Guest Interview – Donna and Cal – New Fidelity N57

So, Cal, tell us a little something about your cruising to date and where you have been so far?

We started cruising in 1985 on “Quicksilver Girl” a 34 ft sloop which was primarily in Florida and the Bahamas. In 1992 Hurricane Andrew hit Miami and sunk our boat. In 1994 we bought an Alden 44 “ Exile”and cruised the Bahamas, Caribbean, East Coast US/ Mediterranean for 10 years and finally San Francisco. Since acquiring “New Fidelity” we have cruised the East Coast of the US, returning to Spain, France and Italy. A year ago we went to Cuba, then started cruising the Pacific Northwest in Canada. In May 2017 we returned to San Francisco where we are presently living on board in Sausalito.

Why did you choose Nordhavn?

We decided to choose a Nordhavn because we were ready to move into more luxurious cruising and it was time to move to the “dark side”. Cal looked at an early Nordhavn in the 1980’s but was not quite ready. We finally made the decision to buy one after cruising the Eastern Med Yacht Rally in a friends 47 ft Nordhavn, Seque 2.

What has been your cruising highlight so far?

Our favorite highlight has been returning to the Med and living in Barcelona our first winter on board. We spent four months living in a small rowing club, enjoying the great cuisine in the city and visiting our favorite vineyards.

Do you travel with an animal/s on board?

Yes, my husband

What training or skillset would you consider a “must have” prior to buying a boat?

A good appetite for adventure and problem solving ability. Having a good partner doesn’t hurt

What upgrade do you most wish you could make to your boat?

Donna would like to convert the day head into a pantry- Cal would like to keep the day head

In your past life what did you and Donna do?

Donna was a Nurse, Medical Risk Manger, Director of a homeless Clinic in Miami, Director of a Modelling Agency, Leader of Slow Food Miami, Gardner, and Community Activist. Calvin was a lawyer.

Cal, if there is one thing Donna does that irritates you while underway what would that be?

Donna tends to make elaborate meals in rough conditions.

And Donna, if there was one thing Cal does that irritates you what would that be?

Calvin checks me, always reminds me not to fall down the stairs. Be careful, blabla

Onto irritating things, have you ever run out of something while at sea that has caused problems?

Yes we ran out of fuel while entering the Capri Harbor in our sailboat…….its that Imperial gallon thing

What is the shortest trip you have made?

Crossing from North Fork Long Island to Connecticut in a gale

What is the longest passage you have made?

Recently from San Juan Islands to San Francisco and also from Turks and Caicos to San Juan, Puerto Rico

What have been the tallest seas and strongest winds you have encountered?

We have experienced 7 foot seas from the stern at 7 seconds for seven hours recently. We have been in hurricane force winds in the Bahamas.

If you didn’t own your current boat, what boat would you like to change to?

We both would love a Nordhavn 64 when we grow up.

When you purchased your Nordhavn, what were the key features you were looking for?

We wanted the largest boat that we could easily handle ourselves. At the time we did not know how nice it is to have twin engines.

Would you describe yourselves as more hunters or more gathers?

Donna is definitely a gatherer and Calvin is a hunter

Why did you name your vessel New Fidelity?

New Fidelity was the name of the paddle wheel steamboat in the novel “Love in the Time of Cholera”, written by Gariele Garcia Marquez.

What other names did you consider?

None, I called Calvin from the library after checking the name of the boat that the couple went away together on…..

What is the one lesson every boater should learn?

Wait for the weather.

I see you are Slow Foodies, how did that come about?

We were introduced to Slow Food Tuscany in Italy and brought our interest in local and traditional food back to Miami where Donna became active and the voluntary Leader.

Do you know John and Tina Philippson on N75 Sockeye Blue, as they too are Slow Foodies?

We planned our Cuban trip with John and Tina because of our mutual interest in good local food. Unfortunately, we did not find good food in Cuba.

What is your favourite anchorage and why?

We loved the anchorage at Aristotle Onassis’ Island in the Greek Islands and also in Ithaca.

Biggest surprises with your cost of ownership?

The cost of dock fees in Capri…… really!!!

What is your favorite activity while aboard?

A really good landing

What is your favorite Marina and why?

It is hard to name just one but our top 6 are Barcelona, Nice, Marseille, Portovenere, Syracusa, Sicily.

What is your favourite quote and why?

Cal’s favorite is No good deed remains unpunished because it is true.

What’s the funniest thing that has ever happened to you while at sea?

Sailing into a small harbor in the heel of Italy and passing a guy who had a mechanical issue in his steering transmission system so he could only go backwards. We told him that we would help him once he arrived in the harbor. We organized a big reception for him as he arrived. We are big on celebrations.

What’s the biggest mistake you have ever made on the water?

Cal’s calculation of fuel capacity as we entered Capri harbor.

What is your most hated boat job?

Cal – Cal loves all his jobs

Donna – I am not a great cleaner…..he is obsessed with cleaning.

Tell us a little something about New Fidelity?

She is our home, my galley is a work of art, I have loved collecting art, fabrics, food, wine, friends, recipes, and living an adventurous life.

What is the one thing you are most afraid of?

Cal – Losing his good health and not being able to cruise

Donna – Missing my pilates class.

What’s your favourite photo ever taken while at sea and why?

I have 5,475 photos and videos of our travels and I love the ones in the harbor of Marseilles…..the oldest harbor in Europe.

What would you never leave behind (besides each other) when heading out to sea?

Donna tries to be fully prepared and she always overstocks, over prepares, and over cooks.

Calvin always makes sure the wine cellar is well stocked, fuel is full and the to do list is down to non-crucial items.

Donna tell us something about yourselves that nobody knows?

I have occasional seasickness but control it with magic bands. Calvin is actually a nice guy.

I hear on the grapevine your daughter was a famous model? Is she still involved in the fashion business?

No she is a mother of 2 teenage girls and is back in college studying to be a physician’s assistant. She had a great modelling career for 15 years and was one of the supermodels of the 80’s.

If you were to give one piece of advice to someone thinking of cruising the world, what would it be?

Make sure your partner shares your interest.

If you were advising someone as to the best area of the world to go cruising, where would it be, and why?

We are still working on that one. We love the Pacific coast, and look forward to Mexico. We are on the no plan plan. We have spent many years in Europe and loved it.

And finally, where to next?

Mexico, on the 2017 CUBAR, We will stay in touch.

Thank you very much for your time, will be watching this year’s progress closely.

Good luck with your travels!

Proudly bought to you by: Pendanablog


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