Ellen and Ed Zacko Sail around the world in the Lyle Hess designed NorSea 27 Entr'acte!_____________________________FIND US AT - http://enezacko.com
Entr'acte---The music played before the second act of a Broadway musical.

The Voyage of Entr'acte

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 Part 1--The Partnership

    The story of our first voyage.


  Part II--The Friendship

   Background to our present voyage 

 October- US East Coast 

 November - Chesapeake Bay

  December - Daytona Beach


   February - Nassau Bahamas

   March - Exuma Cays

   May - Haul Out in Florida

   July - Trans Atlantic to Azores

   August -  Azores

   October - Landfall in Lisbon


   July - Sevilla,Espana


    March - Sevilla,Espana

    June - Semana Santa Feria

    August - Caicos Fred

    November - Azores, Madeira,
                                   Canary Islands

    December - Canary Islands,
                                  to Carribean


    April - Carnival Trinidad


Part IV--Into the Pacific

  January -  Trinidad

  March - Grenada to San Blas

  May - Panama Canal

  December - Costa Rica Yacht Club


   April - Galapagos

   May - Passage to Polynesia

   June - Marquesas and Tuamotu


    September - Tahiti

    October-Raiatea, Bora, Bora


                     American Samoa

   May - Tonga

   October - Fiji


   October-Fiji Second Season


   October-Fiji to Vanuatu


    New Caledonia

    Going Home--to Sevilla!


     Off to France


        Up the Seine
                          to Paris

         French Canals

Fall-2013 Return to Spain

                   to Sevilla

         Semana Santa 2014

         Feria in Sevilla - 2014

         Jazz in France-2014 




                         The Voyage of Entr'acte Continues 

                                                         with  Ellen and Ed Zacko



                            We're back in the USA!

    Yes, it has been a long time!  Far too long but we have been very busy. Crossing an ocean, crossing a continent and working non stop for months on our refit.  So much has happened, all of it good but,  we have not had sufficient time to tell it all so.....below is a very brief summary of the last year and a half.

    As the Coast Guard weather station always says......"More to follow!"

    Stay tuned.




    Well, we bet you thought we had given up!   Swallowed the anchor!  Sunk!  Were Lost at Sea!

    No, as of May, 2016,  Entr’acte and crew are still in alive and well.  It has been so incredibly busy, between playing jazz in Arizona and throughout Europe, writing for Good Old Boat magazine and trying to keep up with all of our ‘Family Obligations” here in Spain that , well, we  were just having a grand old time and “did not find enough for time to do this update.”

    We have said this many times over the years but we will say it again, The capacity for the Spanish to party is…..unlimited!  And it is extremely exhausting to even try to keep up.

    We have not done any significant sailing these past two seasons.  All of our sailing has been “close to home.”  Down the Rio Guadalquivir, along the South Coast of Spain and Portugal and over Gibraltar and  Morocco to do our EU “turnaround.”   

    Entr’acte is allowed to remain in the EU for 18 months tax free but to maintain this status we periodically have to  “sail to any port outside the EU, clear in, clear out and return to the EU.      So, every summer we make our passage to Tangier, enjoy the city for a week and  play  Jazz  at the Challah Beach Club.   When we clear back into Spain, Entr’acte receives a new 18 month allowance.  But, no long passages anywhere.  There is just  no time.

    We have also said this many times as well.  One does not come to Europe for the sailing, rather for the culture and the vast opportunities to study and become involved with the culture on a personal level.  True, the sailing we do is first rate.  The marinas and Yacht Clubs are lovely, well appointed and quite inexpensive.  The restaurants are wonderful and very affordable.  The best part is that the wind is extremely variable, both in direction and strength.  If we do not have a favorable wind we just wait a day or so,  the wind changes and off we go.  In many ways, these have been the best sailing conditions we have enjoyed anywhere in the world!

    So, why you may ask do we now have the time to make this update.  Guilt for one thing.  It has been on our minds for a long time but  the reason is that we are trapped, stranded, harbor bound in Cadiz.  The wind has been howling a gale for two weeks with torrential rain every single day.  No one is going anywhere any time soon.  So, we for once in many years we have nothing but….time!

    We departed Sevilla toward Gibraltar on April 30.   It was much too early and we knew it.  We knew the gale was approaching and we also knew that we would be trapped once we arrived in Cadiz but this was the plan.  We did not want to be trapped in Sevilla because it would prove problematic later on.  

    We are headed for a rendezvous with a yacht transport ship.    You see, we have decided that “it is time”… to bring Entr’acte back home to the US.

    There are many reasons for this, most of them happy ones however, leaving Spain has been a very difficult and sad decision.

    When we departed the US back in 2002, we had “retired from playing music.”  Done!  Quit!  Forever!  Well, that all changed sometime back in 2009 while we were in Marquesas and Tahiti.   When we came home to help Ellen’s mother, we began to play again.   With Entr’acte in the Southern hemisphere, things were easy.   The cyclone season there is the good season to play music up North.  So, while the rain and wind torn things up down South, we tore things up musically in Arizona.    

    Once we knew that once we brought Entr’acte back north, things would to be so easy.    Now,our West Valley Jazztett has become extremely popular our appearances have increased and with it  the responsibilities to the rest of the band as well as the other groups who rely heavily on our commitment.  

    We have managed to make a valiant effort to juggle the two life styles by playing as much as we do in Europe but there are just too many balls to keep in the air.

    This also explains the yacht Transport ship.   We would love to sail her back but again, the safe time to make this passage is also the prime time for the  band.  

    The Schengen Treaty has  not helped either.    That dreaded treaty that allows us to stay  for only 90 days in Europe countries.  The boat can stay for 18 months but we must go every 90 days and remain out of   all of the Schengen country (everywhere you  go with a boat) for 90 days before we are able to return.  In the “Good Old Days,” if you were traveling on a yacht, you could stay for 90 days in Spain, sail to  Portugal for 90 days and then return to Spain.  The officials would not enforce the rule as long as one did not cause any trouble.  Unfortunately, with the problems of these recent years the law is being enforced and it makes traveling at 5 knots and remaining legal an impossibility.    The Schengen committee recognized the effect this was having on tourism throughout Europe and was, for a time, working on a solution specifically aimed at yachts but with all of the recent events, any revision has fallen by the wayside.     These past few years, we have investigated  many different “legal” solutions and all of them were so unwieldy to impliment and still, ultimately be unworkable at a speed of 5 knots  that it just seems easier to call it a day.

    It has been a great ride but….it’s time!   Besides, Entr’acte has been on the go now for 14 years and has logged tens of thousands of miles and she needs a bit of TLC that we can not give her while we live on board.

    SO…….here we sit in the Real Club de Cadiz with the howling wind and rain.   It may never stop!  Everyone says that  this has never happened before but is happening only now because we have decided to leave Spain.   Hmmm, could be!   

    At the beginning of this missive we said we were headed TOWARD Gibraltar.  The fact is that as of today, we have absolutely no idea from which port we will depart, when we are scheduled to depart or where we will end up when we finally arrive in the Good Old USA!  The only thing we know for certain is that the trip is paid for!

    This uncertainty why we chose to depart Sevilla so early.  We needed to be recovered from the emotional shock of saying good-bye to everyone,  negotiate the draw bridge, lock and river and be in a position where we could move instantly to wherever and whenever we  were told.  So, we sit and wait and write.

    Speaking of writing,  this past winter was a banner year for us that department.  Three years ago, Ed was  named “Contributing Editor” of Good Old Boat Magazine and this past winter won a “Perfect Trifecta” ( in the Boating Writers International writer’s contest.

    A Trifecta is a horse racing term for when you place three bets on the same race:  Win, Place, Show.  So, here we are, all in the same contest.

    First prize for :  The Ship’s Log

    Third Prize for: Dead in the Water—When Your Good Old Boat Suffers a Heart Attack

    Honorable Mention:   AIS for the Rest of Us

    Not bad for a guy who barely passed English Comp 101 in college.  We still can not figure it out.

    As always, we like to  add some pictures to our updates but there is very little to add in that department that has not already appeared but we would like to pay tribute to all of the friends we have made and enjoyed while here in Europe these past years.  Nothing exciting in the sailing department to be sure but friendship is way this life style means to us and these are the memories we like to share.

    We will let you know From Where——To Where and When as soon as we know.


                      Semana Santa 2016                                           Opening of Feria 2016                                            Elena y Irene


           Alvaro y Dr. Mary Jesus                                             Ulf y Sarah                                                  La Familia Cwerz
          Muchas Fiestas Buenas                                   Guias de turismo estupendo                                   Gracias por su alegre

    John and Isabelle la feria Dos Hermanas                  Christian-"I Love my boat!                        Klaus & Christina's Wedding Day


         David, Mary Carmen y Belen                       D. Federico Gallego-Maestro del Baile             Manolo Conde every day for 30 years


                   Klaus, Jaime y Ireni                                                  Atapeado en Cadiz


    J. Antono, J. Antonio y Dolores         D. Jose Antonio y Daughter Auxiliadora


                           Jazz at the Challah Beach Club, Tangier Morocco


                                       Cave 38, Paris                                                                                    Django Reinhardt

    We are back in France for another round of Jazz.  One week at Cave38 on the Rue Du Rivoli and a second week at the Django Reinhardt Festival in Samois Sur Seine--just 60 miles South of Paris.  Our arrival in Paris was a bit tense due to a Railway strike but we managed.

    We rented an aprtment for the week right on the Rue Du Rivoli.  It came completely furnished, including a grand piano that was in tune and was only one block from Cave 38, what luck!

                     Cave 38, Rue Du Rivoli                              Right downstairs!                                  One block drom the gig                 

    We played with three different groups during our stay in Paris and as usual, the mucianship was outstanding.  First was the Brzilian band Cai[irinha.   Mid-week the guitar artistry of the Flavio Annicchiarico and the Monetti Brothers.  Finally Beniot Martin and straight ahead Jazz featuring the extraordinary Monika Herzig.  

                                 Caipirinha                                            Monica Herzig                                      Benoit  Martin                             

                     Ellen, Flavio and Bernard                            The Monetti Brothers                             Great place to practice

    Next it was off to Samois for the Django Festival.   Each year the world descends on the little village of Samois, Djangos home.
    We played non-stop for a solit week with the best guitar players from all over the world, including Flavio from Paris, the Monetti Brothers and also Levis reinhardt, the great grandson of Django.  He is only 17 but leads his own stellar group.

                       Ed and Pierre Monetti                           Pierre and Levis Reinhardt              Ellen, Judy and Carolyn take a break.

                                Ed, Pierre and Flavio                            Violin summit                  Flavio and Pierre, outstanding!

    After the Django Fest, it was on to Germany to visit with Ellen's cousin Werner and Ingrid.  It has been ten years since we were last together.  Ingrid is quite a cook so it was quite a reunion.


    We are now back on board Entr'acte and tomorrow we will depart Sevilla, "The Frying Pan of Europe," and head down the Rio Guadalquivir.  Our immediate destination, Morocco.  This is a must because  our visas and tax exemtion will expire in a few months and we need to renew.  To accomplish this, we must leave the EU and clear into some non-EU country.  We can then re-enter the EU for another stay of 18 months.  Fortunately Moroccan destinations are quite close at hand, very pleasant and somewhat easy to get to.  After Morocco where do we go next, who knows.  This will be  the first time in years that we have no real plan, no obligations  to very long passages through dangerous reefs or other serious and complicated navigational challenges.  We can actually "play boat," and not have every day and every decision be a matter of life and death.  This could be a lot of fun!

    Of course we will return to Sevilla in the fall.

    Stay Tuned


                    la Feria

                                       Feria 2014                                                                                     La Portada 2014

    We survived Semana Santa quite nicely.  As usual there were people by the hundreds of thousands to watch the Pasos.  For once the time difference from Arizona to Sevilla and the resulting jet lag worked in our favor so the long nights out chasing Vigins was not too taxing.   We actually made it to Easter Sunday before we crashed.

    As usual there is a one week "recovery" period and then a second week "to prepare" for the beginning of La Feria----which would be another entire week without sleep.

    The official opening of Feria is Monday night at midnight but as always in Spain things get going early. On Saturday night is was  the" 33rd annual Concurso de Jamon."   A Ham contest----having nothing whatever to do with Ham radio.  This is a competition for the best tasting Jamon Serrano. The competition was between 30 competing brands/styles/types  of jamon, all being freshly cut to request and passed around for eating and judging, served with copious amounts of bread,Cerveza Cruz Campo, Jerez Fina(Port) and Rebujito(7UP and Sherry).  

                 Concurso del Coaches Caballo               30 different types of Jamon!                             Vote for your Favorite                   

    Of course since this was Feria in Sevilla--all eating was done to the accompaniment of a live Sevillana band and we began dancing the Sevillana far in advance of the offical opening of Feria.

    Sunday it was the Concurso de Coaches Caballos---horse drawn carriages--which was held in the Plaza de Toros(Bull Ring)-Magnificent!

    On Monday, Feria officially opens with an event called Pescaito----an evening of eating nothing but fish, in all of it's forms.  Our Pescaito event was courtesy of The Jeffetura Superior Policia - Bomb Disposal Unit----the menu included--Pastel de gambas,Jamon Serrano, Queso Viejo,Gambas Blancas, Langostinos, Bacalao, Salmorejo, Adobo and Chocos----of course in unlimited amounts.  We won't mention the wine beer and Rebujito.  

                               Here we go!                                           All you can eat!                                 Feliz Feria 2014!                                

    Suddenly at Midnight,  everyone leaves the table and goes outside to watch the lighting of this year's Portada along with all of the lights of Feria and it is suddenly like being at the center of a Nuclear Blast as hundreds of Cassttas come to life with lights, drums and bands.   The Party has begun and it will be non-stop eating and dancing La Sevillana for the next week.    

                          Non-stop Sevillana                                Elena y Mary Carmen                      A different dress every day

    Do the Spanish take the time off from work for Feria----NO!  They go to work and at Siesta time they come to Feria.  Then they return to work and after work come back to Feria---the Spanish NEVER SLEEP!

                              Back to work!                                         Horses by day!                                 Dancing by night!

    After a week of dancing the Sevillana, Feria came to a close with the usual firewworks display.  We all retreated to Club Nautico to recover.

                                                                                      Fiesta at Club Nautico 

    In Two weeks we depart for France where we will play Jazz for two weeks.  One week at Cav 38 on Rue De Rivioli and another week at the Django Reinhardt Festival in Samois Sur Seine--just like last year.  Then we will return to Entr'acte and put to sea.

    Stay Tuned


    Semana Santa 2014

    Semana Santa 2014

                          Semana Santa

                               Paso San Gonzalo                                                                                    Paso Santo Entierno

    After six months of playing Jazz in Arizona, we are finally back on board Entr'acte.  This time it was easy.  She was already floating fully commissioned and it was like we never left.  

    We arrived just two days before the start of Semana Santa(Hloy Week) in Sevilla and we fell right into things.  In this case our jet lag proved to be an advantage.  At 03:00 in Sevilla our body clocks were set for around 6 PM.  It worked out fine.

                  Manigetero Don Jose                              Costalero Ricardo                                    Father and Son

    Our dear friends Don Jose Suarez, Manegetero for San Gonzalo, and his son Ricardo, a Costalero,  took us in hand and we spent the better part of a week running about Sevilla chasing the processions. The processions for Semana Santa are made op of 120 pasos. One paso depics some aspect of the passion and death of Christ and is always accompanied by a secons paso of the Virgin Mary. 

                       Post of honor                                   It's heavier than Entr'acte                                Break time

    The Manegetero is the guard of honor for the paso.  There are over 120 pasos moving around Sevilla during Holy Week.  Each paso weighing upwards of 8,000 lbs is heavier than Entr'acte and is carried by 30 or more Costaleros.  Each of the Pasos are escorted by a full band and hundreds of hooded penitents who wear the hood in order to make the procession of pennance in annonymity.

    The crowds on the street at this time are unbelieveable.  If you have trouble with large crowds, this is not theplace to be.  The processions, while solemn are also wonderful social events when after one group completes thier procession they walk the streets in support of thier friends.

    All of this takes place in the shadow of the new Portada (entry way) for the latest opening of La Feria which takes place two weeks after Easter when at midnight(when else?) the lights suddenly go on and thus begins a week of non-stop music and dancing la Sevillana---that group of dances unique only to Sevilla.

    Stay Tuned

                          Nazarrenos                                         Friends from San Gonzalo                       Feria Portada 2014


       Home at Club Nautico                                                        Queen Isabella's Library

          After seven years in the Pacific, Entr'acte is once again docked at el Club Nautico de Sevilla!



    Sevilla, September, 2013

    Our return to Sevilla was everything we had hoped for.  All of our friends were there to greet us and even  after almost ten years away, it was like we had never left.  No one wasted any time.  The fiestas commenced immediately and we were overwhelmed with music, dancing and of course FOOD in all of its Spanish abundance!

                  ¡Viva España¡                             La Famila Suarez                       Paella for 300 people               La Giralda Tower

    Sevilla will be our base for the next few years.  We plan trips into the Med, over to Morocco and of course a return to the Azores.

    As Entr'acte rests and recovers from her long saga, we are in Arizona  practicing hard to regain our proficiency at dancing the Sevillana, happily playing Jazz to sold out concerts and counting the days until our return to Sevilla for Semana Santa and La Feria.

    Stay Tuned!


    The first of 190 locks                                                                                       St. Mames                                     

    After a week of playing non stop Gypsy Jaz at the Django Reinhardt Festival,  we left the Seine and the river current behind  to enter the French canal system  which would take us across France to the Mediterranean. 

    The French Canals, June to September, 2013

    In July, 2013 we entered the Canal du Loing which took us through Briare and the famous bridge canal designed by Eiffel. The canals were narrow and quiet,  much in contrast to the Seine.  

                   Eiffel's Pont Canal                     One way traffic                      France, the quiet way                   Chatteau Busiere

    Unlike the Seine, we could stop and tie up wherever we pleased.  There was far less traffic and life was easy. The scenery was simple but spectacular.    The restaurants were few as we were really in the countryside of France.  


                    Stop anywhere                          The long road                                   Solitude

    We were joined for two weeks by John and Paula from Mr. John VI.  They left Mr. John on the hard in Malaysia for the cyclone season and made a trip to Spain for a "vacation" in thier home overlooking the Mediterranean. There are 190 locks between Paris and the Mediterranean.  Some we had to work ourselves while others were automatic.   Entering and leaving the locks many times tested our boat handling skills to the limit and it was nice to have crew to help operate the locks.

               Entering the lock                         Happy Daze!                               Cranking the lock                      A stop for bread

    This voyage was a far cry from the ocean.  No current, no swell, no waves.  The narrow canal is less than 4 feet deep.  We could, and did, tow Entr'acte by hand if necessary.  Of course there were other boats besides Entr'acte and we would sometimes share a lock with someone and pair up for the day.  This arrangement always led to new friendships.

                     The Crew                             Roadside lunch                             New friends                                       Ibis

    The canals certainly had their element of excitement.  190 locks.   From time to time the automatic locks malfunctioned and got out of control and oh boy!  Things could become very exciting indeed!

                       Up-Locking excitement                                 Down-locking                                           7 lock staircase

    Entr'acte made her way across the  European continent and eventually entered the river Soane and finally the "mighty Rhone."  Again we were back on a river but this time we were going DOWN CURRENT.  The Rhone was spectacular and in itself worth the trip.  There are only five locks on the Rhone but they are absolutely massive with a 22M(75ft)drop.  For some reason they were more awe-inspiring than the locks of the Panama Canal.

                       Medievil churches                       Castle on the Rhone                Rhone Lock                   Massive!

    Arriving in Sete on the Med we quickly turned Entr’acte into a sail boat again and flew across the Gulf du Lyon in a full Mistral wind leaving France and entering Spain to take time to visit John and Paula at their villa in Alicante while waiting for the West wind to drop and switch to the East.  

                       A sailboat again!                           Into the Med                           Strait of Gibraltar              Sevilla here we come!

    The wind eventually shifted back into the East and made for perfect conditions to make their final jump to Gibraltar.  It was September and the Mediterranean winter was upon us.  We were also "smelling home" and were on the final push for Sevilla.  We departed  Almerimar,  150 miles from Gibraltar, on September 15 with a plan to arrive at the Strait just after sunrise to connect with the West flowing current.  The plan unfolded smoothly.  After a beautiful overnight sail we arrived at Gibraltar exactly on time.  It was a beautiful sunny Sunday morning as we entered the Strait with 10 knots of wind astern.  Fabulous sailing!   We had transited the Strait many times over the years and knew what to expect.  Usually, whatever wind you have upon entering the Strait  is doubled by the time you exit (10 knots becomes 20).  This is due to a venturi effect that is created between Europe and Africa funneling through the narrow(16 mile) strait.  As the wind increased, we shortened sail.  It continued to increase and again we reduced sail.  Within 20 minutes, our pleasant ten knot  breeze had become a whopping FORCE 9 and reaching  68 knots,  just under hurricane force.  This was a full Levanter, completely unforecast, which is not at all unusual for the Mediterranean (the unforecast part).    Entr'acte was screaming along at 8.5 knots under bare pole---no sail at all!  We were safe enough but we were flying!   To ease the strain on the rudder we unrolled an extremely small amount of jib and Entr'acte shot ahead rocketing out of the strait into the Atlantic at an astounding 10 knots!   Welcome Home!  

    We had no desire to round Cape Trafalgar in this wind and so abandoned the rest of our plan to make directly for Chipiona at the mouth of the Guadalquivir. We made for Peurto Barbate  10 miles away  and waited comfortably for two days until the winds returned to a reasonable strength.  What a ride!

    While waiting for the wind to calm down we received some disturbing news from our friends in Sevilla.  The opening times of the lock and the draw bridge had been changed to times that were not at all convenient  for pleasure craft and thus would take some serious re-planning.
    Our run from Barbate to Chipiona was easy and without incident but the weather forecast was for serious rain in a few days and as much as we wanted to enjoy this delightful little town for a few days, we had to press on to Sevilla the next day.

    We usually take two days on the river to reach Sevilla but this time we departed Chipiona at " 0 dark hundred" and pushed hard all day to arrive at the lock by the opening time of 21:00hrs connecting with the bridge at 22:00 and finally, like two thieves in the night  Entr'acte arrived at Club Nautico de Sevilla.

    What a saga!    From New Caledonai to Le Havre by ship and then crossing the entire continent of Europe  and across  to the Mediterranean in seven months!  It was a Herculean effort with it's share of challenges but we made it. What a voyage!

     We are home!



    On June 11. 2013, Enr'acte arrived at Le Port D'Arsenal de Paris.  It doesn't get any better than this! 


    The River Seine was lovely but stopping places were scarce.  The guides would indicate a good  Halte Nautique but when we arrived there was nothing there.  It was a bit maddening. But we eventually would find a nice spot outside a lock but it was a bit tedious.

    We were advised  to stop just after the final lock 5 miles from Paris for the night and make the last run at 06:00 so as to avoid the fierce river traffic of tour boats, ferries and cargo peniches.   Again, that was not to be. There was no longer any place to stop between the lock and Paris so we ended up arriving in Paris during the busiest time of the day.  The traffic was outrageous,!  Feries, construction barges, water taxis, sight seeing tour boats, peniches carrying cargo, police boats and fire boats  but in the end we managed to travel through without incident.

    We locked through to  the Marina d'Arsenal smack in the center of Paris.  It does not get any better than this. 

                           Arival in Paris                                 Port D'Arsenal de Bastille                               The Djazelles

    Paris was a blast.  We were within easy walking distance of everything we could want or need---everything except diesel fuel.   Even in Paris, all fuel had to be ferried by jerry can sometimes a great distance and on foot.  There was a diesel barge that serviced the peniche fleet but they only dealt in large volumes and we were too small.

    Our main interest this time in Paris was to take in the Jazz clubs and participate in the numerous Jam sessions throughout the city.  In this, we were not disappointed.  The sessions were many, the clubs affordable and the musicians outstanding.  We were readily accepted by the jazz fraternity and indeed treated like royalty, making many new friends throughout our stay.  There is this myth of the unfriendly, angry Parisiene.   Well, we certainly did not encounter them.  Every single person we met was the epitome of friendliness and courtesy.

                             Ellen and Matthiew                                Club 37 in Paris                   Jam at the Django Festival

    Honfleur and the Seine

            LeHavre was a wonderful place to  arrive and re-group after the pacific.  Everything was available to us and withing walking distance. Eventually we were ready to head off for the Seine.  

     Entr'acte  arrived in Honfleur in grand style on Tuesday May 7, 2013.   The 14 mile trip  from Le Havre into the  dreaded mouth of the Seine went smoothy.  Our tide, current and lock time calculations were spot on . We connected with the lock at exactly slack current and passed through the lock without incident.  Our new home was inside the basin float of the Vuex Port de Honfleur.

                       Arriving in Honfleur                                Veux Port                            Port Captain Julie and Nana

    Honfleur is the jumping off point for the trip up the Seine and on to the European Canal system.  It is an opportunity to meet new friends going the same way but also a great spot to re-unite with old friends as well.    After several days exploring this beautiful old village we were anxious to move on to Rouen and Paris.  This next trip is a real challenge and we had much to co-ordinate.  The problems are numerous.     The Seine is a very busy river with constant commercial traffic of all sizes.  It is tidal. The current is swift and treacherous.  There is absolutely no place to anchor along the way. The holding is poor. Outside the channel there is little water and numerous underwater dikes ready to rip out your boat's bottom should you encounter one.  Pleasure craft are forbidden to travel the lower Seine between  1/2 hour after sunset  and 1/2 hour before sunrise.  The result----we would have  to make the 60 milestrip from Honfleur r to Rouen in one go. All of this is just for openers.  

    It works this way:

    We need to depart the lock at Honfleur 1 hour before the change of current, low water, at the lock and no eariler than sunrise.  At low water there is not enough water outside the lock to exit.  If we miss this time we must wait until one hour after low water and lose two vital hours of favorable current which will now prevent us arriving in  Rouen before it turns against us.   If we get this right, the tidal difference between Honfleur and  Rouen is such that by the time we run out of  incoming tide from Honfleur we are far enough up river to pick up the incoming into Rouen.  This is called "catching the rolling tide" and is what we must do, otherwise the adverse current is so strong as to make the the distance in daylight impossible.    Oh, and did we mention the weather?   This window of opportunity occurs for only three days in every 10.  Miss it and you wait for 10 days and hope that when it next comes around there is good weather.  The Seine in a gale is bad news!

    So we do our best homework and catch the last draw bridge opening from the Veux Port the afternoon before we wish to leave and spend the night tied to the sea wall outside the lock.  The plan is to pass the lock at 06:00, enter the Seine one hour before the current change and buck that current for one hour before we catch our ride.  Sounds good.  Looks good. We were ready.

    Everything goes like clockwork. We exit the lock and encounter the fircest current, swell and wind combination that we have ever seen.  Entracte, without a mast rolled horribly but it was only for a few minutes until we made the turn onto the river.  We held our breath until we were certain we were in deep water and actually on the river.  We knew we would buck the current for this first hour but even though it was the last of the out-going tide, it was fierce.  To be out here in the  full ebb would be a disaster.  We cleared with port control and they bid us good journey. We were off, doing 2 knots over the bottom.  Oh well,   in an hour we would be flying at close to 10.  We increased our rpm to 3100 and three minutes later the engine shut down. Stone-----Cold-----DEAD!

    Fortunately we were still close to the lock and the Honfleur Sauveteurs en Mer effected a quick rescue.  The trouble was caused by a clogged exhaust elbow.  By the end of the next day we were again fully functional but alas, we had missed this window and now had to wait for 10 more days.

    This turned out to be a lessing in disguise because we were "stranded" in Honfleur just in time for the Festival Marane and the blessing of the fleet.  We dressed ship and enjoyed the festivities.  An added bonus was we had a wonderful reunion with UIla-Britt Lyman from the Danish yacht Ghoster.  We met her and her late husband Bent way back in 1983 on our first trip to Portugal and had kept up a correspondence ever since. Bent has recently passed away but  Ula-Britt came all the way to Honfleur  to see us and we had a wonderful reunion in the rain.

             Allen and Yvonne on Dolphin III               Ulla-Britt comes from Denmark             Rescued by Le Sauvetuers

    Finally our chance came again and this time we flew up the Seine to Rouen, made famous as the city that burned Joan of Arc.  

    While in Rouen  Thibaud and  Catherine Tibierghen along with their son Tituan,  showed us immense hospitality and  helped us make our final preparations for  the trip to Paris and beyond.

    The trip onward toward Paris was not at all easy.  Because of heavy spring rains, the Seine was in flood and we were continually bucking a 3 knot current every single day, all the way to Paris.    In addition to this,  there were several overheating problems caused first by  a plastic bag caught in the engine intake and a second one due to a faulty---brand new---water pump impeller--which saw  us hanging on a pole for a day making repairs.   Then, there were  also fuel problems,  meaning, you could not buy any!  There are thousands of boats plying the Seine all using diesel but strangely there are no fuel stations along the Seine where  you can buy it.  There was NOTHING from Rouen onward. 

             The Family Tiberghien                    The first of 300 locks                         Peniche on the Seine

                                   is in
                                             Le Havre,


                              CMA CGM Matisse                                  Just Lauched-hello LeHavre                                                      LeHavre

    On April 23, 2013, Entr'acte arrived safely in LeHavre France.  The entire voyage took forty-seven days and despite several gales she arrived without a scratch.  We were priveledged to ride on board Matisse from Savannah, GA all the way to LeHavre. This was a fabulous experience and will be detailed in full at a future time.

    Upon boarding Matisse we looked high and low but could not find Entr'acte.  At dinner on the first night at sea, Ronald the messman said "Oh, the little white boat all covered in plastic with the mast lying across it."   "Yes, that's it."   "I will take you to it tomorrow."  The next morning after breakfast Ronald took us aft and we looked all over but could not find it. He asked one of the crew. "Oh, yes, that was unloaded in Australia!"  Oh Boy!  We were stunned!   The Captin began a computer search of the cargo and finaly found her stowed out of sight below decks.  He took us to see her and she looked just like a Mummy in a Tomb.   What a relief.

    The Atlantic crossing was a brief 13 days and included two gales but thanks to outstanding seamanship on the part of Captain Dragojlovik all went well.

                                The Mummy in the tomb                                                                            Rising from the tomb                                                                 Please don't drop her!

    Matisse arrived in lehavre at 14:00 and by 18:00 Entr'acte was launched.  The stevedores lined the dock and cheered, the entire crew of Matisse waved goodbye, Capt Dragojlovik sounded the ships horn and Harbour Control came on the radio "welcomed to France" and offered us a pilot boat as escort to the marina.

                              Floating again                                                                                                What a mess!                                                                       We're gaining on it!


    We arefloating again and  right now we are both exhausted after our arrival. We have been working full days to prepare Entr'acte for her next voyage---Up the Seine to Paris and on to the French Canals down into the Mediterranean.

    You can see the entire track of Matisse as well as our trip across France. Just click on the spinning globe.

    Entracte in the Panama Canal

    For the past month we have been tracking Entr'acte's progress back across the pacific on board CMA CGM Maisse.  Thenks to the modern miracle of AIS we were able to plot her approaches to the varios stops along the way.
    The route of Matisse began in Noumea, New Caledonia and so far has included the ports of Sydney and Melbourne in Australia, Napier and Tauranga in New Zealand and Punta Manzanillo on the Caribbean side of the Panama Canal.

    Below is a selection of screen shots taken from the AIS  plotting center as well as those captured when Matisse transited the Panama Cana

                                               All ships approaching Panama Canal                                              Ais plot Matisse in Miraflores Lock

    At 03:00 on April 3, 2013, Entr'acte  made her second passage of the Panama Canal on Board CMA CGM Matisse. There are so many containers that Entr'acte can not be found.  We hope she is in there somewhere!

                         Miraflores Lock                                                  Gatun Lock                                                             Gatun Lock                                            Exiting Gatun Lock

    Next stop for Matisse and Entr'acte will be on April 8, Savannah GA where we will both go on board Matisse for the final leg of the trans-Atlantic passage to arrive in Le Havre, France on April 23.  Here's hoping for good weather in the North Atlantic.

    Follow Matisse and Entr'acte-------click the spinning globe.

    See you soon.


             CC Matisse with Entr'acte bound for LeHavre, France
                                Nous Allons
                                           en France!

    Entr'acte's Pacific voyage is now complete. It has been a terrific ride; Panama, Costa Rica, Galapagos, French Polynesia, Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu and New caledonia but now it is time for something new.  She is now on board CC Matisse bound for LeHavre to begin the next chapter in her world adventures.
    Click here for the latest news. To follow Matisse click the spinning globe in the upper right corner of this page.

      New  Caledonia!


                    Yes, Someone lives here!
    After two wonderful years in Fiji, it was time to move on. Entr'acte set sail for Vanuatu on June 29, 2012.  Vanuatu was very laid back compared to Fiji. The villages while quiet were picturesque.


    The Ni-Vanuatu are every bit as friendly as the Fijians but their extreme shyness is in direct contrast to the Fijians.

    Welcome to Dravai Village!

                             Off to market

    The Ni-Vanuatu live off the land.  If the jungle provides it, they use it.  If it is not found in the jungle, they don't need it.

    The entire island of Anietyum is without electricity or running water.  There are no motor vehicles of any kind, no internet, no telephone, no stores or shops.  If you dont have it, you wont get it here!


    The Cultural Festival at Port Sandwich on the island of Malekula is not to be missed.  On a score of one to ten, this was a 50!

                            Harvest Dance

             Screaming into New Cal at 7 knots!

    Entr'acte arrived in New Caledonia on August 1, after a boisterous three day passage.  Once through the notorious Havana Pass we we were flying along at 7 knots with the wind astern.

    The wind blows like this every afternoon but inside the lagoon it is smooth sailing.

    Port Moselle, Noumea, New Caledonia.  A real dock, water, electricity and high speed- reliable- internet.  What a treat! This was the our first real marina with  such amenities since Trinidad way back  in 2007.

    A marina at last!

                    Magic Bay, Baie de Prony

    Even though Noumea was crowded, there were ample places to go and be alone.

    Entr'acte is now stored at Nouville Plaisance Chantilleir  awaiting the end of the cyclone season.
    In March, she will be hoisted on board the CC Mattise and sent to LeHavre, Northern France.  

    The plan is to cruise the Seine to Paris, the Canal de Nivernais and the Rhone to the Mediterranean and then on HOME------to -----Sevilla!


                    At least she won't blow away!

    Ship Track Position Reporter

    You easily can follow Entr'acte's progress through the Ship Track position reporter.  This is a free service of the Maritime Mobile Service Network, a dedicated group of HAM Radio enthusiasts that maintain a  radio network for ships at sea.  Through MMSN we have world-wide access to emergency communication, daily weather reports, and daily position reports or we can just take the opportunity to pass the time at sea by calling Net Control to just  say "hello!"

    When on a passage we file daily position reports over the high frequency radio to MMSN which they post on the Ship Track web site.  Just click on the link above and you will be automatically connected to Entr'acte's personal Ship Track page.  There you can see our daily progress, or lack thereof!  If you play with the zoom tool on that page, as you zoom in you will see a series of red dots which represent each individual position report
    (be careful, a little zoom gets you a lot).  Place your cursor on a dot to see the time, date, our latitude, longitude and a brief description of the conditions on that day.  You can also adjust the page to view specific lengths of time from one week, one month or all positions filed.

    If there is no updated position report, it should not be viewed as a disaster.  It could mean that we had very bad radio propagation that day, low battery power, laziness or bad weather.   It might also mean that we are in a harbour and off the boat exploring or we are very busy having a grand time and just plain forgot!

    You can track any vessel that files position reports.  All you need is their radio call sign---Entr'acte's is KC2JBX--just go to the 
    Ship Track home page
    , enter the appropriate  radio call sign and off you go!

    It's easy! Check it out!