Sunday, January 4, 2015

Let the Purging Begin

Hans and I really lucked out on our family trip to Pennsylvania for Christmas this year. We had no issues with snow (there wasn't any), we had sun shine nearly every day (unheard of when I lived there for 50 some winters, and doesn't that just figure), and our return flight (which we found to be completely topsy-turvy and had us leaving St. Louis, Missouri at 6 AM when we were indeed in Pittsburgh?) got straightened out and we enjoyed a smooth trip home.

We managed to stay awake to usher in the New Year and after spending a very lazy New Year's day watching the Twilight Zone Marathon, I decided the next day was time to start cleaning house (or rather boat).

How in hell have we managed to collect so much junk. While living on a boat.

Usually when the urge to clean out the garage (guest berth) hits me, I take one look at the mass of junk accumulated in there and calm myself by mixing a Wilbur Wow-Wow and settling down with a good book. But that just won't cut it anymore since we've decided to cast off our lines this month and start cruising again.

I'm still puzzled over why we have so many blankets, coats, gloves... for people who live in the tropics (because folks that's exactly what Florida is; the tropics), and don't get me started on all the hockey gear we have. Among some of the junk I yanked out of the garage was a massivesleeping bag. "But that's the sleeping bag I used when I lived aboard in New York City during that record breaking cold winter (a bazillion years ago)." Hans told me. It still ended up beside the dumpster (a place for great finds, I should know). Our heavy leather coats are going to get boxed up and sent north to sit in someone else's closet for our next visit as we do not need these in the Bahamas this spring. Since Hans no longer has to report to a desk job, I'm putting his huge Brooks Brothers dress shirts (they really do take up a lot of room) up for auction on eBay although we did hold onto three of them for future dressy functions. Also on eBay will be a size 3 Jessica McClintock cocktail dress (I wore it exactly one time) and a fancy schmancy propane/smoke detector because it needs to be wired electrically to the boat and we don't feel like doing that. We have battery smoke detectors and we're happy with those, and every time I cook we're reminded of how good they are.

Other than a lot more weeding, I need to make another trip up the mast to drain the water out of one of our spreader lights, take down our bimini and dodger in order to clean the mildew off of them and then treat them with 303 so hopefully they don't leak all over us when it rains. Clean, buff, and wax as many outer surfaces that I can reach, meaning not that many, but I'll bitch about it anyway.

At the age of twenty, our VHF radio has become a bit of a prima-donna and while she has no problem listening in on everyone else, she's taken a dislike to bridge tenders and refuses to speak to them. There will be no oil for that squeaky wheel, she's getting dumped like a first wife. We also need a breaker for our water pump (also acting up) since I'm pretty sure Hans wouldn't be able to live with me if that sucker failed.

Days before Christmas, divers replaced our old worn out feathering props with big new bronze props. We took the Knotty Cat out for a spin and she put on quite a show. We found ourselves zooming about at 7.1 knots under power. Our last trip (right before one of our propellors siezed up on us) had us struggling to make 5.

A very tired propellor. It did its job well for nearly 20 years.

The same week we were having fun with our propellors, we had also been wondering where the hell the water was coming from that we would sometimes find under the port engine. There are too many 'things' that could have been leaking, and during one of my stints in the engine room where I love to try out new yoga poses, I did find a very tiny drip on a fresh water hose. We thought that might be it but of course it wasn't. Finally Hans narrowed it down to the raw water impellor. Some people (very handy people) here at the marina told us how we could fix it quite easily by tapping out the wadda-you-call-it, buy a thing-a-ma-jig at the auto parts store, and jam it all back together. We called our old mechanic up north and he told us to replace it. Period. So even though our handy friends laughed at us, Hans went ahead and replaced both of them. I'm not crossing the gulf with something held together with spit and tie wraps.

Today we're getting hauled out in order to get her highness's bottom painted. Again. Of course today is windy and getting out of the slip should be interesting. We will then spend a few days at a luxury (pet friendly) motel where I sincerly hope no one gets murdered in the room behind us like the last time. They did capture the killer (the poor girl's ex-boyfriend) but not before he stole a couple of cars and killed yet one more person.

Now I've got to figure out what to do with all the stuff in our refrigerator since it will be shut off while on the hard. I hope Hans doesn't mind having chicken for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

At least Wilbur will be happy!


Wilbur inspects the latest interloper.




  1. Congrats on your cruising plans. We plan to follow in your wake in a year or two.

  2. Happy New Year! Our boat is out the water too, but it's too cold to get anything done ... 19 degrees this morning! I'm sure the weather's a little warmer for you, and hopefully you're about to be back at "home". Hope you didn't pick a hotel with a killer .. LOL!

  3. It was so cold and windy when they put the boat back into the water, the yard let us stay in a slip so we wouldn't have to motor back home. And it was a toasty 41 degrees compared to 19, Ouch! Thank god for electricity and a portable heater.