We purchased Mirador new in early 1995. She is the first boat we have owned for any length of time. Between April 1995 and August 2000 we spent a lot of time and even more money preparing the boat and ourselves for this trip to somewhere.
Between 1995 and 2000 we sailed Mirador all over Puget Sound and along both the East and West Coast of Vancouver Island to learn about what equipment the boat needed and what we needed to learn.
Jerry retired from his consulting work in June 1999 in order to spend full time working on Mirador. Arlene kept working until early July 2001 in order to, as she put it, "pay the bills."
We sold our home in late April 2001 and moved out on July 4, the day we became independent of shore side concerns.
The Washington DC area was not what Jerry remembered it to be so in June 1970 he rode his motorcycle back to Washington state and began graduate school at Western Washington State College in Bellingham
Jerry began sailing in 1971 while at WWSC. One Sunday morning, the son of his thesis advisor talked him into "sailing" in an afternoon race on Lake Whatcom. Jerry had never been on a sailboat in his life and had no idea what a C-Scow was or what he, as the only crewman, needed to do to keep the boat upright.
Shortly after starting the race the C-Scow, (a 20' tunnel hull racer that was just about the fastest sailboat on any body of water until the Hobie Cats arrived), was upside down with the spinnaker wrapped around the hull and the crew laughing hysterically while trying to right the boat. At that point Jerry was hooked on sailing and has never lost his love for sailboats.
Jerry and Arlene met at Western. One hour after meeting they were racing Jerry's motorcycle around Mount Chuckanut at 100 mph. Arlene, sitting behind Jerry on the bike, needed a death grip to hang on. They have been inseparable ever since that ride.
In the picture to the left, taken in 1974, the boat Jerry is standing on is a Ranger 32 that was owned by Dr. Les Blackwell who was a professor at WWSC. Les probably had the greatest influence on Jerry's love of sailing. Les, Jerry, and the rest of the dedicated crew campaigned Trumpeter all over the Northwest from Tacoma to Vancouver, BC.
On Jerry and Arlene's second date, the 16' dinghy they were sailing pitchpoled, while on a full plane in a thunderstorm, and then turtled. Arlene was trapped under the boat with the mainsheet knotted around her waist. Jerry was thrown clear and was in no danger. Everything worked out OK and they have sailed together for the subsequent 27 years.
Jerry had almost completed his Masters thesis in experimental psychology at WWSC by spring of 1974. During the four years of graduate work at WWSC Jerry worked half time as a computer programmer and consultant. When ARCO offered him a job working on a state of the art process control computer at the Cherry Point refinery, he gave up on the final version of his thesis.
During the late '70s and early '80s Jerry worked with ARCO and several software companies to develop a new field in computer science which allowed him to apply all that weird multi-variate statistical stuff he learned in grad school.
For those of you who care, and there probably aren't many, Jerry worked in the area of IBM Mainframe Capacity Planning and Performance Management. He specialized in analytic models of large scale computing systems. He helped many large companies make their mainframes run faster and do more work in less time.
Jerry started his own consulting company in early 1984 and spent the next 16 years traveling around the world. Jerry did a lot of very detailed planning and problem solving in the capacity planning and performance management business as well as teaching hundreds of classes in North America, Europe, Africa, and Australia.
Jerry became a board sailing fanatic in the early '80s and quit messing around with sailboats for 10 years while he board sailed every chance he could find. Jerry was one of the first of the "Gorge Sailors." He and his good friend, Lee Kulla, made their first trip to the Columbia River Gorge in June of 1983. Lee, who was a school teacher, and Jerry, who tried to never work during the summer, spent every summer during the '80s sailing in the Columbia River Gorge or Maui, Hawaii.
Arlene is a native of Western Washington and attended Western Washington State College to get her Speech Therapy degree. When she and Jerry moved to Los Angles in 1977 she started teaching elementary school for the Simi Valley school district. After a year of teaching she had the good luck to be laid off due to Prop 13's devasting impact on the California public education budget.
We moved back to Tacoma, Washington in December 1980. Arlene was hired as the first woman to work as a water station operator for Tacoma. and is still the only woman to have ever held that position.
We had no children but did have many dogs and cats who also sailed with us.
The house was put up for sale in April 2000. In July 2000 it looked like there was a deal in place and the house would be sold by Thanksgiving. We decided to sail Mirador south down the US West Coast during August and September while the house deal was finalized. We planned to leave the boat somewhere in Southern California and return to the house to move out once the deal closed.
In mid-October 2000 it became apparent that the buyers would never be ready to close so we put the house back on the market. Arlene was finally able to sell the house in late April 2001. Jerry was of no help at all in the house sale because he was out of contact somewhere in Baja California helping his brother sail a boat from Puerto Vallarta back to San Diego.
The late spring and summer of 2001 was especially interesting for us as we moved out of our home onto Mirador. We had lived in a six-bedroom, 5,400 square foot house since 1982 and had never thrown out a thing. We had to find a way to go from living in a huge house with six bathrooms, two family rooms, five fireplaces, and three storage rooms to living in a 200 sq foot boat with one bathroom and no storage. Some of our furniture and household goods are in storage, most of it was sold or given away.
We are pretty dedicated athletes and try to spend at least ten hours a week getting some serious exercise. Arlene is a hard core weight lifter. She carries a full set of free weights on the boat and never misses a workout, no matter what the conditions.
Arlene is also a very fast long distance runner and regularly runs eight to ten miles.
Jerry is also a serious runner but would die of a heart attack if he tried to keep up with Arlene.
Jerry has been a avid bicycle rider most of his life and Arlene is now also an accomplished cyclist. They each have a custom road bike and good mountain bikes.
They will carry the mountain bikes on the boat and plan to ride everywhere they stop.
Here are some more pictures of Jerry and Arlenes bicycling adventures:
That's Mt. Ranier in the background