Well this has been a week, remember how I whinged last week about how much contradictory information there is online about caring/repairing for a fibre glass hull? This week so far I have scraped the sides of the hull and I have washed the grease build up of the underneath/flat areas of the hull, and you know what, it was all a waste of time. I should have used a sander from the start. This boat was made in 1977 (or 1979, depending on which piece of paper you look at), there are so many coats of paint under there that there is no chance of attacking the gel coat by mechanically sanding it. I could have finished this job by now if I was willing to just stop the car and ask for directions, yes yes I am that man that is prepared to get so lost they have no idea where they are rather than just stop and ask someone the way. Vanessa went over to the paint office (25 metres from where we are in the boat yard), and in Spainglishfrench asked the lady for some help. In my defence I thought I was doing okay, the underneath has come up a treat, but when it came to cleaning up the “grease” build up from the sides I ran into problems, that stuff was not budging for love or money. The “paint lady”, Angelique said that the “grease” is previous anti-fouling paint and is designed not to come off, she thought I was funny because of all the work that I had done that was not needed, I thought she was funny because she licked our boat to ascertain what paint I was trying to remove (eww)?¿!*
So, plan B, no wait wait, I haven’t finished moaning about the Google information from last week yet, it turns out we don’t need to paint Adventurer with anti-fouling paint, so long as you cruise in fresh water and don’t go in coastal water, it’s not needed. Things get better and better, well we may not be quite there yet, but they certainly became a bit cheaper. So, plan B, unfortunately I do have to wash the underside of the other side of the boat, it will be easier than clogging up huge amounts of sandpaper, once that’s done I get to play with the orbital sander that came with the boat, yay! I don’t even have to fill all the pits in the hull as the paint will do that, there’s a few deeper dinks underneath that’ll need filling, but instead of the 5 kilos of filler I was imagining I’ll only need 500 grammes, another yay!
Anyhoo, we’re still on stilts in the boatyard (obviously), we’ve been living aboard for two weeks now and all is good, and I really mean that, I thought that there would be some sort of transition period where we would miss a larger living area but no, even the cats have gotten used to it, though getting in and out of the door without one of them trying to sneak out is getting harder and harder, we didn’t realise Lara – who is so laid back she sometimes lays down while she eats – could move so fast. We’re hoping to be in the water in about two weeks, depending on the bill for the work done to the rudder and drive shaft. Talking of which, we weren’t entirely shafted as I said last week, it turns out that the rudder was given a hefty whack by something that actually bent it out of shape, so Mr. Cynic, give it a rest! It did seem a bit dubious considering how people said that all boats bought through H2O need work done on rudder, bearings and drive shafts.
Of the many things that we left behind in Spain mostly we got away with it, though I can’t believe we left behind the coffee spoon (long story, I won’t bore you). My sister Jacqui bought us a book, “Cruising French Waterways” which we had to leave behind (sorry Sis), I know, leaving that behind sounds ridiculous but it was hardback and we really were counting the kilos that went into the car, anyway, there’s a copy of the very same book on the Adventurer, cool. We had to leave behind all the plants including a buddhist pine (please Marcus, look after her), which I desperately wanted to come with us. We’ve had an amaryllis that, despite bouts of neglect, (we once put it in an cupboard in its dormant period, only to remember it much later and found it was nearly ready to bloom), it had just finished flowering before we left so we cut it back, took the bulb out of the soil and brought it with us in a plastic bag to replant as soon as we got here, it has just started shooting again, yay! I brought my chefs knives only to find the knives here are far superior to mine. I’m pretty sure that in a few months time I’ll be saying “where’s the ______”, and Vee will remind me that we left it behind. I know that we’re going to wish we had brought the quilt though, there was one on the inventory so we left ours behind, bad mistake, the one on board is very thin and we’re not acclimatised to being this far north yet, we’re already cold at night and have had to get a blanket, this is July, what’re we going to be like in winter?¿! As soon as we get our boat licences (yeah yeah, I’ll get to that), we’ll be heading to the warmer south as fast as this boat will take us.
*In case you’re wondering about the slight contradiction here, it seems that the previous owners were also confused about the should/should not info concerning anti-fouling paint and decided to leave the underneath of the boat but paint the sides with the stuff?¿! See, it’s not just me 🙂