Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Repowering Project Day 2

Riverside Boatyard, Fort Pierce, Florida

Things move slowly down here. We keep telling everybody that we'll be up on the hard for only a few days, maybe a week. They laugh and say, "Call it a month." Our friends Reggie and Terry came here for two weeks, and wound up staying for 5 months of repairs. Captain Bill, who we met today put his boat up for 2 weeks work, and now he's on his second year of repairs. We won't let that happen to us.

Not to say that everything is easy. The boatyard gave me a hassle about outside help. My brother Ed and his friend Steve are coming tomorrow to assist us in removing the old engine. Bud Taplin will come next week and the manager said that he would not be permitted either, despite the fact that he's not being paid. The boatyard said that none of them could assist, or even climb a ladder without insurance. I checked with my insurance company and they were going to send a certificate with language that should satisfy Riverside. Still, the Riverside manager said no.

In the meanwhile I talked with a neighbor, Captain Bill that I mentioned above. Bill said that it was really a matter of money. When local contractors do work in the boatyard, they pay a portion of their fee to the boatyard. Outside helpers who are not paid deprive the boatyard of revenue. With that in mind, I went back with a new ploy. I proposed that the Riverside yard workers would remove the engine and put the new one in, but that I would have the assistance of my friends to prepare for the removal and the supervision of Bud Taplin on the installation. I explained that Bud was an expert that I was calling in because of his expertise. That approach worked, and the manager agreed.

It was a good lesson in diplomacy for me. I would have needed some yard worker help in any case. The difference was in emphasis. In my original mental model I thought to do all the work myself with the help of friends and to call on yard workers in if and when needed. In the compromise model, I asked the boat yard to do the work while allowing me to handle some preparation and supervision with outside resources. The practical difference between the two is not large. What can I say. I'm an engineer. Diplomacy has never been my strong suit.

At the end of the day I rode my bike down to Avis and rented a car. Then we drove out to the barrier island to a place called Bauman Apartments. Bauman was recommended by our friends Reggie and Terry from Blue Topaz. It's very nice. We rented an apartment here for a week, extendable to two weeks. The apartment is delightful. There is even a back yard and a nice dog to play with. Across the street is a path leading to a private beach. Libby was also delighted to find a microwave oven in the kitchen. Wow, such luxury! (Thanks for the recommendation Reggie and Terry)

Anybody want to come visit us in the next week or two? We can host you in better style than we could do onboard Tarwathie.

The only problem is that all this stuff costs money. Ah well, I just have to relax and to consider these expenses as part of the repowering project.

Repowering Day 3

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