Monday, July 30, 2007

Hauling off the Stick

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The review of our electronics damage was completed today by the yard, and as this picture shows, our mast (aka the stick) was removed to be evaluated. This is a precarious process, at least to the owners. Basically, the mast is harnessed up and a crane is used to pull it up from where it is stepped on the deck and down to the keel. The initial analysis is that we lost one of two radio antennae and our tricolor/anchor light. The wiring which runs through the mast has yet to be cleared.

Today our Project Manager, another Peter, informed us that we may be spending "the season" with the yard while repairs are completed. That probably means all of August and some of September. Tomorrow we get the dollar estimate which gets passed along to the insurance company.

We spent several days last week and the weekend with the Rosenzweigs while we attended the viewings and funeral service for our dear friend Brian Moore who valiantly fought his battle with cancer but was called to heaven to coach their baseball team. Both Peter and I loved Brian and our lives will never be the same without this dear friend.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Oh! If First Edition could only talk.

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Finally, some work commenced today although we still have not been able to get an estimate on the cost to repair in order to submit it to the insurance company for approval. This picture shows a chunk of our keel, blown out by the lightning bolt. Apparently the keel had been epoxied prior to our ownership in order to cover up the hole which is once again evident and is shown in this picture.

First Edition at some point in her 18 years of life has probably run aground on something hard. Since the damage was done years ago (and we did not do it this time!) it is likely to be only cosmetic. I choose to believe First Edition ran out of water at some tropical isle where she took a chunk out of some coral that in turn took a chunk out of her. Something romantic.

While moored in a harbor in Maine a few years back, the boat adjacent to us recognized First Edition and told us how one of its former owners met his maker...while trying to board First Edition from his dinghy following a party in Trinidad. He had dropped his wife off and when he did not immediately follow she suspected he had returned for more frivolity. Apparently his body was not discovered until the following morning, and it was concluded he suffered a heart attack and drowned.

So our lightning strike is just another chapter in First Edition's story. And we anticipate a happy ending.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Hit by Lightning

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At about 10:45 am on July 18th, First Edition was struck by lightning. We are pleased to report that the crews' heartbeats have returned to normal, and First Edition is now sitting in a cradle in Stamford, Connecticut where her damage will be assessed. The picture shows her out of the water, and to our eye, it seems there is no hull damage. Fortunately, First Edition has a grounding plate (unlike many sailboats) and yards and yards of copper stripping running through her. We know the bolt hit the top of the mast, as our antennae have been shattered, and most of our electronics (some brand new) are inoperable. It is likely that we will be in this yard about a month while the repairs are completed. Although it may sound like we are leading a depressing life, as with the engine failure, we are fortunate that this latest event occurred in familiar waters, and that neither of us was hurt. Once we nail down the details such as meeting with the insurance adjuster, surveyor, and mechanics to lay out a repair scheme, we will likely head to our skihouse and enjoy the life of you landlubbers.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Arrested in Oyster Bay!

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Although incarceration is not involved, the Captain was arrested for speeding in Oyster Bay today by the Town Constable. She had no sense of humor. Those of us who have been with Peter while he has been stopped know his "I represented the PBA routine" which has for the most part resulted in the successful departure of law enforcement, sans ticket. He did not try this, or flashing of what he refers to as his "get out of jail card" gifted by our friend Detective Curnyn. Instead, he was handed a ticket for causing a wake in a mooring field, accomplished with a 10 foot dingy and a 15 horsepower motor.

The problem is, you may plead guilty (which "I understand is the equivalent of a conviction after trial"). However, no fine is specified although an address is provided to which it may be sent. All efforts to determine said fine by phone have failed.

He may be incarcerated yet.

Since the last posting we determined that the engine had not been fixed, fixed the engine without knowing how we had done the fixing, determined the chartplotter is not functioning (we need this to determine our position, especially in fog), and now that we tried to raise anchor, found the washdown pump that rinses the muck off the anchor to have failed. The convict is on the way to visit a marine store in town, which of course the ever-confident Peter is sure will have all the parts he needs.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Journey Begins!

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On Thursday July 12th we declared First Edition sea-ready, and to avoid a Friday the 13th departure, left our boatyard at 4 pm. The wind was perfect and the skies were clear as we motored our way along while the Captain and semi-retired person made phone calls and read emails. We had decided to stay the night at Great Kills Harbor on Staten Island at the Richmond County Yacht Club, the closest anchorage to the Verrazano Narrows Bridge which we needed to hit the following day near sunrise in order to avoid very nasty currents in New York's East River at Hell Gate. As we approached the mooring assigned to us, we lost our engine. Fortunately, the launch tender quickly threw us a tow and delivered us to our mooring. We quickly determined we had run out of fuel, having thought we had switched to a full tank but mistakenly turned to a near empty one. Although this was not an auspicious start to our voyage, I kept thinking how lucky we were that this had not happened while going under a bridge or into the turbulent waters ahead of us.

Peter bled the air out of the engine while remorsing that I had turned him into an engine mechanic after a successful legal career. Cocktails were poured, dinner enjoyed, and we turned in early in anticipation of our 5am wake up time on Friday the 13th.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Soon Ready?

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On July 1 we finished loading our stuff onto First Edition. There is a massive amount of clothes, safety equipment, cooking gear, home office supplies, all the junk necessary to live our lives while afloat. All of this has to be crammed into 44 x 13 feet, our living quarters. On Monday the movers come to take our furniture into storage for the duration of our cruise.

We had hoped to be on the way by now but our boat is not ready. We have doubts that our refrigeration is working, and our autopilot's computer or compass is kaflooie. So, visiting Maine may not be an option for us this summer. On July 10th we close on the house sale so we will move on board whether or not she is ready. Hopefully our dock-sucking will be shortlived.