Sunday, January 6, 2013

December 2012

    October 2007 - December 2012        The Rebuild is Complete
    After a five year rebuild of the 1974 Hallberg Rassy Rasmus 35 hull number 337, I prepare for my long awaited and planned cruise. Some dreams don't come easy and this is no exception. I will admit that I tend to take the hard route in many of the endevours I undertake. The rebuild was a journey in itself, a grueling marathon, but one that left me with a huge sense of accomplishment. This web page allowed me to interact with other Rasmus owners around the world keeping me motivated and inspired. But now it is time to turn the page and embark on another journey. Hopefully one in which Mary Annie will take care of me.
    December 15, 2012         Mary Annie gets broken in FAST
    Mary Annie is docked at the Little Rock Yacht Club on the Arkansas River. She looks mighty small with the large motor yachts docked next to her. We took the boat out on the Arkansas River last Saturday for the first time. We motored up about three miles and then back down another 5 miles. Everything seemed to be going well, EXCEPT, the steering was pulling to port, almost like a car with a low tire pressure. Also, the hydraulic steering was "slipping". I think that may be remedied by bleeding the lines again. But the pulling to port has me a bit puzzled. I will unhook the hydraulics and steer by tiller to see if it is the hydraulic steering causing the problem. And then, I grounded my baby the FIRST day out. I hadn't gone 6 miles and I go aground. That is really typical of me. I didn't slam to a stop so I was hopeful the damage was minimal. All the yachties at the club could then say, "Welcome to the Club".
    December 16, 2012       Almost Made the Darwin Awards
    The next day I wanted to check the damage. I got my scuba gear out and checked my tanks for air. I was pretty much empty in both scuba tanks but one had about 50 lbs in it. Hell, I was just going to go 6 feet deep and check the damage so I decided to hook it up and give it a go. The water was a chilly 54 degrees and visibility of about 12 inches.   As soon as I got to the bottom of the keel, I couldn't get a teaspoon of air in my lungs. The cold water had turned that 50 lbs of air to zero. So I shot to the surface and came up under the dock, banging my head, still under water. I thinking, shit Pat, this isn't going to be the way I die, it's just too embarrasing. I mananged to fight my way out from under the dock and finally get some much needed air.
    Well, I thought it wise to fill up my tanks and try again. Which I did and found a 2 foot long x 3/8 wide x 1/4 inch deep gouge. Minor damage but I thought I would pull the boat and fix it while I was at a nice spot to do it.
    The repair took about 4 hours total and Mary Annie is back in the water and happy. It just needed a little bit of epoxy sealing, Marine Tex, and bottom paint is all.
    December  2012      LIving on Mary Annie

    I have been living on the boat  for the most part.  It is very quiet in the marina if the weather is calm..  That is a surprise.  I thought there would be a lot of noise coming off the docked boats, you know, clangs, and bangs.  LIfe is pretty simple on this small boat.  I play a little light music in the evening, read a book, and get to bed much ealier without the TV in my face. In the mornings I make some green tea or coffee.  I play Stings' Soul Cages or other light music and sip on my hot drink and watch the sun rise.  

December 25, 2012               Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

      Everyone wishes for white Christmas.  Living in Arkansas, we wish for one every year but haven't had one in over 80 years.  That changed this year.  We were on national news for our white Christmas.  First, icy rain fell and covered the trees bending them over a bit, then the snow came, 10-12 inches of heavy, wet snow that stuck to everything it touched.  The trees kept bending until they broke.  It sounded like a war outside all Christmas night long.  The power lines fell along with the trees.  At least 200,000 homes went cold and dark.  Our power outage lasted for 6 days in 17-30 degree weather.   The morning of Dec. 26th I opened the door and just wanted to cry.  It looked like a bomb went off.  No tree or shrub was left untouched.  There was a lot of work to be done and this was going to put some added pressure on me to leave on time.  Then, wouldn't you know it, I caught the flu.  In a dark cold house with the flu is no fun at all.  I will be looking into alternate power in the near future.  I did get out to the boat before I got sick and took some pics of it covered in snow and ice.  Does the name Endurance come to mind.  Below are pictures of our big blizzard.  

    My Mom Hits a Home Run

    My mom has been worried about this upcoming cruise.  She has been saying things like, "you know, finishing the boat was a great accomplishment, if that's all you do you can be proud, even if you don't go on your trip."  and  "Are you sure you want to be out on that big ocean in that small boat?" and "Pat, you are so tired, when are you going to have time to rest before you leave?" etc. etc.  She hasn't accepted the fact that I'm am going to do this thing.  Then, during Christmas, things changed for her.  She told me she thought long and hard for a gift that would be there for me when I am out alone on the big blue ocean.  Something I could rely on when I am in need.  She brought out a large wrapped present and handed it to me.  I was thinking a heavy duty jacket or wool sweater to keep me warm on those cold damp nights.  I unwrapped the gift and realized my mom was all in and oh did we laugh.  Thanks mom.  It is perfect.

My Very Own Wilson

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