Friday, November 17, 2006

Sandy Hook, NJ

Wind: W 10-15 knots, gusting to 20 knots

Another day in lovely Sandy Hook. I shouldn’t complain, because we’ve accomplished a ton here. The head got fixed, we got showers, and internet, and laundry done, bought groceries, got fuel and water and ice, all of that important but boring stuff. We were supposed to leave today, and I fear we may regret not leaving today. There’s supposed to be a good weather window through Tuesday, but you never know, especially in November. Still, I’m glad we stayed, because I think we got more accomplished today on the boat than we have since we started sailing.

Let me see if I remember the entire list: dishes (which are never-ending on the boat, in my sink the size of a teacup), bleaching all the mildew out of the corners of the boat, off the wooden cutting boards and the trash can, bleaching our toothbrushes, organizing the toiletries, putting back in our navigation station cushion, going through our gigantic miscellaneous box that no matter what we do never seems to get smaller, making a tool drawer for Karl so he doesn’t have to drag rust from his toolbox all over the cabin sole any time he needs a tool, saving the cabbage from decay, rinsing out our floor rags and Karl’s muddy gloves, putting away my summer clothes so I can fit the important papers in the shelving in the vee-berth, sweeping and cleaning the floor, and all-around general organization.

Karl’s list was: putting up my Don Quixote Picasso print on the bulkhead, putting up my knife block, testing miscellaneous loose wires and taping them up, rigging up brackets for our VHF charger, inverter, and solar-panel controller, screwing wires in the head back into place and protecting them with a teak panel, putting up a paper-towel holder, and now he’s still working, trying to rig up more lighting, specifically lighting for the galley, where we’ve been using headlamps to cook.

I’m exhausted just thinking about it, and I’m sure I’ve bored all of you except for those who actually plan to do this someday. Because this is what it really involves—all these crazy jobs that don’t occur to you until you’re actually on the boat, sailing. The mildew is out of control. I’m not sure if it’s just because we have a fiberglass boat, or because we took out the thirty-year-old insulation and went down to a bare hull, but we have fungus coming out our ears. A lot of things on the boat are just management propositions. You can fix the problems. All you can do is manage them.

We were thinking about leaving sometime tonight, and doing the all-day all-night sailing thing straight down to Cape May. But now I think we need sleep. We’ll still try to leave early tomorrow morning, but we’re never very successful at that.

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