So for all those following my blog…My apologies. This past weekend we managed to lose the ENTIRE BLOG to cyberspace. The Windows "fupgrade" disabled our mouse on the boat so Odyssey software won't work and Navnet II is giving Scott fits. GRRRR!!!! All I can say is…DAMN COMPUTERS!
The helpful IT Department at Weebly graciously found my blog today floating in cyberspace! Hooray! Sorry for the inconvenience...
I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving! I truly have MUCH to be thankful for! Now getting ready for the Holidays! YAY!
I just returned from two weeks of moving onto the boat and getting training with Captain Ray. Three days in the engine room alone, then a day of electronics and energy management, instrumentation, etc. Every single day we trained, then had a "to do list" a mile long. We made daily trips to West Marine and Home Depot, only to return to the boat for more Boat Work. Whew! Our first weekend off was spent awakening to flooding in the salon…Scott and I worked together as a team to find the leak, dismantle the salon lights and ceiling and then fix the hose that broke. It was a bit traumatic (no water for 36 hours, need I say more!) but we were proud we had successfully handled our first "Boat Crisis".
We finally performed our official "Renaming" Ceremony with the company of our new boat friends Rick and Julie of White Rose N4701. Although we all agreed it was hard to pour good champagne into the ocean, we did our duty and served up our sacrifice to the Gods of Wind and Sea! A good time was had by all!
In less than two weeks, I learned to check water tank levels before clothes washing or showering. I learned to check the electrical panel for amperage usage before using appliances. And most importantly, I learned to check the BH ( the black water holding tank) BEFORE going to the bathroom and not being able to flush!!!
I was the first and only one of us to have my "on the water" training. WOO HOO! Captain Ray was a wonderful and patient instructor and had me practice, practice, practice docking. The question remains, "Why can I dock this 55 foot beast and not be able to parallel park my little SUV?!?!" I'm open for answers to this question…
Well, Paula would NOT give me another pass on blogging so I will try to give the highlights and lowlights of the past couple of months. Thank God Paula found this lost blog in cyberspace, as I WAS NOT going to try to type this blog AGAIN!
My life has been ruled by a 3 page "To Do" list that started as a 1 page list. It seems when I knock off one item either Captain Ray, Brian from Celtic, or John from Nordhavn add 3 more items!?!? Oh, and then there is Paula who is always good for a few new items from time to time.
A typical training day is training from 8 to1 while accumulating many new "To Do" items followed by working on the list all afternoon and evening. Then like the movie "Ground Hog Day" it all starts over again the next morning. I must admit I am extremely more comfortable in the engine room and with all of the systems thanks to the training.
A typical non-training day (Day Off) is up at 7 or earlier and working on "The List" until 5pm and much too often til midnight. It has kept me off the streets and away from visiting the numerous Tiki Bars in the area and indulging in their selection of Rum Babbas. Hmmm? Do you think "The List" thing is a conspiracy to keep me out of trouble concocted by Paula? Paula????
She nailed it! Paula was comfortable in the engine room and never was confused during training. She has made huge strides in the 10 days of training. I think all of the books and blogs she has read on the subject helped her greatly. When it came to hands on handling of the "Big Beast" she killed it. With heavy current and mild winds she parked the boat without incident. I was impressed. It is quite a site to see little Paula at the helm on the flybridge some 20' up in the air.
Flood One. With too many experts on board all doing something different and all talking boat stuff someone forgot to turn on the auto grey water breaker. We were cleaning and purging the fresh water tank. Well obviously a holding tank can only hold so much. Water overflowed the Captain's head sink!!! Flowed down (Big surprise) and into the salon. We had to pull the salon head liners, lights, and dry everything out. WTF? I guess this was truly OJT. A lesson I will NEVER forget. After all was cleaned up John Hoffman (Not his fault by the way) smiled at me and said boats are meant to get wet. Too funny, and broke the tension!
Flood Two. Paula and I had been training and working day and night all week. We both agreed to get up late Saturday and take Saturday off to see the local area. After all we earned a day off. So, I get up Saturday morning and go into Galley to make coffee so we can have a leisurely Saturday morning. I walk into the galley half asleep (No coffee yet) and there is a major waterfall pouring down on and the length of the breakfast bar!?!?! Well I yelled every expletive I could think of and made up some new ones. I concluded my tantrum with "Why the Hell did I buy this damn boat?" Then it was time to stop the waterfall. Turned off the fresh water pump and started looking for where the water was coming from? My first thought went back to Flood One and I checked the Captain's head. No problem there. Recently, a new refrigerator was installed on the flybridge. Bingo! A high pressure water line had split behind the refrigerator. During installation new lines were put in - except for one. That is the one that spilt! Overnight most of the fresh water drained down the deck drain with some (Too much) of the water flowing down the water line and into the salon. Well, thanks to my OJT from Flood One I knew the drill. Pull the head liners and lights and dry out everything. Replaced the water line with high pressure fittings that I upgraded and will last 100 years. Obviously we had no day off that weekend. But, once completed and all was repaired (and after numerous celebratory cocktails) Paula and I had a sense of pride that we handled the disaster and persevered through it all. We love this boat (Odd but true).
Broken Toe. I have smashed my toes, fingers, elbows, knees, head, back numerous times doing "Boat Yoga". After all of this I managed to take it up a notch and broke a toe.
Black water Pump out. Absolutely my least favorite task hands down!!! Add to that major pump out drama and it just plain sucked. No pun intended - OK maybe so. The first pump out was a two part episode. Part one the pump out drama was with an under powered pump boat. I was warned that I would have an issue and Mr. Pump Captain would not want to prime the line. And indeed the boat could not obtain a pump out. My grey and backwater caps were factory installed with a chain. Pump Captain insisted the chain was screwing up the suction (Really???) so I removed the chain. That did not work. After much discussion he agreed to prime the pump. Unfortunately we still did not have success. Pump Captain said the issue was on my side. He suspected maybe I had a closed valve. How dare him!?!? So, I begged him to come back later the same day as he only comes once a week and I was full of it. He would only give me a maybe. I contacted Nordhavn and Rob and Chris came over to investigate. All checked out fine. Fortunately the Pump Captain showed back up while Rob and Chris were on board. We went through the process and yes the Pump Captain primed the pump. No success. Rob asks Chris to go below and crack the backwater line to insure we did not have a vacuum issue (Clogged vent). Chris does and yells up that we are pumping the empty grey water tank! Really? We move the pump over to the labeled grey water line and Bingo the black water tank starts flowing. Evidently the caps were originally reversed at the factory when built and no one knew? Go figure. Next pump out was at the fuel dock and the nozzle leaked! Need I elaborate any more? Yuk…. Yesterday the Pump Captain showed up with a brand new boat with 5 times the pump out pressure with a none leaking nozzle. Process worked great and completed in one forth the time. I was a very happy camper. Well as happy as I can be as it is still my least favorite task.
Hmmmm? I guess that will come once we cast the lines and sail over the horizon (January).
We are located at the end of B dock in Sunset Bay Marina in Stuart. This means the car and marina office are about 150 yards away. I have made a thousand trips up and down the dock moving stuff in and trash out. Randy Fritz, our friend from Indiana, showed up for two days and helped me get a lot accomplished! Thank you Randy for all the great help!
Scott and Paula