Change Of Plans

It is amazing how the Universe twists and turns our lives. Not to say that we are at the whim of some powerful being that plays with us, but then again maybe we are…
One of the age lessons both Shelly and I have hopefully come to understand is that when things happen there is a reson for it and it is best to embrace, cherish and work with it.
So I am back working.
On the morning we were prepared to leave the harbor, with charts laid out, the boat ready for sea, and everyone all excited about new adventures; we rode up to the grocery stor for last minute milk etc.
I had never noticed a little marine services shop across the street, so we stopped in to ask if he knew anyone who might want to buy our old radar and walked out ten minutes later having been offered temporary (a moth or two) work to substitute for a technician who was leaving for a delivery to Maine.
Going through the grocery store was a torment as the very last thing I wanted was a job – much less to stay in Marathon even as nice as it is.
But when the Universe speaks…
So here we are and every morning I get my tool bag and bicycle off to work on other people’s boats.
Our goal is to make use of the contact to upgrade the refrigeration, batteries and a couple of other projects in this time.
Now we are reconciled with a delay in our plans, and excited about the possibility of being that much closer to a self sufficient (not so dependent on the generator) home.
The projects continue while I am at work and on the weekends!
Most of the canvas in complete. The dodger (protects the cockpit and companionway from spray and wind) has been rebuilt. Shelly did an awesome job and even added a sharp, eye catching blue trim!

And a new bike bag…

This image looked much nicer in person showing the new sail overs and dodger!

Now we work our way around the boat to change the last of the burgundy paint to blue. The paint stripe at the deck level is called the sheer stripe, and the starboard side is now blue while the port side remains burgundy…

The yellow circle on the transom will have the Japanese lettering for Yume painted soon! Then, someday that same yellow will be used for a thin stripe just above the waterline blue. That must wait until we haul out again.

Anyone notice that Yume seems to be listing a bit to starboard (to the right)? That is because the port fuel tank and the port water tank is empty. You can really feel it when inside the boat and gets fixed quickly when it happens!

Shelly is working hard to keep up with our internet work, learning more about website management than she really wants. She is helping keep up all our customers sites as well as the paws4people foundation work.


Ryan is becoming famous (as he continually tells us he will) in his online world, having now created revenue for himself with his animations. I say – go for it!

You can see what he is doing here.

Saturday nights are fun as we join other boaters in the harbor dockside for a potluck and a jam session of local boater musicians. The crowd is very attentive and appreciative – besides being our age and older they know all the songs!

That is all the updates for the week from paradise. It is funny how things change. We are promising ourselves to try and take some time on the weekends to get the boat out of the harbor and enjoy the Keys some.

And Goose is ready to go in.


Last Few Days In Marathon

The unknown is exciting. As the day comes to leave Boot Key and Marathon (our home for the last five weeks) we are both excited and apprehensive. Where are we going? What might happen? What if something goes wrong?

On the other hand, the questions can be different. What new people will we meet? What cool new places will we explore? Where will we be in a month, this summer, this fall?

Answer – who knows? But the not knowing makes it fun!

The list of things to do before we leave has been whittled down. Of course the list is never done, but we feel good about what has been completed.

Shelly's canvas has made the boat look very spiffy, with a new mizzen and main sail cover, and new bike bag. She is knee deep as we write with the dodger in pieces sewing in new canvas. This is by far the most challenging canvas job on a boat and the locals are jealous of her skills… I just take her for granted!

The engine oil dipstick had broken inside the tube and required the removal of the starter to access. This job was put off as long as possible until there was no more procrastination left available. After two days, we have a jury rigged repaired dipstick tube and stick, the port side of the engine cleaned and painted, wiring fixed and cleaned up all the way up to the panel (this needs lots more work) and the bilge inaccessible without removing the starter now sparkles.

On Friday at 4 while finishing up this job the generator stopped running. The problem was tracked to a bad salt water pump impeller which had to be replaced for us to have power and cold beer. That is the problem with “stuff” as it tends to break at the worst of times.

Two hours later, with some less than ladylike language, and blisters on both arms from a hot engine, the beer was cooling down again.

The most fun jobs are the ones with instant gratification. We have all been working on the hull for a couple of months scraping the old nasty paint off so we can get to the original gelcoat finish to wax and polish. Just this week the last of the paint was removed and Shelly was able to paint Yume on the transom. It looks great!

Just wait until she paints the Japanese letters. That is going to be cool!

It is easy to see from the stern the burgundy stripe still to be done on the sides, and the blue that is finished on the transom.

This image shows the white paint we scraped off and the creme colored gelcoat underneath…

But our stay here has not been all work. We are sort of sad to be leaving our 3x a week softball game, but since Most people leave Marathon for the summer and go north, the season is ending anyway.

Shelly rode her bike out to Piegon Key on 7 Mile Bridge and took a couple of nice pics.

The old highway bridge is the pedestrian and bike walkway out to the key. She says she the wind coming back was blowing so hard she had to get off and walk!

We would have liked to get out to the reef, but there was only a day of two of the five weeks here the wind lay down enough to go and we just couldn't get it together.

We hope to make up for it on the way north. We are in no hurry. The next planned stop is to be in Atlanta May 8 for the paws4people/Heroes First golf tournament. We will probably leave the boat in Savannah or Hilton Head Island for a few days to go there and then maybe on the Biloxi and visit Ian.

Ryan made a cake for the old guys softball team we play with for the last game. Shelly joined us and impressed everybody!

We are all ready, including Goose!

As always your comments (even the sarcastic ones) are appreciated and welcomed and will be answered in kind…


Time is Growing Short

Shelly has painted the Japanese symbols for Yume on the throw cushion we keep on the lifeline. She is practicing for painting it on the transom!

It is hard to believe we have been tied to this mooring ball for almost three weeks. The days fly by and we make jokes about how busy we are. And now we are getting short. We have less than 10 days before we leave. We are not sure why we are leaving or where we are going but we know it is time.

Softball three days a week, walking Goose twice a day, scraping and sanding the hull, and sewing all the new canvas are just a few of the things that take so much time.

Life is perfect though.

Shelly stepped right back into her awesome sewing skills without a hitch, and turned out the mizzen sail cover in a day. The main sail stack pack will take a bit longer but is coming along.

The new mizzen sail cover!

The other big project is stripping all the old paint off the hull, taking it back to the gelcoat, sanding with 320, 600 and even higher wet/dry paper, buffing and waxing. What a difference it makes! But it is a LOT of work…

You can see the old white paint vs the gelcoat even before the buffing and waxing. It will look nice when done.

Shelly got the first coat on our name on the transom yesterday. The front that came through last night has us waiting for the wind to die down before we can continue that task.

I got the guitar out and hit a couple of local places for the jam nights and we have made some new cruising friends. We met Paul and Linda on the catamaran Blind Faith and had a couple of fun nights with them before they took off for the Bahamas a few days ago. We were a wee bit jealous watching them leave the harbor and wish them fair winds.

Ryan continues to impress the local population with his softball and internet skills and all the retires have all adopted him.

This image of our two Exide 4d batteries is for our friend Bill who has the same boat in Texas and helps with advice. These poor batts are history I am afraid, as they have been abused both before we got here and since. We ran the generator 8 hours yesterday with an equalization charge, and the specific gravity barely budged. New batteries are going to run us $450-600 for 4 big golf cart batteries with as much amp hours as we can get.

The next big expense is replacing the refrigeration system. The old 110v Crosby compressor and the two holding plates, although working, are old technology and can be run much more efficiently, quietly, with much less hassle using a 12 volt compressor and evaporator plates.

Whether we can accomplish that before heading back north is yet to be seen.

Here is a question for you. How would your life be different if you had to replace all the water you used in your house in two 6 gallon jerry jugs. We do.

The requisite setting sun pic!

And as always Goose is (im)patiently waiting for you to show up here in paradise!


Daily Life On Yume

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It is harder to post now, as we are sort of settled in and it feels like nothing is happening. We have our routine now for Boot Key. Work on computers from 0630 to 0830 or so. We run the generator during this time, make some breakfast, and start the day.

In with Goose by 0900 or so, fill the water jugs to bring back to the boat, and off to work at a friends if there are thindpgs to do. Otherwise it is softball, or some other activity, then back to the boat for chores and tasks. By 1600 Goose is looking longingly at the shore so it is back in (with the water jugs), maybe the shower gear if we feel grungy enough, check for mail, and back out to the boat. Pull up the dinghy (to stop growth on the bottom and protect it from theft), start the genny for the night charge and run the refrigeration plus hot water heaters think about dinner and make a rum to watch the sun go down. Couple more hours on the computers and it is time to turn in and read.

Life is good.

We keep on working on Yume. Slowly but surely (after all why hurry?) tasks get completed. We have been experimenting with gel coat colors to match the hull as we scrape off the old nasty paint.

Shelly has 6-8 coats of varnish on almost all the outside teak, and has started on the inside.

The smell from the heads finally reached the overwhelming point and I removed the aft black water (waste) tank and found the original vent hose kinked which would surely cause the smell. Now with a nice clean tank, new lines and vent hose all is well.

We ordered all the canvas for the boat yesterday and can't wait to start sewing new sail covers, bike bags, awnings, and other misc stuff in blue – to match that pretty paint Shelly is working on.

Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday is softball at the park with Ryan being the youngest (by about 40 years!) and me being second youngest. These guys know how to play ball and it is a ton of fun.

This weekend is the Seafood Festival here in Marathon. It is supposed to be the 2nd largest in the US. They are setting it up right where we walk Goose… So we will run over in the morning and let you know how the Florida lobsters are. Hehe

Although this pic shows how beautiful it is at sunset, yesterday was quite different.

Last cold front came though about 4pm with huge, black, ominous looking clouds and a sharp drop in temperature. The winds and rain howled all last night and we were grateful to be on a mooring and not worrying about dragging an anchor. There are parts of awnings in the trash from vendors who set up for the festival yesterday, didn't listen to the weather and came back today to find their awnings blown all the way across the field.

Today it is still blowing fairly hard out of the NW but is forecast to clock to the NE for the festival tomorrow.

Today we cleaned out some lockers that holds the winter clothes. It feels funny to hold long sleeve shirts, turtlenecks, sweaters and long johns, but we know we will need them sometime somewhere.

Right now we only use shorts, tshirts and flip flops! And that is the news from Yume!

Gooser says come play on the skateboard park!


The Yume Odyssey – a Different Approach to Life!