We are now facing a fast approaching deadline to head back south to the Caribbean. Our summer, which we’d hoped to spend mostly sailing, has been spent on family matters and getting the boat ready for long term sailing. Everything we do to ready ourselves seems to have taken much longer than planned. Some things just don’t go according to plan. And now with our planned leave for next Wednesday, has already been delayed for Thursday and I won’t be surprised if it is Friday. We are still holding out hope that we will make it early to join the Salty Dawg Rally (http://saltydawgrally.org/) in Hampton Virginia for a November 4th launch to the BVI (weather permitting of course).
So, you ask, ‘What have you done to get the boat ready?’ For starters, we had the running rigging redone, sails re-stitched, added radar, a new windlass, new lifelines, installed new instruments, registered our AIS, installed SSB, filed a sail plan, recovered some of the cushion covers, cleaned cushion covers, installed a washer/dryer, ordered solar panels to be installed later, bought and picked up a parasail (which we now have to install more rigging for that, ordered today), purchased charts, replaced navigation and interior lights with LED’s, provisioned (some last minute stuff still to be done), visited a vet to have Charlie’s pet passport paperwork finalized (still in progress), purchased snorkel gear, a pressure cooker, an electric induction cook top, storage bins, mason jars for storing dry goods (all cardboard must be removed from packaging to avoid bugs on board), purchased tools that we somehow missed bringing, along with other items we somehow missed bringing, made new curtains and decorative pillows, purchased bedding for guest rooms, bought slippers because it’s now cold enough to need them, and that’s all I can recall off hand. I’m sure Paul could elaborate on the list.
Now that we are down to our last week in port in Annapolis, we are beginning to panic. There are so many things still to be done. The water maker is not yet installed, the solar panels can wait (we hope), the battery to the generator had to be recharged (hopefully for lack of use and not because we need a new battery), the dogs Titer test was not expedited by the vet, so we paid the extra $155 today to have it complete by Tuesday (let’s hope they come through), the anchor is on order and should be here Monday, the 500 ft chain is being picked up as I write this (I have no idea how we are going to get it on board), the car has to go back to Canada or somewhere for storage for a year (not willing to have a dealer give us a ridiculous low amount of money for it), final provisions need to get on board including 25 gallons of drinking water (since the water maker is not installed yet), and if the new propane tanks do not arrive by Monday, we’ll have to buy temporary new ones and have them filled (because it is illegal to have the ones we have refilled in the US – ‘it is what it is’). With the list of what has to be completed, we are in full panic mode. So much left to do, and with so little time remaining.
As you can see, it’s not always fun and games, but the fun in the sun is there for the taking, you just have to be willing to work for it. I suppose that’s true with all things in life. In future blogs we hope to report it was all worth it by sharing our adventures. So forgive me for not posting more frequently throughout the summer. Hopefully this will change over the upcoming weeks.