Monday, October 14, 2013

Hoping for a good time

I am a life-long motor head who has owned cars and motorcycles continuously since about the age of 15. They weren’t always good cars or running motorcycles but there was always one around; until today. Deb and Emily drove the Z-car to Car Max, struck a deal, and I am without wheels to call my own for the first time in my adult life. It feels weird and I’m not sure I like it. But the Z wouldn’t tow behind Kintala nor fit on the foredeck.

I like even less that Emily, Joel, and Kacey had to head back home today. The weather did its best to dampen their visit. The relentless rain didn’t abate until this morning so they only got one day to see how pretty this place can be. In spite of the weather they provided some necessary help in finishing up a couple projects, cheerfully pitching in on the VHF, GPS and new ship’s battery projects. Most important they brought a desperately needed morale boost. This last push to get underway has been much more difficult than ever imagined; a relentless struggle that has backed me right against the wall and become a grim struggle of effort, budget, time and weather. Most days end from sheer exhaustion, hands bruised, callouses torn, too tired to eat, too hungry to sleep. There is much to be said for a shot of youth, laughter, and enthusiasm.

The break in the weather gave some hope that, after installing the new house battery this morning, a shakedown sail would end their visit on a high note and see us on the verge of heading out in a day or two. But, well, this is Kintala after all. Pulling the old battery uncovered a sinkhole like failure in the bottom of the battery compartment swallowing one of the starting batteries. Fortunately some 70% or so of the compartment floor was still solid. The repair took most of the day but was no more than pretty straight-forward glass work. It sits curing even as I type so Kintala is without so much as basic DC power this evening. By tomorrow afternoon this too should have passed with the compartment sound, painted, and batteries installed … another potential disaster averted, fixed, and fading from memory as we move on to the next thing. But I am already missing the boundless energy and certainty that all will work out well provided by my three young friends. Someday, maybe, we will get together again at some far off port, enjoy some sailing, and share stories of getting Kintala fit for duty.

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