This year has been a very upside-down boating season. We went on a trip for a week to ten days in mid June, and other than a day trip or two, the boat has been sitting on its mooring. It seems crazy, but there is actually method behind the madness.
The first part is that both our kids have been mostly around this summer. As their lives increasingly pull them off in different directions, it's nice to take advantage of the time when they are around. So instead of cruising there were a number of weekends with gangs of people around, a couple of trips, and just general hang-out time. It's been really nice, but I still get a little twang in my gut when I look at the boat sitting all lonely on its mooring.
The second part of the story begins today, and is the "upside-down" part. This year all our cruising will be over the winter instead of the summer. Today we begin the migration south with an ultimate destination of the Bahamas for another family get-together.
The trip will be in two stages. The first will be from Gloucester to Florida where we will leave the boat while we return home for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Then right after Christmas we will get back aboard and make the trip over to the Bahamas where we will stay for who knows how long. Our return to the US will largely be driven by progress on our new boat, and getting our current boat on the market to sell so we minimize the likelihood of owning two boats at once.
Leading up to our departure has been a mad rush to get the boat and ourselves ready. First, we decided that you can't go to the Bahamas and not go diving, so we went off and got dive certified. And of course once certified, you need all the gear. In most cases people rent gear as needed, but if you are on a boat in remote places you really need to have your own gear and be self-sufficient, so now the boat is jamb-packed with dive gear. All this was no small feat.
Then there's the boat. Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. There is always cleaning, including the boat bottom, props, thruster, and thru hulls. These are especially subject to marine growth on a boat that has been sitting a lot, so I decided to do a short haul to make cleaning easier and to allow for inspection and replacement of the zincs. Some of you may recall that we picked up a trap and line last summer stow aways discovered and expelled. I've had a little wobble in the drive line ever sense so the haul out would allow us to get that checked out. Well, to make a long story short, I now have two new rear cutlass bearings, re-tuned props, and re-aligned engines and the wobble is all gone. It's great to have that taken care of before departing on a long voyage. Other projects involved some wiring to install the Mac Mini and 24" monitor that I'll be using on the new boat. I want to get completely familiar with Rose Point well in advance of the new boat.
As best I can tell, we are ready to go......
On a side note, one of the odd things about blogging is that it feels like you are talking to yourself, and in a lot of cases that's probably true. I'd love to hear from readers about what you like and don't like, and what you'd like to hear more about. Or just chime in however you like using the Comments sections below.