Tuesday 2028 – From Maine, not the Caribbean
I am not sure what prompted me to write tonight, perhaps feeling a bit homesick for our dear old Audax, perhaps the winter weather and lack of Vitamin D! Life is so precious… the important parts are sharing your experiences with the ones you love, humans, dogs, living beings, nature. Happiness..an inside job that can radiate outwards and spread like a viral contagion. Here is a simple navigation to the many segments of our trip, I hope it spreads joy…inspires one to seize the day and follow their dreams. Live in the moment…love what you do! Be sure as always to check out Stevie’s sister site as well here for a parallel journey
The Preparations this ain’t your ordinary pleasure cruise
We are looking to find an individual, group of individuals or a network production studio to create an Extreme Boat Makeover show.
Anxious to head South once again.. our wonderful and dearest friend Audax decided it was time to let go.
Perhaps a bit overzealous and forgetting to secure an able helmsman.
She chose a course and with it her fate.
Our fine lady always a women of style took her own life Sunday.
Breaking Free… she courageously crushed onto the granite ground of Fish House Cove, West Point. Maine.
But what a year!
So if you choose to shed a tear, just remember how she spread oh so much cheer.
Serving as home for 6 months, 2 twenty something’s and a 30 something had a mission: Sail a boat from Maine to the Caribbean and back. Leaving far too late and under the falling snow they set out November 19th from Freeport, ME. Journeying quickly down the east coast to Florida, crossing the gulf stream and steaming full force into the mighty trade winds on a 1000 miles journey through the Bahamas, Turks/Caicos and Puerto Rico to make landfall….St. John in the USVI’s late February.
2 months , 30 plus visitors and this many margaritas later she set a course due North. Blue water sailing via Bermuda she returned to Maine. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!!
A summer of day cruises galore…one late October day the winds wailed, the waves swelled and she broke free.
An insurance claim denied, the memories engrained the emotions welling.
Thank you all…for Everything
Byroneeeee, Stevie aka Papa Stevie, Capt Jordi aka Jord Boy, John Boy aka Jerky Lips
Extended TEAM AUDAX
Jim, Amanda, Phil, Bruce, Sverre, Chris, Rodger, Jillian, Bryn, Scot, Dagny, Cory, Stacey, Dorothy, Bill, Scott, Gordon, Johanna, Jonas and Family, Kate, Erin, Chelsi, Suzette, Josh, Ethan, Bob, David, Matt, Rosie, Andrew, Lisa, Natalie, Amanda, Nathaniel, Ben, Kate, Steve, Evan, Palo Mariah, Whitter, Jenn, Ben, Peggy, Malcolm, Tiffany, Sam, Oliver, Eli, Nina, Charlotte, Camilla, Sarah, Yuri, Will, Karin, TC, Nicole, Clint, Jackie, Emma, Tim, Isaiah, Pat, Hank, Martha, Mitchell, John, Ryan, Keith, Amanda, Nicole, Andrew, Virginia, Toad, Gueniveve, Bozi, Keira, Drew, Vanessa, Shannon, MITA, to all people I forgot to add to this list (sorry!) Mr. Heater, Auto and god bless him…Dodgy
PS: There is a support group set up on Facebook set up by Bibo aka Bob aka man who writes Hakus. Check it out if the link works I hope: support group or just log in and find it HOLLER!
Wednesday 1730 – Sitting in the Shrimp Shed looking out at the turbulent waters off Cat Cove debating whether or not to go in search of dinner to be found in the 3 lobster traps resting just off the Audax’s moored location. To experience life…. the ever moving and grooving situations, twists and turns. The world is what we make of it and one such measure of the quality of the experience is the relationships one forges, builds, shares and enjoys.
It is all of us together that made the magic happen.
THANK YOU to all for making the Audax Reunion such a smashing success.
The picture album without futher adieu.
Tuesday 0750 – Bath, Maine - Welcome to our site. The home of Jordi, Steve, Byron, John and a multitude of others who shared our 6 month tour of the Caribbean.
Please take a look around, the photo gallery has quite an extensive selection and by clicking on the categories to the left one can enjoy the many adventures we took. Stevey’s blog Southbound Saint has an equal amount of complementing material as well, he even got one of his postings published in a local periodical!!
Where to now… with the site, with life??
The moment is all we have and it rolls ever forward.
Live it, love it, learn from it, share it…
The Caribbean Endeavor marks the most extreme adventure I’ve had in my life. It was an incredible experience
It ‘s packed with more memories and experiences that I can write. I’m extremely grateful to John, Jordi, Stevie and the Audax fans for making this trip possible.
John, Jordi, Audax, I charged through squalls, though pelting rain, over massive waves, and cut through powerful currents. We safely covered hundreds of miles of deep blue sailing. During our tour we were immersed in wildlife. We sipped tea while humming birds flew around us. We dove into water while sea turtles and barracudas swam under us. And towards the end of our voyage, dolphins escorted Audax north. We ate raw sugar cane, wild mangoes, and fried plantains. And when we didn’t have access to these local foods, we made our own concoctions like the chocolate frosting and peanut butter sandwich. On a couple occasions we enjoyed dining locally too (thank you Roger). New experiences were found every day. It’s remarkable to reflect on all the things we saw and experienced.
This trip is serves as testament to the power of dreams and intentions. John, Jordi, and Stevie had a grandiose vision. It’s the kind of vision that most people marvel at, but do not act upon. Not only did they act on their idea, but they carried it out successfully. I was fortunate to join them during the final leg of the trip.
Having virtually no sailing experience, I quickly learned the core concepts of sailing. I enjoyed diving into this adventure at full speed. It was a risk for me to fly down to the Caribbean to spend 5 weeks with people I did not know. But I took a risk in my life, and was rewarded with a phenomenal trip and great new friends.
Now that I’m back on land, my mind is racing. It’s racing with memories from the trip and plans of what I will do next. This trip reminds me to “think big” in life. I want to truly live life to the fullest. I now feel unstoppable and look forward to taking on new endeavors in my life.
Living our dreams – that what we did on the Audax. It was a trip market by many good things… good things.
Dr. Seuss”s book was actually titled “Oh the Place You’ll Go” and his characters and pictures may have been a little more interesting and unusual then the ones we have posted over the last six and a half months, but we can now say we have gone to lots of amazing places and met some interesting characters of our own along the way!
Some of the most caring people I met were the wonderful Kerstens family that invited me in for a rather unique Florida Christmas. There really is nothing like being 26 and having Christmas with Christopher, a four year boy who got a very cool remote control car, which I had to test out for him! Then a week later I met the Whites, another family I am sure to keep in touch with and whose boat I helped sail up the east coast. On top of these great people we met tons of friendly and not so friendly locals along the way, all of whom made the different places new and exciting for us.
Actually on our last night out at sea John and I started talking about all the places we have been to on this trip. Meanwhile a ball of fire also know as the sun, was gently lowering itself into the ocean directly off our port side, and 3 northern right whales blew water up into the sky then raised their fins to say goodbye to the Audax and our 6 month Caribbean Endeavour!
It is unbelievable to think it was 6 months long, which for us was the perfect amount of time. I think about Phil and Amy who did 3 years traveling around the world and I feel lucky to have had all Phil’s help getting us safely out to sea and home again, but no desire to spend 3 years out there! Speaking of getting out to sea the number of people that helped prepare Audax is outstanding. My brother Sverre was there for us, Bruce Schwab, and tons of others putting in their time and skills. Also all the people that came down really made this trip the great experience that it was, and somehow we all managed to have a blast with every one of them. Go figure when you have good friends, a sail boat, and the Caribbean Sea. It doesn’t get much better! We even got our parents down there. Well at least my wonderful mom and the Herrigels, which I think we can name Rodgy as Audax’s biggest supporter!
Looking back the thing that really made this trip great for me was Byron, Steve, and John. Papa Steve is a man I look up to and have great respect for. Even if sometimes I push to get places faster and he likes to chill and relax. There were not many words that came out of Steve’s mouth that I didn’t take to heart and I know I am a better person after having spent so much time with him.
Beeroan, as I like to call him is certainly a man of enthusiasm, and ideas! I am impressed at the leap of faith he took contacting some strangers to go sailing, which is something he hadn’t done much of, especially with all the off shore passages!
Lastly of course is Johnboy who I have known since a young age, growing up together throughout the summers. John and I are very similar and half the time we say something to the other, the other is thinking the same thing! For the past 6 months I think the most we were apart on an average day was 2 hours, which is more time then any married couple. All I can say about how much John means to me as a friend is I am lucky he is not a girl or I might be married right now!!!
Between all the amazing characters and places along the way I know that this experience can never be duplicated and will certainly never be forgotten. So as this chapter ends (not sure Dr. Seuss books have chapters) I am looking forward to many more exciting ones to come my way, and thanks to everyone for supporting us!
Jordi St. John
“The Sea We Traveled”
Back on land, is it grand? Rowing out and boarding the mighty Audax yesterday on a rainy, gray day to ensure she was not sinking (due to the nagging leak!) I went down the hatch and was greeted by the stale, diesel infused, spartan scene. Surreal and a tad sad… the magic of the journey having come to an end….the realization that she is simply a boat. The trip was the relationships, the camaraderie, the dynamic moments of aliveness generated by our actions, the often seamless actions of Jordi, Steve, Byron and myself… the excitement and enthusiasm of our guests…of sharing with fellow cruisers….of interacting with the local communities.
As we made our first calls from Buzzards Bay, the final night at sea and through the first hours of landfall in Maine….“emotional ecstasy” I feel best describes our state of mind. Yet momental awareness can so quickly fade into routines…the realization and re immersion into an overwhelmingly materially overloaded situation and society. On sea as on land there are stresses and anxieties…yet as I re-compress I do have a different perspective, a different outlook. Life is more comfortable and more alive as I consciously love it, live it, learn from it and most importantly share it.
To Steve, Jordi and Byron
Byroneee – a chance aligning of the stars to future greatness.
Papa Steve – a cell phone found, spiritual connections abound.
Jord Boy – 20+ years of true awesomeness thus far.
You are my brothers and true companions.
The bond is eternal and everlasting.
Thank you from every part of my mind, body and soul.
I love you guys.
To all family, friends, supporters and readers:
You made this trip what it is.
We love you, please come visit us!!!
To the Audax
Thank you for the safe passages, the safe travels, for being our home.
Moving ever forward living out our purpose…
To create joy/to enjoy.
To be happy, to seek wealth and prosperity for self – both ourself and yourself.
The Audax is back home where she shall now roam.
And I hope all who have shared and cared.
Shall come have a toast along this wonderful Maine coast.
Reunited… so delighted!
We lost a sail, but with the wind at our tail
we did not roam and found our way home!
All smiles as we trekked 1650 miles
I do confess that we are truly blessed
Wow, Pow, Holy Cow, Live in the NOW
A small request if you are willing to bequest:
People reading this blog truly means the world to us… to read peoples comments…to share the experience…to know others are watching. If you have a few moments next week (as it is not currently operational yet ) we are going to create a digital guest book for people to sign and it would be so awesome and mean a lot if anybody who has followed our adventure would take a moment to sign. Jordi, Byron and myself will also be posting some thoughts on the trip, what it has meant to us and where the AUDAX goes from here.
Without further adieu…the trip logs and a look at the Audax inner working cogs!
Friday (23rd) – Noon position: 18’ 19” N 63’11” W
Moderate seas, calm winds, sunnyish skies as we trek North heading 345 Magnetic. We lost site of Bermuda a couple hours back as we steamed out alongside an armada of boats excited to leave. We now see only sea as we work to get refocused with the general thought aboard the Audax being “damn, we got a long way to go!”
Saturday (24th) –34’22” N 65’19” W; 24 hour log: 86 nm Motoring along under cloudy skies, moderate swells and light breezes from the NNW. Working to make it to 36′ N prior to daybreak tomorrow when the winds will significantly shift North driving us West. We hope to catch a counter clockwise cold eddy current that will help propel us towards the infamous Gulf Stream. Currently standard operating procedures aboard the Audax prevail: Sleep, watch, eat, read, write…repeat, repeat, repeat.
Sunday (25th) –35’52” N 67’16” W; 24 hour log: 156 nm
Crisp, clear skies with strong Northerly Breezes (20 knots) propelling us West as fast as we dare to go! Still looking for the cold eddy current…life is tame and comfortable here aboard our floating home. Monday (26th) – 37’20” N 69’03” W; 24 hour log: 152 nm
In strict adherence to the Law of Three’s…Our main halyard snapped, we hit the gulf stream and Byron caught a fish!!!! An interesting, exciting action packed morning to say the least! Jordi and myself held on for dear life as we clawed and climbed our way to the top of the mast in failed efforts to fix the halyard, but the surf’s up as we ride the Gulf stream current at speeds close to 9 knots and Byron made right with the fishing Gods by returning from where it came the Mahi Mahi. Spirits are up as we motor along under calm conditions and bright sunny skies.
Tuesday (27th) – 39’44” N 70’09” W; 24 hour log: 150 nm
Hats on head, sleeping bags in bed…water temp at fifty five, anybody care to take a dive!!! Overcast skies, but land lies 100 NM away hey hey!! Motor sailing under Genoa only and making 6-7 knots as we enjoy a solid 15-20 knot tail breeze and 5 to 7 foot seas. What direction shall the winds become when a front passes over us around 2000 hours tonight? NW would NOT be best, but NE would be oh so mighty sweet and make for a nice reach for Buzzards Bay back in the US of A. Wednesday (14th) – 41’36” N 70’53” W; 24 hour log: 138 nm
EXCITEMENT, OVERWHELMING emotion pours out as we make our first calls to loved ones. Thankful for a fairly anticlimactic and relatively calm frontal passage last night around midnight as we now steam out from the fuel dock in Fairhaven where we successfully cleared customs with officer Loney. Gorgeous sunny skies and moderate northerly breeze. We forge forward for the Cape Cod Canal before the tide turns at 1600
Thursday (29th) – 30’22” N 64’47” W; 24 hour log: 120 nm Location: Sebasco Harbor Resort, Phippsburg Maine. LAND HO!!! An official boat escort for the last 200 yards by Phil and his first mate Burt on the Ruth and a one person welcome home squad of sister Bryn! What else is there to say… a WHOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. “We’re there!!” Official arrival time is 1300 under sunny, gorgeous, crisp Maine spring conditions!
That all fit in our boat , Pizza Party!! (click on this image to see Maine passage photo album)
USA, hey hey! Arriving in our inbox this AM…the go ahead and detailed directions to get us HOME!!!! So without further adieu… so long, farewell, avid a say goodbye Bermuda. We have enjoyed our stay and we now pray for a safe, simple passage. Lots of love and see you all soon!!!!!
Where still here although we do feel that the end is near as we continue to keep up our cheer… yesterday we even went out and had a beer (for 7.50!!!!! ) This is us atop Gibbs Lighthouse as today Team Audax went on a tour of Bermuda. We started off with a high speed ferry ride from St. George to the Royal Naval Dockyards (Note: when a country limits a household to one car only you can bet the mass transit system rocks, it does! On time, clean and efficient, two thumbs up.) We then traveled to Scaur Hill Fort, one of many on this island…all well kept and fascinating in their own ways. The next stop was Somerset Bridge, the worlds smallest drawbridge where we enjoyed tuna fish tortilla wraps by the channel side. Back to St. George by 1600 and notch another day of Team Audax Bermuda style that fits oh so well between the Heart’s playing at night and our internet morning delight. It is nice and it does suffice, but we miss Maine, we miss our friends, we miss our families and as the high pressure looks to build we are optimistic for a late week departure!
This is Jordi and I after our 11 mile run!!, we could get home on this boat I bet, (click on it for the whole Bermuda photo album )
A 900 mile journey that by the end…
we were in a serious hurry.
As we raced to get in…
before the gale force winds that would have had us severely pinned.
We now rest for our next test.
Thanking a higher power from above with all our love.
The logs from at sea…. Friday (9th) – Noon position: 18’ 19” N 63’11” W
Off the western coast of the Anguilla. We officially left today at 1000… 16 hours later than planned due to what one could certainly call a fiasco. Ben, our 4th team member, was deported at gunpoint upon his arrival yesterday in St. Marten because he only had a one way ticket and did not have an official letter from the captain of the Audax detailing his return trip aboard the boat. Not being allowed any communication whatsoever to try and reach out to us as we sat and waited to rendezvous a stones throw away at the nearby Mc Donald’s as he was forced to purchase a ticket for immediate return to the states….enough said! Thus a team 3 strong we set out under extremely favorable conditions. With the wind just off our aft beam, moderate seas and sunny skies we cruise along at 7 knots.
Saturday (10th) –20’24” N 63’32” W; 24 hour log: 136 nm Settling into the routine under calm to moderate conditions. Light 10-12 knot breeze, 4-6 foot seas. Sunny skies above as we cruise along at 5-6 knots. Byron avidly working to catch a fish, some repair work to Abby and lots of suntan lotion for all.
Sunday (11th) –22’30” N 63’23” W; 24 hour log: 125 nm
With light southerly winds we motor north under a hot sun. Calm conditions persist as we enjoyed a dip in the 3 mile deep water today! The daily sextant reading has us close by 40 nm to our current position Zoning into our respective watch/sleep cycles resulted in the best aka least sleepy night watch schedule last night under a beautiful quarter moon and pseudo cloudy skies.
Monday (12th) – 24’52” N 63’52” W; 24 hour log: 143 nm As the winds begin to build, the Audax begins to roll. Steaming along at 7 plus knots with 15-20 knots out of the SW and seas 4-6 feet under partially cloudy skies. Listening religiously to Herb and obtaining the weather faxes has us feeling pretty comfortable about our current position as we closely watch the frontal storm systems that are passing to the North of us. Card playing, reading and misc boat work filled our day here at sea whilst cake frosting and “fun dip” helped get us through the night watch!
Tuesday (13th) – 27’18” N 64’28” W; 24 hour log: 150 nm
Sunny skies currently. A nice reprieve from the thunder, lightning, winds and rain we experienced earlier today. We passed across the cold frontal boundary and the winds blew (30+ knots) and the seas raged. We reefed our sails and thus prevailed! We now sail along with half canvas at 6 knots with a 8-10 foot swell and a moderate westerly breeze of 15+ knots.
Wednesday (14th) – 29’28” N 64’20” W; 24 hour log: 130 nm
Slicing north through a 10-12 foot westerly swell under partly sunny skies and cooler temps…conditions quite similar to New England summer season weather…bye bye Caribbean trades. Its 175 miles to go as we just sighted a few migratory birds and keep our self busy with a constant changing of canvas due to an oscillating breeze of 10-20 knots out of the West/North West that has us moving forward at anywhere from 4-8 knots.
Thursday (15th) – 30’22” N 64’47” W; 24 hour log: 80 nm Winds from the North…Bermuda (120 nm) to the North. The Decision: A 90 degree turn to the West and we were so close!! We now await Herb’s report at 1600 and to receive critical weather faxes at 1700 to help us best determine our next course of action as we sail under reefed main and genoa in a 6-9 foot NW swell, 10-25 knot variable wind and squally conditions. Long underwear and socks last night…that was a true delight! Also our first boat spotted this AM since leaving St. Marten 800 miles ago!
Friday (16th) – 31’50” N 64’53” W; 24 hour log: (75 nm est)
Cruising along under calm seas and light breezes. What a difference 12 hours can make as Bermuda before gale force winds and dark looks real good. From high stress decisions and bouncing around in 10 foot swells with the engine at full throttle making 2 knots into a strong headwind last night to comfortable motor sailing at 6 knots under sunny skies today….we breath a sincere sigh of relief.
1830 WE ARE THERE!! With an hour of sunlight to spare… a whooooo hoooooo!!!!