When we were kids, living in a tree house was a wonderful fantasy. Well. I'm sorry to report that, at our age anyway, it's not all it's cracked up to be. Apart from the constant ladder climbing and the boatyard dust, the lack of plumbing is the biggest hassle. The boat toilet is out of action and we cannot use the sink drains which definitely complicates life, but we do get plenty of exercise on the long walk to the bathrooms. No matter, it's just something that has to be done and this is our first haul since St Kitts in 2017 so we we're due for some boatyard penance.
We are making progress dealing with the last preparations for the Pacific crossing. The new ablative is on the bottom. Janaki bravely took on the job of stripping, lapping and rebuilding all the cone valve
through-hulls and I was ready to work on the Hydrovane
self steering installation until a sharp eyed yard worker noticed that our cutlass bearing inner sleeve was stuck firmly to the prop shaft and freely rotating in it's bronze case. This would definitely have failed badly on a long trip so a very good find BUT it means taking the propeller off, removing the shaft and then getting the remains of the old cutlass bearing out. None of these are trivial tasks so we are set back a few days (again).
Because we don't want to put the boat back in the water after servicing all the through hulls then leave it unattended we will leave it on the hard until we get back from our trip to Peru in May so tree house living will persist for a while - oh well....
Yesterday was a very sad day because we had to say goodbye to our good friends Jeff and Molly as they headed through the Canal into the Pacific. Our dream had been to cross the Pacific together but it turned out that they are on a much faster schedule than we are and there was no way we could be ready to keep up with them. In any event we plan to savor both S America and the Pacific for as long as it feels good and that was just not going to work for them at all. Anyway, it was a delight to spend some time with them and we will keep in touch as we both move west. Their blog is here