I remember my anxiety as my brother, David, and my sister, Colleen, dropped us off at the Calgary airport with our five overloaded bins and two bicycles in October, 2010. They helped us push our way through the crowded ticket counter and I felt as though we were moving to another planet as we set out on this odyssey. By the time David and his wife, Lee,joined us on Alberta Crewed for the first time sixteen months later, he almost knew more about our boat than we did. With a passion for and knowledge of anything electronic and mechanical, David has followed us vicariously over the past few years as we trekked through boat shows, went on boat deliveries, chose our Antares, and visited the yard as she was constructed. David was our armchair expert as he poured through any piece of literature he could get and conducted extensive research on components and specs. He knows the Antares website backwards and forwards and was an excellent sounding board for Craig in figuring out the systems on our boat as we went along. We sent him the latest two hundred page Antares University boat manual as a Christmas present and I imagined a tear of joy out of the corner of his eye as he opened it. He appreciates the art and science of the 44i. When David finally stepped onto Alberta Crewed in Turks and Caicos on January 18, he was speechless. It may have been the overnight flight from -30 degree Calgary winter that contributed to his delirium but I'm quite sure he was pinching himself as his dream to sail our magnificent machine was becoming a reality.
Knowing how much this trip meant to him, we gave him the best welcome gift possible; a trip up the mast. Our tri-light had quit working a few weeks earlier and David had taken delivery of a new unit from Denmark and brought it down for us. Boat components are perpetually under repair and new boats are not immune. The integrity of the multitude of companies involved in the make up of a boat is found in their response when something goes wrong. Our tri light which is a beacon to other boats at night that we are under sail, is an expensive and critical piece of safety component. The company, Lopolight, couriered a whole new unit to David from Europe, no questions asked. After making do with solar garden lights (a handy multi-purpose backup), we are now back up and shining white, red, and green, and we have one happy crew member. Mr. David is hereby christened 'Mr. Antares'.