Pages for a Diary of Days Gone Bye

Welcome to our website

As with much of our lives our site is somewhat eclectic, we tend to simply push forward or “mess on” as Mayke likes to say with our individual pursuits and challenges.

To help you navigate through our domain from the top-left drop-down menu Pages for a Diary of Days Gone By you will find pages to some of the more recent milestones of our construct; on the right side menu-bar there are paths into our past endeavors, creations and adventures. These are organized in three category headings: ART, SEA and Mountain Postings. If you have questions, comments or suggestions please use the dialog box at the bottom of each page.

If you would like to window-shop some of our postings just scroll down and enjoy.

Mayke 2016 work and exhibition

Here is Mayke's 2016 work under the theme "Henri & Mathilda". Her exhibition at the Gallery Sens Interieur is now on with a retrospective of some of her prior year works. Enjoy
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Adventures continue : discovering Sicily and Apulia

No, we have not turned our backs to the sea ! Quite to the contrary we are engaging it from a new perspective.
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L’Exposition 2015, “Moi-je” de Mayke

L’exposition 2015 de Mayke à la Galerie Sens Intérieur est d’un grand cru, c’est un retour à son expression intégrant l’abstrait et le figuratif, travaillant texture et profondeur avec une perspective qui lui est propre qui me rappelle certains de ses tableaux de la période Port Grimaud.
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Mayke’s 2015 “Moi-je” Exhibition

2015 is a “grand cru” of Mayke’s work, returning to some of her basics with that ability to meld the abstract with the figurative expressed with depth and texture. Then again her work theme this year is in short “Moi-je”. “Moi-je” that “id”expression form the French language possess in a sort of innate, instinctive, often impulsive “me, I”
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Starquest, a Tale for All Ages

STARQUEST is a tale of witches and angels in quest of … you will chuckle and smile then laugh yourself silly trying to explain to your child why it is so funny.
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Mayke’s 2014 Exhibition

Much the inspiration driving Mayke this year started with our incredible road trip in an Airstream Land Yacht motorhome. If the “yacht” notion took us back to our blue water sailing days this time the waypoints were more constrained, beginning south of Tampa Florida across the southern states to Big Sur south of San Francisco.
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Mayke’s 2013 exhibition

2013 Exhibition Overview Cliquez sur une photo pour le visualiser ou lancer le diaporama Click on a photo for viewing or to begin the slideshow Pas reçu le dernier “Ebats […]
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s/v Sean Seamour II photo-history

If you look at the photo of our life-raft on the side of the mountain of water it is hard to imagine, but to put these incredible 70+ foot wave in perspective consider Hurricane Grace in 1991 that led to book and movie "A Perfect Storm" had averaged waves of 37 to 50 feet and rogue waves hitting 100 feet. Sub Tropical Storm Andrea that led to our demise had waves that averaged 70 feet with rogues waves much higher!
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As the woodshed becomes cottage

The woodshed has been one of my big projects, one that has waited years in quest of a driving inspiration that occurs when the creative ideas crystalize into a master […]
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A Storm Too Soon, a true story by Michael Tougias

Michael Tougias' newest best selling true story 
of our disaster, survival, 
and incredible rescue titled "A Storm Too Soon"’ is missing pictures in the hard cover first print run (some will be included in the soft cover version in 2014) so I have scoured years of old computers to reconstitute a history of our s/v Sean Seamour II, it is a work in progress but have a look, much of our ordeal is related through stills of the video the US Coast Guard made of our rescue
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A long journey

Maria Elizabeth (Betty) Buehler de Lutz was born on December 10, 1921 in Oberachern, near Baden-Baden, Germany. She immigrated to the United States with her parents Sophie and Gustav Buehler in 1928, and lived in Fort Plain in the Mohawk Valley of upstate New York.
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Negotiating Bridges on the Inter-coastal Waterway

We left from Tampa where Seanee had spent the summer under José’ close watch, it had been a year since her successful if tumultuous crossing from the Mediterranean. With our […]
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Hamlet of Camp de la Suyere

(manuscript extract from “The Extraordinary Course of my Unaccomplished Dream”) Chapter : 15 Building Paradise Found   It felt like my landing in the Canebiers Bay ten years earlier after […]
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And humor, there must be humor

I am constantly sketching, drawing stamps in which I concentrate the story or image floating elusively in my mind. Whether it is laughing at my work or the situations that surround […]
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An Electrifying Experience

s/v Sean Seamour III has a new master, Daniel will further Seanee III’s destiny. If I never attained the dream of a green Seanee with electric propulsion s/v Sean Seamour IV made her Mediterranean debut this summer after 40 years on the Baltic Sea. Built in 1970 in the true tradition of the Nordic Folkboat, Seanee IV is clinker built wooden sloop originally designed in 1942 about to be modernized with electric propulsion...
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Dernière leçon apprise du naufrage du Sean Seamour II

Le 7 mai 2007 ‘une vague scélérate estimée entre 24 et 36 mètres de haut a percuté le flanc bâbord de Sean Seamour II au milieu de la nuit. Les miracles qui nous ont permis de survivre sont contés; les héros qui nous ont arrachés à ce maelström médaillés; les leçons apprises publiées. Cependant, lors des remises des ces décorations...
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Atelier de la Suyere 2010 work

The ferry leaving Mindelo Cape Verde with the dayworkers bound for Sao Anton across the straight, a morning and evening event. Overladed with passengers hanging on over the gunwale with […]
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Equipage du HH-60 médaillé pour le sauvetage du 7 mai

C'est confirmé, les quatre membres de l'équipage du HH-60 des Gardes Côtes (US Coast Guards) seront médaillés le 19 décembre pour l'extraordinare sauvetage de l'équipage de Sean Seamour II
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Epitaphe pour le Sean Seamour II

Après le tableau de Mayke "Widow Walk du Camp de la Suyère", si prémonitoire des évènements du 7 mai, une résignation silencieuse envahie sa vision de Sean Seamour II qui repose au fond de la Fosse de Hatteras, un épitaphe et une immortalisation qui permet à notre créativité de rebondir et à une nouvelle aventure d'émerger
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Epitaph for the Sean Seamour II

The storm has subsided, Seanee as we always affectionately called her for me, him for Mayke, lies at rest 2500 leagues deep in the Hatteras Trench. I singled out this part of Mayke’s rendering of Seanee at rest for the artist within her still sees blue sky from the depths as the epitaph reads “met a rogue wave on the seventh of May 2007”. The full painting lies below.
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Of my battles of human history

This new posting celebrates two events, the inauguration of the Gallery Suyère close to my Atelier and my most recent ...
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Sur Mes Batailles de l’Histoire Humaine

Ce nouvel article marque deux évènements, l’inauguration de La Galerie de la Suyère près de mon atelier au Hameau de la Suyère et ma nouvelle création, dix oeuvres déclinées sur le thème de Mes […]
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A Final Lesson Learned from Sean Seamour II

Just one year ago today a rogue wave estimated between 80 and 120 feet high pounced upon Sean Seamour II ...

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Next generation Sassen honored with the Prix de Rome award

Viviane Sassen honored with the highly coveted Prix de Rome award for her unique contribution to the art of photography
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Stars Are Made In Heaven – Witches Are Not

A humoristic book of illustrations about witches and angels with laughs and stories for all ages For a slideshow presentation or just a visualization of the illustrations click on the […]
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Death’s Door by Doug Campbell

Death's Door in Soundings November magazine by Douglas A. Campbell Senior Writer is the story of Sean Seamour II rescue and a glimpse at the investigation regarding the malfunction and duplication by cloning of the ACR EPIRB hexadecimal code that almost cost the life of the crew
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The widow walk of Camp de la Suyere, waiting on Sean Seamour II

Our move back to Saint Tropez from the Luberon is over, albeit with the terrible loss of our Sean Seamour II in sub-tropical storm Andrea. From 4000 miles away I felt the storm brew then explode, Camp de la Suyere became my widow walk, canvas my only connection to nature' course.
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Video du sauvetage du l’équipage de Sean Seamour II

Video du sauvetage des trois membres de l'équipage de Sean Seamour II en face du Cap Hatteras le 7 mai dernier, a peine une minutes des 30 disponibles... dans des creux de plus de 20mètres (70 pieds)
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Sean Seamour II rescue video

I have uploaded the Sean Seamour II rescue video edited by NOAA for the COSPAS SARSAT 25th anniversary
Sean Seamour II rescue

Additionally, WPLG Local 10, the ABC station ...

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Mayke Sassen back to Saint Tropez

It will soon be three years since our transfer from the Luberon back to the Golfe de Saint Tropez, successful albeit with the loss of our Sean Seamour II in sub-tropical storm Andrea. Mayke's atelier is finished and humming away with new works you will soon be able to see on her website but better yet in her Atelier Gallery soon finished.
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About me

I paint from a passion to get to know who and where I am. I once had a dream, I was on stage giving a brilliant performance. At the end, I noticed that the curtain had been closed during the session. I want to open that curtain and share.
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A mon propos

Je peins, mue par la passion de découvrir qui et où je suis. Je vis un rêve : je suis sur scène délivrant une brillante performance. A la chute, je remarque que le rideau est resté fermé. Je souhaite l’ouvrir et partager
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s/v Sean Seamour II – the final log entry

This is the log of actions and events driven by the only subsequently named Sub-tropical Storm Andrea, leading to the sinking of s/v Sean Seamour II and the successful rescue of its entire crew on the early morning of May 7th 2007.
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Récit du naufrage de Sean Seamour II

(extraits du magazine Voiles et Voiliers # 438) Jean-Pierre quitte la Floride avec deux équipiers à bord de son Océanis 44 CC, direction Gibraltar. Après quatre jours de mer, au large du Cap Hatteras, l’équipage doit faire face à un coup de vent bien plus fort que prévu.
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Mayke Sassen – some of my older work

At the request of some interested I have begun to post some of my older work on the blog. Here ...
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EPIRB / GPIRB issue update

Although I have sought to inform the mariner community worldwide to check their EPIRB and GPIRB proper registration by posting in various forums my near death experience due to an EPIRB that did not, and that could not fulfill its vital life saving function, this alert seems to have gone somewhat unnoticed until focused their attention on the issue (photo: my GPIRB and the clone manufactured two years later).
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The Greening of Sean Seamour III

The Green Boat Adventure seeks to define a new art of "green sailing" with the ultimate objective of totally eliminating fossil fuels from our sailboats in favor of a total dependence on renewable energies.
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Security notice to all mariners

On this anniversary of the loss of Sean Seamour II and the traumatic experience of clinging to a life raft in seventy foot seas with the belief that no help is on the way I call on all mariners to read and consider appropriate measures to avoid our predicament (in photo side by side the original GPIRB and the clone manufactured with the same serial number close to two years later).
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Note de sécurité à tous les navigateurs

L'anniversaire du naufrage de Sean Seamour II et l'expérience traumatique de se cramponner à un radeau de survie dans des creux de plus de vingt mètres, persuadés qu'aucun secours n'arrivera, m'amène à alerter tous navigateurs, plaisanciers comme professionnels, à lire et prendre les mesures nécessaires pour éviter que ce drame se reproduise (photo: ma balise et le clone fabriqué deux ans plus tard).
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Yet another award for USCG Swimmer Drew Dazzo

US Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer Drew Dazzo is once again awarded for the extraordinary rescue of the Sean Seamour II crew by the Naval Helicopter Association
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US Coast Guard HH-60 crew receives award for May 7th rescue

US Coast Guard HH-60 crew members will receive awards for the extraordinary rescue of the crew of s/v Sean Seamour II last May 7th. The vessel caught in a sub-tropical depression subsequently named Andrea, was further battered by a rogue wave.
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US Coast Guard crews honored by her Majesty’ services after saving Sean Seamour II crew

The US Coast Guard crews (HH-60 and C-130) are the true heroes of the day for their extraordinary rescue of the Sean Seamour II crew. The HH-60 crew is to be recognized (we hope and are pushing) by both the Canadian and US governments for their courage and valor.
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Les services de la Reine d’Angleterre honorent les équipages du HH-60 et C-130 des Coast Guard

Les deux équipages du HH-60 et C-130 qui ont assurés le sauvetage de Sean Seamour II sont honorés par les services de la Reine d'Angleterre, l'équipage du HH-60 sera reconnu par les deux gouvernements du Canada et Etats Unis pour leur prouesse et courage.
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Action summary for the US Coast Guard rescue of Sean Seamour II’ crew

The US Coast Guard action report on the Sean Seamour II rescue is another extraordinary demonstration of valor and courage, the parallel between Kevin Costner' The Guardian is not limited to Comdr. Smith' role as co-pilot, here again the winch cable...
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Rapport d’activité US Coast Guard – Sean Seamour II

Le rapport d'activité des US Coast Guards dans le sauvetage de l'équipage de Sean Seamour II est édifiant, le parallèle avec le film de Kevin Costner The Guardian ne se limite pas au Commandant Smith qui joue le rôle du copilote, ici encore le cable du treuil...
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The circuitous routes to my inspiration: how “Four Girls” came to be

Mayke Sassen shares another of her new works and its source of inspiration "Four Girls", a preview with a story. Come visit my gallery
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Leçons tirées du naufrage du Sean Seamour II

Dans l'attente du récit sur le naufrage de Sean Seamour II qui sera publié sur mon blog à la mi-août et en pensant à tous ceux qui préparent leurs croisières ou traversées cet automne sur la route du sud, je livre déjà les leçons tirées de mon mon naufrage du 7 mai dernier
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Lessons learned – don’t leave port without them

After the sinking of Sean Seamour II during Andrea many have asked me to publish my lessons learned from this harrowing experience, I encourage all fellow mariners to read these ten points.
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Mayke Sassen – Atelier and Current Work

It took well over a year to transfer from the Luberon back to the Golfe de Saint Tropez, now that the Atelier Camp de la Suyère is built and filling up with new works it was time to create a new website window "Atelier and Current Work, have a peak...
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Pages for a Diary of Days Gone Bye


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    4. Hello JP,
      We just read “A Storm too Soon”. What a story and what an ordeal. We are so glad you survived and got to share your story. My wife and I were sailing our 50 ft catamaran, El Gecco, from Puerto Rico back to Charleston, SC when we encountered the winds of your storm north of the Bahamas and took cover after 24 hours of battering seas & winds in a remote atoll/island. . Herb Hingleberg from South Bound 2 was routing us and covering 200 miles a day, routed us out of that storm. Had we continued north, who knows what our fate would have been. I took my previous boat, a 38ft monohaul I designed and built myself, racing solo around the world in the BOC Challenge and the Around Alone, and too encountered life threatening storms, in particular on my approach to Cape Horn, and I wrote about it in my book, “Journey of a Hope Merchant”, but did not, in the entire 27,000 mile solo race, encounter seas such what you had endured. My hat is off to you. We are back out sailing on our cat with our family. Hope some day we will get to share an anchorage. Keep living your dream as you too know how fragile life can be.
      Neal Petersen

    5. Nick Merkle says:

      Dear JP and Mayke,
      I just finished reading “A Storm Too Soon”. I could not put this book down and wanted you to know how much you have inspired me. I am 42 years old and have always dreamed of sailing on the ocean. Although I was born and currently live in landlocked Ohio USA. I have lived in the Florida Keys, England, and Connecticut yet have never accomplished my dream. I broke my back in a very violent car crash when I was 17. I have battled alcoholism and have been a steady smoker of both cigarettes and marijuana. I have divorced from my English wife a year ago and have a great 10 year old son. I run my own construction business which is failing more every year. I have made the decision to quit the alcohol, drugs and smoking which helped mask the back pain. I have accumulated much debt but refuse to file bankruptcy.
      I just wanted you to know you have inspired me that I am only not too old to yet sail across the sea but that my back problems can no longer be an excuse for my life’s failures.
      Good luck on your new adventures,

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