Thursday, February 6, 2014

San Diego: with pleasure

        Chicago was a mess yesterday morning.  Only 6” of snow fell over night, but it was still falling as I went to the airport and the taxi slid around a bit.  My flight was delayed a couple of times, but finally took off and that is all that matters.  About a third of the seats were empty.  I had a row to myself.  Almost civilized.  Landing in San Diego, sunny, in the 60s, palm trees, boats sailing on the harbor, people in shorts, it was difficult to believe not just that San Diego is in the same country as Chicago, but that it is on the same planet.
        My messenger bag proved a success.
        Needing a coat in Chicago, I did not bother with the vest, and did not, as one reader suggested, have 31 pockets full of gadgets.  Only five of the coat’s seven, and several of those items, such as the Yellowbrick, are not going back with me.
        None of this weighed very much.  The MacBook Air at just under 3 pounds, the most.  The rest are hand sized.  
        I didn’t reach GANNET until just before sunset.  She is in fine shape and appeared to be cleaner than I expected, although when I scrubbed her deck this morning, considerable grime washed away.
        The two parts of my life are so unrelated—the only common element is me—that the transition is sometimes surprising.  Last night I found myself wondering what was in the blue bag on the port quarter berth, until I opened it and remembered that I bought a new waterproof food bag when I was last here.
        I leave enough on GANNET so I don’t have to make an immediate trip to the supermarket, but biked over this morning anyway to get fresh fruit and other essentials, including nuts and gin.  I know you’re wondering.  I have only an inch or two of Laphroaig, but the source for that is farther away and would take too much time.  Contrary to popular belief, I can live with Laphroaig.  For a while.
        Before scrubbing the deck, I bent on the furling jib.  This is always a hassle because wrinkles in the sailcloth over the luff rope stick in the foil.  Lots of trips from bow to winch and back.  Eventually the jib went up.  Usually I lower and stow it below when I return to Evanston, but I think that this time, expecting to be away only two months, I’ll leave it in place.
        I also returned the bow sprit to the deck, which enabled me to restore order to the cabin.
        However, the Jordan drogue has arrived.  Quick trip.  It was shipped from England last Friday.
        I have not yet opened the package, but it is bigger and very much heavier than I expected.  I’m not sure where I will stow it.  Perhaps in the cockpit during passages.
        The dock around GANNET was relatively clean, and the sea lions have for the present taken up residence elsewhere.  None even out on the bait barge.  I did startle a black crowned night heron when I stood up in the companionway this morning.  I apologized as he flapped away.
        Hosing the deck established that I still have a leak around the forward hatch.  Sigh.
        Although I was hot while scrubbing the deck and the sun is shining now, rare rain is predicted for tonight. 
        Being here is great in many different ways, chief among them living mostly outside again—even though I’m writing in The Great Cabin, hatches behind and ahead of me—I’m facing aft—are open, and I can feel the wind on my back and see the sky; and to be no longer dormant.