Friday, July 27, 2007

July 25

July 25. Yesterday while underway the bilge pump kicked on a few times. I figured it was the new packing that I had put in the propeller shaft stuffing box.

So last night after writing yesterdays trip report I opened up the bilge to adjust the stuffing box and was confronted with the sight of water dripping down off the starter. Damn. It looks as if the starter was touching the heat exchanger on the engine and over time has worn a hole clean through. Christy was already asleep so I closed up the bilge and set the alarm for 0600 so I could tackle the job in the morning.

I slept like crap and woke up at 0500. I let Christy sleep, alright she laid there while I made as little noise as possible and went to work on the leak. I had to remove my old friend the starter (yet again) to get at the heat exchanger. When I did I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was a hose clamp that I had put on back in Sneads Ferry that had failed. The heat exchanger was still good although it did have a rather deep depression worn into the case. A little JB Weld to fill the depression, a scrap of leather as chaff protection and we were good to go. I even adjusted the stuffing box just for the hell of it while I was waiting for the JB Weld to dry.

So we still made our planned 0930 departure but first there was the pooping of the dogs. Here in Atlantic Highlands this involves a short dinghy ride to a dirty little beach. This morning’s trip was at near low tide so I grounded the dinghy 50 feet from shore and had to carry the dogs to the beach. Both dogs wear life jackets with handles on their backs to make it easy for me to handle them. I was wading through shin deep water with a doggie “suitcase’ in each hand. When I glanced down at Tucker he’s very slowly swimming the dog paddle 12 inches above the water. I guess he just wanted to be ready in case I dropped him too soon.

We were able to sail most of the way to the Verrazano Bridge before motoring through the city on our way to Long Island Sound. A quick rant about New York, Down south I made sport of a lot of the local expressions such as twern’t and thems. Truth be told they were fun but a lot of it was because there was no malice, no lack of civility, just people being generally pleasant. It was funny, but it was nice. Here in New York its F…this F….that. It’s all this mondo negativity; I’ve never heard so many grown ass men complaining about everything under the sun. They’re out on the water on a weekday and their still complaining about every little f…ing thing. I have no idea how they handle Parkway traffic.

We’ve stopped for the night in Cold Springs Harbor. The sunset was incredible tonight and showed a thousand shades of orange and red for hours after the sun went down. Today was a 53 mile day and even with the 0930 start we were able to anchor by 1730 hours. Tomorrow looks to be about a 50 mile day as we head to Duck Island to set ourselves up with a 40 mile run to Block Island the following day. We’ll be underway by 0830 and ride the ebb tide out Long Island Sound.

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