Sunday, August 30, 2009

It's hard to beat a good pair of ash pain sticks

(Oars.) Reliable. Efficient. Cheap. Low maintenance. Not like Honda outboard motors at all.

Simplify, simplify. I could hear Hank's words from across the years as my outboard coughed and died and absolutely refused to re-start. I think its a fuel issue. I will look at it later. For now I am thinking rowing is a pretty nice thing to do on a sunny Sunday morning. Nothing brings you in touch with the maritime environment like a slow row; working the currents, dodging the moored boats, listening to the gulls and the fish jumping out of the water.

Of course, the experience is much better in a boat actually designed to row. Aluminum skiffs do not fit that category and it is a personal peeve of mine when I see a Craigslist listing for an aluminum 'rowboat' for sale that obviously has an outboard mount on the back. The aluminum skiff is the antithesis of a good rowboat. That is what I was thinking as I was rowing an aluminum outboard skiff with too-short oars across a heavy current trying to find the slack spots where I could make some headway.

I am surprised people read this with all my complaining...

Anyway, I made a run out to Jenny to see how she faired the stormy weather and two weeks of neglect. She seemed quite fine actually. About 18 inches of water in the bilge (its a very deep and narrow bilge) but nothing too terrible. It took a minute to pump it out and then clean up whatever the heavy rains couldn't dislodge. The birds have been enjoying the boat in my absence obviously.

I think I am actually looking forward to haulout time so I can stop worrying about the boat and get started on some interior projects. I miss working on the boat and working at the mooring just doesn't do it for me. With the less-than-stellar sailing weather this season and my need to work as much as possible getting in a sail is more work than enjoyment anyway. I am ready to have Jenny home so I can make the insides pretty. I might even forego sailing next year to advance the project. I am pretty sure it will be a few years before my bank account is sufficiently engorged to afford a decent cruise. Maybe it is better to get the job done and sail later. That probably wouldn't work for a lot of people but I actually like the work. Maybe not quite as much as cruising but probably as much as daysailing which is all I have time for these days (and not so much of that either).

Jenny looks good. The wind gusted pretty strong for an hour or two yesterday with the hurricane passage offshore but I could find no evidence that it was a hardship for the boat.

Now I can stop worrying for a day or two...

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