Archive for May, 2007

Grass Field

Thursday, May 17th, 2007

Hand Made sign. Isla Providencia, Colombia

Isla Providencia, Colombia

Porta-bote Redux Redux

Thursday, May 17th, 2007

At the end of February, my mom sent me an email saying we got a large box containing some “black plastic planks” and so we assumed that they were the replacement seats Porta-Bote generously offered to replace at no charge. Two days later, we received this email from Sandy:

“As promised, we sent, free of charge, complete replacement seats and transom to the address you you emailed us.
I don’t know if you tried to contact us again and your message was viewed as spam. But, we have not received any communication from either of you acknowledging receipt of the free replacement parts.
If you get this message and reply, always make sure the word “Porta-Bote” is in the subject line. This way it won’t be trashed. Also, I suggest using the “Reply” key so you’ll know if we received your message or not. I did this with this message. “

Joshua pressed the “Reply” key for the above email (address “,” whose subject was already “From Sandy /Porta-Bote”) on March 4th (the day we arrived to Portobelo, Panama after being out of contact for the previous week) thusly:

“We didn’t get a follow up email about it from you all so we were surprised to hear that a strange large package arrived at our Arizona address. We knew immediately that it had to be the porta-bote parts. It was too late to make it with our current visitors but we have some more people coming down near the end of April. Hopefully, they will be able to bring them down. Thanks again. ”

So, fine. We requested information on warranty once upon a time. Sandy replied saying although our seats were out of warranty, we pissed him off enough that Porta-Bote would send replacement seats/transom anyway, just to make us feel bad happy. So we gave an address and a few weeks later they appear, unannounced (that is, until after they arrived), but appreciated. We sent a thank you email. AND we posted a follow-up to our blog explaining what Porta-bote offers as seat/transom warranty and what they were doing for us. Done. Everyone’s happy. Whatever!

Sandy’s reply the above, by the way, was this:

“Apparently some of our mail just doesn’t get through. Which is probably the reason your original negative blog was created in the first place. We shipped when we promised we would ship. and we answered your original mail promptly.
We always follow through as promised. It’s a shame your viewers are being misled when they open your blog.
Hope this can be straightened out so we are depicted fa little more fairly.”

(This makes me think that Sandy did actually receive a response to the other emails and that he must know that we are aware that replaced the seats and transom free of charge. But, perhaps I jump to conclusions…)

We also got this, addressed to “” and then re-sent when it didn’t make it, so the end product was three pages of forwarding garbage for a two-line email:

“Hi Folks, Haven’t heard from you in weeks and assume you’re still of this planet.
Have you received the free replacements we sent as promised?”

And a couple weeks later, this:

“Hello Folks, This is 23rd attempt to reach you via email.
I guess you don’t turn on the computer very often when you out and about.”

Which, um, weird. 23 attempts in fourteen days is some kind of crazy persistence. We didn’t respond to this one because, what the hell do you say that that anyway?

And today, this (posted as a comment on our original dinghy review post):

“1- Never received your original “two requestes”. You also never responded to our other emails ????
As you are aware, we replaced your seats and transom free of charge.
Have a feeling contacting you by ordinary email doesn’t work too well. Neither does your ability to contact us. This was the original reason you got upset. It wasn’t that we were not willing to respond. We never received these emails.
This is the reason I am trying to contact you in your own blob. This may actually get through OK.
Anyone else who wants to contact us:
Oh well. Such is life.”

So, I must say I was surprised to receive the comment to our “blob” saying they had never received any emails from us acknowledging the receipt of the replacement seats and that we are misleading our readers and etc. I’m sort of tired of dealing with this actually.

It is up to you, dear reader, to decide if I misled you. Or if I was unfair to Sandy or Porta-Bote.

Sloth Crossing

Wednesday, May 16th, 2007

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Parque National Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, 2006

You may remember way back in 2006 we talked about meeting a sloth on the road. Here is the long awaited video. Thanks to Sage for helping me figure out the flash. Let me know if you can’t get it to play.

Trimaran Sailing

Tuesday, May 15th, 2007

My cousin Danielle got married last weekend and as part of the festivities we all went sailing on a couple of racing trimarans. They aren’t as roomy as the TimeMachine but boy are they fast. Even loaded down and in light air we still zoomed around at a good clip by our standards.

John Williams Corsair F-31 Gimme Samoa

[John Williams on his F-31 Gimme Samoa]

If you look behind his head you can just make out the speed of 7.2 kts but you can see by the water that it can’t be blowing much more than 8.

Custom trimaran Wing & a prayer

[Wing and a Prayer]

My uncle (Bill Coxwell) built this trimaran out of a Moore 30 and a Stilletto 23. Very cool.

Bill Coxwell


trimaran sailing with girls

[Gimme Samoa with Wing and a Prayer in the distance]

We got all the girls on our boat leaving Bill with all the muscle.

high tech sailing cloth

[Fancy sailcloth]

For Sale

Tuesday, May 15th, 2007

As most of you know, we are planning to take a break from cruising. Since we don’t know when or where we will take it up again we have decided to put the TimeMachine up for sale. There are too many boats sitting in storage and we’d rather see the TimeMachine on the water and being enjoyed. Also, Cheyenne has certain criteria for the next cruising trip: standing headroom everywhere and a dedicated double bunk! We still plan to haul it out and do some necessary work and a few cosmetic things. A classified ad will be in the June issue of Latitude 38 among other places.

The obvious questions is “What will happen to the blog?” We’ve been discussing it and the current plan is to continue blogging in continous manner using the same database. However, after we sell the TimeMachine we may move the continous blog to another domain and leave as a static site about this experience. We are radically unprepared for normalization and have no intention of settling down to normal jobs, so the adventures should continue although they may not always involve sailing.

Cheyenne Weil, Joshua Coxwell