Log #3d To Cockburn Island – First E-mails & Computer problems

July 5, 1998 in Log Series 02 - 07, Logs by Series, Series 03 North Chanel, The Logs

Log #3d To Cockburn Island – First E-mails & Computer problems

(NOTE – The following shows my first naïve attempts to use the old Mac 5600 laptop kindly given to us by Linda Berman, and which we received ONLY MINUTES before we departed from THSC in Toronto. [We almost left the dock with the computer repair technician who was setting up the modem on it.] I had never sent an E-mail before in my life, and knew nothing about the effective use of this Mac laptop computer. We started out without a charger unit for it. We had to learn it all from “scratch” without being able to pick up a phone to ask questions or to have computer literate friends come over to show us how to use it. Below are my frustrated first attempts to send out logs.)

Sunday July 5, 1998
Lake Erie
N 42 22.17
W 080 35.18
2213 hrs

We are motor sailing down Lake Erie on the third day of our voyage. The sun set was beautiful, and I toasted it, our voyage, and our many friends whom we have been privileged to know. Leaving our family and friends was probably the hardest part of this decision to sail the world for a few years with no specific end or destination. (Battery died)

Sunday July 19, 1998
Gore Bay
1000 hrs

This is the first time I have played around with the laptop since the battery went out on July 5. We are plugged into shore power at present and have the computer plugged in as opposed to just on battery power. I feel very frustrated at my ignorance of this machine and need to spend some time playing with it. I need to know how long the batteries will last. We have 3 on board. I do not want to interfere with this message as we hope to go up into town shortly and send this off as our first E-mail.

We are waiting for Stuart Mulqueen to arrive, but we are uncertain as to when he will show. If he is not here by noon hour, we will leave a message at the marina, that we will call in via VHF at 1800 hrs, and again on July 20 at 1200 hrs. If he arrives, we will return to Gore Bay to pick him up.

We have not found any of the discs we thought we had brought, so we will take the laptop up into town and try to send our first E-mail to Judy’s father and then call him via telephone to see if he got it.

Other news is that we got the Long Distance Award from the Great Lakes Cruising Club for coming the farthest distance to the Rendezvous. My back is still very stiff and sensitive. I wear the support belt frequently. I need to do more exercises to loosen up.

I will save this now, preparatory to shutting off the computer and taking it into town to try to send an E-mail. We have many E-mail addresses of friends who want to keep posted on our progress. I hope I can learn how to use this thing to send off multiple E-mails at each opportunity.

If I am successful at this, it will give me the incentive and confidence to sit down at the computer more often to keep a log of our journey. (I noticed a dotted line above this paragraph, and assume it’s a page break.) Judy sends her regards. I will try to save this now and use it as the content of our first E-mail.


July 29, 1998

The above has not worked, yet. However, I want to try sending Henry (Judy’s father) this as an E-mail, using the copy and paste format if I can bring this into the E-mail. I plan to copy this, then open the E-mail and paste it as the text. I do not know how to use attachments, or other possible features yet, but hope springs eternal.
Here goes.
Aug. 5, 1998
Cockburn Island
N0 luck on the above attempt

Well, it is 9:30, and we are alongside at Tomasville, a “ghost town” on Cockburn Island. This is the first I have tried the laptop since the last time on July 29. We were in Toronto for a few days clearing up a few loose ends, and trying out the computer again. When we got back to VELEDA on July 30, we had a good visit with several of our friends in Espanola and area, as well as with Alvin and Sandra and our grand daughter Amanda.

We departed Bay of Islands July 31 and have enjoyed anchoring in a different location every night in the North Channel. (Sturgeon Cove, Mink Island, Oak Bay, Beardrop Harbour, Meldrum Bay and tonight, alongside for the first time since Gore Bay two weeks ago.)

We bought a convertor/adaptor to convert DC to AC for charging our computer and other low draw batteries and appliances. When we tried it for the first time a couple of days ago, it didn’t work. We were frustrated and thought we would have to send it back, However, today we met Gord Belfry, an old friend from the Power Squadron in Sudbury here at Cockburn Island who helped us identify that we had the polarity on our DC (cigarette lighter ) switch reversed and had also blown its fuse. When we corrected this “Voila”, it worked! So, here I am typing with my two fingers to put some more of my thoughts down.

However, I have now to learn how to format a disc on a Mac so I don’t have to save everything on my hard drive. I hope to send this epistle from the beginning, out via E-mail when we get to Sault Ste. Marie on Saturday, Aug. 8.

Now to the present. We had a relaxing day for a change. No long sail getting in just before dark. We had breakfast ashore at the Meldrum Bay Inn. It was a pleasant experience, sitting in one of the verandahs, watching humming birds hover around the hanging feeders. We visited the Net Museum, a local community museum, to read about a few dives I made up here with the Navy at HMCS York in the mid 60’s to try to verify the wreck of the GRIFFON. We were in their archives. Lester Pearson, our Prime Minister at the time, was the MP for the area and got the Navy to check out the offshore wreck in about 90 feet of water. (Still not verified as the GRIFFON.)

Then we left at noon hour and had a leisurely sail here, Cockburn Island, arriving about 3:00 pm, with enough time to meet Gord Belfry, and go for a swim at a lovely sandy beach. We had a nice drink and a cold supper. It has been beautiful sunny, hot weather. I have some lovely music on the tape deck, and am enjoying sitting down with the computer to put down some of my thoughts as they come to me. That is why they are not yet organized in any sequence.

I will leave the sequencing to later, as now I want to save this, and find out how to format a disc. More to come later.