Living at a slant…


One thing our sailing life reminds us is to be flexible. That is easier said than done, especially for me. I have never been one to plan out my entire life, and I’ve never made a “career plan.” I’ve enjoyed many of the surprises that life has handed me. However, I do compile lists and find comfort in knowing what I’ll be doing/where I will be at given times.

Before we were hauled yesterday morning, I had resolved myself to the fact that it was unlikely we would be getting out of here right away. Our bilge pump was continuing to go off every 3 to 4 minutes; the leak wasn’t getting any better! And then we learned on Sunday evening that a large cold front was forecast to come through with strong NW winds (gusting to 25 here in Indiantown; gale force in the Gulf stream just offshore), freezing temperatures at night, and daytime temperatures only in the 50’s for the next couple of days. Being delayed here for a couple more days, where we can be plugged into electricity (heat!) while this cold front goes through, might not be such a bad thing!

The marine lift got to us about 10:00 yesterday morning. As soon as the bottom of the keel cleared the surface of the water, our leak was apparent. Water was running a steady stream from an area at the very back of Thyme Hyssop & Wry’s keel. Yikes!

Eric, Indiantown’s yard manager, immediately got under that leaking keel, fished around the area with his knife, and promptly pulled out a rock-like piece of “bondo.” Turns out our boat’s previous owner was warned 3 years ago about a crack in the back bottom of the keel, and made a very shoddy repair. The thought that we were sailing with a piece of bondo filling a crack, and that we were often far from marina facilities (what if we had gone to the Bahamas last season?), is frightening. The marine surveyor didn’t see it; the previous owner never mentioned it. I am feeling great relief that the leak showed up first thing this season. It’s going to be a costly repair, but this time it will be a repair done right, and we’ll know that we can trust this boat again.

Ron may have had his issues with the yard manager last season, but he’s singing Eric’s praises now. This guy knows his stuff, and has been so helpful.

So, we are back “living on the hard” in the work yard. They’ve “blocked” us so that the keel will better dry out, and we are living “uphill” while repairs are made. Sleeping “downhill” in our v-berth is a bit interesting. Today is too cold for fiberglassing (and probably tomorrow, too), so we’re drying out and getting other small projects done as we listen to the wind howl and keep warm below. The sun is shining and I am way overdue for some serious knit therapy (and that goes very well with hot tea). Not such a bad day!



2 thoughts on “Living at a slant…

  1. From the crew of “Enchantress”

    The good Lord does love Sailors. Sorry about the problems and the cold but relieved to know that you’ll enjoy the winter season in a safe boat.


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