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, Wyoming
Thanks for visiting Sauce du Jour. Feel free to share a great recipe, leave a comment, or make me dinner. I'll bring hors d' oeuvres and the wine! To visit my website go to Thanks for visiting the Sauce ~Tammi

Apr 30, 2011

The Bruise Cruise

See that little red bag on the right? It's our 1st Aid kit, which (in six months) we haven’t had the occasion to use. See that smiling group of people below left? Those are my cousins, better known as the reason that the little red bag was put to use.
The Big Guy and I could hardly wait for what we knew was going to be a wild and crazy week. These cousins are the fun ones...the ones who will drop everything and on a moments notice, drive 200 miles for a party. They not only come to the party, they are the party!     
We blamed The Big Guy for putting the process in motion when he started the trip off by trying to do one of the things that men are not genetically capable of. Multi-tasking. (News flash for the male species: Walking and chewing snoose is NOT considered multi-tasking. Either is simultaneously belching while a) talking, b) eating, c) scratching, d) watching sports.) Anyway, we’d barely left the docks when Big tried to put the hammock away while opening the storage locker that it goes into (attempted multi-tasking), which resulted in a fall and a slide (almost considered multi-tasking) across the deck, furthur resulting in a bruise to the bicep. Bad juju was in the air and The Bruise Cruise was not only officially born, but it was off and running.
     Later that night while Mona was getting into the dinghy she demonstrated the uncool way to do it, by taking one big step and then doing a face plant. The only thing stopping her from running her head into the far corner of the dinghy was the motor, which by the way, is the perfect size for a head to get wedged underneath. That may be why her eye was all swollen and weird looking. Still that didn’t explain the reason for the all night ralphing. (Concussion maybe?) She called flu bug, we called bull$h!t and thought it may have had something to do with the six different varieties of cocktails that she had ingested just shortly before the dinghy dive. I have to hand it to her, the next morning the girl did her best to rally because she really wanted to test out her new scuba certification. Finally it was agreed that puking into your regulator would be gauche, so her maiden dive was scuttled.
     Big and I took Tom on his first dive, and he did great, although we had a minor panic attack when what we thought should be about half way through the dive, discovered that Tom was about on his last breath. We made a beeline back to the boat and I had one hand on my octopus, ready to buddy-breathe if need be. Not to worry, Tom got to the surface with a good breath or two to spare. Whew, good thing we are practicing on the relatives. We would hate having to explain losing a complete stranger to a family of complete strangers.
The next day Mona must have given her bug to Tom, because he spent the better part of the day chumming for fish. Nausea from the flu is bad enough, but garnish it with a little sea sickness and you have a power puker on your hands. The poor guy was so sick that he and Mona got off the boat and checked into a little bungalow for the night. Did I mention that these are our fun cousins, the ones who are always up for a party? When Tom was feeling better he followed Mona’s lead and demonstrated yet another way of how not to get in the dinghy. His digger about landed him in the drink and if it hadn’t been for that dinghy line that got wrapped around his neck he could have gotten hurt. Luckily I was standing by with my camera and was able to capture the moment.
     Ok, so when you step from the salon into the cockpit you HAVE TO PICK UP YOUR FEET! Just sayin. Shyla kept forgetting that, which resulted in her stubbing her toe (the same one, natch) about 10 times a day. Finally on the 3rd day and on the 2nd stub of the morning, she jammed it hard enough to declare it broken. The hide was definitely peeled off and her pig began to turn a shade of purple that matched her nail polish, making it look like she had a sloppy pedicure. We gave her a shot of tequila and taped her up, all before the coffee was even cold. She howled like she were on fire when we poked a fin on her foot so she could snorkel The Baths. Yes, torture is included on all Pisces' cruises.
So we don’t specifically know what Paula did to earn her injuries, but somehow she managed to average about one bruise per day. Big is not a doctor, nor has he ever played one on TV; but he did stay in a Holiday Express once, so that gave him the necessary credentials to perform the surgery required to remove a piece of broken coral from her toe. Since she was biting down on that whiskey soaked rag that we had shoved in her mouth, we couldn't really decipher her yelling, but we think she said something about us needing a lawyer. 
         Jerome, aka “The Cleaner” did not get his black eye from diving under the dinghy to get the 5 jalapeno slices that I had the audacity to throw overboard. No, that came from repeatedly banging his head off the bowl while licking up the leftovers. What leftovers you ask? That’s right, with "The Cleaner" on board, there were NO leftovers, and he had the black eye to prove it!
     By the end of the week Susie, aka "Mrs. The Cleaner", had 3rd degree burns, and I’m not talking sunburn here, I’m talking scalding burns on her hands from doing dishes eight hours a day. After "The Cleaner" cleaned the plates then "Mrs. The Cleaner" cleaned them again. As if the burns weren't enough, she didn't notice that big thing on the back of the boat, aka "The Back of the Boat" and she smacked her hand on it which earned her her very own official Bruise badge. "The Cleaner" was able to kiss it and it make it better. (see photo below right...nah, come to think of it, he was just licking some leftovers off her face.)
     It was sometime around day six when Big dropped to the deck like he’d been shot out of a cannon. As he was hoisting the main sail he stepped on that part of the boat that he is always telling everyone else not to step on because it can be slippery. Well, he lay dead still for a few minutes before regaining consciousness. If the rest of us hadn’t been laughing so hard we could have gotten a picture, but as it turned out we missed a great photo op.
     I thought that I was going to be the only one to come away without a limp, a bruise or a permanent scar, but when there is bad juju onboard no one really makes it out alive. Case in point: everyone was in bed, the boat was quiet and I decided to go get some hang time in our new hammock, since I had not yet had the chance to take it for a test drive. Pillow and blanket in hand, I settled in. I closed my eyes and let a little sigh escape my lips. I was dead tired from all the cooking and nurse-maiding. About that time the hammock came to life and bitch slapped me right out it. I landed with a (loud) thunk, and I’m pretty sure a fractured shoulder, right on top of Tom and Mona’s stateroom. I heard the hatch creak open a little farther, heard the laughter and saw Mona’s head pop out, camera in hand. (Publishers note: As the author of this story I reserve the right to post whatever pictures I want to or don’t want to. And I don’t want to post THAT one.)
     At the end of the week the party-people went through more Advil, Neosporin, Dramamine, cortisone cream, tape, band-aids, peroxide, ear drops and benadryl than they did Bud Light Lime. (Exception: "The Cleaner" would be excused and excluded from that statement)
     By the way, they did snorkel and hike the Baths, had a beach BBQ, went to Anegada and got the Conga line started, bar crawled on Jost, and did so much more. It wasn’t like they all just laid around reading War and Peace and licking their wounds. Not them, they are The Bruise Cruisers and they'll  be back!
This is one of my all time favorite dishes and since I can find better shitake mushrooms here than at home, I have made it many times. (I think I originally found this recipe in Bon Appetit, but don't quote me.) I made this for the Bruise Cruisers and believe me when I say that there were NO leftovers.
Asian Pasta with Flank Steak

Elvis...oh yes he is guarding the bread basket!



  1. OMG...laughing my entire @$$ off at the memories from this trip... I have to say that you and Larry are the best doctor/nurse, bartender/chef, captain/first mate, dinghy driver/tour guide, etc, etc, etc....combo that I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. This trip was a once in a lifetime ((that we are all hoping to experience again)) vacation/celebration that will forever be my happy place to go to in my mind. Thank you for the memories...and the friendship....

  2. Tammi, Tammi, Tammi. Obviously we didn't leave enough jewels and pricelss gold boulon with you to keep what happens on the boat, on the boat. Oh, and just to clarify, I was evacuating things from my body for (2) days, and at both ends to boot, (ewww)! Thanks for such a memorable 25th anniversary! We wouldn't have done it any other way than with you and BIG! You and BIG are truly living the dream. Keep it up, because you guys are an inspiration to the rest of us! Luv ya'! BRUISE CRUISE MEMBER #1

  3. Shyla, Hope to see you and your momma back on board and that the bruises have faded. We will replenish the 1st aid kit as soon as we know that you are coming! Had a blast and so glad you came. Thanx for reading SdJ!

  4. Hey Tom-#1 Bruise Cruiser, Big and I are so glad that we could share your 25th anniversary with you and Mona! Come back anytime you need a good colon cleansing (ewww!-you said it first). We had great time, hope you have recovered!
    ♥ you guys!