Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What's Up

Since we got back from the Grand Canyon, we haven’t done any sailing. There are some things we need to accomplish before we head out again, so we’ve been working toward those goals.

The trim on our roller furling (headsail- or the one that goes in the front [bow] of the boat) is very torn so we took it down and brought it to a sail shop to be repaired. We have some alternate sails which we brought to a park and unrolled to check the condition of. In the interim, we’ll probably try using one of those sails the next time we go out.

Since we aren’t experienced sailors, we’d be foolish to sail without the security of a working engine (that has the proper amount of oil). We’ve been brainstorming how to check the oil level in the Atomic 4 engine (it seems the engine is lacking a dipstick). We will most likely research how much oil the engine should hold, drain the oil, fill it with the proper amount of new oil, and create a dipstick of our own. And when I say “we”, I mean Ben. My knowledge of engines is very limited. In January, I plan to enroll in an introductory class on automotive engines to better my knowledge. (Yes, I realize this is a marine engine, but I have to start somewhere).

Other than that, we’re just waiting for winter to hit. We’ve had the pleasure of experiencing our first two rain storms on the water (and I use the term “storm” loosely here in San Diego). The sound of rain hitting the deck is soothing, just as it was in Tater. However, the sensation of a sneakered foot stepping into 3 inches of water in the dinghy (not to mention sitting in soaking clothes while rowing from the dock to the boat) is much less soothing. We’ve each got a raincoat. I’m sure after a couple more rain storms, I’ll be hitting up West Marine for a pair of foul-weather pants, some rubber boots, and a waterproof bag for my belongings.