are the Grafs, Sharon and Michael, of Springfield, Illinois, proud owners
of the Larabeck, a 42-foot yacht. Sharon is an ethnomusicologist
at the University of Illinois at Springfield. Michael is an engineer who
can build or fix just about anything and who caught the sailing bug at
a very young age.
more about us --More about
got its name
the South Pacific is a big adventure and we spent years planning for it.
Read an in-depth
interview of Michael and Sharon about how our dream became a
left Florida in early May, 2010, sailing to the Panama Canal, the Galapagos
Islands, and our longest trek--3000 miles--to the Marquesas Islands! We
have meandered through French Polynesia, Niue, the Cook Islands, Tonga,
and the eastern shore of the north island New Zealand. We toured NZ's south
island by car with friends, then stayed in Auckland where Sharon researched
south pacific music and culture at the University of Auckland. In
late April, we returned to Tonga, spending the summer exploring it and
the islands of Fiji.
We flew back
to Springfield August 4, Sharon to resume teaching and Michael to consult
for his former employer. Michael returned to Fiji in September, sailing
with crew member Mari to Vanuatu.
From there, he and two new crew members, Megan and Tom, sailed to Ile
Huon and Chesterfield
Reef in northern New
Caledonia. They arrived in Bundaberg,
November 14. Michael is now preparing the boat to sell. Stay tuned
for more adventures.
We send daily
updates (via SailMail) and photos
when we find internet. We hope you enjoy following our journey.
We had a great
Thanksgiving -- perfectly roasted turkey, gravy, stuffing, potatoes, squash,
kohl, pumpkin pie and many other delicious treats. Jeannie
and Sharon played a little twin fiddling before dessert, and during dessert
we all took turns reading a short story by Truman
Thanksgiving Visitor." It was delicious and relaxing, just
like Thanksgiving ought to be.
Today we are
heading to Fulton Missouri to play our
fiddles in the "Black Friday Buy Nothing Jam session and BBQ" at Howard
and Margot's farm. [See links for Howard's
Sharon and Jeannie
note: TG pictures to follow!]
a very happy Thanksgiving with all the fixin's.
Wish we had
some of that tropical fruit we enjoyed in the South Pacific here in Springfield.
fish, and pork cooked in an underground
oven would be great too : )
her sister Jeannie will head out to Pat (webmaster) and Heather's.
Lynn Fisher will join them. So this portion of the Larabeck
Landcrew can't really complain because we will have Thanksgiving Turkey
and pumpkin pie in the absence of the tropical feast. Sharon is making
kohl (red cabbage) in honor of Michael, who always enjoys this German
dish at special meals. Even though he can't be here, this way he
knows we're thinking of him.