Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Gosling's Final Chapters

15:00, 24 October 2015, passing thru Grant's Pass, on our away to Mexico

Well it had to come someday. This will be my last few blog entries for Flights of the Gosling.

We have finally found a buyer who wanted her bad enough to give us a decent amount so we are on our way, trailer in tow, back to Gosling to remove our stuff and turn her over to the new owner.

A month ago we had our winter cruising plan formulated, spares bought and packed and a few friends arranged to meet us along the way to Zihuatanejo where we are going to attend Kirk and Charlene's (Freedom Kirkland) wedding. Then the unexpected happened, we got an offer on Gosling and since then we have been on an emotional roller coaster with the sale being on, off and complicated by silly misunderstandings, that, thankfully, have now been resolved.

It all began a few weeks ago when Fran and I received a phone call for our broker, Marisa, while we were driving between relatives in Ontario. Marisa announced that she had someone very interested in Gosling, an American, raised in Scotland, who has been working in the US for some time and looking for a "cheap”, quality, solid boat to bring back to Scotland. Over the next few hours his lowball offer was rejected and our counter-offer was tabled. We left it at that as the potential buyer wanted to do extensive self-survey. We have to commend Marisa as she stayed with him the entire time in a hot dusty boatyard while he did his thing. In the end his only concern was that the rigging was more than 10 years old so he had to get estimates on replacing it. Apparently his insurance company insisted on this point, even though the existing rigging is fine. Our attitude was: Too bad, so sad, get another insurance agent....

So, a few days of pins and needles passed waiting for another offer. Finally, after further negotiation we arrived at a compromise price that we were happy with. The next step was to be a sizeable deposit and paperwork to be signed by a specific date. At that point we were in “sold mood”, re-jigging plans, advising our cruising buddies of our altered plans and making a list of all the stuff we had to do to complete the transfer of ownership and how we were going to bring back what we weren't going to include in the transaction, dinghy, anchor, spares, tools. The list is long!

The promised day came and passed with no communication from Marisa. A few days later she called saying that she hadn't heard from him but was still hopeful as he was travelling and hard to get hold of. She also mentioned that he had intended on going to La Paz to look at boats but was confident that she had talked him out of it insisting that Gosling was the best boat he would ever find at that price and condition. Good on ya, Marisa! By then we were now back in “cruising the winter” mode.

Well, the worry-warts that we are we contacted our friends Erin and Damon (Nomad) at marina Palmira, La Paz, asking them to keep an ear out for someone called Virgil purchasing a boat in La Paz. Almost immediately we got a response saying that, indeed, a 'Virgil' had bought a boat called Raven Wind.

Well, needless to say, we were ticked off but, hey, sailing another season in Mexico would not be a bad thing. We called Marisa with our findings and she immediately called Virgil asking “what gives?” Virgil was dumbfounded and insisted that he was not 'that' Virgil and that he had full intentions of buying Gosling and that she was the best boat he had seen in his searches. (Back in sold mode). A date was reset for the funding and paperwork and it just so happened to be the day we had planned to leave for Mexico. Needless to say, we were apprehensive of leaving without that warm fuzzy 'sold' feeling. It took an act of faith to leave the cruising extras in the garage at home and add on some RV-ing extras. We were a few miles into Washington state when we got the confirmation that the deposit was in the bank. We breathed a sigh of relief and re-adjusted to the reality of an RV winter adventure along the coast of Mexico watching our cruising friends pass by offshore. It will be an emotional next few weeks!

Friday, 6 Nov, Marina San Carlos

Well, the deal is done and sealed. We are no longer the owners of Gosling but we are camped beside her in the yard and have been slaving over her for the past few days. Already we have seen friends leave on their boats after getting them ready for another season. Rolande and Angus (Saren Sea) splashed yesterday and are now across the bay at the Fonatur Marina waiting out some weather before beginning their winter odyssey. Jennifer and John (Spinnaker) are feverishly working on their boat so they can do the same. This is the time of year when most boat owners arrive to get their boats ready so there is a lot of activity around us.
No comment necessary

Done deal!
We have been busy clearing out our stuff from Gosling.  Fran had it spot on then other day when she said that everything she touched brought back memories of happy times cruising. We had not realized how much we had onboard until we began taking loads off and trying to find places to store it until we are ready to return to Canada in April. Luckily we have friends with room in their storage lockers to help us out. The trip home will be anything but comfortable with the cases and bags of stuff filling both truck and trailer.

It has been very hot during the daytime but mercifully cool at night so we are sleeping well. It is very dry, dusty and those little thorny seed pods, the goat heads, are ripe and get into everything afoot. They can be very painful when stepped on, a regular occurrence, since they are very hard to see on the ground.

 Fran had a mini-sale here on Wednesday and it was quite successful. We sold both dinghies, the Engel freezer, we had obtained in Panama, and dozens of other items we no longer need. Tomorrow is the big marine swap meet in San Carlos. We should be able to really reduce our inventory there. This will be a momentous event for me. I normally buy more than I sell but I don't need anything.... Well, we will have to wait and see though. There must be something.......

The new owner has been delayed so we have full reign of Gosling until he arrives. That will give us lots of time to get our stuff cleared out, make her presentable and partially rigged. The summers here play havoc on boats. The heat, wind, dust and rain all play their roles in making a mess to the nice clean decks and surfaces we left behind in April. Thankfully we have lots of water for wash-downs, power for the vacuum and rags to spiffy her up.

20:00, Sunday, 8 Nov. Same, same....

It was a very good swap meet. We sold lots of stuff and took advantage of Linda and Bill's offer of space in their storage locker, which, just so happened to be just a few paces from where we laid out our stuff. It sure made a big difference back at the trailer/boat. The space between the two had begun to look like an Arab souk (bazaar) with all the stuff lying about. We are in the final stages of organizing ourselves for this RV holiday and the truck can just take so much. With Fran's kayak, the BBQ, our snorkeling gear, Fran's sewing project stuff and the various bins of food, drink and dog food, we will be filled to capacity.
Capitalizing on our junk

We are really pleased to have contributed to the possible and pending sale of Prairie Seashell. After Don passed away Lynn had to get the boat ready for sale last year. We were here and gave her a hand with the painful process of saying good-by, not only to the boat, but the boat that Don had built in their Calgary back yard. It was assigned to a local broker but there had been no activity at all, however, this past week we recommended her to 2 different couples and it looks like one of them (from Toronto) is getting very serious. We hope it goes through and relieves the heavy burden that Lynn has had to endure for the past year.

Good news, Virgil, Gosling's new owner, or should we say, the owner of Halcyon Daze, (yup name change coming up), will be here mid-week and we should have just enough time to do a decent turnover before we head off. We have Ariana's (the Fonatur Ariana) wedding to go to on Saturday and we are away early Sunday. She will be ready. We have already warned Virgil that the old girl does not like name changes so we have advised him to look up the proper ceremony, otherwise the unpredicted can and will happen. (Is that like a notwithstanding clause?)


20:00,10 Nov 2015, same place

We sold Prairie Seashell! Woohoo! The couple who saw her fell in love and made the deal the same night. Since then I had a chance to show Ian and Ellen's boat, Kasasa. The couple that saw her is undecided, at present, but will decide in a week or so. Wouldn't it be a coup if it sold too? Maybe I have a new vocation.... Not!

Today we had a look at our next choice of boat, an Ericson 38-200. We first saw the model in Panama, owned by Harley and April, now somewhere in the South Pacific. The one we saw today was a nice boat in its time but now in need of TLC and lots of funds to bring her back to her former glory. We are not seriously looking and the owner would have to reduce his price considerably to make us interested.

On Sunday we took a road trip to Empalme for shrimp and brought back two kilos of 'cowboys', the biggest ones. We repackaged them so that we will be able to enjoy them throughout this winter season, well, another 4 times, anyways.

Today Fran taught her second class on making Ocean Plaits out of old halyards or sheets (ropes). Look out CFSA, she'll be doing it again when we get home.

Our buyer, Virgil arrived in town this afternoon. We should be seeing him tomorrow and doing our turnover over the next few days.

It will be much more of an emotional event for Lonnie, the owner of Pandora lll, a former grand dame of the sea that had been laid up in the yard here for the past several years as Lonnie tried to bring her back to her former glory. After years of combatting dry rot and the ravages of the weather here he finally capitulated and had her crushed today. All that is left tonight is a pile of rotted timbers next to those of the Arctic Ark that suffered the same fate last year.
Pandora III - lost cause

Sad fate of wooden boats

Arctic Ark's last stand


  1. Congratulations on your sale..can just imagine how emotional that will be but it sounds like you will still enjoy Mexico this winter. We are on our way aboard Ka' San Diego now and hope to head down the Baja next week....LA Paz with Dutch friends (Witte Raaf) for Christmas...then on to the Riviera. We will look for you! I am back blogging so you will know where we are...hope we find each other! Lyneita

    1. Great!!! We would love to see you again. We keep asking people from Comox if they know you and finally we met a couple here in Chamela, Fred and Charlene. He makes Wolf watermakers and she, a retired dietician, used to have connections with the school you worked at.
      Please stop in if you pass thru. We will be here until mid to late Jan then on to Zijuatenejo for a wedding in mid Feb. Might participate in the sail fest but that is too far away to plan for at present.

  2. Congratulations on your sale..can just imagine how emotional that will be but it sounds like you will still enjoy Mexico this winter. We are on our way aboard Ka' San Diego now and hope to head down the Baja next week....LA Paz with Dutch friends (Witte Raaf) for Christmas...then on to the Riviera. We will look for you! I am back blogging so you will know where we are...hope we find each other! Lyneita