Monday, June 3, 2013

Treasures for the bilge

Dear Friends and Family,

More than a week has gone by and we haven’t seen a bit of evidence of human existence. Has there been some sort of apocalypse? Of course, we know there hasn’t been, as we’ve made contact with friends and family via email and listened to other humans on our HAM radio, but it sure seems weird to have gone so long without seeing a single person and it does give one something to think about.

We made it through the off and on again rain storms; all were pretty tame, but we did have some strong winds. Jimi threw out a second anchor as a precaution. We spotted lightening one evening and Jimi immediately unplugged everything and shut down the boat’s main power. So there we sat in the dark, but not for long. Nothing became of the lightening and everything went back to normal. So what did we do while held up in such a small space for over a week?  Jimi used the time well by knocking several ‘honey do’s’ off his list. He installed a latch on the trash door; it used to open during passages banging this way and that. He made wedges from scrap pieces to teak to tuck in between the sliding cabinet doors; they would rattle when the boat rocked. We would previously stuff a piece of tissue paper between the doors to stop the rattling. He fixed some trim pieces in the forward head and finished the top portion of the aft companion way with scrap pieces of teak trim. He attached hooks above my vanity for hanging towels. The top of his dresser can be used as a book shelf now; the books are secured by a piece of rope connected to a hook on each side. When is the best time to find leaks on a boat? While it’s raining, of course and this he accomplished too. He also spent time on his personal hobbies and studied weather info.

I made some small cloth bags to hold desiccant and sewed a strip of sunbrella on the end of our mizzen sail cover. Then Jimi finished that project.  I tried a new bread recipe: Hawaiian sweet bread – it was so good. I’ll have to make that again when we can  buy more of the ingredients. I worked on my own personal hobbies: scrap booking (I’m all caught up now), watercolor painting and cross stitching. I also did a lot of reading: I finished the fourth book of ‘A Game of Thrones” and began the fifth book.

Finally on our last day at Little Harbor we were able to venture out for some exercise and fun. However, the dinghy was still on deck and we had no desire to unload it, so we swam to shore. I carried our clothes, camera, snacks and water in a dry bag while Jimi carried our burnable trash and we swam about 500 feet to the beach. We hiked the deserted one and half miles of treacherous terrain until we could go no more. The terrain was razor sharp pieces of dead coral with small portions of sandy beach areas. If this wasn’t a good workout after sitting for the past week, I don’t know what would be. We both needed that.

We were in search of some old ruins Jimi spotted on our navigational software. When we got to the end of the line, we had to turn into the brush to find the ruins. The area was so grown in that it was too thick for us to trample through; we had to abort. Although we didn’t find the ruins, we found many treasures during our beach combing. We found several conch shells in perfect condition, Polvoparahornear (baking soda from a foreign country unopened and in perfect condition), a puffed up sand dollar, an aluminum buoy, and a small child’s toy.  The beach was lined with nets, ropes, and plastic containers all which have washed up on shore. Plastics are a big problem for the ocean and its sea life. You will always find windward beaches littered with plastics that either fall off boats or because container ships dump their trash. Metals will sink and are quickly consumed by the salt water, glass will sink to the bottom of the ocean often times breaking to make sea glass, which is later gathered by collectors, but plastics do not disintegrate in the salt water, nor do they sink. They float and often times whales and other sea animals think they are food, which is then the cause of their death.  It was very sad to see such a beautiful place so overcome with plastic trash.

After our hike, we built a small fire on the beach to burn our burnable trash, which consisted of tissues, used paper towels and other paper products, etc. Once we are twenty five mile out to sea, we’ll throw our cans and glass overboard. We’ll hold on to our plastics until we can throw them in a proper trash receptacle.
That’s all we’ve got for this post. We got a lot done for not doing much.

We plan to leave here tomorrow. I’m not sure what the winds hold for us at this point. The forecast says not to expect much, but we are going to go for it anyhow.  We could make it ten miles or thirty miles – I’m keeping my fingers crossed for the thirty. Even though we are three days in to hurricane season, we’re confident we can still make it South before the real danger arrives. And if not, we have several hurricane holes mapped out that we can duck in to.

Stay tuned for our ‘Top 10 list of what to do when it’s raining outside’.

Love everybody,
Lorie & Jimi

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