Wednesday, July 7

My dog ate my homework

That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it. Actually, I've been busy and stressed, and that's why I haven't written recently. A lot has happened since I last spoke with you all, so to keep you awake, I'll try to be brief.

The bank looked at the survey and told me they wouldn't fund me until all the items on the survey marked "Required for continued safe operation of the vessel" had been fixed. Booo! I guess another tidbit of knowledge I've gained is , when you play with other people's money, you play by their rules. So, even though many of the items marked "Required for continued safe operation of the vessel" weren't actually required for continued safe operation of the vessel, I had to fix them all to get the money.

Larry, the seller, is a great guy (and wanting money brings out the best in people), so in order to sell the boat he agreed to help me fix the items. And when I say "help me fix things" what I mean is, he did all the work and I watched and learned and lent a helping hand when I could. See, he's a general contractor and has been in the boat world for a million years, and I'm a fool, so the arrangement worked out well. He put a lot of time and money into it, I put a lot of money into it, and now the items are fixed and the bank is gonna give me the loan. In fact, the yacht broker just called, as I was typing, to tell me he's sending THE FINAL PAPERWORK (dramatic music) over to the bank as we speak. We should be closing on the boat shortly... Perhaps a few days!!! Holy crap now it's really real!

So, as THE day approaches I am realizing I have no idea what I'm doing. Earlier, it just seemed funny that this boat is twice the size of any pleasure craft I've operated in the past, and that mooring and anchoring were gonna be "learning experiences." But, in the last few days I've had these vivid daydreams where I just don't have a clue what is going on (some people call these vivid daydreams "reality.") Now, I was on a sub for 3 years, and piloted that thing plenty of times. Never really had an issue, and it's over 12 times the size of my new boat... but it also comes with a highly trained crew of 130+, plus other officers who DO know what is going on. Now it is just me and Jessi, and 48 feet feels like a lot. But we like adventure, and what's the worst thing that could happen?!? (Other than crashing into other boats, bursting into flames, losing my boat and a whole bunch of others, while severely damaging the property of the marina. Other than that...)

And that's just me being nervous about operating the boat.

Also ahead of me is the task of repainting the whole thing. That's a lot of wood to cover with thick liquid. Not to mention maintaining it - making sure the diesels run, the shower works, etc. Watching Larry work on the boat made me think "I can do this" one second and "What the hell was I thinking" the next. But, what does make me smile is the thought of the satisfaction I will get from putting a lot of myself into this boat, and then stepping back and saying "I did it!" (Everyone say "awwwww.")

While helping Larry fix up the boat, I gleaned a few more tidbits of boating knowledge to share.

1) Never underestimate a project. It is never a case of "disconnecting a few hoses, unplugging it and replacing it with a new one."

2) Never stop hitting it with a hammer until it starts working.

3) When you can't physically swing a hammer anymore, cut it out with a Milwaukee Sawzall brand destruction device and then buy and install a new one.

Hopefully I will meet success if I follow all my own tidbits.



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