The Boatist

Sailboat Ownership, Translation Work and Tales of Minor Adventure

Retire early, be passionate, don't worry, die poor

Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday at the marina

I parked the jeep at the marina under a velvety blue sky. It was 2 pm on a Sunday afternoon and I was on a mission: to clean the heat exchanger.

Peniche marina on a Sunday afternoon
I felt so good about the balmy weather, blue sky and my mission that I took a couple of pictures.

Port of Peniche
I felt tempted to go for a calm sail in the gentle breeze. But not today, I had a mission that I should have completed 11 years ago back in Port Dover, Canada.

Eleven years ago the raw water impeller half disintegrated and the missing rubber pieces were never retrieved. That means they're in the heat exchanger restricting water flow and causing the exhaust to steam. The engine has never overheated because I don't motor at over 2,000 rpm.

As you can see, this was a special day, regardless of the perfect weather. And that's what I like about a sailboat, it's an insatiable high maintenance mistress that keeps you on a leash in exchange for occasional moments of ecstasy.

But as I was walking down the pontoon, Ryker popped out of his fishing boat and we leaned against a motorboat talking about the Euro Zone, economics, real estate and a Dutch sailor's sexy wife who walked by pushing a bicycle. Just as we were getting ready to wrap up the conversation, Luis walked up with an electric heater under his arm and something to say, followed by another sailor with a book in hand and ideas on his mind and lastly, another friend just killing time. A regular convention on the pontoon.

Whatever happened to socializing on Facebook, instead of spending half the afternoon yakking with real people.

By the time I got to the boat the sun was already sliding down the steep curve toward the horizon.

In the cockpit, what do I immediately notice? My Rutland 913 wind generator isn't spinning. After 11 years of enduring high winds, rain, being jerked so hard in a storm I thought it would jolt itself to pieces, after all this time baking under the Portuguese sun, it suddenly stopped. Rest in peace 913. You'll probably sit on that post like a stuffed rooster for quite some time before you are added to the "missions to be accomplished" agenda.

Rutland 913, no longer spinning
Zero accomplishment. Are you kidding, I had a great time, got home just in time to light the fireplace followed by dinner and a couple glasses of red wine. Damn it, it's good to have a mistress.


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