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Date: 20 November 2013. The Log Book.

As the days grow cooler I tend to nest more and go to shore less frequently. That and my ice lasts longer too. Today is one of those blustery days that define autumn in the south. The skies were overcast but still bright, the weather is warm and, well, it was just about perfect. So rather than stay aboard Seaweed I went to shore.

It wasn't all a pleasure trip. Algae had more than algae on her bottom so I brought my scraper and dragged the dink up on shore. Scrubbing off barnacles is not exactly the "Yachting Life" but it has to be done semi-frequently.

And what you may ask is the Yachting Life? Well, it's a term my Daddy came up with for any boat chore that was particularly onerous. That would include such things as repairing the head, scrubbing the bottom of the boat, washing said boat, bringing trash to shore, hauling water to the boat, etc.

Most folks have this ideal of a Yachting Life that includes pulling smartly into an anchorage, lowering the anchor, shutting down the engine and then pouring a cold one. With feet kicked back the others in said area will flock to the new boat, welcoming them into port and inviting the new arrival to dinner and over for adult beverages.

The message is the journey, we are sure the answer lies in the destination.
But in reality, there is no station, no place to arrive at once and for all.
The joy of life is the trip, and the station is a dream that
constantly out distances us. Robert Hastings, The Station.

Well, I've only been out here for a bit over five years, and I'll let you know if it ever happens. Don't hold your breath!!! And even at those remote places, the folks that arrived before you had the same journey -- you're nothing special so it's important to make the most of your experiences for yourself.

For instance, the story of a short cut that wasn't even close, but was fun:

And the next page:

Therein a log book can be a great asset in recalling times past. Though I might be able to tell you about a saw sparkling waters today, I won't remember where I saw that tiny bird that rested in my cockpit for several hours one afternoon. That's where your log book can be a real boon!

Mine's got not only engine hours (I have two tanks and record which tank and how many hours per so the fuel is used evenly) but also the cool stuff like "spotted an eagle" or "dolphin played today" ... and like above, it reminds me of the coolest stuff!

One day at anchor I spotted a dolphin that looked like it had a ring around it's middle at one time -- since removed by the looks of things. I still wish I'd known whom to contact. Some rescue group no doubt saved and released this dolphin and goodness knows if I'd been involved I would have liked to know he was surviving and living well free. Maybe someone who visits my website will recall the dolphin and know that as of 12 January it was fat, feeding and healthy.

So, in addition to the "stuff" of log books, such as engine speed, RPMs, fuel fills and anchored here information I'd suggest you go so far as to make it your journal too. Draw pictures -- even dorky ones! -- and someday you can pass along the memories to another generation. After all, I'm following my roots having been born and raised aboard and perhaps in the future my grand-daughter will wish to travel these same waters.

And about Log Books -- most, specifically those sold by Defender and West Marine for two, are not "legal" in that the old maritime law calls for bound books with numbered pages. Yes, I'm aware that I'm an old-fashioned girl and that many find electronics the be-all and end-all of log making. However, if there's a dispute mine is the one that meets the rules. So what one did I pick you may ask? I went to Amazon and bought a Record Book.

Log Book choices:

  1. By National, 150 pages: National Brand Texhide Series Record Book (mine)

  2. By Adams, 150 pages: Adams Record Ledger (my recommendation)

  3. By National, 300 pages: National Brand Texhide Series Record Book (if you like lots of pages, pick this one!)

That's it from the waterfront. If you've not gotten a Log Book may I be so bold as to suggest you get a proper one with bound and numbered pages? Not that we did it mind you when I was a kid -- ours were a series of spiral notebooks so it's do as I do now, not then!

Do you have a log book for your boat?
Is it strictly where you go and stay, or do you get wordy like me?

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