Friday, January 6, 2017

Quiet morning

One of the best parts of this cruising life is the (normally) quiet start to a day. Alarms, the blaring of TV news, traffic, and the bustle to make a schedule are not a part of most cruising days. Some time spent sitting in the cockpit sipping from a warm cup and easing into another day is more our speed. 

Kintala lies quiet to her mooring this morning; really, really quiet. Most of her crew for the last month caught the pre-dawn ebb tide of traffic and motored off into the fog for places north. And though one would think that being back to her normal crew of two would make the boat feel bigger, it just feels empty.

At least some of the empty will get filled with final preparations for finally getting off the dock. The romping Bird-Day sail sprung a fuel leak and showcased the need to tighten up the side stays a little. While cleaning the bilge of fuel we discovered that the bilge pump “auto” function wasn't working. Part of the work just passed included installing a new, high tech, “field sensor” equipped, low profile, pump that would suck the bilge nearly dry. Which it does, so long as the high tech “field sensor” part of the pump is squeaky a bilge. Add a regular cleaning of the bilge pump to the routine maintenance list, and take that pump off the “good idea” list. A really good idea would be a bullet proof pump and a simple float switch that works, slimed up and smelly, after weeks of sitting in a dark, damp, and dirty place rarely visited. (The fuel leak turned out to be the gasket under the tank sending unit. An easy fix, and now we know about the weak link in our bilge pump system. Not a bad deal.)  

There is a fan that needs changed, the oven is acting up, and we need to change the filter on the holding tank vent before the tank starts getting filled up once again. Stores need stored and some needed general clean up of the deck and cockpit testify to having had seven people living on the boat for the past month.

It looks like a passing cold front will keep us on the dock for the weekend, bringing storms, wind, and much cooler temperatures starting this afternoon. There will be plenty of work to keep us busy while we wait for a break in the weather. And though I freely admit that the relentless effort needed to keep a boat safe and operating is not one of the things I enjoy about cruising it will, for this weekend anyway, make it easier to get used to quiet mornings again.

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