Splashing Leela at the beginning of the summer is always a very special moment. This time Saxony couldn’t join me in taking Leela back to Vancouver so I recruited my trusty friend and business partner Mike. We headed down to Bellingham on a Friday night and enjoyed a wonderful evening of bluegrass at my friend Nick’s incredible house he calls The Roost. Check it out, it’s a most amazing indie music venue located in my artist friend house. You may remember Nick as the guy continuously sleeping on this trip!
Next morning Leela splashed, we spent the day cleaning her out and finally slipped the lines in the early evening. We enjoyed a brisk sail across Bellingham Bay to our old favorite haunt, Inati Bay, where we elected to spend the night before a 4:30am start planned on Sunday morning for a straight run back to Vancouver.
We couldn’t believe it when we ran into Chris Marin aboard s/v Valhalla anchored in Inati Bay enjoying a peaceful night at anchor. I had met Chris the year prior in the Bellingham boatyard prior to our big trip. Chris had been very kind and under his watchful eye (and with a lot of his help) we completed the installation of our new LED mast mounted deck flood light. We invited Chris over for a BBQ and shared some sailing yarns well past sunset.
We spent 16h under motor the next day making our way up Georgia Strait to Vancouver. Mike and I worked on the business, brainstormed, rejoiced when the tide was at our back and moaned our 2.7kt speed when the tide was against us. We even almost ran aground near the Richmond shelf when we temporarily lost our bearing and confused some buoys. That would have been a full speed running aground at 6kts so we thanked our lucky stars we avoided this mishap.
Just as we were pulling into Granville Island to check in at customs the engine suddenly and completely quit on us. With very few options available, in between the boat traffic and marina docks, we were able to spot an empty space along the commercial dock and pulled Leela in smooth as butter under her inertia alone. Picture perfect! The engine issue ended up plaguing us for a few months and caused us more than one cancelled weekend trip with friends. In the end, the diesel intake dipstick into the tank kept on sucking air and we replaced the whole assembly to completely solve the problem.
On that day we managed to restart the engine and limp to Spruce Harbour Marina which would be our home for the summer. Spruce Harbour Marina is Canada’s only cooperative member-owned live-aboard marina where we discovered a wonderful community that welcomed us with open arms. We ended sub-letting our apartment in Kitsilano for the summer and living in the community from June 1st until the end of September.
End of June Mike and I took an extended weekend to fly his floatplane over to Vernon BC for a weekend of paragliding with our friends! Mike is a very accomplished pilot who is commercially certified on fixed and rotary wing aircraft and is the proud owner of Golf-India-November-Papa, a beautiful Cessna 185 on floats.
We were also extremely lucky to be invited to our friends Michelle and Andrew’s wedding in Tofino, where Saxony was the Best Woman. Likely the absolute most beautiful wedding we ever attended. They had reserved Wya Point Resort for the weekend and we all got to stay in ocean side Yurts with nothing but the sound of ocean waves crashing onshore all night long. We partied hard with the rest of the motley crew and thoroughly enjoyed this perfect weekend with a wonderful group of people.