Now that our friends have departed its back to work, on the boat that is if you can call that work. I have a few projects to work on before we head north to the sea of Cortez. Apart from the regular servicing of various boat systems I decided to replace much of the running rigging as most of it is as old as the boat and some of the lines are getting a little hard. I particularly want to replace the mainsail halyard, main sheet, the topping lift and spinnaker halyard, the last of which I use to be winched up the mast when necessary. I also need to replace the block at the top of the mast which has cracked and is also used for hoisting me up the mast. I also need to replace the wind vane and bird protector on the top of the mast since those dammed FRIGATE birds keep landing on the top of the mast and flying off with various parts of my boat. I have no idea how they removed the bird protector as it has to be unscrewed.
One other BIG project we had embarked on is to have a stainless steel arch made to hold the solar panels, act as davits for the dinghy and hold various other pieces of cruising equipment. One of our sister ships, Kewa, another HR46 is here in the marina and they have just had one made which I liked the design of and thought it is a good opportunity to get one made when I can see the design and quality of workmanship. Mexico is a great place to get work like this done as labour costs are quite a bit cheaper than anywhere else. So having pushed the button it took about a week for the wheels to start moving but now progress is being made quickly.
We did debate whether to have the work done as it would delay our departure to the Sea of Cortez but it’s an opportunity too good to miss. Another advantage of staying is that we will get to see more of our friends who are departing for Australia on the Pacific Puddle Jump and attend the seminars kindly put on for sailors in the area. The seminars cover topics such as weather, fishing, mechanics, how to provision on long passages. Did you know you can keep eggs for over 3 months without refrigerating them? And no it does not involve covering them in Vaseline or varnish.
This week is the week when all the guys heading off to the Pacific Islands and beyond start to leave on the Pacific Puddle jump. The first leg is nearly 3000 miles and takes around 3 weeks to make the first landfall. It is likely to be the longest passage many people have made or will make. Our friends Richard and Geri on SV Panthera, whom we met in Friday Harbor are leaving tomorrow and we wish them fair winds and following seas. Have a look at some great photos and videos at www.richandger.com There are apparently about 300 boats heading to the Marquesas islands from all up the west coast of America (North, Central and South). It sounds a lot but it’s not really given the distance. We have started to listen to the Puddle Jump cruisers net on the SSB radio to hear the positions of our friends and acquaintances that have left already. It’s amazing that we can hear people on the radio hundreds and even thousands of miles away and out of reach of wifi.
We continue to meet more wonderful people and Katya has been enjoying “hanging out” (definitely not playing) with people her own age. Katya is becoming more independent with each month that goes by. It’s a wonderful thing for me to see her growing up and being there with her. (Not sure of she feels the same though)
One of the other families Katya has been spending time with are on a boat called Family Circus. There are x people on board with. Check out their blog on www.tzortzfamily.blogspot.com
We also met the wonderfully inspiring Jeanne Socrates on here Najad 380, Nereida. Jeanne has completed a number of solo circumnavigations, she became the oldest woman to have circumnavigated solo around the Five Great Capes of the southern Ocean and has been presented with the Blue Water Medal and nominated for the Yachtsman of the year award along with being presented with the Duchess of Kent award and a host of other accolades too numerous to mention. Check her blog out at www.svnereida.com