Life Interrupted….3 Times

posted in: Family and Friends | 24

In New England, winter always interrupts the boating season. It’s the rhythm of things here and we welcomed it this year. Yes, really! With our Kadey Krogen 39 home here in Connecticut, Al was ready and eager to spend his winter getting to know the boat and making his own improvements to her. I had visions of decorating since there was considerably more space and options for those touches.

In February we flew to Florida for a warm weather break (interruption) and enjoyed several stops there, beginning with a visit to Anthony and Annette on Magnolia in Palm Beach Gardens.

We toured Loggerhead Marine Life Center and its turtle hospital.
As usual, the four of us always find places to go, places to eat, and fun to be had.
A dinner in Stuart with Al’s brother, Bill, too!
Men at work. Sanding a pull-out drawer for Magnolia’s galley.

Next stop – Delray Beach for a few days at a boutique hotel called Cranes, an oasis tucked away in the midst of the city.

Beautiful gardens and paths, two pools………
Delray Beach – beaches and town life.

From Delray Beach we headed south to the Keys for a week’s stay at Kona Kai on Key Largo, another little hotel tucked away from noise and crowds.

Kona Kai’s private beach with hammock and a lovely pool.
Kayaks to use right off the beach. Each day we went exploring we were treated to manatees swimming under and around us.
I forget their names now, but these guys liked to hang out at the pool as much as I did.
A lovely Valentines Day dinner at Marker 88.
It was a lovely and fun getaway.

We returned home on February 19th and as I look back now, it seems odd that we were so unaware of what March would bring to all of our lives and how much the world would change. Social distancing, stay-at-home orders, frequent hand washing, hand sanitizer, face masks, and no where to go even if we had wanted to leave our homes.

Fortunately, Al’s work on the Kadey Krogen could continue since it is largely a solitary endeavor. I started prepping a few blog posts about his winter boat projects, his “watsonizing” as we affectionately call them.

As launch day approached, we uncovered the boat together and began putting her back together.

Uncovered on April 28th.

And now for the third interruption of our lives. We had removed the Kadey Krogen’s name from the transom and were finishing the prep work so that she could officially become Kindred Spirit. On May 3rd, I was sitting on a stool on the swim platform and working on the transom. The stool slipped and threw me 6 feet down to the ground onto my back. It is difficult to write about this, even now, so the short version is that my spine was fractured in two places, requiring two rods to hold it together. In many ways, I was lucky; it could have been worse. After 9 days at Yale including the surgery, I was sent to an acute rehab facility for 10 more days before returning home on May 22nd. Because of the corona virus, Al and I were apart for almost 3 weeks through this ordeal. That was truly challenging.

An absolutely wonderful surprise awaited me at home. My sons and their families welcomed me back home on the front lawn.

I still have a long recovery ahead of me, but I am doing well, all things considered. Kindred Spirit‘s launch date has been pushed back indefinitely until after the neurosurgeon checks my progress in a couple more weeks. One step at a time. I am determined to salvage some of this boating season and enjoy our lovely Kadey Krogen.

And I will eventually finish the posts about Al’s watsonizing projects. I promise.

24 Responses

  1. Gloria &Jim

    Jim & I are so sorry to learn about your injury and hope & pray for your speedy recovery. Let us know how your rehab goes, till you are back in boating shape, so to speak. We are currently boatless as we lost JIMANDI in Dorion in Green Turtle as did many others. Again we wish you good health very soon!
    Gloria & Jim

    • watsons

      Hi Gloria and Jim! Good to hear from you, although it is dad to hear of so many of our Bahama friends lost boats due to Dorian. Are you looking for a replacement? I cannot imagine Al without a boat. He is now patiently caring for me so that we can hopefully use our new boat this season.

  2. Gwynn E Sterken

    Major Bummer! So sorry to hear of your fall but happy to hear you are on the mend. I hope you will fully recover even faster than expected and able to go exploring in your new boat. She looks like a beauty! Hugs, Gwynn

    • watsons

      Thanks, Gwynn! So good to hear from you. This health challenge was a shock to say the least, but with Al’s loving care and patience, I hope to fully recover, sooner rather than later. It’s just going to take time.

  3. David & Catherine Allin

    Michelle ….Catherine and I are so terribly sorry to learn of your accident. very, very hard for you and the family, and we wish you a truly speedy recovery. We particularly feel your pain, having a new boat in which to go exploring …we, in contrast are boatless for the first time in forty plus years having lost “Solitaire 1” to hurricane Dorian ….. but cannot imagine what would go through our heads and minds were we to replace her , as we fully intend to do, and not be able to sail her !! So..please take care and get well least it gives Al some time to continue his Watsonizing !! All the very best to you both.
    David & Catherine.l

    • watsons

      How lovely to hear from you, David and Catherine! We have such wonderful memories of our times in HopeTown. We can certainly understand that the “boatless” condition must be sad for you. We hope you soon find a new “Solitaire” that will bring you as much joy. We were/are so excited to begin new adventures on our Kadey Krogen 39, but alas, we must be patient.

  4. Sue Kunzelman

    Michelle, Soooo very sorry to hear about your accident. Glad you know that you are doing well now. Please take care and stay well. Sending hugs.

    • watsons

      Thanks, Susie! I will admit this is the biggest challenge life has thrown at me, perhaps even more than the ovarian cancer and lymphedema. Nevertheless less, I will persist! 😉

  5. Ellen seltzer

    So glad to read you are making progress. We are here for anything you need. I am happy to take a very slow walk with you when you are allowed! Take care. Ellen and Harry.

    • Ann Brown

      Oh ..thank heaven you are recovering…
      I will keep you in my meditation and Reiki practice.
      Take your time and let your body heal.
      Michael had back surgery ..screws and plates to stabilize his lower back. He is well healed and enjoying a pain free life.
      Blessings and hugs to you both…

      • watsons

        Thanks, Ann. It is really good to hear about others who have had serious back surgery and recovered. That has been my one focus – to be healed and well again.

    • watsons

      Thank you, Ellen and Harry! As I progress a little more from my turtle’s pace I will happily welcome the company.

  6. Linda Reed

    So sorry to hear this but I too know how fast accidents happen… last year I fell down the lazarrete opening and god was protecting me … somehow I had grabbed something that spared me from falling to the bottom of the lazarette… ended up with many bruises a broken toe and a bursa on the elbow… it could have been so much worse… take care of yourself and wishing you a speedy recovery

    Linda Rees “Unwinding”

    • watsons

      Thank you, Linda! It is shocking how life can change in just a second. I am lucky it wasn’t worse than it is. I am slowly bit surely healing and hoping to salvage some boating with our KK39.

  7. Deanna and Sarah

    Oh my, we are so so sorry. Sending all the. best wishes and good thoughts to you. Bless you. D ‘n S

    • Michèle Boulay

      How awful Michele & Al. As boaters we know how easily events like this can happen. We wish you a speedy recovery & return to better times on your new Kindred Spirit. God bless.

      • watsons

        Thanks, Michele and Joe! I am determined to get back to my old self, and hopefully sometime before this boating season ends.

    • watsons

      Oh Sarah and Deanna! So good to hear from you – we miss you. Thanks for the good wishes!

  8. Linda Santoro

    I’m so sorry to hear about your injury! I hope your recovery is fast and complete and you are able to get back to boating this season!

    • watsons

      Thanks, Linda! This was certainly a new challenge for me, but I am working on getting well and strong again.

  9. Kimberly Boneham

    Oh, Michele! Jeff and I are so sorry to read about your accident! It truly has been a difficult spring season for you. We are wishing you as speedy of a recovery as possible!

    • watsons

      Thanks, Kim and Jeff! I am focused on healing and regaining my strength.

  10. Jackie Tetreault

    Oh Michelle I am so sorry that this happened. You are a true warrior. Prayers for your tecu❤️

    • watsons

      Thank you, Jackie! One of these days we have to get together.

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