Just looking at the list we knew today would be a tough one. It’s the kind of list that makes you think that this day could go sideways in so many ways so that scratching off just one item would be a kind of victory.
There’s a back story to the list and that is that we’ve been nursing our starboard start battery since Stuart, Florida. I wasn’t sure if it was the battery or something else because it tested nearly the same as the Port battery but the engine started very slowly. We have a switch to combine both start batteries in an emergency but in an emergency you don’t want to have to run into the saloon down the stairs, fold up the mattress, pull the hatch up, bend over and find the battery combiner switch.
This is typical of the kind of decisions one is faced with as a liveaboard sailor. Hauling a group 27 battery on a bicycle is something even I wouldn’t want to try so we thought that we could get the battery when we rent the car to go to Lancaster for my license renewal. We had to get to the dinghy dock by 8:15 to catch our ride to the car rental shop but the Battery Warehouse isn’t open until 9am and we had to have the old battery as a trade in but we had to get on the road. Maybe later.
The rest of the day went well. License, mail, and bags of bulky stuff in hand, we ran into traffic on the way home, which put the kibosh on the battery again. I was getting anxious about getting one of the last three mooring balls in Back Creek but in the morning we had to return the car by 9am and the Battery Warehouse doesn’t open until 9am so no battery without a car. Our friend Jim, who has already helped so much had once again stepped up and offered to drive us to pick up a battery, however we needed both motors to get to the fuel dock and back down the Creek to pickup a mooring.
I refilled the bad battery with water and after an hour queue for the fuel dock we finally had our tanks full. However Marce found smoke rising out of the starboard engine compartment. Smoke is bad. I hustled down there and found our own little China Syndrome happening where there should be a battery. No more nursing. Annapolis Landing Marina graciously loaned us their courtesy car.
As I walked into the Battery Warehouse there must have been 20 people waiting to buy batteries! Sandy the hurricane. Didn’t think if that.
Back at the boat the new battery solved the slow starting of the starboard engine and we picked up the next to last mooring. Without missing a beat we started to prepare for Frankenstorm. It’s difficult to assess what will happen when it gets up here, reports are all over the map but it’s hundreds of miles wide so we are going to get something and right now it’s aiming right at us.
We all decided to go to Davis’ Pub for a pre-hurricane dinner. Jim said we’d better make it early because there’re so many people in town to take care of their boats there’s bound to be a crowd. It was a “drink to forget” crowd. It works for me.
That’s life on the water.