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True Stories

This page is for posting personal stories submitted by Mallard Bay property owners.  Send your input to the webmaster at scottymac1@aol.com in any commonly used word processor format.  Include your name and a brief description of what you were doing when the experience happened to you.  Don't worry if you're a little fuzzy on dates, names and facts.  Strict accuracy is not nearly as important as entertainment value.

Select below the stories you'd like to read.


Linda Hobson - Wingman

A moving tribute to an injured member of Mallard Bay's wildlife.


Bob and Julaine Cleland - 1966 Vacation to Four Corners

1966 Vacation Part 1 -  (posted 10 Sep 2012)

1966 Vacation Part 2 - (posted 3 Oct 2012)

1966 Vacation Part 3 - (posted 22 Oct 2012)


Bob Cleland - MS Princendam - 64 Days With 526 of My Newest Close Friends

Letter from The Bounding Main - March 17, 2013 - Bob details the first days of his adventure.

Letter #2 - April 1, 2013 - Bob visits Madeira, Morocco and Gilbraltar.

Letter #3 - April 19, 2013 - Halfway through the trip Bob sees Malta, Crete, Turkey, Cyprus and Egypt.

Letter #4 - April 28, 2013 - Athens, Dubrovnik, Venice, Sicily, Naples


Bob and Julaine Cleland - 1966 Vacation to Four Corners

1966 Vacation Part 1 - (posted 10 Sep 2012)

1966 Vacation Part 2 - (posted 3 Oct 2012)

1966 Vacation Part 3 - (posted 22 Oct 2012)


Bob and Julaine Cleland - Voyage of the Tropic Bird

1997 Christmas Letter - Carnival in Trinidad, a visit to Venezuela for eye surgery, a honeymoon cruise, major boat repairs and a trip to the U.S. highlighted the Clelands' year. - (posted 22 Apr 2012)

1996 Christmas Letter - Back in the Caribbean, Julaine and Bob visit Venezuela, the Grenadines and Trinidad while visiting friends and relatives in the U.S. -  (posted 25 Feb 2012)

1995 Christmas Letter - After eight years cruising Europe, the Clelands make their return voyage to the Americas.  From the Canary Islands to the islands of the Caribbean, their adventures continue. - (posted 1 Jan 2012)

1994 Christmas Letter - 1994 took the Clelands and the Tropic Bird closer to home as they cruised from Cyprus to a variety of destinations in the Mediterranean, winding up in the Canary Islands, jumping off point for their return cruise to the Americas. - (posted 6 Dec 2011)

1993 Christmas Letter - This year, after boat maintenance in Cyprus, the Clelands sailed into history in the footsteps (or boat wake) of Alexander the Great, visiting the Aegean Sea and the coast of Turkey. - (posted 16 Oct 2011)

1992 Christmas Letter - 1992 starts out with knee surgery and progresses to a harsh winter in Cyprus and cruising alone and in the company of other boats off Turkey, Greece and Cyprus as well as a side trip to Egypt.- (posted 6 Sep 2011)

1991 Christmas Letter - In 1991, the Tropic Bird was in the Mediterranean, but the Clealands spent many days and miles exploring western and central Europe by car in addition to exploration of places with unpronounceable names throughout the Med. - (posted 7 Jul 2011)

1990 Christmas Letter - This year, the Clelands took the Tropic Bird to Spain and Portugal, then into the Mediterranean where they explored Gibraltar, Corsica and the French Cote d'Azur. - (posted 5 May 2011)

1988 Christmas Letter - 1988 took the Clelands to the North sea, Dutch canals, the Baltic and Swedish lakes, then back to Plymouth, England. - (posted 6 Apr 2011)

Details of the Atlantic Crossing - Backing up a bit, this is a letter sent from the Azores after the Clelands guided the Tropic Bird on its first Atlantic crossing from Fort Lauderdale and Bermuda.  It goes into greater detail regarding the crossing than the 1987 Christmas letter that is posted below. - (posted 21 Mar 2011)

1987 Christmas Letter - The Clelands report on their second year onboard Tropic Bird.  This year begins in the Bahamas and leads them to Florida to prepare for their first trans-Atlantic crossing which includes Bermuda, the Azores and finally, England. - (posted 3 Mar 2011)

1986 Christmas Letter - This is the first of many Christmas letters detailing events aboard the Tropic Bird.  Eight months earlier, the Clelands started their voyage and by the end of the year had sailed to Maine, Massachusetts, Baltimore, Delaware Bay, Norfolk and the Intracoastal Waterway to Florida. - (posted 24 Feb 2011)

Swanning Across Sweden - This article, written by Julaine, was published in an anthology of sailing stories and details when Bob and Julaine took the Tropic Bird through one of the more famous cruising canals in Sweden. - (posted 22 Feb 2011)

From 1986 until 2000 Bob and Julaine Cleland lived onboard their 34-foot oceangoing cutter, the Tropic Bird.  They had sailed for the previous 20 years on weekends and vacations, but had never before taken on full-time cruising.  When Bob retired from his career as an engineer, and Julaine from hers as a graphic artist, they took the big leap, sailing a large portion of the world, to the Caribbean, and traversing the Atlantic to the British Isles, Scandinavia and the Mediterranean, before heading back across the Atlantic. 

As they traveled, they documented their adventures in the form of articles for publication, letters to family, Christmas letters and ship’s logs.  Bob and Julaine have been kind enough to share these with our community.  Items from their collection will be added to this page periodically.


Scott McGuire - Stories of the Diplomatic Security Service

Honest Officer, I'm Not a Spy - (posted 2 Jun 2012)

Sub Machine Guns and a Rigged Election in Uganda - (posted 27 Nov 2011)

Sleepless Moscow Nights and Days - (posted 14 Jun 2011)

One Week At the South End of a Northbound Horse - (posted 16 Mar 2011)

Slumming in Palm Springs - (posted 22 Feb 2011)

Recollection of Saudi Arabia - (posted 11 Feb 2011)

While working for the State Department's Office of Security, and its successor, the Diplomatic Security Service, Scott McGuire (the guy at the far right in the picture) served as a special agent assigned to the details protecting Mrs. Nancy Kissinger and later, Secretaries of State Cyrus Vance and George Shultz.  He also served as Regional Security Officer in U.S. embassies in Egypt, Australia and Venezuela and at a variety of headquarters jobs in Washington, D.C.  Often, the job involved extensive travel, mostly to foreign countries.  Along the way, Scott documented some of his more easily embellished experiences.