A mad dash to the finish and off to Antigua, I hope…

It’s been a crazy few months and somehow it’s only two months now until I plan to head south to Antigua as part of the Salty Dawg Rally.

I am happy to say that my repairs to Pandora’s fuel tank seem to be holding and I  have not seen any evidence of further leaking.  I didn’t expect to see any leaks on the “repaired” tank but did wonder about my port tank which had some evidence of fuel under it.  I sopped up the small amount of fuel from under the tank and it appeared to be thicker and darker than fresh fuel.  It was also quite red as opposed to a pinkish color from dye that is added to fuel not taxed for road use, further suggesting that it’s been there for years.  After getting the small amount of fuel that had collected under that tank out, no more has shown up.  Fingers crossed that there won’t be a problem.

Last week I ran Pandora down to Stamford for what I hope will be the final adjustment to her paint job, the waterline.   When she was painted last summer, the summer of 2018 actually, I asked to have the aft waterline brought up a bit.  They did do that but didn’t adjust the rest of the waterline so it ended up wavy and not the same on both sides.

Getting it fixed has proven to be a bit challenging, coordinating schedules between me and the painter, but it’s being done now.   I understand that they do a lot of work at the Hinkley Yard in Stamford so I guess he worked out a deal on hauling and storage while Pandora is in the yard as I am not being charged this go-around.   Having her out of the water for now is good as I needed a place to put her for a while while we are away in France and it’s better to have her on the hard when she’s not in use.

Anyway, by mid September she should be all set for a winter in the tropics, I hope.

The run to Stamford was uneventful and it was a bit surreal to see her on the dock with a backdrop of office buildings before we headed to the train station and home. While she looks pretty big in that photo, she looks positively diminutive in this one, next to the big cat. I was told to leave Pandora in a slip near the lift and she was out of the water before I even called the next morning.  Here she is on the hard.  I sure hope that they put more supports under her and also add chains to keep them from slipping out.  Just sayin as it is hurricane season after all. 

So, this afternoon we head to France, Paris and Normandy for the next two weeks.  I am hopeful that there will be something nautical to post about while we are there.  However, Paris, where we will begin and end our trip isn’t exactly  known for boats, except perhaps pond boats on some of those reflecting pools.  Fingers crossed that there will be something to write about.  If not, I’ll think of something.

Oh yeah, remember the problem with the watermaker?  It turns out that all I needed to do was a “hard reset” on the computer controller and all is well again.  It took a while for me to get up the nerve to do this as it involved exposing the computer board and shorting two terminals, something that seemed potentially “terminal” to me.

Anyway, I did it and the unit is now working perfectly again.  As the boat is now on the hard for a month, I pickled the unit with propylene glycol and will start it up again when I am ready to head to Antigua.  In the mean time, I ordered some parts to set the unit up to be run manually in the event that the computer gets messed up again.

By setting up the manual override I will be able to run the unit even if the electronics aren’t functioning.  Actually, that’s the way it was set up on my last boat before I took it out and installed it on “new” Pandora.  It’s convenient to have the computer to run the unit automatically but when push comes to shove, it’s nice to know that I can just switch it on.  I’ll write about that when the bypass is settled and in place.

So, Pandora’s on the hard and we fly to Paris in a few hours.  Sounds like fun.  Hope there are some boats…

And, speaking of boats, with Pandora on the hard Brenda and I went for a ride in our little red car the other day and enjoyed a ride across the CT River on the Hadlyme Ferry, a short but sweet run across the river.  After nearly two years, I can’t believe that it’s nearly time to head to Antigua again.  Let’s hope that there isn’t some sort of catastrophic hurricane that gets in the way.

And speaking of hurricanes and hurricane Dorian bearing down on the Bahamas Abacos, it does give one pause for thoughts about how things can change in a moment when Mother Nature comes to call.    As I write this Dorian has been upgraded to a Cat 5, the strongest possible, a terrifying thought.

As I have mentioned, I am involved in the Salty Dawg Rally to Antigua.  Well, the rally also offers a second destination, in this case Marsh Harbor, Bahamas and that is exactly where the eye of Dorian is expected to make landfall in the next few hours.  With the storm surge expected to reach as high as 25′ and sustained winds near 150kts, it’s hard to imagine much surviving such a hit.

I do wonder if this storm will be a repeat performance of what happened in the BVIs a few years ago that led to a switch in destinations for the rally to Antigua.

This photo of Dorian is pretty sobering.  The “eye” is centered over Marsh Harbor so I expect that we will begin hearing more about the damage very soon.   Fortunately, Dorian is expected to turn to the NE and possibly not make landfall but there remains a lot of uncertainty about his path. While Pandora is in good shape to make the run to Antigua and crew is in place, I sure hope that nothing happens in the next two months to change the rules like Dorian is doing in the Bahamas as I write this post.

Bests laid plans or not, when all is said and done, it’s all about Mother Nature as she sets the rules.

Finger crossed…

Anyway, off to France.  Hope I find some boats.

 

2 responses to “A mad dash to the finish and off to Antigua, I hope…

  1. Maureen Woodroffe

    Have a great time. Maureen and Bill

  2. The ferry ride was one of my favorite memories from my visit!

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