Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Our Honey Do List

Vero Beach Public Library (map)

The third day of the SSCA GAM was low key. The only interesting part was a seminar I went to on weather information, how to get it. Weather is an extremely complicated subject. I suspect that I’ll never get interested in it enough to be really good at it.

I felt very humbled by the vast experience of the fellow members of SSCA. Compared to many of them, Libby and I are just novices.

The seasoned sailors also had an interesting perspective on weather reports. They point out that you can choose your departure date for a long passage, and perhaps wait for the best weather to do that. However, once you do depart, you’re committed regardless of what happens with the weather. If a big storm is approaching you can maybe divert your course a bit one way or the other. Other than that, you just have to be ready to take whatever comes along. I can’t argue with that.

Next week we’re flying to Fairbanks to spend Thanksgiving with David and his family. It is also a welcome home celebration for David. He just returned from a year in Kuwait. My oldest son John, is two months in to a six month deployment in Kyrgyzstan.

So, why aren’t we sailing directly for the Bahamas when we return from Fairbanks? We have a backlog of maintenance chores to accomplish. Some people call it the honey-do list. No matter what you call it, the list is long. Here's our list:

  1. Change the transmission oil
  2. Clean the heat exchanger
  3. Replace the engine anode
  4. Re-rig the shifter control cable
  5. Replace the mainsail outhaul
  6. Re-rig the topping lift
  7. Re-rig the backstay flag attachments
  8. Re-rig the SSB antenna routing and attachments
  9. Make a permanent fix for the chafing exhaust hose
  10. Clean the engine compartment
  11. Clean the hull
  12. Wax the hull
  13. Make a full backup of both laptop hard disks
  14. Make a permanent fix for the GPS up/down/left/right buttons
  15. Sand and repaint the interior white
  16. Sand and re-varnish deck hatches, sampson posts and bowsprit
  17. Repaint the deck
  18. Wax all top deck surfaces
  19. Acquire 225’ of new anchor chain
  20. Inspect all structural steel
  21. Install the new jib furler with new forestay
  22. Rig the new sail
  23. Practice with the new sail and furler
  24. Route and install a control line for the jib furler
  25. Put proper registration numbers on the dinghy
  26. Mend dings on the dinghy
  27. Replace the lifeline pads
  28. Acquire an additional fender
  29. Rebuild the toilet with new gaskets and washers
  30. Re-provision
  31. Clean and finish the on-deck teak
  32. Set up for VOIP phone on the laptop
  33. Find buddy boat(s) to sail to Bahamas with
  34. Decide what to do with our cell phone account
Does the length of the list surprise you? One simple truth about living onboard is that you use a very limited set of physical resources and a limited living space very intensely. Those things need maintenance much more often than comparable space in your house.

In any case, Vero is a very convenient and comfortable place to stay while we do our chores. I don’t expect anybody to feel sorry for us for having to work so much.

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