Farley’s Friday: A Dog Dreams Of Sailing in the Bahamas

Farley here.

I had a dream last night, and I thought you’d like to see what I look like in my dream.

Farley Dreaming

I dreamt about the Bahamas and sailing on my Lagoon 380 catamaran (with my humans of course).

Why am I dreaming? My papers arrived. Here’s how it works. Kristina sends $10 to the Bahamas with a form telling the lovely Bahamian people all about me. Then they decide whether I can enter the country, and I’m so wonderful I don’t see how they could refuse.

They mail back my visa along with a receipt for the $10, that’s US dollars by they way.

Right before we sail to the Bahamas from Florida I have to go to a vet. I don’t really like this part, but I have to have a health certificate. That doesn’t seem fair because my humans don’t need one.

Then we set sail across the Gulf Stream. I don’t like sailing overnight. I just can’t go to bed until Kristina does and she likes the midnight to 4 am shift. I try to convince my humans to only sail to Bimini. We can get there before dark and I get a good night sleep.

Once we arrive, my humans visit customs with my papers and then I’m set for the season. It’s a great deal – $10  for an entire year.

Now all I have to do is wait until November and we can get going.

Woof Woof.


Mattina Underway – so what happens to my writing?

It’s travel time again. Matt, Farley and I are heading south along the Florida east coast and hoping for a weather window to cross the Gulf Stream and enter the Bahamas. We are traveling with one buddy boat and trying to hook up with 2 or 3 more. It’s fun to arrive in a pack, with your friends already imported with you.

While we are traveling, I have no idea if I’ll have internet access along the way. My next shot at blogging will probably be once we are in the Bahamas. So if I’m quiet on this end, that’s why.

I always think I’m going to have time to write while we are underway, but it never turns out that way. Somehow, when the sailboat is in motion, I can’t concentrate on writing. Writing while sailing is a romantic idea to me. It’s a dream, really. The reality is I get busy.

I need to be in a quiet anchorage in calm weather to produce a good word count.

See you on the flip side.

Thanks for reading . . .

Mattina: Final Provisioning Before Heading Offshore

It’s been a hectic couple of weeks getting Mattina loaded with our winter provisions.

One of my favourite outings is a trip to the Vero Beach Farmer’s Market.

The farmer picks the grapefruit and oranges the day before the market. There is nothing like eating fruit that fresh. The fruit hasn’t sat in a warehouse, truck, or grocery store. It’s a special treat for us.

We get enough for about six weeks.

Fresh fruit: Yum, Yum.

Our fridge can’t store bulk amounts so I’ve learned a few tricks over the years. Oranges and grapefruit can be stored unrefrigerated in a dark space. To make them last longer, I wrap each piece of fruit in tin foil. This will keep the fruit for 6 weeks, hence the reason I stock for that length of time.

Side cabinet in spare cabin. Easy access, but still dark and cool.

Now that we are ready to go, the weather isn’t cooperating. The next part of our journey means crossing the Gulf Stream. The stream runs south to north, and we don’t want wind against current – it creates sloppy seas and big waves. Wind out of the east doesn’t work because we’d be slamming into the waves. We certainly don’t want squally weather. Really, we’d like a beam reach at 15 knots.

Is that too much to ask for?

Thanks for reading . . .

Going Sailing with Your Dog?

. . . then here is a list of things to bring if you plan to cruise with your pup.

Farley on the deck of Mattina.

Farley, my wheaten terrier, has spent three winters on our Lagoon 380 S2 catamaran and is about to start his fourth.

This week Farley’s permit to enter the Bahamas arrived in the mail, and it was a good reminder for me to prepare for the season.

Farley can’t to this on his own, so I get to do it for him.

After a few weeks in Florida, we’ll sail across the Gulf Stream and spend the winter in the Bahamas. I created list  below from my experience in the Bahamas. I’m sure there are other things you need to consider for sailing to other countries.

Before each season, I review what I use for Farley at home and assume I won’t be able to get the items while I’m sailing.

Farley’s Provisioning List:

  • Dog food and treats
  • Medical Kit
  • Grooming Kit
  • Extra leashes and harness
  • Safety gear
  • Toys
  • Permit to enter Bahamas
  • Health certificate – including proof of immunization for rabies, distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus, leptospirosis, adenovirus and coronavirus.

I’ll expand on some of the items above in future blogs.

Did I miss anything you might bring?

Dog Papers for the Bahamas

Heading to the Bahamas again this fall means a lot of prep work has to happen. This includes getting our dog ready for cruising.

Farley, our wheaten terrier, needs his papers to enter the Bahamas. This winter will be his fourth time in the Bahamas and he’s getting used to the routine.

To get his papers, I mailed our application, along with $10 to the Bahamas. Once they receive this and are happy, they mail back permission papers. I bring these with me when we visit the customs office upon entry into the country.

Farley had to have his rabies, distemper, etc. shots and he’ll have to see a vet right before we cross the gulf stream. The Bahamians require that he has a health certificate right before entry. This can be tricky because usually we are waiting for a weather window to cross the Gulf Stream, and we’re never sure until the last-minute whether we are going to cross.

So far we’ve been lucky and been able to get an appointment with a vet in Florida on short notice. Once I explain what we are doing, I’ve found the vet’s office are happy to sneak us in for a quick visit.

Why do we do all this? So Farley can to this . . .