I’ll Never Stop, Nancy.


I spent a gorgeous weekend working on the boat, a stupid grin on my face most of the time. The end results are a few less fiberglass problems, a nagging cough from the sanding dust that got past my dust mask, a mild sunburn in the middle of my back, two more banged-up fingers, one of which is looking a little bit infected, and a hangover.

The boat is a disaster right now though, with every powertool I own littering the kitchen, a sink full of dirty dishes and screws and bolts and wires on every flat surface. I really need to spend some time cleaning up, but frankly I don’t know when that’s going to happen.

This morning it’s back to banging my head against the bulkhead – hey, maybe that’s the source of the name ‘bulkhead’? I slept well, but when it got light outside I was awake. I lay there for a long while, convincing myself that while it must already be 10am, with my work schedule I could afford to stay in bed until 11am or so… but then my pager went off with a work emergency. My laptop batteries were low, so staying in bed only lasted a few minutes before I had to get up, dress, and switch to the aft cabin (ie, walk out through the pouring rain). On my way out the door I grabbed my cellphone to check the time: 7:15am. I guess my internal clock needs some adjustment.

It was so cold this morning! I could see my breath, so I decided that it was probably time to tackle the stove – and at around 10am I rolled up my sleeves and dove in to clean it out with a stiff wire brush. Of course, burning sooty for the past week or so hasn’t done it any favours, and soon there was a three-inch deep pile of soot in the bottom of the burner. This is when I was struck with a rare moment of genius: I have a generator now, and so I can use the little shop vac that came with the boat!

Well, it worked, and I was able to suck up the soot just fine – but since it’s a shop vac there’s not really a filter, per se, and so about a third of the soot was promptly blown out the other side of the shop vac, all over the inside of the cabin. The second I noticed this, I put the motor portion of the shop vac outside, so I could continue cleaning out the stove, but it just blew soot all over the cockpit instead. You thought my boat was dirty before? Let me tell you, it was positively sparkling compared to now.

For now I’ve given up on the stove, and am returning to work. I went to Canadian Tire and picked up a decent single-burner propane camping stove instead, and proceeded to make coffee in under five minutes instead of an hour. It’s much warmer out, and I’m somewhat dry, so my mood is infinitely better, but damn, what a crappy morning! Best part: it’s supposed to stay rainy all week again. :/