31 July 2011

Our First Circumnavigation! (Learning to Sail: Part III)

As seen from land - this marks the canal entrance
As seen while entering from Lake Michigan; with Jane in her favorite spot

We have circumnavigated Door County.  We spent a couple of days seeing the sights by car, with our home base at the Holiday Motel in Sturgeon Bay.  (Ean has commented on the funky Holdiay Motel in a previous entry.)  But our primary purpose for the Door County trip was to attend a three-day sailing course, offered by the Hoofers, to earn ASA 103/104 certification.  We sailed aboard Delia, a 1985, 47 foot Jenneau.  We sailed up the west coast of Door County (the Green Bay side), and then down the east coast (the Lake Michigan side).  It was an interesting juxtaposition, to see Door County first by land, and  then by water.  For example, we visited the USCG station at Sturgeon Bay, and took a picture of the entrance to the channel that connects Sturgeon Bay to Lake Michigan.  A few days later, Ean shot the same channel entrance from the water. (Both pictures above.)

But the main thing, of course, was the learning.

20 July 2011


In our ongoing attempt to cross items off of our "bye-bye list", we are currently in Door County, in Sturgeon Bay to be specific staying at Sturgeon Bay's oldest and reputedly funkiest lodging establishment, the Holiday Motel.  Occupying a point in the interior design spacetime continuum between Art Deco and Mid Century Modern, the Holiday Motel exudes its designer's good aesthetic sense to leave alone what is priceless and only append where necessary.

Which brings me to the inspiration for this post and perhaps the oddest appraisal this motel has ever received.  Who would've imagined that not in San Francisco, Miami Beach or any of the design hotspots in the U.S. but here in unapologetically uncool Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, here in this typical municipal offspring of the industrial and maritime trades of more than a century past I would happen on the coolest tiled bathroom floor I have ever seen.  (And as a victim of home renovation fever, I've seen quite a few.). Who would have guessed that the original designers of this establishment would have been moved to swing out on such a wild design fancy.  The pink wall tile with maroon bull nose and baseboard doesn't do it justice; it is singular.

If my praise rings sarcastic in its effusiveness, I do not intend it to be so  I am utterly sincere in my admiration of this floor.  Perhaps all the more so because it occupies the bottom of an otherwise unremarkable bathroom in a functionally kitschly redecorated motel in the guilelessly down-to-earth town of Sturgeon Bay.

12 July 2011

Our First Solo Sail! (Learning to Sail: Part II)

Jane before passing ASA 101
Saturday, the 9th was our second attempt at testing-out for our ASA 101 certification and Jane made it.  All the trips back and forth to Madison have paid off.  Her certification means she's rated to take out J24s on her own (well, technically with at least one other person to crew for her--that would be yours truly).  For a highly coveted Hoofer boat, we were lucky to find an open spot the very next Monday (yesterday) afternoon and so we grabbed it.  Finally, a chance to sail on our own, a micro taste of things to come.
Jane after passing ASA 101

06 July 2011

Progress on the Bye-Bye List

Yesterday was our ninth anniversary, so we decided to take a little road trip and knock a couple of items off our Bye-Bye List. We took an awesome hike in Wyalusing State Park, where the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers join. Started at the boat ramp and hiked up up up to Sentinel Ridge. The first 18 minutes of the 2 1/2 hour hike almost killed us, but after that it was good. I thought often of the 25 extra pounds that I would have been hauling up and down the hills, had we hiked in mid-March. Phew!