Saturday, January 15, 2011

Happy New Year

We've had a lot of rain recently. Although it's not raining at the moment. In the past couple of days we've had more than an inch of rain. Its the 14th of January and monthly rainfall totals are over 3.6 inches. As I walk down the dock I notice the water in the marina looks like coffee with cream. There's small little clumps of foam moving northward at about 1 knot. These bits of foam are left overs from the outfall from the Deschutes River entering the sound about a mile south. I check the lines and notice that the boat is definitely pulling at the mooring lines in the direction of the current. I pull back the boat and re-tie the lines.

I've got a new neighbor - a big behemoth of powerboat. Its an older wooden powerboat. I can tell its wood because of a bunch of little dry rot spots right below the gunnel. The owner is aboard and frantically trying to cover his boat up with a blue tarp. Unfortunately he's taken over the finger pier with containers of junk. Hmm? A autopilot binnacle, some bits of frayed canvas, wiring, and other boating stuff. I move them over to his side of the finger pier so I can easily get on and off my boat. He doesn't notice, or pretends not to notice? I sigh and think another neighbor. I board the MV Independence and notice that I still have a view looking N and NE - good.

Another neighbor from a Grand Banks 32 down the dock knocks and says "hello." I welcome him aboard. He's new to boating. He tells me of an adventure of running out of fuel right in the middle of Rich Passage. Oh my. As he tells me of his adventure I gently tap the wood on the MV Indenpendence hoping that this never happens to me. We compare fuel systems and engines between our boats and then filled with this new information he departs. As he departs and I say "good-bye" my neighbor appears and we go through some introductions. He's Joe and he's tied up next to me because he got evicted from the boat house he was using. My GB32 friend tell's him that I'm the "patriarch of the dock." I simply smile and say, "Yep, I guess. Been here for over 20 years. Welcome." That's the end of the conversation.

I thought I'd now have time to do my weekly reflection but another set of boating neighbors appear. Oooh, they bring me a gift - a bottle of Pyrat rum. I gladly welcome them aboard. I say, "Why the rum?" He replies, "I've left you several times the little brass tag that comes with the bottle of rum on your door handle. So this time I thought I will leave you the bottle." (I got to remember to leave the little brass tag from this bottle on his boat.) I offer to open the rum, but he's quick to offer a shot of Irish whiskey. Wow, gift liquor and more free booze. We fill the little brass ration cups with a tot of whiskey, heft a toast to friends, health, and a good new year. We then spend about an hour talking of retirement, work, music, and exchanging memorable Farside cartoons. After awhile I bid them adieu. My new bottle of Pyrat rum does not fit within in my liquor locker. Hmm?

I do have a few moments of reflection and wonder how fate arranges some days that are filled with neighbors and conversation while other days are quiet. Not sure how that happens. I run through a few routine checks on the boat. I notice the following:

  • The pole holder I had mounted had become "dismounted" and was now laying on the deck.
  • The line that holds my radar reflector had parted.
  • There's quite a mess of digested mussel shell bits all over my deck. What a mess.
  • There's quite a bit of water in the bilge and it needs pumping. I don't notice any leaks and hope it is from the rain.
  • I need to empty my "fuel filter drip container."

I made sure to update the log since I had come down a couple of times previously and started the boat to ensure everything is "ok." The engine started fine each and every time, even once when it was quite cold out.

Oh, as I leave I notice my neighbor had repositioned the two containers of junk once again to interfere with my side of the finger pier. I contemplated sending them to Davey Jones locker, but the joviality of the evening keeps me from being so cruel. I merely reposition them back to his side of the finger pier. I'm sure when I return again later I will find something else.

Stats: running time (idling in place in gear) ~60 minutes, ending engine hours 6078.5.

No comments: