So tonight I encountered Nora again. We have met before but the more often you encounter people the better you know them eh? She is 88 and lives on her boat. From England so accent a bit off. Hearing is a bit off too. Husband passed some years ago. And now she resides Paradise Village marina living on her boat.

Her friends all tell her to ditch the boat and get a condo. She is not very excited about this. She has lived in condos/houses all her life and is so done with that. She wants to live on her boat. And she will tell you this. Not hard to communicate with Nora. Just don’t speak softly.

Nora got a new hip about a few weeks ago. So she is a bit wobbly. Drinking a bit less wine than usual perhaps. She is accompanied tonight by her friend Heather. An 8 year Condo Dweller who met Nora God knows how. But they get along. And how could you not. Nora is Nora. I asked her if she ever met a man named Gatsby but she changed the subject.

Nora is concerned that she is running out of money. Lots of people are. Sometimes for reasons, some times not. Anyway Heather encourages Nora to write her memoirs.

Nora reports that she worked as an agent with a company representing various Hollywood types. But after a few months of that many of her clients threatened to quit her because they were not comfortable with the policies of her employer. So she decided to open her own firm representing stars. And it went well with a nice office on Rodeo Drive.

But now she is feeling like she is short of cash even if Mexico is a reasonably cost effective place to live. This is the tip of the iceberg of a very interesting life.

Her friend is absolutely correct. She needs to put these stories into text and publish. A life well lived and the tales to prove it.

Nora. Lived long and well. May you prosper.

Another Day Another Bunch of Hoses

I thought sure I was done with the black water project. But just noticed that the vent hoses need to be attached. This probably matters. But its 95 degrees. Maybe Mañana!

I did get the SSB antenna rearranged. It is mounted up on the backstay. The feed wire I ran down along the backstay and into and through the arch that holds the solar panels. I thought that was clean and clever. But it was also wrong. Doing it this way makes the arch part of the antenna. So your broadcast signal is incoherent. Like I need help with that!

hoses-2The fix entails keeping the antenna 3 inches or more away from the backstay and the arch. Running the antenna feed through the arch would be a Violation of this principle! Pic one (top right) is about my cleverness with the through the arch plan. Pic two (at left) is about the fix once completed. Pic three (down below) is about the feed cable at the base.

Inside the boat today I hooked up the interior antenna connections just inside the connector you can see in pic 3. Sounds simple enough. I hope you like soldering a ring connector on in the aft corner of the boat at about 100 degrees with no breeze! So that completed the antenna project anyway.

And afterwards I showered on the swimstep because I was completely soaked! Barring any lightning damage I hope I never have to do that again. But I know better.


Back in Nuevo Vallarta

The first photo is as she lies upon my arrival. The second is after a brief makeover… look closely damn yer eyes! Can ye not see the sails and life raft ha’ been made ready?

I arrived Sunday September 25th. I’d been home fixing the hell out of all sorts of house stuff. And now I’m back in Nuevo Vallarta to go to town fixing the hell out of all sorts of boat stuff. Bring it on!!!

Shortly after I arrived at the marina the sun went down behind the condos to the west. Perfect time to bend the sails back on Spill The Wine! It was hot, but not as hot as it was in June. It was 95 daily. And there was some humidity maybe… 🙂 I think we are under 90 degrees today. Still a good day to drink a lot of water.

The sails have been floating around the inside of the boat since June. Didn’t really want to leave them up in the air to bake in the UV without otherwise being deployed. But they are BIG! So at night I have been sleeping with the sails. As much as I love them, I don’t miss sharing a bed with the sails. And they look good on the boat! She looks naked without them. But she won’t be cold down here.

Monday it was time to move on to finishing the holding tank hose replacement. Welcome to the Bilge! You’re gonna D D D D Die in the Bilge!! And it is the hottest place in the boat. And did I mention no breeze? Makes me thirsty just thinking about it. But that is a done deal. Ten more years before I need to do that again? I hope so.

Electrical parts carted down from the US. Stowed. Deflated dingy. Out of the salon. Bicycle. Out of the salon. There is a lot of room in the boat all of a sudden! Rode said bicycle down to the marina office to alert them that I will be departing 10/5 or so. That goes well.

Today back to work on the SSB. A sort of Ham radio. Regular VHF radio is 20 miles max. SSB is thousands. Out of the Bilge and into the Breeze if there is any….

Hanging Out With Holding Tanks

It’s more fun hanging out with holding tanks than I knew. A bit over the top wearing sunglasses at night. But as friends go they are pretty rude. Maybe not that bad.

This is Head maintenance. After ten years it’s time to replace the hoses. My Spanish word for the day. Mangueras. Means hose. Cab to marine store and get a bunch of mangueras. Gracias!

Replacing the hoses requires removing the holding tanks. Forward tank is 50 liters. So I peel the tank out and inspect. Tank interior has minimal deposits and is virtually odorless. Now I did put a little chlorox in last night. Still odd as the forward head has always had an unfortunate odor. Oh well, onward. Time to cut new hoses.

Everything is going well until. …! The exhaust hose is too short! Who cut that thing! (Me). I should mention, the hose has wire reinforcement. Care is due in cutting and handling so it slices you not. Don’t ask me how I know! So I cut another. Ay yi yi! It is still too short! I actually used stronger language than that. Another cab to the marine store is now on the horizon.

Now done with progress on the forward head being parts down. Let’s tear into the aft. Some odor has developed over the past six months. A few suspect hose connections. Good. All getting replaced. Inspect interior of 85 liter tank. Hmmm. Used to be I could check the content level with a flashlight transilluminating the rotomolded plastic tank. This has not worked so well of late. Monster deposits tell the tale why. But that hosed out pretty clean. Still quite odorless. But still kinda eww. Hey it’s only once every ten years!

Worth pointing out it’s 96 in the boat and 70% humidity. I’m getting really good at sweating. Keep the fluids up!

Another interesting angle. Nuevo Vallarta is a ghost town. A lot of boats laid up for storage. It’s hot and most of these hosers are gone north for summer. I’m dining alone in a beachfront restaurant. As in only customer! Service is good!

So tomorrow I have the supplies to whack out the aft tank etc. No doubt it’ll be 96 again WhooHoo! Back to marine store Monday to get another slightly longer bit of hose and then the forward head will also be in hand. I’m getting down to just a few more maintenance details, then time to bend the sails back on and get ready to hit the sea.

Off to San Jose del Cabo early October is the plan.

Mid September I’m back in Renton for an important Anniversary!

Several showers in order before I head back… and laundry. ..