City of Angels
When we pulled into Marina Del Rey we were fired up. I had been here once at 15 years old and although I lived in Northern California for 20 years, I had only ventured south a few times. Marina Del Rey is big – by any standard. We found our slip, met the Dock Master and started putting the boat away. Now it was summer in LA and a different world from the cold July in San Francisco. We had a total of 3 trips there so we found great restaurants, walked Rodeo Drive and spent some time driving around Hollywood. Interestingly when you talk to a local they say “No one goes to Hollywood”. We enjoyed it anyway. We also spent some time in Venice and Santa Monica. We rode our bikes down the “Strand” which goes 15 miles south to Redondo. We saw Manhattan and Hermosa Beach and they sure reminded us of our home in Delray Beach, Florida. Sheryl Crow nailed it with the first words of the song “All I wanna do” starting with “This is LA”… We turned that on a lot
I visited Catalina twice growing up. Once when I was 15 and then again when I was 18 – both on my Dad’s boats. The older I get the more convinced I am that this lifestyle is all his fault. Thanks Dad! We arranged two trips to Catalina as we planned on spending the summer in LA. It was worth it. We spent a total of 8 days on the island and we couldn’t help thinking how lucky the Southern California boaters were to have this destination. Although it’s only one island it is big and loaded with moorings and anchorages. You could spend a month there with a different spot every night. The downtown has a great vibe and yes you can find a noisy bar in Avalon. We did but you have to watch the video to the end to see it
Boating with friends
When your boat travels far and wide like Happy Together does we always find ourselves saying “so and so would love this place” but many times it’s not convenient for guests. Sailing can be an aggressive sport with uncertainty, so there are not many opportunities to bring guests that aren’t “sea goers”. Guests need calmer waters and flat anchorages. Believe it or not this is very few places where a sailboat ventures. Catalina was one of those places. It’s an easy ride from LA, about 30 miles, there are good anchorages and the towns have restaurants. Easy airports and voila you have a convenient boating vacation for friends. We decided to invite a bunch and Couple Wars was born. Lennie and I remember having guests in the BVI and you do a similar itinerary with each group but there you can mix it up a bit. At Catalina it was the exact same trip. The variable was the guests. We had a lot of fun on these two trips along with great weather.
We hope your enjoy this montage of LA and two trips to Catalina.