06 January 2009 | Whangarei, New Zealand
Well, I guess a 2-week break in our blog-posts is not unusual, but this time we actually have an excuse. Nancy's parents, John and Sandi, arrived this morning from San Jose, and we will be land-cruising with them for the next 14 days.
We're pretty excited about seeing more of the North Island, and most of the South Island. So much to see and do...including a train trip over the NZ Alps, from the East Coast to the West and back again. Should be very cool.
We're also pretty impressed by John and Sandi's willingness to travel half way around the world...of course, they say it's because they wanted to visit us, but I know that they have always harbored a secret hope to see "Sheep World". Can't fool me.
And the hits keep coming...by the time we get back, some of the boat work I've contracted for should be complete...stainless-steel welding and fabricating (repair a severely bent stanchion and reinforce others, brace the boom vang, add a strike-plate at the bow to prevent damage from the anchor), some sail repair (replace the UV material that we lost off the 2 headsails in Tonga, and flatten the staysail), a little fiberglass work (reinforce the auto-pilot hydraulic ram...again), and some rigging adjustments. Things I can't do, or would do poorly. I've had to trim down my wish-list due to the stellar performance of the stock market, so the current work list comprises just those jobs deemed safety- and maintenance-issues. If I had my way, and the resources to do it, I'd keep the marine-services industry here busy for months.
Future projects include devising an anchor-retention bracket, to keep the 88-pound chunk of metal at the pointy end of Meridian from becoming a missile in rough seas; possibly installing mast-steps, so I can get to the top of the mast without needing Nancy to hoist me up with halyards and winches (and hoping she's in the mood to lower me back down again)
Anyway, we'll continue this lively discussion in a couple of weeks. Until then, we've got a train to catch. Happy New Year, everyone.