The past two weeks have gone by so incredibly fast. We’ve been super busy working on the “big stuff” that needed to get done and now we think we are almost ready to leave.
We finally got to fixing the navigation desk, which was rotted through because of the previously rotted companionway hatch. It’s still our work/tool bench for now but soon enough it’s going to serve it’s intended purpose. One of the bigger projects we tackled was installing and mounting our two 60 watt solar panels. So far all is good and we should be able to live completely off the grid while we travel. Woohoo! We also ordered and installed a bunch of things (AIS radio, handheld chartplotter, SSB receiving radio, LED cabin lights, masthead antenna).
Last week, we left the slip and took the boat out for the first time. It was wonderful. Life is good out there on the water. We would have stayed out there much longer, but we had an appointment to haul out the boat. On the hard, we sanded and painted the bottom, reconditioned the prop, removed the old boat name and hailing port, and replaced the raw water strainer for the engine. Drilling holes through the hull and below the waterline is not fun. We weren’t allowed to stay on the boat while it was out of the water, so rather than spending money on a hotel, we slept in the jeep. We took cushions off the boat, made a nice little bed, and slept in a parking lot by the beach, which was surprisingly more comfortable than I thought. Unfortunately, I also have a gazillion bug bites from leaving the windows cracked for a little ventilation. Stupid stupid stupid no-see-ums.
Luckily, it hasn’t been just work. We’ve met some awesome people and made some really good friends while being here. There has been some late nights with lots of wine and great conversation. We got to sail with our new friend’s on their beautiful Cabo Rico 38. They left a couple days ago to sail around the world…incredible! We’ve all been readying our boats to set sail on big journeys so it was really inspirational watching them take off.
Well, our departure date is near. If everything lines up (we’ve got a few things we need to get done still) and the weather falls in our favor, we should be heading south to No Name Harbor on Key Biscayne later this week. We are very fortunate to have met an awesome couple here with similar plans and timelines as us, so we’re hoping to sail down together.
We’re living by the weather now so we’ll see what she gives us!