Owl & Pussycat

The adventures of Jim and Isabel aboard S/V Sonsie of Victoria

unscrambling spaghetti

18 February 2013 | ko'olina Marina, Oahu
Paradoxically, the closer we get to departing on our grand adventure of sailing around our big blue ball, the less sailing we do. There's so much preparation for our journey!

In the three weeks we've been here this time around we've been out a total of once: on a fun day sail with Rob & Tammy from the Lower Mainland Yacht Club (White Rock BC) and our professional sailings friends Judy & Julian who are the crew of "Sirius", the 78' Nordhavn which -ahem- blocks our view of the ocean from our berth at H33!

So while humpbacks are gloriously breaching offshore, Jim & I are hunchbacks, squeezed down as far as we can get into the starboard lazarette to set to rights all the radio and navigation equipment wiring gone wrong. Gone are about a dozen wires from yesterday's technologies. Tracing their paths amidst the bundles which run behind fixed objects like waterheater drums, all the while tightly squeezed into a space the size of your typical cupboard under a kitchen sink was a fun challenge. It takes two to tango at this job, to ensure you're tugging at the correct (usually black) wire.  

Jim is, on top of everything else he's so capable at, a complete radio whiz. I follow his directions, trying to keep straight which wire is which, and running, with the help of a clever string, new ones back & forth from the nav station to the stern. He then proceeded to program everything and interconnect them.Honestly I consider him brilliant: we now have equipment that talks to each other, that enables us to get online while offshore via the HF radio, see other ships and get weather reports while at sea. Wizardry!! Lucky, lucky me to be with such a clever guy!

Now that we've sorted out the scramble of successive installations of different VHF, HF, and AIS system wiring, and installed a new, functional set of radios, antennas, AIS, plus a sternlight and loud hailer/foghorn, we get to squeeze back down into the lazarette this morning to repack the rudder post.

And very soon we fly home for a week or so - for a "sea survival" course plus Daphne's 18th birthday on March 1!
Vessel Name: Sonsie of Victoria
Vessel Make/Model: Southern Cross 39'
Hailing Port: White Rock BC
Crew: Jim Merritt & Isabel Bliss
Retired from the skies, Isabel and Jim are headed to the sea, to first sail the South Pacific then beyond. They are members of the Vancouver BC chapter of the Blue Water Cruising Association. Jim is a former member of the Yellowknife NWT's Great Slave Cruising Club, Isabel of White Rock BC's Lower [...]
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Sonsie of Victoria's Photos -

Who: Jim Merritt & Isabel Bliss
Port: White Rock BC