The featured picture shows a young woman relaxing on the beach with a coconut cocktail, what some people may think we do all day. “Don’t you get bored?” “What do you do all day?” Yes, we drink our share of cocktails, but that is just before we drop from exhaustion from what we really do all day long. We are not bitter or jaded, but we’ve been taking a good look at our stays in both St Lucia and St Martin and comparing them mentally with what even we thought we’d be doing. We haven’t exactly been living the dream; we’ve been feeding it. Eventually the dream will get full and spill out into reality, but not this time around in St Martin. Here’s a look at what we’ve really been doing.
The wind generator has developed a wobble which translates into a vibration that goes through the pole and into the boat. Usually the D400 is very quiet, but this wobble has made it noisy and probably less efficient. Dave and his dad, John, researched potential problems and sent me up the Boson’s chair to have a look.
First I tied down the blades to stop the motion. Then I wiggled different parts this way and that way to find out where the wobble was coming from. The blades all seemed tight. There was no play in the nose cone, but the entire unit wobbled at the base where the D400 sat on top of the pole. More research suggested that the problem is the yaw bearings. So they lowered me back down and added bearings and a new nose cone to our shopping list.
After a hard day’s work on Dave’s long list of boat projects, we took the evening off to visit with Indigo and enjoy some drinks and BBQ. Eric and Debbie always have funny stories about their misadventures. I think what makes them funnier is knowing we aren’t the only ones having misadventures.
When we bought the boat, it did not have a generator or air conditioning. Those were probably two of the best investments we made into the boat. However, there was a slight oversight in the installation of the air conditioning. There is no drain for the condensation. How much water can condensate on the unit? You may ask. It is about 1/2 a gallon per hour. Still doesn’t sound like a lot? well run the aircon all day and we have at least 4 gallons of water sloshing around inside our dining seat! Ideally there should be a condensation pump that sends the water to the bilge. We don’t have a pump, but Dave and John decided to try installing tubing and gravity feeding the water to the bilge.
Of course neither of them can fit behind the fridge, so it became my job to run the tubing through the hole they drilled in the seat behind the refrigerators to where Dave was at the far side to guide it into the bilge.
It took all three of us to get the tubing in the right place. The tube didn’t lay flat, so the gravity feed didn’t work, but simply taping it down flat allowed the water to flow through. It looked like we would be successful… Until we tried to put the refrigerator back in place. The tube pushed the fridge out about an inch. Back to the drawing board.
Dave and John went shopping and came up with the idea of putting a corner in the tube. Hmmm. If our new plumbing ever gets clogged, my first guess will be at the corner.
One more downward dog yoga session behind the fridge and the job was finished up. The tube laid nicely along the bottom and side. After taping it in place, the water still went through by gravity. It’s not perfect, but it will get us by until we get a condensation pump. Then the pump will just need to be installed and hooked up to the plumbing we already have in place now. Best of all… The fridge went back into place! I think I heard the angels singing!
It pays to marry a geek from a geek family. Buy a windlass remote for $200+? Heck no! Build one from scratch for $20!
I mean John is truly making this thing from scratch. Find a plastic box, a switch, yada, yada…
Best of all? It works! Now I can operate the windlass and see what I’m doing. What a concept!
Dave even installed a way to hang it in the anchor locker. What more can a girl ask for? I’m so spoiled!
It was a busy couple of weeks with all the work, but we did manage some more fun time. Francois and Vanessa from Why Knot IV met us at Pineapple Pete’s on Christmas Eve.
The evenings were comfortable in the cockpit where we played card games, drank wine, or just relaxed and chatted.
Of course, no visit to St Martin is complete without visiting the Sunset Bar to watch the planes arrive and takeoff. The bar even posts the arrival schedule for your picture taking convenience.
The small planes do not need to use the entire length of the runway, so they can come in high.
A medium sized plane comes in lower, but still doesn’t need the entire runway. It is the big planes like the KLM and Air France flights that look like they are landing on the beach. Unfortunately, our visit to Sunset Bar was not timed right to see one. But Dave’s folks got the idea while we shared our last lunch together before their departure flight. Maybe now we’ll go to the beach in our bathing suits and enjoy a cocktail in a coconut while we soak up some sun. Hahahaha! Now THAT is funny…