While Debra sat contemplating her future cruising life I fired off a text to the chief mechanic expressing my lack of enthusiasm in their efforts to rid us of this plague infecting our drivetrain.
Apparently the message got through because boss man said he’d be there bright and early to see what’s up. Uh, so you want to watch it shake itself to death despite the new shaft, coupling, engine mounts and assorted other adjustments over the last oh…Hey almost a year now.
We collected ourselves and got the boat ready for time on the water. Figuring we were going to be here at least another month in this harbor. I had the (dumb) idea of getting a mooring. You ever leave an anchor chain sitting in the water for over a month? Yeah. Disgusting. You ever test an engine in gear while at anchor? Yeah, you drag your chain right up to the anchor and chances are some douche is going to drop the hook right on top of you so you can’t go anywhere (see last season) anyway. So a mooring it is. I wanted one as close to shore as possible. They laughed.
We had a restless night as you can imagine but come morning the guy we give gobs of money to arrived. “Yep, she shakes.” Brilliant!
What you need is a flexible coupling. It will mask the actual problem but it will make it all go away.” What? Do it! Buy me a magic coupling and make all this go away! At this point I could give a rats ass what the original problem is.
We said goodbye to our Guy We Give Gobs of Money to and we prepared to shake our way out to the mooring. I asked for help with the lines. One of the “Helpers” pulled the bow too hard to port and we scraped the side on the way out. Asshole.
We got tied off to a mooring and Deb was like, “Too early for a beer?” Hell no woman. Crack em open. Normally we don’t drink this early unless we drop the anchor in the morning after a good voyage. This was a special occasion. A beer. Some breakfast and a nap. Being in the water is better than the yard even though we’re still F’d up.
The following morning I was pretty excited about the magic coupling. I was walking on my toes with anticipation. The Guy We Give Gobs of Money to showed up with the magic. Ooh, I just had to touch it. This was the device that was going to get us home and possibly save my boat from an early sale.
Wrong bolt size. Son of a bitch! The Guy We Give Gobs of Money (TGWGGOM) to left to find another one. More waiting.
We got off the boat and popped around the isand a bit. We made it to the University area where we ordered veggie bowls and beers. We stopped at a place called Options and saw some old faces. We even got to watch a Purdue football game and had some good conversation with some football fans. It felt good to get away from the boat.
TGWGGOM shows up with the proper sized magic coupling. He slaps it on while I pace.
“OK she’s installed. Lets start her up and put her into gear.”
We were ready for all this to be over with and I stood tall with my hand on the gear lever where I whispered a little prayer to who or what wants to listen. Here we go….
She shook worse than ever. 😦
I heard TGWGGOM below, “ah fuck”. So I said it, “Ah fuck”. Then Deb said it, “Ah fuck”.
I shut the engine off and took a seat. How much more of this can we take? This boat has been stuck in Grenada for about a year now. OMG a friggin year!
“You want me to remove the coupling?”
“I don’t know what else to do?”
“We could pull the prop.”
I’m not hauling.
“We could dive on it. Pull it. Replace it with another temporary prop to see if the prop is the problem.”
Sure, knock yourself out.
“You could buy a new prop.”
I’m not buying a fucking prop.
“I’ll find a temp replacement and we’ll swap it out underwater.”
Debra started working on the for sale ad. I worked up a price that would sell fast. The boat was never a factor in our retirement. We assumed a loss so anything we get for it is a bonus.
A prop was found to slap on the shaft but then it was found to be bent. Goody. I asked for a compression test and injector replacement. I have spare injectors. The transmission is showing no signs of a problem so we’ll not bother with that for now. I’ve started looking for others to help and I have some leads. I can’t keep lingering here with zero satisfaction. In the mean time we’re getting other boat chores completed and enjoying the place.
It’s a Friday and it’s a shopping day. We were going to go but there was a threat of rain so we bailed. Sure enough just before lunch a squall hit. We sat down for lunch below decks and finally the sun came back out and a gentle breeze flowed. It was going to be a gorgeous day.
The anchor alarm went off. This thing is annoying. Every time we rotate after a storm we get the alarm. I go up top to reset….
HOLY SHIT THE MOORING PULLED OUT!!
I started the engine and put her into reverse to pull our bow away from the boat we were about to hit and then slapped it forward to move away from the other one behind us. We powered forward dragging the mooring with us until we found a spot to drop anchor. We dropped the hook, set it and called the marina. If we had went shopping KN would be on the rocks and totalled. Damn it! Why didn’t we go? 😀
The dockmaster came out and asked if we were securely anchored. He then went back to get his dive gear.
Uh, dude. Untie me from this dead mooring you knob.
He came back in dive gear and a spear gun. WTF. He plopped over the side and was gone for 10 minutes. What the hell is he doing. He pops up with a fish on the spear and throws it into his dinghy. “The mooring pulled out of the ground!”, he said.
“I put you on a better one all the way up close to shore.”
Dude I don’t think I want another mooring. “It’s a good one. Guarantee.” Damn. Why do I let these things happen to me. A mooring works out better for us with all the work going on. What the hell I’ll take the mooring. He then vanishes underwater for another 15 minutes. Seriously man? He pops up with another fish and says he will meet us at the next mooring. He really didn’t care about the mooring. Just his dinner.
We’re now as close to shore as you can get and we have a sandbar behind us to stop the boat if she breaks free. A thorough beating against the rocks would probably be best at this point. I mean, we could be worry free 😉
So here we sit again waiting on mechanics to throw darts at this problem. I’ve expressed my dismay and anger to no avail but we’ve finally taken control and are calling the shots. Other eyes on this problem will solve it no doubt. We will prevail.
How much worse can this get we thought. We get an email notice that we have mail from Novamar, our insurance company.
I contacted the bastards and they said they will not insure anyone in the Caribbean right now. OK so let me get this straight. You insured boats in the danger zone and low and behold there was danger and they filed claims. So many claims that you pull out of the area. Meanwhile us follow the rules types stay out of the danger zone but we get cancelled. Piss off eh!
You really have to laugh.
I forgot to mention that our batteries died. Yes we got 3 years out of those Trojans. I bought some cheap AC Delco batts. Maintenance free. They worked for a few days and then one died. Yep. I’m still laughing. Deb might be on the verge of complete humour removal. I’ll keep an eye on her.
Life is still good. We have rainbows and cold beer.
Oh. So we’re close to shore now right? This work boat pulls into the marina to POUND pilings into the earth for the next month or two. LOL. We might be batshit crazy by the time this season ends.