Sunday, December 16, 2012

Marooned in Marathon

If there was a good day to leave for the Bahamas it would have been today. We watched as four boats pulled out first thing this morning. Unfortunately we still have one unfinished project and it's a kind of a big deal. Since we got here Brian has fixed the steering problem and replaced the wet elbow on the generator amongst many other things. At the same time we took our single sideband radio into a shop to see if it could be salvaged. We need this radio to get our daily weather updates as well as for communication. So, back everything up to last Wednesday. The radio shop called and said our radio was not worth investing any more time and money in. So first thing Thursday we were off to the shop to pick it up. The owner suggested we try an old used radio and if it worked he would only charge us a couple of hundred dollars. Good deal? For sure since a new one is about $2500. Back to the boat we went and Brian wired it up. Nothing. Friday morning we were off the boat by 8:15 and at the shop before 9 to return the used radio. I stayed outside with the bikes (so we didn't have to lock them) while Brian was inside. He came back in few minutes and told me the owner had offered him an almost new Icom radio for $1500. What did we want to do? $1500 right now was not in the budget, however we believe in safety first. We read the brochure while sitting on the steps of the shop. While sitting there, the owner's wife came out to shoo us away because she thought we were panhandlers. WHAT? We were clean, a little sweaty maybe but Brian had just been in the store 10 minutes before. We agreed to buy the radio. The owner unpacked it all on a table to explain how to hook it up. The first problem was there was no manual. The solution, download it.  All 70 pages. The second problem was that while printing the manual the electrical circuit to the printer started to overheat. This is in a marine electronics store remember. This happened four times during the printing, so it took nearly two hours. By the time we left the store it was well after noon. The owner put the boxes in his truck and we met him back at the marina. Back to the boat to drop off the radio because we had other errands planned for the day. Back to the marina and off on the bikes. To K-Mart to exchange one of our cheapo solar lights which worked for less than a day.  I guess that’s all you can expect for $3.  We returned a movie to Redbox, stopped at the grocery store for sweet and sour sauce and then to the post office where I sat on the sidewalk and wrote our Christmas cards. Back to the boat. Rip the bed apart and Brian rewired the new radio.  By this time the sun is going down and we’re out of light.  To be continued tomorrow.  Friday morning we are up before 6 and Brian is back at the radio so we can listen to the 7am weather.  Or not.  A couple from a neighbouring boat offered to come and help.  It looked like we were missing a connector.  Off to West Marine, then back to the boat, hook it up and………nothing! In between all this several other things broke.  It’s really hard to believe because I’m pretty sure Brian has either fixed or replaced everything on the boat, but while hoisting our Canadian flag, the flag halyard broke.  Enough already!  I’m going to take a shower.  I just, got my hair wet and the water stopped.  I guess that’s better than after you get the shampoo on your head.  The water pump had quit.  Once Brian had it switched out with our spare pump he took apart the old one to see if it could be rebuilt.  The culprit was a rubber band all chewed up in the impeller.  I have no idea where it came from.  I almost forgot the leak in a connection under the kitchen sink that had to be repaired. By this time I was about ready for a hotel room, hot shower, king sized bed, big screen TV and a take out pizza.  We had a drink, ravioli and salad and played cribbage instead.  This brings us to today.  It’s Sunday.  The radio shop is closed so we can’t go there and that is why we can’t leave for the Bahamas today……Sigh.   010
Now the fun part.  I took on two new jobs today.  Brian needed a haircut.  While in St. Petersburg we bought a set of clippers at Walmart to be used when out of the country.  I know, you can find a barber anywhere but after all he does colour my hair for me.  So, I cut his hair!  I think he was pretty nervous about it because he had a hand mirror angled on his head the whole time I was cutting.  By the way, never say oops when you’re cutting someone’s hair.  Ha!
    Second job, the flag halyard that broke.  It was fairly calm in the harbour this morning so I was ready to go up the mast.  Well, I was until I was seated in the bosun’s chair and saw that all the residents of the boats around us were watching, hoping for some entertainment on a quiet Sunday morning.  I do not like heights at the best of times and I really don’t like an audience.  Brian cranked me up with the winch until I reached the spreaders.  I warned him to stay in the centre of the boat and not make it rock, but everything was fine.  I actually enjoyed it and the view was amazing!  I must admit I was hugging the mast pretty tightly because I was covered in oxidized paint when I got back down.

the view from my perch
looking out over the mooring field
the mast is 58 ft high
I did it!
the view of the harbour

So it’s nearly 4, the flag is flying, the laundry’s done and the blog is updated.  I’m sure the Bahamas will wait for us.  Life is good.

1 comment:

  1. This post completely wore me out (and also reminded me of our first 2 months in the Chesapeake where everything broke down!). You're still well ahead of the game and you'll get to the Bahamas very soon I'm sure, and I'd hate to have Brian arrive with ''bad hair' ;-)


About Us

Brian, Sally and Cricket the cat sailing on our 41 foot Morgan Classic sailboat. In October 2011 we sold our house, quit our jobs and set out for Florida in search of a sailboat. We found her in Madeira Beach Florida. A 1987 41 foot Morgan Classic. Our plan is to sail for a couple of years. First to the Bahamas, after that...who knows.