A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Terry Syrokosz
Date: 2018 Feb 19, 16:32 -0800
I got an e-mail from Frank Reed a couple of weeks ago suggesting I introduce myself. Today is the 1st time I've been on a computer in a little over 2 weeks. Sorry for the delay Frank.
I have loved boats and the water as long as I can remember. When I was 7 yrs. old one of my favorite things to do was float around the pond (that my grandfather dug to water the cattle, we only had 5 or 6 at the time) in a rubber raft for hours on end. I also wanted to get an idea if I was ever shipwrecked how it would be (kids huh?). Eventually I sewed a sheet on a couple broom handles, rigged a rudder from an old oar and tried to sail around the pond ( it was only 25 feet or so around ). My grand father did have a cabin and a little red and white runabout on Lake Erie a couple of degrees north of the farm. That's was ages 3 thru 7. My first memories of life were the lake and that boat. When I was 12 my mother got remaried and moved to Michigan. I promptly got to work in a doughnut shop and got a paper route so I could buy a sailboat. That summer I bought an open 17 ft National one design. The seller had us taking off our shoestrings to jam between the planks to keep the water out. My 1st job was recaulking then paint. I spent days at a time fair weather or foul on that boat on Loon Lake ( I think some people thought I was the loon). A new job ethic was born. Work all winter sail all summer. A couple years later I sold the Paula Jean and got an 18 ft Hampton. Spent every minute I could on that one as well. Found a deal on a 25 ft Jr. Holiday. That one I should have takin a surveying course before hand as most of the ribs and planks were rotten as well as the deck. Sold the Hampton for the downpayment on a 20 ft Windrose. That one I kept on Lake St. Clair. It was nice as it had a cabin and cushions. Sailed a lot on St. Clair finally got to go on my 1st cruise across St. Clair up along the western shore of Lake Huron to Georgian Bay. We took her to Florida on vacation several times. Loved the saltwater.
The day after I graduated high school I was on my way to Florida for good with my boat (sold my 70 Chevelle for cruise money). Made the crossing to West End from West Palm. That is a story all it's own. No Radio, no depthfinder,etc. I heard the best bilge pump is a scared man with a bucket. I believe that's true for small boats. Sailed around a couple months in the Abacos. After that trip I sailed her back across to go back to school. Attended the Charles F. Chapman school when it was in Palm City and they still taught celestial. Didn't have a chart but found a paper place mat in a restaurant that seemed pretty close to scale. It did just fine. Stayed on the boat till graduation. For the next 25 years or so went from boat job to boat job deliveries and crew mostly from deckhand to captain. Did work marine sales new and used gear for awhile. Started Gulfstream Fishing Charters out of Ft. Lauderdale.
About 20 years ago I met my wife Kathy (well she wasn't my wife when I met her ; ). She's a Great Girl with a learning disabled daughter who in Florida would have been put in classes of unteachable kids from what they told us. We checked around and found Ohio to have a great program for kids like her whear she could stay in classes with kids her own age instead of being put in a corner. We believe this has allowed her self esteem she would not otherwise have had. Our plans now that she has graduated is still going to school and has a job, is for her to see the world. By that we plan to take her on a circumnavigation on a 30 to 40' sailboat (we are still looking for the boat). We do have a particular design in mind. I'm 55 yrs old now so I'd like to start soon.
A few months ago I realized my CN has grown quite rusty thought I'd brush up a bit.
I can hardly believe my good fortune running across this site.It is AWESOME !!!!! As are the people who are helping me regain skills. THANK YOU ALL!!!!! I'm sure I'll have many more questions. I was discussing this with our family doctor the other day and he has decided to learn CN as well. I can not express my relief and happiness to find "A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Position Finding"
Oh by the way My wife and I were married on a ship and plan to renew vows for our 20th in Mystic, Connecticut @ Mystic Seaport June 2019 YOU ARE ALL INVITED !!!
We'll let you know when we have plans set.