I have a mosquito bite on my ass. It started yesterday when I acquired some bites on my foot and heel. I suspected those were exposed bits in the night that fell victim to vampire-squitos. But never did I imagine that merely cooling down my butt would result in such indignities. Have they no shame!
Nevertheless I persevere. I got up this morning and putter around until the High Lord Dr. arose and allowed the day to begin. Coffee, bar and I started to prepare to cast off. In good time L was ready and we cast off and gently backed out of the slip, heading for Madeira Bay and the pump out.
Three or four minutes later we weaved our way into the public dock and tied up on the wharf where the pump-out oughta be. It was a small vertical grey pipe that said ‘No Self Service’. So I wandered into the Harbour masters office to inquire and he said “Broke.”
But… broke broke?”
“Um, but our tank is full. And it stinks. And sometimes even I have to go to the bathroom.”
“Doh know. Maybe.”
“You have a nice day.”
“Yah. Thanks. A stinky day anyway.” Mutter mutter mutter…
So we walked the boat off the dock and slowly backed out into the bay. I informed Leslie we were going to Powell River instead of Texada and called Larry at the Cooper base there to let him know we were coming. We brought in the fenders and lines and slowly made our way out of Pender into the Malaspina Strait.
It was a longer trip than we’d planned so we left the sails down and motored for a couple of hours. At one point the winds picked up and were going the right way so we decided to try a bit of sailing. As soon as the sails were up, the wind was down. We stared dejectedly at the luffing sails for a couple of minutes and dropped them back down and motored on.
Something occurred to me and I had Leslie idle the motor and, while we drifted along, I tried plugging the holding tank vent while she vigorously pumped more water into the tank. Logic dictated that something had to give and at worst I would find myself spattered in foul fetid stinky slime. Just like a day at the office and I’ve kinda missed that. After a lot of pumping and pressurizing the system, the blockage in the drain let go and the sea was full of crap. Literally.
And we were happy.
So the plan was back to Sturt Bay on Texada Island and the friendly docks of the Texada Boat Club. I called Larry and let him know. He sounded harried. Apparently the impending circus of 10 strange boats on his dock was stressful. I got the impression he was more than happy not to see me.
A fine day. I stretched out, hat on my face, and baked in the sunlight while L slaved away behind the wheel, ensuring we didn’t run aground in 10 metres of water. And we didn’t. Great job! And a kudos to me for taking a break. Everybody wins.
Eventually around 12:30 the winds picked up to 9-11 knots and we were only and hour away from our destination. So up went the sails again. This time we headed upwind in a close haul and were zippily speeding along at 6 or 7 knots–faster than we had been motoring. Of course we were head 90 degrees away from our goal, but that’s what tacking was invented for.
A few long tacks and we were headed directly into the entrance of Sturt Bay. I tried radioing ahead but got no answer so I phoned instead. They said just pick a place on dock 4 and settle in. So we did. We rigged for docking and I gently backed us in. I think I might be getting the hang of this docking-at-empty-docks-with-no-wind thing. A friendly fellow from a gorgeous, late model 40′ Bavaria gave a hand and we tidied up and coiled the lines.
A beer, some cookies and sausage and we relaxed out of the sun for a bit. Then a quick walk around the site and we decided not to walk the hill into town. Better to bask in the sun some more and do some writing and napping.
Tonight’s dinner is BBQ porkchops and tomato salad. I am marinating the chops in something C would be ashamed of me for but c’est la guerre. The Pinot noir rosé was chilled and perfect to begin the cooling down process. Mmmmm. Food.
After dinner was more r&r and talking about the next few days. Then I had a shower. Warm, cool, wet, soapy… Showers are awesome! I feel like 1.25 million bucks (taking into account inflation and market fluctuations). I think we will resort to card games later and close the night off properly with a win for Team Bruce.
We finished the night off with 30 minutes or so on deck watching the sun go down and grudge match crib. Stay tuned for the scores…