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Key West, Florida
November 29, 2008 - January 23, 2009
I find today’s Key West to be much like a flamboyant, crazy, beautiful, delightful, suntanned, leopard-bikini-clad bi-sexual Aunt in cat-eyed sunglasses and black lacquer stilettos who is devilishly misbehaved at all times, yet simultaneously perfectly refined as she makes ridiculously exaggerated gestures with a cigarette holder and speaks with genuine eloquence about everything and nothing, all while lounging outdoors all day in the topical shade next to a weathered end-table littered with cocktails in various stages of consumption, an overflowing ashtray, several dog-eared classic novels, an array of skin lotions, and a loaded 45 caliber pistol “just in case” . . . while the wild roosters strutting about the streets and yards give her a wide berth. Basically, she’s “totally mad,” “packing heat,” and very “conflicted” – and you can’t help but adore her. . . Read more

Ambergris Cay, Belize; Isla Mujeres, Mexico
& Arrival in Key West, Florida
November 12 - 29, 2008
But, after three years in the Third World, we were keenly aware that the U.S.A. was “just right there” north of us . . . and it was a powerful magnet that simply could not be resisted. In fact, truth be told, we were excited beyond description about the prospect of being back in the land of boat parts, FedEx, VHF weather reports, Coast Guard assistance, top medical facilities, Rule of Law, clean drinking water, high quality food, English speaking people, and a thousand other things that we had come to miss in the Caribbean.. . . . Read more

Rio Dulce, Guatemala to Ambergris Cay, Belize
June 14 - July 9, 2008
November 4 - 12, 2008

After ten minutes, I finally got an answer . . . it’s a Shark! About six feet long and one hundred pounds, it all made sense. I’ve caught many a shark, but never have caught one trolling. As soon as I saw it, I realized that I should have known it was a shark by the way it fought. . . . Read more

Guatemala - Part Two
Exotic Land of the Maya
May 28, 2008 - November 4, 2008

The scale of the canyon area is overwhelming; it took our senses from “zero” to “stunningly spiritual” in less than five minutes. The Rio Dulce is one of those special places on earth that transcend the physical world and give one the sensation that they are standing before a window to a new dimension. Natural cathedrals of such majesty leave not only permanent images within our minds, but also indelible imprints upon our souls. . . . Read more

Guatemala - Part One
Crime and Cruising 2008, viewed from the Rio Dulce

The issue of crime and cruising keeps circling in the shadows of my writing efforts like a big Bull Shark, stalking the fringes of my reports of happy cruising. Here and now, I aim to shine a bright spotlight on that damn "shark" of a topic, show him to you from the tip of his nose to the end of his tail, and be done with it . . . Read more

Colón, Panama to Rio Dulce, Guatemala
April 2, 2008 - May 28, 2008

Of course, we had no directions and no map. The island is small and we were just poking around and exploring. On a whim, I took a turn and followed and road down a gut in the mountain that looked as if it might go all the way down to the shore. Sure enough, we stumbled upon one of the most beautiful beaches imaginable. . . Read more

PANAMA
Panama Canal, Colón, Panama City, Santa Clara,
Boquete, Chagres River,
And Bond . . . James Bond
February 20, 2008 - April 2, 2008

There is no other inland river setting in the entire Caribbean that even comes close to the Chagres as far as we are concerned. The safety, privacy, peace, tranquility, abundant wildlife, and pristine uninhabited jungle make the Chagres River a setting that is unique and utterly precious.

Our stay on the Chagres River goes down as one of the coolest things we’ve ever done on the boat.. . . Read more

San Blas Islands and Colon, Panama
January 10, 2008 - February 20, 2008

Many visitors came aboard Indigo Moon: cruising friends old and new, Kuna people, and even one totally uninvited guest: a six foot long red-tailed boa constrictor!

Have you heard of the cult-classic movie Snakes on a Plane? Well, our real experiences might provide fodder for a sequel: Snakes on a Catamaran!. . . Read more

Cartagena, Colombia
October 27, 2007 - January 10, 2008

Ask me about Colombia and I’ll tell you of a place where beautiful people live a wonderful life by the sea. I’ll explain that their priorities are centered around family, devotion and friendship. Moreover, that the people of Colombia enjoy a proud history that is rich in significant culture. It is a place that is unhurried but hardworking, simple and complex, modern yet also primitive. . .

My Colombian daydreams take me back to a wonderful place where, for a golden moment in time, Indigo Moon floated in a perfect world of international yachting fellowship where fun, fashion, fishing, food, free ice cream, and perfect sailing days surrendered to evenings of relaxed sophistication and unparalleled Colombian hospitality. . . Read more

Bonaire to Cartagena, Colombia
September 27, 2007 - October 27, 2007

The passage from Aruba to points west, like Colombia and Panama, requires a couple of hundred miles of rounding the waters off of the Peninsula De Gaujira, the northern-most point of the South American continent. The total distance between Aruba and Cartagena is 385 miles.

This area is notoriously rough with fast currents, steep seas and routinely fierce trades blowing against the currents. High, snow-capped mountains on the coast send cold air down to meet 100 percent humidity and equator-like heat in the 90’s. It is a supercharged convectional engine that produces monster size thunderstorms. Basically, it is a very dynamic area weather wise, so picking a relatively calm weather window is crucial. . . . Read more

Bonaire for Hurricane Season 2007
June 14, 2007 - September 27, 2007

The radio went quiet. We were in shock. My breath went shallow and my mind shifted gears– a computer now processing various doomsday scenarios: what are the sea conditions between here and Venezuela if we run now? If we try motoring in the lee of the small island of Klein Bonaire, what is the highest wind speed we can motor into before all headway is lost and we are swept to the open sea? What wind speed would make it impossible to swim to shore if we began to get swept away and abandoned ship? How about beaching Indigo Moon on the small island of Klein Bonaire if need be? If we capsize, where should the life raft be for the best deployment options? Each single question begged at least a dozen more, spinning me out of focus over and over again.

As my metal circuitry popped and crackled with a dangerous overload of amps, Melissa sat silent at the salon table, ashen-faced.. . . Read more

St. John, USVI for the Cruising Season
November 11, 2006 - June 20, 2007

Within an hour we were safely on a mooring in Caneel Bay on the northwestern shore of St. John. The sailing equivalent of “Beam me up, Scotty”, we could not believe our eyes! After eight and a half months of heading down-island, we were back “home” in U.S. waters. What a wonderful feeling!. . . Read more

Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela to Bonaire, Netherland Antilles
October 6, 2006 - November 11, 2006

We were mesmerized by the color of the cobalt-blue water. Unlike the gun metal grey waters to the east near Margarita, the western waters were brilliant as we approached Tortuga. It was not since the Southern Bahamas that we had seen such vibrant sea colors. Awesome!. . . Read more

Venezuela
July 2, 2006 - October 5, 2006

We set sail to the southwest, ultimately headed for the mainland of South America! This passage was particularly “exciting” compared to our Caribbean adventures so far, mostly because it required us to sail through the most controversial and potentially dangerous waters we have plotted a course through to date . . . Read more

Windward Islands of Eastern Caribbean
Martinique, St. Lucia, Bequia, Mustique, Canouan
Southern Grenadines & Tobago Cays, Carriacou & Grenada
May 3, 2006 - July 1, 2006

After clawing our way to windward for months (in fact ever since we left Ft. Lauderdale and all the way to Dominica), it was wildly satisfying to finally have the wind at a fast and friendly sailing angle behind the beam, with a noticeable absence of spray on deck (and our faces) . . . Read more

Leeward Islands - Part Two
Nevis, Antigua, Guadeloupe, Les Saintes & Dominica
March 31, 2006 - May 2, 2006

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . . It is here at Dominica that our wildest Cruising dreams were fulfilled by day as we explored an indescribably beautiful, unspoiled jungle paradise. It is also here that our worst Cruising nightmares loomed by night as we slept restlessly in stale air under locked hatches, with flare guns, mace, and a handheld VHF radio in the bunk with us, all while fearful of being boarded by robbers . . . Read more

Leeward Islands - Part One
St. Martin / Sint Maartin, St. Barths, Saba, Statia & St. Kitts

February 25, 2006 - March 31, 2006

All of North Sound of Virgin Gorda was fast asleep as we raised our mainsail and slipped our mooring line at 4:00 am, just offshore from the Bitter End Yacht Club in the British Virgin Islands. We had a good track line on the GPS from our entrance into the Sound the night before. Like following a "bread trail" we motorsailed out of the sound following our old trackline (and used a Q-beam and the radar to exit the Sound safely). Turning to starboard thereafter, we killed the engines and set sails while headed around the northeast end of Virgin Gorda, passing between it and Necker Island and into the open sea beyond . . . Read more

United States Virgin Islands
January 23, 2006 - February 24, 2006

Much like our beloved French Quarter in New Orleans, spirits from centuries past abound in the streets of old Charlotte Amalie. It doesn't take much imagination to vividly picture the harbor filled with square riggers and the streets bustling with traders of the 1700’s. What an exciting place! . . . Read more

British Virgin Islands
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Tortola, British Virgin Islands
January 3, 2006- January 22, 2006

The Virgin Islands are astonishingly picturesque: cobalt blue and turquoise waters; high mountains with lush greenery; cloud patches casting slow-moving shadows across those bright-green mountains; and, all that as we sail along in with the warm sun on our tanned shoulders in January! Jimmy Buffett's Manaña lyrics are apropos: Yeah, they're freezin' up in Buffalo stuck in their cars, and I'm lyin' here 'neath the sun and the stars . . . Read more

Ocean Passage
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Tortola, British Virgin Islands
December 27, 2005 - January 3, 2006

Watch-by-watch and day-by-day, we will share what it was like. It was a significant offshore undertaking for just two people. And so, if you are game for this tough one, get some sleep, eat well and be rested – it won’t be an easy pleasure cruise. . . . Read more

United States East Coast - Part Two
Oyster Bay, New York to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
August 30, 2005 - December 26, 2005

Despite the gray morning, excitement and anticipation were high! It was hard to believe that by mid-afternoon we would be resting in a marina on the Jersey side of the lower Hudson River, directly across from lower Manhattan’s Financial District and the World Trade Center site . . . Read more

United States East Coast - Part One
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Oyster Bay, New York
June 16 , 2005 - August 29, 2005

We felt as though we were flirting with hurricane disaster and made earnest efforts to expedite our tasks. We departed Ft. Lauderdale on July 17, 2005. Destination: Beaufort, North Carolina. The trip would require a three day offshore passage in the Atlantic while taking advantage of the favorable northerly currents of the Gulf Steam at speeds of up to four knots. We departed Ft. Lauderdale via Port Everglades on a perfect day in July . . . Read more

Southern Bahamas
May 25 , 2005 - June 15, 2005

It was still early in the day when we reached Long Island. We anchored out in a cove just north of the Cape Santa Maria Resort. The north shore of Long Island is rimmed with dramatic cliffs that are exposed to the open Atlantic, resulting in very harsh erosion with large caves cut into the cliffs. . . . . Read more

Exumas, Bahamas
April 19, 2005 - May 24, 2005

Making our way south toward Sail Rocks at the top of the Exumas, we crossed the “Middle Ground” that is the largest sand bar I have ever seen. Miles and miles and miles and miles of spotless, white sand bottom only ten to fourteen feet below us. The water is as clear as water can be. . . Read more

Abaco, Bahamas - Part Two
March 10, 2005 - April 18, 2005

Hope Town is located on Elbow Cay and is touted by many as the most picturesque settlement in the Bahamas. . . Read more

Abaco, Bahamas - Part One
February 23, 2005 - March 9, 2005

We have been in the Bahamas for six weeks now. With all the major outfitting and preparation behind us, it’s finally Play Time!. . . Read more

Marathon to Fort Lauderdale to the Bahamas
January 10, 2005 - February 23, 2005

Marathon was the first stop after we departed Louisiana. We spent almost two weeks at Driftwood Marina. Our stay in Marathon was, for the most part, a repair episode with little junkets to Key West and Ft. Lauderdale mixed in. Marathon marked the beginning of boat “shakedown.” In addition to the fridge repair, the mixing elbows on all of my engines went bad. . . Read more

The Adventure Begins! - January 6 - 10, 2005

It is a dreary, grey winter morning in Mandeville, Louisiana; just the kind of cold winter weather that has always depressed me and made me wish for a life in the tropics. Thus, this weather is fitting for bidding farewell to Louisiana’s cold and humid winter. . . Read more

Preparations to Cast Off - January 1, 2005

Our journey finally commenced on the first day of the New Year! The first destination was intended to be the Florida Keys, but we made an impromptu stop across Lake Pontchartrain at Mandeville, Louisiana due to less than favorable weather and a failed speed log needed for the auto pilot. . . Read more

Pensacola, Florida - May, 2004

Having completed our Easter Weekend trip to Mississippi Sound, we now focus our sights on a two week trip in early summer from our home port of New Orleans to Pensacola, Florida and back. It is high time we stretch Indigo Moon's legs a bit further, and we do so from May 17 to May 28, 2004. We have taken two weeks off from work so that we can take our time. . . Read More

Easter Weekend at Mississippi Sound - April, 2004

With winter over and warm weather finally taking hold, we make our first trip out of Lake Pontchartrain since the delivery from Fort Lauderdale. We head into the Mississippi Sound for a visit to Cat and Ship Islands. Read more about our adventure involving a nearly deserted island, an old Fort and a search for a missing person by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Christening Ceremony - September 26, 2003

On a beautiful Fall day in the middle of Lake Pontchartrain a proper christening ceremony was held to rename our Lagoon catamaran from Kariann to her new name Indigo Moon. Read the transcript of the ceremony.

Delivery to New Orleans - August 28-September 3, 2003

Early on the morning of Thursday, August 28, 2003, Buddy and Chris Remson, a friend from Baton Rouge, flew out of New Orleans to Fort Lauderdale to bring Indigo Moon across the Gulf of Mexico to her new home in New Orleans on Lake Pontchartrain. They spent the first two days provisioning the boat and waiting to see what track tropical storm Grace was going to take in the Gulf. On the morning of August 30, 2003, Buddy, Chris, and Captain Scott Vanerstrom eased into the Atlantic and took a right turn south to head around the Florida Keys and straight across the Gulf of Mexico. You can read Buddy's account of the trip including pictures taken along the way.

Survey and Sea Trial - July 10, 2003

We traveled to Fort Lauderdale, Florida in July, 2003 for the inspection, survey, and sea trial of Kariann, a 38' long and 21'6" wide 2001 Lagoon 380 catamaran. View a web page similar to the one we posted for family and friends shortly after the survey and sea trial.


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Current Location:
Mandeville, LA

Read the Baton Rouge Bar Association's article about our return to Louisiana and Buddy's position with the Lawyer's Assistance Program.

Read Buddy's interview 10 Questions for Indigo Moon by The INTERVIEW WITH A CRUISER Project.

02/2013 Update:
Land Ho! What Now?!?
Read about our new life ashore.

Previous trip log about our time in Key West, Florida

Hawksbill sea turtle hatching on Bonaire.

Find out how Indigo Moon got her name.

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