Name That Yellow Thing

So, I was taking this class last week and in the corner of the stairway was the object seen here. It's metal, about 24" tall, marine use. Prizes to whomever can identify it. Somebody else out there has to know what it is!
I took a captains course last week, and I passed!! Now I can be a Captain, just like my idol, Captain Morgan. (What do you mean, he's not a real captain, he has the hat and everything.) I'll have what's usually called a '6-pack' license and no, believe it or not, it doesn't have anything to do with alcohol. It means that if we wanted to, we could carry up to 6 passengers without having to be inspected by the Coast Guard. Steve is taking the same course, but his is an online version and he'll test in March. Not that I'd make a big deal of it or anything, but I did pass the test first... All we have to do is finish the mountain of paperwork, get physicals, drug tests, eye tests, CPR and First Aid, raise our right hands and get our Oath notarized, figure out how many days of sea time we have in the last 7 years and get 3 character references. Yes, character references. I can't possibly see why the Coast Guard would possibly care what kind of character I have. If my references all say that I'm an a******, will they deny me a license? What if I have no character at all? What if I am a character? What if I were just a bunch of black lines? Whoops, that's caricature, sorry.


Ice, Ice Baby

To me, sailboats are tropical things, warm water, sun, fun, ice in my drink. So there's just something inherently wrong with seeing ice around a sailboat. And something VERY wrong with seeing ice around MY sailboat. I was leaving for class early this morning and the boat was surrounded by ice. Ice. It took me a minute to figure out why the water had those funny cracks in it. The marina was ice from the inside docks to the breakwater on the other side of the channel. My first reaction was one of Steve's favorite military acronyms "WTF, over!" My second reaction was to call Steve and tell him to poke his head out and take a look. His reaction is not printable. I went off to class, came home later this afternoon, it still hasn't melted. I have to take my hat off to the Tourism Council in Oriental and their version of the winter weather that we all believed. There are quite a few people here, like us, walking around saying "What happened to warm and sunny?"

We are both keeping busy studying for captains licenses and radio upgrades, fixing, mending, etc. Adjima is lost without her sunspot to sleep in and has declared herself the Inspector Of Everything and is making a pest of herself. It's a good thing she's so perfect in all other ways or it would be really annoying.


The Running of the Dragon is a New Years Eve tradition in Oriental, the idea is to touch the dragon as it goes by, to assure good luck in the coming year. I touched it and wished for warmer weather. This year it was at 8pm only, due to some 'hooligans' who vandalized the teeth last year during the midnight running. Hard to believe that in a town of 900, the hooligans were never apprehended. We went with a group of new friends and had a great time.
New Years Day found us out in the cold again, this time for the annual "Instead Of Football Regatta". Sailing on Bristol Star, a Bristol 41 belonging to new friends Kevin and Louise. It was our first time to go racing, ever, and Kevin and Louises' first time to have their new boat out of the slip. With a crew of nine, you would think we would have paid closer attention to the race, instead we drank Manhattans and rum (not together), had cheese and crackers and fudge. The great thing about this regatta, is that the mandatory skippers meeting was at M&M's after the race ended and then, over big steaming cups of soup, they drew the winners from a hat. That's my kind of racing.