Crystalline waters beckon under the Avalon pier
Since we're suffering through a dry, snowless winter up at Green Valley Lake, we were thrilled when Chris' Uncle Brad invited us to sail to Catalina Island aboard his Catalina 36 "Uff Da."
"Uff da" is a Norwegian curse word (or something).
making it the dream destination for local sailors
Despite the pall over Dana Point,
we were happy to be at sea again
Off with the shoes!
I enjoyed my time at the helm,
but my shoes stayed on... :-)
Captain Brad clowning around
After an easy 5 hour crossing, we arrived at Avalon Harbor.
Did this battered fishing boat motor here all the way from Vietnam?
It would appear so... (yikes)
We hooked up to Brad's personalized "Uff Da" mooring.
You don't even want to know how long the waiting list
is for this, or how much it costs.
Brad's wife Lisa took the cattle boat over and booked
2 nights at the Pavilion Hotel (she's not a sailing-type gal).
She asked me if I'd like to join her there for a girls weekend,
to which I happily said "Yes!"
The lovely grounds of The Pavilion
It was best, anyway, to leave the boys
to sleep aboard Uff Da. They would be
talking generators, batteries, alternators
and genoas for hours on end...
...leaving Lisa and I free to discuss other,
more pressing subjects... ;-)
The boys talk solar panels while Lisa and I check in
After a tasty seafood dinner, we poked around Avalon looking for a bit of adventure.
What? A bowling alley in Avalon? Yes. It's true!
Well, it's mini-bowling -- sort of a cross between Skee-ball and the real thing.
I beat the topsiders off of everyone with the earth-shattering score of 121.
The next morning we awoke to a clear, warm, sunny Avalon
The gifts of off season sailing: a nearly deserted beach and lots of open moorings
Welcome to mid-winter in Southern California... :-)
Chris getting to know his island again
Fun fact: when the iconic Avalon casino was built in the
1920's it was the tallest building in Southern California
Lisa and I met the boys at the dock
as they dinghied in from Uff Da
So happy to be on a dinghy again
More Avalon beach scenes
Brad and Lisa rented a golf cart and we took off exploring the island
The view from the top (note the red helicopter in the foreground at left)
Pastoral island scene
How could we say no to this roadside lemonade stand?
This is a first: they also sold moustaches (!) and bracelets for a dollar
I passed on the moustache but I love my new bracelet
Avalon from the west side
This view hasn't changed since the 1920's
Since Brad is a member, we spent an evening at
the Catalina Island Yacht Club
I'm sworn to secrecy as to what we did that evening...
Naww, just kidding. It's a lovely club and we felt very welcome.
Although Brad DID go to Harvard...
I suppose I should ask him if he was a member of
the Skull and Bones fraternity... ;-)
The next morning, we awoke to a very foggy Avalon
Soon enough, the fog cleared enough for us to
make a safe passage back to Dana Point
I mostly shivered in the cabin while
the boys happily worked the sails
My husband's happy place
And just like that, we were back in Dana Point. Many thanks to Brad
and Lisa for their amazing generosity. XOXOXOXOXO
Last shot: The "honesty in boat naming" award
goes to "Seamy Barrister" in Dana Point.