Chop wood, carry water……

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August 9, 2013 by Last Star blog

Chop wood, carry water……

Even here at the Marina there is always something to do.  When you live aboard the needs of the boat are critical.  It’s your house and you have to attend to it.  Often the boat-owner lives miles away from the boat.  Visits to the boat are on weekends, it is supposed to be a fun time.  Family piles in the car, picnics are packed, cold beverages etc.  Upon arrival everyone piles on board and off you go.  When you get back you need to get home, weekend may be over, work the next day so you tie up the boat, maybe spray it off and swear that you will fix that leaky hatch next time….it’s’ normal to put it off, you’re there to have fun.  Years ago when we had the boat in Havelock and the kids were little maybe once a quarter I’d go by myself on a weekend just to do work, no need to drag the kids to the boat for that.

Today Patricia put the finishing touches on the cockpit table with a last coat of varnish.  She did the fiddles in the galley and tried to blend in the look on the lazarette walls in the aft cabin.  You see someone previous to us added some varnish to the walls in the aft cabin and rather than take the TWO freaking screws that were holding some awful picture of a lighthouse they just varnished AROUND the two frames.  Yep, left the wood bare behind (so to speak) the frames.

Now to do the varnish work back there we had to remove the bed linens, the mattress pad, and foam mattress–all to the V-berth.  In addition, we shut down the rear AC so we knew the temp below would rise.  We hoped to get rid of the smell quickly.

While she was wielding her brush I got the shop-vac out.

We bought an air purifier back in June to try and tame the cat-hair issue.  This Honeywell model has a pre-filter that needs cleaning periodically to extend its life–OK, i’m in.  Here’s a photo of it during the vacuuming, I’ve removed the hair from the bottom as I slowly spin it on the drum.  The flash sort of bleached out the photo–the air purifier works really well at capturing hair!!!

Bottom is vacuumed, top is hairy...

Bottom is vacuumed, top is hairy…

Mini inspecting the inside helping out....she's the root of the problem

Mini inspecting the inside helping out….she’s the root of the problem

Ready to put back together.  Thi s thing is the bomb and does a good job simulating a house system for filtering

Ready to put back together. This thing is the bomb and does a good job simulating a house system for filtering

We also had the Air Conditioning guy out to look at the AC in the salon, Last Star has three units and the salon/middle one was not cooling.  We were pushing air from fore and aft to try and cool the boat, figured this was not ideal so I tried to tackle the problem.  No luck after a while in the books.  Turns out it was low on freon.  Low on freon means there is a leak; slight chance it could be a valve but not that lucky.  Turns out there was a pin hole at the weld near the hi-pressure switch so he pulled it and will return it next week.  Estimated cost between $500-600, bet we’re closer to the latter.  When he recharged it in order to check it out the unit was blowing blissfully cool air into the salon–oh let’s fix it.  While it was out we cleaned up the AC area under the settee–chop wood, carry water.

Nasty...

Nasty…

Not so nasty--ready for fixed AC

Not so nasty–ready for fixed AC

Well when Patricia was done with the varnish and cleaning her brushes she called me into the galley to see her wonderful work.  I immediately leaned in to inspect (that’s what Captains do, they inspect) and placed my hand on her fresh varnish work.  Fortunately she had some more varnish and mineral spirits to clean her brushes again–silly girl, always distracting me!!

For her troubles I sent her topsides to address the anchor rode she damaged the other day–all bad things on the vessel are promptly blamed on everyone but the Captain.  Now I did pull out all the chain, lay everything on deck for her and then promptly retreated below to the coolish-ness and some more Freecell on the computer.

Ideal working conditions...sun and fun!!! Like a holiday

Ideal working conditions…sun and fun!!! Like a holiday

Early stages....

Early stages….

Finished and good as new, in fact better than the last one, more braiding.

Finished and good as new, in fact better than the last one, more braiding.

So that was a smattering of today’s little tasks.  Every day it seems we carry water and chop wood.  It just needs doin’…..If you need further clarification on carry water, chop wood then do what generally works–google it.

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