A lot has (and has not) happened since we were last together in December. How have you guys been? Time to catch up.
What has happened?
Carol and I are, once again, alone in our home. The project to help and heal the family that has been living with us is, for the most part, over. While they are not to the point where we would like them to be (who ever is?), they are for the most part making progress. Time for them to fledge and make their own way in the world, once again. We have high hopes.
What has not happened?
EVERYTHING on Sea Bird. The plan (I know, Steve, God is laughing) is to take her south this winter, somewhere warm. Florida, Boot Key Harbor, Dry Tortugas, and Bahamas have all been discussed. The Minor Problem is that nothing has been done in the way of repairs and upgrades in the two years (two years???) since we have been back. She needs some attention.
The Major Problem is what to do long term. It has become apparent that we are not going to cruise year round. Because I'm a Pirate married to a Farmer, we are going to have to split the year up. Growing season in NC. Cold season in...Someplace Warm. Thanksgiving and Christmas in NC with family. Some time each year in New Jersey with the Jersey Girl.
So what happens in between? Do we leave her in Oriental (a place we love)? Do we move her to a place that is less than a FIVE HOUR drive from our house? Little River, SC, is near where my Dad lives and can keep an eye on her (FOUR HOUR drive). Do we move her to someplace like Titusville, FL, where the weather is almost always better in the winter than NC but the drive is brutal (although there is a cheap flight from an airport near our house that puts us there in under three hours)?
The Major Problem is left for another day. Time to work on the Minor Problem. It's not so minor.
You will remember that Carol has taken a contract job. It is technically scheduled to end in September, but looks like it will actually end in July. Our lease at the marina ends in June. As we are probably going to move the boat (somewhere) south, we don't really want to sign another yearly lease. So it looks like I will move aboard the boat in July, living in the boatyard on the hard, while my bride is back home. This is not my ideal living arrangement. It is certainly not her ideal situation. She is...whining. A little bit. Approaching a full pout.
I don't really see any way around it. Things have to be done. Some by the boatyard, some by me, but done they will have to be if we are going to be traveling south and back in NC for Thanksgiving. And as we all know, things on a boat never go according to the plan. At least not my plan (Thanks again, Steve.)
So a few days ago, I went to see her to say hello. I gave her decks a thorough scrubbing. I got the dinghy up and running and once again hanging off the stern on the davits. I stuffed the sails into the back of the Jeep and brought them home for inspection. Couldn't see out the rearview mirror for the trip home. (FIVE HOURS)
I had two very restful nights of sleep on the water. With a touch of salt.
So now the sails are in the empty bedroom that once housed grandchildren. One project over, another begun.
We are looking forward to it.