Friday, January 20, 2017

Durban: glad

        We slid back into GANNET’s natural element at 7:45 this morning and were in our slip a few minutes later.
        First I stowed everything, even tools I knew I would soon be using.  I wanted—no, I needed—to clear up the clutter, and I did.
        Then I removed one of the two floorboards so I could clean up the debris that had fallen into the bilge.  I can reach down there between the floorboards, but for a major cleaning need to remove a board.
       While I was wiping with a paper towel a crew member made the mistake of venturing aft into the bilge from a space below the v-berth.  He quickly realized his mistake, but not before I got him with kill on contact spray, which worked as advertised.
        Bilge acceptably, though not perfectly, clean, I went on deck and chipped loose paint from the deck and cockpit.  Borrowing a neighbor’s hose, I washed and scrubbed the deck of dirt and debris accumulated in my three month absence.
        When I stopped for lunch, for the first time since my return a week ago yesterday, GANNET was in order.
         There is more to do, but I just wanted to enjoy having the little boat being right for a while, and then light rain came.
        Now at 5:15 I’m sitting at Central, a plastic of tequila and tonic at hand, Leonard Cohen singing “Suzanne” on the Megabooms—a name that has some resonance for me, rain falling, the companionway open, the spray hood up.  I have still to connect two lines from grommets to eye pads to straighten out the trailing edges, but the broken toggles have been replaced and the installation is essentially complete.  We’ll see if it works at sea.  I live in hope.
        As I began to provision for the more than 6,000 miles from Durban to St. Lucia, GANNET will again become cluttered.  For tonight she isn’t.  I’m glad.