were long. The California Landscape of Ray Strong's paintings bold & soft. Lovely, smooth, brown hills with deep green clefts tucked into the whole, rising to a peak. Lovely, denuded, at rest, from the water more so. Two boats at anchor, one sail, one fishing. The water like glass, reflecting the last rays of sunlight, splashing color everywhere, that way.

ray strong painting
Ray Strong Painting

We had a hearty meal down below. Chris made pasta with bolognese sauce. I contributed another salad with turmeric dressing.  Slawek made tea after he did the dishes. We had a nice conversation about family and community.


Video from a moving boat has the advantage of a long pan. When we arrived at San Simeon at dusk, approaching from sea in a slow-moving boat the camera pans left  catching the changing viewpoint: the light on the water, the fog, the approaching land in warm light. Then returning the pan to the right it sees these things again but closer now for the approach of the boat. We spent a peaceful night and morning rocking gently at anchor aboard The Puffin.



6.26.18 / Tuesday / San Simeon to Monterey 14 hrs.


We are underway, blowing through six foot swells coming from the same Northwest direction we're going. The Dramamine is working. I feel fine in the rough sea. Puffin has a motor under her sink in the galley. It is painted bright red. The little red engine that could I call it. She motored the 14 hrs to Monterey from San Simeon. We saw more dolphins and whales in the sea so deep and so wide. I want to take a picture, record it in some way. I can't but I enjoy trying to at least calibrate, harmonize myself to what I can't really capture or understand. The time goes by quickly for me because I never want it to end and it always changes. We are all sailors in this way.

We are now at port in Monterey, at rest. Sunlight sends long shadows across the dock platform. The boats are creaking. The sun is setting again. It's 7:30, we have another 45 minutes of this lovely light.


Panoramic & Cubist Concoctions

I began taking panoramic photographs at anchor, 360s of the view from Puffin result in roughly 5:1 horizontal images. While underway the movement of the boat trips the software to create Cubist Concoctions, some of them keenly interesting. The dimensions vary depending on how long the pan works before the movement trips it up. 

“Cubist Waves” 1st set


“Puffin Seen@Sea” w/ Chris & Slawek 

"Here Goes Nuthin!" dD

The day on the water today was a trip up the California coast, a coast I know well from land but not at all from the sea. The mountains that rise up behind the striking CA coastline are primary from the sea. The peaks like Pico Blanco tell of when Spanish galleons made their way along this coast and named the prominent points of reference. Points on land are sometimes visible. We saw the Big Sur Bridge, the Carmel Mission and Pebble Beach.  I was trying to locate Andrew Molera State Beach. I think I found it, but does it really matter?

The past is just a goodbye.

"CA. Coast" Ray Strong  

6.27.18 Monterey Harbor

At Rest Monterey Harbor w/ dD

Below the winch, in front of the SandBar Grill, I sit aboard Puffin in Monterey Harbor. Monterey is a large working harbor the fisherman are up and out predawn. The yellow winch house is open. The skies are overcast. The morning chill is in the air. I hear seagulls seeking craft over the hum of the winch. It's impressive how sound carries so crisply over water. 

Light is my Spirituality...

 Art is my Church - dD

On shore I make my way to McDonald's for Wi-Fi, I start a conversation with Jose, a Spanish-Speaker from Oaxaca. In the shower I growl a MLKing speech like I was Tom Waits “ ...longevity has its place... but I'm not concerned about that now...but I'm not woooooorried about anything now. Tonight.  I'm not woooorrried about Anything! I'n NOT feaarrring Any man! Mine eyes!... have seen the Glory of the Coming of the Lord!”- Amen

Mcdonald's is a scene, fisherfolk and salty blokes pitchin the banter like they were casting out lines. Casting out to other critters on the coral reef of their lives. I get to work with a big table to spread out my things: journal, sketchpads, and a bag of mark making implements. I eat nothing. I am not here for the so called food or the conversation. It is time to collect all the thoughts that were scattered about the boat during the passage then washed ashore with the flood tide. Back to Puffin for 10 AM departure to Santa Cruz.

6.27.18 / Monterey to Santa Cruz / 4 hrs. / 12 knots 

We are 2/3 of the way to Santa Cruz. We are surrounded by WHALES.  Whales all around us. One came right up to the boat! Amazing creatures. I am in heaven one more time. 

Approaching Santa Cruz we have fine sailing, sun and good wind. We see the boardwalk and the lighthouse at the harbor entrance. Sails come down, bumpers are attached and lines made ready. Chris calls the Harbor Master and we are given a slip. A 30+ year friend of Slawek comes to the boat. We have dinner with John and Barbara at their colorful, whimsical home in Scotts Valley.


6.28.18 / Thursday / Santa Cruz Harbor

Aboard Puffin the sun is trying to burn through the morning fog. It will. Fishermen are baiting hooks motoring out to sea, four Asian men in khaki, three white men with ponches and beards, one loan fellow, another. They go to fish.

I relax on Puffin watching the sun play with the cloud cover. There is a bit of blue patch Inland. We are prepared for a sunny day. Anointed with sunblock. Breakfast of oatmeal and banana, nuts and raisins, coffee.

We're at Harbor. Being a harbor is like being half dressed. Part of me is ready to go out and the other half wants to go back to bed, to sea. Desires are like tidelines, flow meets ebb and forms an eddy, a harbor. Intention is at half-mast, divided. It's natural to want to go explore on shore, but I’ve seen it all before. “One more time” I hear myself say. “This time will be the right time.” I stay on board until the sun breaks through. A woman rows a scull by, then another. I’ll paint that, then go. Rower.01 is the result. Then I went to The Java Junction.

Rower.01 dD

The cafe was empty except for a woman in a teal summer dress working on a laptop. I sat across from her but didn't look closely or speak to her. Instead I started to paint another rower and listen to the music. The result of that was Rower.02 The idea of animating for the film "Circles" had set my sight on a Chagaleque twist on weightless lovers. Maybe the woman's dress influenced the color? It felt right. She, Sarah Mitts, ended up speaking to me first. Sarah told me about herself over tacos. I introduced her to Chris Hall and Puffin. 


6.29.18 / Friday / Santa Cruz to Half Moon Bay / 4 hrs. / Sunny / 15 kn / 6ft

We leave Santa Cruz Harbor at 4 AM The engine stops.Captain Chris goes below to make with the wrenches. Slavek turns her over repeatedly. I wait in the dark of the early morning. She starts again. Underway, crashing through 6 ft swells. Puffin is doing 5 knots, rocking, slamming and crashing. I am horizontal. All is well….Yet...Nature is calling. A trip to the head is imminent. A delicate task under the circumstances, tis a challenge over a rough sea, a delicate balance. Twas a fine sailor, aye, Capt. Thomas Petty who said, “The wiping is the hardest part.”

6.30.18 / Saturday / Half Moon Bay to SF Bay / Brickyard Cove - Richmond

Slavek has the heart of a sailor, he longs for the helm and the sea. Unfortunately for this polish immigrant his life has settled in landlocked Saint Louis Missouri. His dream, today, is to take the helm of Puffin and steer her under the Golden Gate Bridge into San Francisco Bay. From the beginning things took an unexpected turn. The wind normally from the North blew from the South. Puffin splayed both her sails wing-n-wing like a butterfly to capture the breeze and carry us North. Then it changed again and blew from the West at a steady 30 knots as we approached the Golden Gate. Chris got us to work trimming the sails, reefing the main and adjusting the jib. With Slavek at the helm we passed, Seal Rocks, The Cliff house, Lands End, Bakers Beach, 1 mile Rock. The flood tide and wind propelled us under through the Golden Gate.  The Sun Shown. It was Glorious!
Slavek raised his arms in joy.
I was getting as much as I could with the camera when it left my hands bobbled for what seemed an eternity till it, finally,  ended up, on the deck, inches from going..... overboard! I breathed again & laughed it out. "I better get a tether for that", I thought.
Slavek was still struggling with the helm all the way to Raccoon Strait and half way to Brickyard Harbor. Then it calmed. We were passing through the breakwater. It was done. An exciting finish to a memorable week of blue water sailing. Here's what it looked like from the camera that stayed on board after all.

Capt Chris Hall @ takes Puffin North under sunny skies and southerly winds
Slavek is ready for the adventure of his life.
dDelany alla Francis Bacon/Picasso
Puffin goes Wing N Wing 
Helm goes from Capt Chris to 1st Mate Slavek
"Something Good is Going to Happen. I Don't know What It Is.
But Just Saying It Can Even Make it Happen." Kate Bush
Puffin Reefed & Rolling toward SF
The Golden Gate 
Pushed Thru 2 The Other Side / Being Born Again Into....
Into ...The Sweet New Form 
"I hope second life is going to be sailor's life" Slavek Przemyslaw
May resolve win the battle of possibility.

życie jest piękne Life is Beautiful.

Gratitude to Chris Hall for allowing us to be part of A Puffin! Adventure.
I leave you with a Spanish lesson, 
"Noches De Boda" by Joaquin Sabina
Que el maquillaje no apague tu risa
Que el equipaje no lastre tus alas
Que el calendario no venga con prisas
Que el diccionario detenga las balas
Que las persianas corrijan la aurora
Que gane el quiero la guerra del puedo
Que los que esperan no cuenten las horas
Que los que matan se mueran de miedo
Que el fin del mundo te pille bailando
Que el escenario me tiña las canas
Que nunca sepas ni cómo, ni cuándo
Ni viento volando, ni ayer ni mañana
Que el corazón no se pase de moda
Que los otoños te doren la piel
Que cada noche sea noche de bodas
Que no se ponga la luna de miel
Que todas las noches sean noches de boda
Que todas las lunas sean lunas de miel
Ay, reata, no te revientes que es el último jalón
Que las verdades no tengan complejos
Que las mentiras parezcan mentira
Que no te den la razón los espejos
Que te aproveche mirar lo que miras
Que no se ocupe de ti el desamparo
Que cada cena sea tu última cena
Que ser valiente no salga tan caro
Que ser cobarde no valga la pena
Que no te compren por menos de nada
Que no te vendan amor sin espinas
Que no te duerman con cuentos de hadas
Que no te cierren el bar de la esquina
Que el corazón no se pase de moda
Que los otoños te doren la piel
Que cada noche sea noche de bodas
Que no se ponga la luna de miel
Que todas las noches sean noches de boda
Que todas las lunas sean lunas de miel

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