We have been in Florida for almost two weeks now and we are still organizing and working on the boat. Mel and Greg have terribly neglected their children during all of this. Fortunately, Mel has learned that they are developing useful skills on their own. Allie now has become manager of over 100 people on Tomodachi Life, and Tommy conquered Mount and Blade Warband and is now “doing a mod.” So these parentless children can now run a city and defeat the Visigoths by selling mutton, or whatever Tommy’s game entails. It’s a kids’ paradise when their parents are too crazy busy to limit their electronics time!
Greg has been upside-down and sweating into the bilge for the last three days straight. So much for, “The bilges should always be dry,” which is what our Leopard rep Bob told us. Yeah right. It is painfully obvious on our boat why the local catamaran service company, JustCatamarans, has a sign up on their door, “Electricians needed.” Because shoving wire into serpiginous cracks in 90-degree heat and having to use ferrules (whatever those are) and all sorts of marine-type protection on them to keep them from corroding is miserable work!
All of this sweat is meant to increase our independence from the generator, which Greg hooked up a couple of days ago. The solar panels and the watermaker are in! This means Greg only has 15 other projects to complete! Greg plans to provide details once he is able to extract himself from that-space-he-is-in-of-which-I-don’t-know-the name.
Mel unfortunately has not completed any of the projects she thought she would be doing. Putting up lifelines and sewing flags sounds so luxurious to her right now. Instead, she has been switching out the Rubbermaid and Sterilite boxes for dry bags. Because soft, lumpy, waterproof stuff fits the odd spaces in the boat better. Over the last week she has come to realize that a boat designed for charter may not be the best liveaboard. Every storage area is sized for two weeks worth of stuff, tops. The fridge and freezer are tiny, the drawers are tiny, the port bathrooms have no storage for even an extra roll of toilet paper. The tools one requires to have onboard to be as independent as possible in faraway lands just don’t fit right, at least not where they should. When Bob suggested that Mel fill the port forepeak, the only large, dry, easily accessible indoor storage area on the boat, with nothing but spare paper towels and toilet paper as “you shouldn’t put too much weight in the bows,” she laughed and cried inside at the same time. You don’t build that kind of storage up front and then tell people they can’t use it! Robertson and Caine, what is in your forepeak, huh? Cotton candy and fairy kisses? No wonder your boats go so fast!
Mel just had to vent a bit. The boat is still lovely and is doing the best it can for a 48 ft catamaran. I mean, we are the ones trying to fit an 88-key Yamaha keyboard onboard. Which we fit, by the way! We shipped back home a few bikes and other heavy things. We learned that having an account with UPS saves you a lot of money when you outfit a boat for cruising. Because one does make some large, heavy mistakes.
Plan now is to leave on Wednesday for Colombia, regardless of the state of the projects. We shall see if Mel’s anxiety level permits it. The above pic is a little snippet of the view from the saloon out the front door. Because nothing is more relaxing after a hard day of using Ziploc Space Bags to compress your bedding than watching entire crews clean someone’s Megayacht. I guess you have to have at least $5 million to buy a decent closet! New plan: figure out way to get $5 million….