Andante's Sailing Blog

January 2014

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December 29 - January 7

Miami Beach

While we were anchored at the east end of the Venetian Causeway at Miami Beach Diana and I bought hop on - hop off tickets for the double decker bus that goes around Miami Beach and the City of Miami. We also did lots of walking.

Some photos of the Holocaust Memorial in Miami Beach.


At left is an example of the Art Deco architecture to be found on South Beach in Miami.

The Biltmore Hotel needs no further comment! Well, alright. It was one of the first to be built in Miami to cater to the snow birds many decades ago.


Two of the churches to be found in the Coral Gables - Coconut Grove environs.

Me and Diana on the bus tour around Miami.

This is a photo of Senor Gomez at the Domino Park in Little Havana.

This epiphytes were growing on a live oak near the entrance to the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens.

A quinciniera being photographed on the grounds of the Vizcaya


The third most impressive skyline in the USA, after NYC and Chicago. According to the tour guide.


A pait of Tesla photos from the store on Linclon Rd Mall for Christopher.

No photos allowed inside the Vizcaya Museum cum mansion, so you'll have to settle for some exterior photos. Built by James Deering, a VP at Innernational Harvester, at the time that the robber barons were building their cottages in Newport.

There are lots of wall murals in and around Miami.

On Bayshore Drive near the Miami waterfront there is a sculpture exhibit of works by an Iraqi artist. Men and women of peace are depicted carrying weapons. The sculptures are quite provocative and make you think 'What if...'

For New Years Eve we were anchored near Miami Beach. We had five, yes five, fireworks shows that we could see from the boat!

Henry Flagler was a visionary who brought the railroad to Florida. He is credited with creating the modern St Augustine. Julia B. Tuttle, also a visionary, convinced hiom to bring the railroad to south Florida, creating what we now know as Miami. On Biscayne Bay behind Miami Beach there is a monument to Flagler.

There are four faces to the monument: Education, Prosperity, Industry, Pioneer.

Diana and I spent a great deal of time with Jeff and Susan Mahall of the vessel Meltemi. I met them last winter in the Bahamas. In the middle of our bus tour we took a break to have lunch in Little Havana, then had dinner together the next night in Espagna Way.







January 8 - 12, 2014

Dinner Key Marina, FL

After Diana left i did some grocery shopping and built the new, temporary anchor platform that I had distroyed back on the Indian River.

This set of 5 photos shows the temporary anchor platform project I conmpleted while in Dinner Key. In May I'll have a new teak platform made and talk to WilFab about rebuilding the stainless framework.


Three scenes around the Dinner Key Marina. This area was te site of the Pan Am seaplane service to Latin America. The Peacock probably is meant to memioralize the peacocks that were kept in the area and which were commonplace Deering's Vizcaya estate. For a city the size of Miami this is a pretty modest city hall.



January 13, 2014

Dinner Key, FL

News from other cruisers today. Indian Summer and Yankee are about ready to depart Fernandina Beach for points further south in Florida. Wolgang has been in touch with Customs and Border Patrol to get assurance that he and Yankee can re-enter the US from the Bahamas.

Sara and Phil called to report that they arrived in Miami last night. We talked briefly about plans to cross. A few hours later they called back and said 'Let's go to the Bahamas tomorrow!' So, that is the plan.

January 14, 2014

No Name Harbor, Buscayne Bay, FL to Bimini, Bahamas

With Spartina I weighed anchor at 0500. Spartina slowly led the way out past all the other anchored boats. Initially we motor sailed while waiting for the wind to pick up.By 0700 there was enough wind to shut down the diesel and continue under just sail. The rhumb line from No Name to Bimini is due east. The Gulf Stream flows north at anywhere from 1 to 3.5 or 4 knots. The wind was west of south at more than 15 knots. In order to do the crossing we had to sail a close reach, keeping the boat's compass heading about 120 deg magnetic, while being swept north by the Stream. With the strong southerly component to the wind the Gulf Stream was relatively benign. It was lumpy for about hour late in the morning. This was a sailing day and Gulf Stream crossing that sailors pray for. The one motor trawler that sort of acompanied us across reported that the smallish waves and lumps necessitated putting a lot of their galley ware on the cabin sole.

I will be returning to Philadelphia to for an indefinite period in order to finish up my work for the IAFF.

January 15, 2014


Jim and Martha from Togwotty. Their boat has been in Jim's family for nearly 50 years!


Mermorial Garden in North Bimini.


The Big Game Club in North Bimini was the site of the end of Gary Hart's presidential campaign.

Some of the big game fish to be found in the waters off Bimini.

Jim and Phil swimming in the Infinity Pool at Bimini Sands Marina.

Friday January 17 - Saturday January 18, 2014

Bimini to Nassau

A group of five boats left Bimini on 1/17 for the approximate 24 hour passage to Nassau at 4 PM. This had the advantage of getting us to the Northwest Channel at somewhere near daybreak and then an arrival in Nassau in the early afternoon. The weather for this passage turned out to be one of the few instances when Chris Parker was a little off in his forecast. He had predicted NW winds at 10-15 knots for all of Friday afternoon and evening across the banks with the wind veering to north at 15 - 20 knots as we turned from east to southeast toward Nassau. As it happened all of Friday there was almost no wind at all. Once we made the turn to the east across the banks the wind was light and just north of east, making for an all night motorsail. When we first went through the Northwest Channel the wind stayed light and easterly, making for slow sailing conditions. Through the course of the late morning the wind did build and back to the north. The consequence of all this was that once through the Northwest Channel the engine was turned off and there was good sailing. As the wind built the sea state in the Tongue of the Ocean became very lumpy. It would be fair to say that the sail down the Tongue of the Ocean to Nassau was a lot of exercise. The picture of Andante below was taken by Stanley Pendleton on Westwind.


January 19 - January 21, 2014

Nassau, Bahamas

While the crews from Krazy Girl, Spartina, Togwottee and Westwind were out sightseeing and visiting the beach I stayed aboard Andante to work on my material for for the IAFF arbitration. At least I am in a sunny, warm location.

January 22, 2014 Wednesday

Nassau to Philadelphia

Yesterday a big snow storm blew through the middle Atlantic. By today most of the air travel had been resotred to schedule. However, the same could not be said for SEPTA. It took almost as long to get from Philadelphia International Airport to my hotel in Horsham as it took to get from Nassau to PHL! And wow, is it cold up here.

January 23, 2014 - January 26, 2014


Thursday and Friday I spent working in the offices of WWD on editing and assembling the pieces of one of my two presentations to the arbitration panel, The other presentation had been prepared at the end of November for presentation for the December 10 meeting that had been cancelled. It was so cold on Saturday and Sunday that I didn't go out. Instead I worked on putting together chapter overviews for Diana's stats and linear algebra texts. I also worked on the research project with George Lady. For more than 5 years we have been exploring the question of whether a given data set could possibly have been generated by a particular algebraic model.

January 27, 2014 Monday


This was the last day of testimony before the arbitration panel. It was a very unpleasant and high stress experience. The 'experts' on each side present their position on particlar issues. As part of that presentation one tries to discredit the position taken by the opposition.

The three person arbitration panel is made up of a neutral arbitrator and one member from each side. In my opinion the City member of the panel is belligerent and histrionic. The City should be embarrassed to have him as their representative on the panel.

January 28, 2014 Tuesday


This morning I went to the dentist for a small filling repair, a refill of a surface filling and a routine cleaning. Afterwards I went up to Temple to meet with George Lady. Most recently I/we have been working on a Monte Carlo representation of the statistical power of our proposed model selection procedure.

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