Lost in the Deltaville Triangle
02 July 2007 | Deltaville Marina on Jackson's Creek
S winds 5 to 10 kt. Waves 1 foot. High 80. overnight low 57
If you've been thinking that maybe the WILD MATILDA had vanished at sea, I don't blame you. It has been a while since I posted here. But it wasn't the sea that got us - we've been lost in the Deltaville Triangle.
Play appropriate spooky music here - Do-do-do-do-do-do-do-do
It starts when you get here, with gremlins that crawl into your engine room and start mixing diesel fuel into your crankcase. Then, they have these boatyard guys who look like perfectly normal, friendly human beings, but after a while, you begin to realize that they work from sunrise to sunset and the longer they are on your boat, the more your problems multiply. I think they are like those alien creatures in Men in Black and that at night they go home and slip out of their human suits so that all their other legs and tentacles can stretch out. I would not be surprised to learn that Roswell, NM is the sister city to this place.
Shortly after we arrived, a front was forecast to come through here. That evening the sky started to turn black about an hour before sunset. We cleared the decks and battened things down, and soon we heard the big splats as the raindrops began to hit the deck. The wind increased and the boat began to heel over at the dock. Incredible lightning flashed all around us accompanied by deafening thunder. As the time shortened between flash and boom, we kept rolling our eyes at the boat's overhead, knowing that we couldn't see anything, but wondering what was happening in the sky overhead. Then, KABOOM, and the flash and boom were simultaneous. The boat and our bodies shuddered with the impact and when Bruce checked the wind speed indicator, we had 47 knots.
The next morning, the six-foot long hand-painted and varnished sign at the entrance that read "Deltaville Marina and Boatyard on Jackson's Creek" lay in the road, knocked off its post and broken in half.
They celebrated the Fourth of July here on Saturday with a parade in town and fireworks that lit up the whole anchorage that night. They were supposed to lift us out of the water Saturday to repitch the Max Prop, but it turned out their prop expert Caleb was driving a tractor that pulled one of the floats in the parade. Sorry, folks, wait 'til Monday.
So what started a couple of weeks ago as a problem with an injection pump has now resulted in a replaced lift pump, new injection pump, rebuilt injectors, new water pump, new alternator bracket, rewired tac, repitched prop, and . . . we're not out of here yet.
Bruce just came back and told me that the quick haul to repitch the prop that is supposed to take place this afternoon might not happen at all. One wheel of the Travel Lift just fell into a hole with a big Krogen trawler in the slings. The Deltaville Triangle strikes again.
We have changed the billing on the marina slip from daily to monthly.
I measure the time by how big the ospreys chicks are getting on the red number "2" marker in the harbor.
Deltaville Marina and Boatyard at Jackson's Creek is actually one of the best places imaginable to have your boat break down. They have the friendliest people and the word has got out about this place, so it has an interesting cross-cut of boaters, too. Last week, someone put a sign up on the door to the Boaters' Lounge: "Pot Luck dinner tonight at 6:30 p.m. Bring a dish." About 30 people showed up and we met folks from England, people just starting out on a new boat, one couple who had completed a circumnavigation and were selling their boat, and another couple who bought their boat in Brazil and were sailing it north to New England. Some were on boats in the marina, some were hauled out on the hard in the boatyard, and others were out in the creek hanging on a hook. The food ranged from pasta salad to chili to quiche to bar-b-que chicken and there was tons of it. The people who had put up the sign said they didn't know anybody in the marina and they just wanted to get to know some of their neighbors. They had no idea so many would show up. This is just part of what I like so much about cruising.
I met one guy named Stan on a boat named GREEN EYES. He is fascinated with the fact that I write thrillers, and every time he sees me he gives me a few more details of a possible plot. It's actually pretty good. But it's also a little frightening when you meet someone who enjoys thinking up brutal storylines and telling you all the details of a scene where gruesome torture takes place. It makes you wonder if he is a reflection of you. And that's more than a little scary.
So, the plan now is to leave tomorrow. But that has been the plan for a week. We are waiting to see if the aliens have sucked the Travel Lift into the earth yet. And I wonder if this blog post will make it out of here or if they have cut off all communication.
Maybe WILD MATILDA has been transported to an alternate universe deep in the Deltaville Triangle. . .
do-do-do-do-do-do-do-do-do-do-do . . .