morning_of_fleeing (Large) (2)We’re going back to Phoenix for a few days until Hurricane Odile passes. Our plan was always to drive down to Mexico, drop off scuba gear and a huge compressor at the boat, drive back to Arizona, and then take the bus down for an extended trip so we don’t have to leave our car in Mexico. Mexico’s Baja Peninsula is a scary place to be right now. Odile, a class 4 hurricane at sea, became a class 3 hurricane as it raged up the Baja Peninsula near Cabo San Lucas and La Paz this morning. To the left is an image from this morning of hurricane Odile’s path up the peninsula, with a red heart near the current location of our boat.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe’re postponing our honeymoon for a bit, or maybe this IS the honeymoon as we work together to deal with this hurricane that threatens our boat. I was more anxious to leave than Brian and more concerned about the hurricane. We checked the hurricane forecast together every few hours, even in the middle of the night. We secured the boat, loaded all our toys inside the main salon, and tied everything down tightly as we waited for the big winds to come.

I was getting more and more worried about the hurricane and wanted to go back to Phoenix to wait it out, the sooner the better. Brian wanted to stay and protect the boat. We talked about my taking the bus up to Phoenix alone but I couldn’t bring myself to leave my husband in this storm, and especially during our honeymoon.

Brian is a wonderful partner who respects my comfort levels and wants to keep me safe and comfortable on these big adventures we enjoy. When I read reports that Hurricane Odile could be “historic” and “record-breaking” and I saw it heading up the peninsula instead of staying out in the Pacific Ocean, I wasn’t sure what it would do next and didn’t want to be anywhere near it. I have no experience with hurricanes, all I know is they can be unpredictable and this was a very, very big one. Brian wasn’t worried about the storm, but he was still willing to go back to Phoenix so we could stay together.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is one of the reasons I love this man so much, feel so safe with him, and want to experience life with him. He’s incredibly brave but he accepts that sometimes I’m not. When I’m apprehensive, we figure out how to make things more comfortable, which in this case meant leaving Mexico for a bit until this big hurricane dissipates. We’re also waiting to see if another disturbance in the ocean turns into a hurricane within the next couple days, which is likely.

Also, I am reaching my stress threshold. Our wedding was fantastic but intense, and then we drove all the way from Idaho to Mexico only to be greeted by a “historic” hurricane. We are really looking forward to our honeymoon cruise with plenty of relaxation, scuba diving, fresh fish, pina coladas and colorful sunsets, but that may need to be delayed a bit. At least I have a 90 minute massage to look forward to in Arizona, hot yoga, and just plain relaxation before returning to the possibility of hurricanes and more ocean drama.

It’s been a very active year for hurricanes in the East Pacific Ocean and now with the Sea of Cortez getting nice and warm (which is great for scuba diving) it tends to draw storms toward the Baja Peninsula. The latest hurricane, Odile, was especially strong. It caused plenty of damage, but at least no casualties have been reported at this time. We’re so thankful our friends in La Paz are ok and we’re waiting to hear how much damage has been done to the city.

I’ve learned a lot about hurricanes lately. We’ve been really thankful for the efforts of the US National Weather Service and their hurricane forecasting website. The brightly colored cones showing the predicted winds both frighten us and comfort us, but at least we are informed and can move away from a big hurricane if needed. Advanced weather forecasting data is one big reason we recently got a device for satellite internet on the boat. Our new device, made by Iridium, is new and pretty exciting. I’m looking forward to seeing how well it works for us. It will be a low bandwidth connection, but we can use it to work occasionally and check weather forecasts while we’re in remote places without any cellular service.

Lisa Hackett

About the Author

Hi, I’m Lisa. I’m a tall, blonde superhero and I live in a van. I do it all. I rappel big waterfalls, drive from Idaho to Alaska solo, live and work in a van in the wilderness and dodge encounters with wolves and bears. Seriously. More

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Lisa. I’m a tall, blonde superhero and I live in a van and on a sailboat with my superhero husband, Brian. I do it all. I rappel big waterfalls, scuba dive with sharks, dodge encounters with bears and wolves, and work remotely as a full time computer programmer.
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About the Van

Hi, I’m Vanifest. I’m a big, 4x4, off-the-grid van complete with solar panel for power. I'm a 2000 Dodge Ram Van and Lisa has had me since 2009. Read more about me here.


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