Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Charter Foods

Big breakfasts of couscous provence, eggs over easy, wilted spinach with lardons, all topped with creamy mushrooms. Great way to start the day!

Other meals this week were pork tenderloin with local chutney, served over garlic mash, with a side of steamed sugar snap peas and apple salad. To finish that dinner we each had a slice of key lime pie.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Our First Charter

Three fun-loving couples and we're off for a Old Year's Charter that won't be forgotten!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Clean Boat is a Happy Boat

We scrubbed every inch of floor.

Look at that shine!!

Of course this is in addition to all the cleaning that normally goes on before every charter: wiping down the walls and every surface, deep-cleaning all the heads, washing the outside of the boat, doing all the laundry and making all the beds; as well as stocking the boat with beer, wine, booze, soda, and of course food! Not to mention the regular maintenance, oil changes, filter cleaning, rig tuning, as well as all sorts of repairs, and the various improvements that we are always up to.
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Watersports Locker

Tara took the initiative to organize the watersports locker. This involved fabricating racks to hang lines on one side and to hold the waterskis and wakeboard on the other. Sasha installed shelves to store his tools. Tara painted the racks that she built a nice fire engine red. Perfect for the holidays, too... Merry Christmas everyone!

Sasha quickly filled the locker with stuff:

Note the spinnaker, in its sock, stowed up in the bow area.
In this last photo you can see the spare shroud (grey and wrapped in plastic). This line alone is strong enough to lift DOUBLE the weight of this boat without breaking! It also weighs about 5 pounds. Not sure why we'd need a spare, but I'm glad we have one.

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Delivery Pictures

The delivery was exciting, beautiful, trying, and a lot of work. We left in the freezing cold with conditions that would put any vessel through her paces (35+ knots of wind and 10-15 foot seas), and Diadem handled them in stride. We averaged 10 knots of boat speed for the trip, at points surfing down the face of the waves at 15 knots! While those conditions were par for the course for the North Atlantic in December, we were happy as things warmed up and calmed down, and the one day in Bermuda was a welcome break. The crew did a great job and the fact that it got a little warmer every day made everyone happy. Of course there were beautiful sunsets over the open ocean and all that, so here are a few photos:

Before we took off, Sasha had to fix something important in the bilge:

Yes it was beautiful out there on the Chesapeake:

But it was COLD!!

In Norfolk, we moored among Navy warships:

And I had a day to sort my nuts and bolts:

At some point it warmed up enough for Tara to take off her socks:

Bermuda was gorgeous and calm for a day:

So Mike and I went up the headstays to tighten the torque links on the furlers:

Tara does something important:

Zion has a birthday:

The trip from Bermuda to St. Thomas:

Warmer every day!

Warm enough to scrub teak:

We saw whales!


The sun is rising on a new day for Diadem!

Back in BVI

I promise, pictures soon... perhaps even this evening if this borrowed internet connection keeps working! :)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Almost There

Currently 2 hours North of St. Thomas!! Be there soon!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bermuda - St. Thomas

Departing Bermuda tonight, expecting to arrive St Thomas on Sunday or Monday. Follow us online!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Safe in Bermuda

It was a wild ride!! Pictures soon!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


We arrived a few hours ago safe and sound after a great ride. Pics soon!

Monday, December 7, 2009

We're Off!

Saying goodbye to all our friends around the yard and putting the final touches on boat work. Headed for Norfolk through the night, hope to reach our next marina Tuesday afternoon. We'll stage there until early Thursday morning when we head out to Bermuda!
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Yep. It's cold.

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Sunday, December 6, 2009

Make way for Genny!

One more piece of the puzzle! Our old generator was so packed with salt and rust that it began leaking oil... out every crack and hole! When they began taking it apart it became very clear that fixing it was maybe not the best option as it would cost almost as much as a new one.
Here Jeff from Bay Shore Marine (local NorthernLights rep) watches as the hulking genny is lowered into an engine compartment. Chris Oliver from Dock Side Marine is also curious as the brand new engine he just installed is directly under this dangling machine.
Our friend the crane-
The new genny in place on it's mounting board. In the process of hooking everything up.

Delivery Cooking

How does one provide three well balanced meals a day for a delivery crew? Cook most things before you leave! (Thank goodness for freezers) Not knowing what sea conditions will be while out on big crossings most galley cooks don't plan to be in the galley any more than they have to. Also, since I double as first mate there will be plenty of other work to keep me busy. In the past few weeks I have been putting together an eleven day menu that will be mostly prepared ahead of time and stored between the fridge and freezer. During the crossing anyone on watch will easily be able to follow the menu to locate our next meal, thaw it and pop it in the oven/ on the stove. Voila!
Just back from the grocery with all my loot.
Parcooking soups- (Apple Squash Cheddar Soup, Carrot Shitaki Barley Soup, and Curried Lentil Soup)
Baking loaves of bread and baked oatmeal- Can't wait for breakfast!
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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Stepping the Mast

Stepping the mast (putting it back on the boat) went much smoother than we had anticipated.
Joe, the crane operator here at Bert Jabin's lifted it off the saw horses in the yard while four riggers took the foot and carried it over to the boat.

Keeping everything at the correct angle, the mast is brought over the lifelines and onto the boat. Here you see Sasha running to jump in the anchor locker and lend a hand with pulling the wires out the bottom of the mast and through their fittings.

Mike, the owner of Southbound directs traffic by giving the crane hand signals when the guys are ready to lower the mast onto the deck. Jordan is holding the two forestays.

With the addition of four deck lights, a repaired steaming light, a tricolor/ anchor light, and one more VHF antenna it's a tight squeeze for Sasha and Mark to get all the wires fed through the deck.

We've decided to try out the newest technology in rigging. Instead of bulky stainless turnbuckles, our dux stays have beautiful lacing and lashing.

Looking at the size of our mast and the forces at play, Southbound had special stainless thimbles fabricated instead of the typical aluminum.

Mike holds a forestay in place as jordan fastens.

The final and most tedious step which kept the crew around past dark was the all important tuning of the rig. Once the mast is up each stay has to be properly tensioned. This takes hours in the initial process. Next step will be to take her out for a sail and tune some more- looking forward to that either Sunday or Monday!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Another beautiful day.

Every beautiful day starts out with a proper breakfast. Today I was delighted with one of Tara's savory delights: herbed poached egg over couscous with a Le Pain Quotidien brioche fresh from New York City!

Tara also did a great job cleaning, touching up, and polishing the 76' carbon fiber mast.

The Bay Shore Marine guys removed the old leaky oily generator.

The new hatch lenses and salon cushions look fantastic!

The second helm shade arrived. In this photo, two of our riggers, Jordan and Craig, are getting ready to install it. Notice the new electronic Teleflex engine controls in the lower-left corner.

Also, the new inflatable tender has arrived! This Avon JetSport 430 has a 93HP turbocharged two-cylinder 4-stroke engine, so it runs clean and fast. The boat is a lot easier to drive than everyone said it would be. I think the teak decks on the tender complement the ones on the yacht nicely.

Notice, the helm shade is installed in that last photo. Also, the teak on Diadem needs a lot of work, especially when compared to the new tender! We still have to accomplish a few slightly more pressing items on the to-do list first: install new generator, step mast and tune rig, adjust tender lift, clean and prep for delivery... there is still a lot left to do! We are keeping busy and staying warm and happy!