Thursday, October 17, 2013

The first 10 days

I am surprised how little adjusting it has taken us to live off of the grid. All of Marie's demands for power, water, and heat now seem to be paying off. Well just a minute, lets take a step back, I've got this boat so complicated that I'm always holding my breath. Will this work will that work, and when I hear a strange noise I cringe. There are many little glitches that I somehow manage to overcome. I got about 100 gallons of water out of the watermaker before the high pressure pump fell apart. After some soul searching about what went wrong, we concluded that although the pump was new it was over 10 years old and the seals probably just dried out. A special thanks to the guys at SK watermakers for helping me out and getting the parts to me quickly.
Our friends Bill and Connie, on a trawler named Polan, invited us to raft up to them at the Columbus day regatta. With our 7 foot draft I thought it best if we arrive a Elliot Key at high tide, this meant we would have to leave Coconut Grove during low tide. Well no sooner did we clear the channel at the end of the anchorage, than we ran aground. The wind was blowing us further onto the shoal every time we got a little slack. If only I had a little more power (a tow) I knew could clear the shoal. Eva, our first officer in charge of ships relations, came on deck and flagged down an open fisherman. The captain was nice enough, but he was not up for a tow. Instead he offered the carry an anchor off to deeper water so that we could pull ourselves off as the tide came in. Help never comes for free, in this particular case, I had to listen to him rant about how I should work myself free and that I shouldn't be on the west side of Biscayne Bay. I took it like a champ. Just as he left and I started to pull on the anchor line a tow boat showed up and pulled us into deeper water, lickety split.
Back on course, we were off to Elliott, shaken, but not broken. We arrived at our destination without any further setback. Bill had picked out a great spot. I am really pleased with my anchoring setup. It may be slightly oversized, but man it's like a suction cup on the bottom of the ocean. That first night at Elliot we had the great pleasure of being serenated by Ken Gill and his daughter Summer Storm, cool name huh, look her up on youtube. I just thought the world of them.
Everyone in the raft-up was leaving the next day, but I really needed a little more time to amortize the effort of getting there, so we stayed another day. To me it looked like we were a hundred yards from the island of Boca Chita, so I got everyone into the dinghy, and headed for shore. For a while there it felt as though time stood still. On and on we went, but the little island just didn't get any closer. When I looked back at our boat, it however was getting smaller and smaller. Point, I need to get better at judging distance on the water. Boca Chita was bought by Mark Honeywell, yes the Honeywell on a lot of our electronics, in the 1930s. He used the island as a retreat and hosted extravagant parties attended by famous entrepreneurs, I wasn't there. In any case it is a great destination for a day on Biscayne Bay.
Mirador performed really well and my confidence in myself (how fast I can fix things) and the boat has been bolstered. One more going away party and we'll be ready to sail into the sunset. The truth be told I am a little embarrassed about a second going away party, it definitely seals my fate. I have to go!

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you made it back in one piece pop, now we can start planning our trip to dominica :D You should make a sequel to the "Life of Pi" movie, and call it "Life of Joaquin" You wouldn't need the zoo since you have hadrian and eva lol, but yeah start making a movie! Alright, don't forget to call an let us know your alive now an again, and keep writing! stay safe poppers!