No, that’s NOT a leak!

Okay, here is the leak update.  We don’t have one.  (fanfare, cheering, ticker tape parade!)  Our situation is more challenging.  It turns out, we have an issue with condensation.  When we run the heater in the evening the boat heats up, but the air outside does not.  The boat cools, and we get condensation in out of the way spaces.  The condensation pools, and we get rain inside the boat even when it’s dry outside.  Science is so cool.

The solution is ventilation.  With that we are installing a fan in a high point on the boat.  Fingers crossed that this will work!

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There’s a Leek on Your Boat!!

leeks

 

Wait, that was supposed to be “leak”, not “leek”.  Aren’t homonyms fun?  Finding new homonyms has become something of a passion for my youngest.  This is one of her favorites.  While I’m a fan of the produce, water making it’s way inside my boat is more than an annoyance.  We have been trying to track down this leak for a while.  It only happens when it rains.

Dousing the decks and all areas outside with a hose doesn’t recreate the problem, but with the slightest cloud-based sprinkle I’m battling indoor rain.  Let’s just say it’s intensely frustrating.  It’s practically impossible to get to sleep with a constant drip, drip, drip.   Then there’s the psychological impact: the mental association of water with a necessary trip to the restroom.

Drip, drip, drip…  I leap out of bed with a bladder emergency, every few minutes.  Totally uncool.

At any rate, while it has all the makings of a snipe hunt, we will continue to pursue this leak.  Thoughts and prayers are appreciated.  Now, if you’ll excuse me, all this water talk is having the usual effect.

It’s Raining Again….INSIDE?

It seems like not so long ago when everyone was complaining about the drought in California.  I can say with confidence, it doesn’t feel like a drought anymore.  In fact, we have more water now than we know what to do with!  Dams and reservoirs are overflowing, and yet the rain is continuing to bucket down.  Guess I have no excuse not to wash the boat this summer.  haha.

When the weather is not so great outside, it makes a perfect opportunity to do boat work inside.  Usually I catch up on baking, and hubby does something with his tools.  I make every effort to stay out of his way; Lord knows I don’t want to get roped into one of his multiday projects.

I was on my way to bed, and noticed water dripping from above.   Actually, it was more than a drip.  It was raining inside.  This had to be rectified and quickly.  The next morning, we pulled out the ceiling panels and opened up crawl spaces to track down the source of the water.  It was condensation, and LOTS of it.  We racked our brains trying to figure out what would cause that much moisture.

As I was checking out the crawlspace behind the oven, I happened to look down.  The oven wasn’t vented.  When propane is burned (like in a propane oven) there are two byproducts: carbon monoxide, and water vapor.  Bingo.  We opened all the access panels, plugged in the dehumidifier, and hopped online to order the necessary bits to fix this.    The boat dried out overnight, but I was banned from using the oven until it was vented.  This is a big deal, as I bake a lot of gluten/dairy free foods for the kiddos.

Finally, our order arrived.  Guess who spent the weekend with half their body  shoehorned into a crawlspace, and the other half dangling out over the sink?  That would be me.  I drilled a hole into the outside of the boat (SCARY) and hubby and I worked together to get the vent line in.  We caulked the outside hole and pronounced our project complete.  Firing up the oven for a test run only confirmed the high quality of our work.  Yay us!

The condensation issue is not completely resolved, but we put a big dent in it.  I think we are going to install a small fan later.  Until then, I’ll fantasize about a back massage and ice the new bruises that have sprung up.

What’s it like on a boat in a storm?

Everytime there is a storm, I’m asked what it’s like being on the boat in that kind of weather.  So, I figured I would break it down here.  Keep in mind, this is while we are docked.  It’s a whole nother matter at sea.

  1. It’s loud.  Not like “Oh it sounds like there’s a storm outside” loud.  It’s more of a “storm- of- the- century- ushering- in- armageddon” kind of loud.  Every. Single. Storm.
  2. Since we are on a catamaran, we don’t move a whole lot.  We do, however get occasional gusts that  nudge us.  There’s not a lot of movement, but just enough to remind you that you are not on land.
  3. Wind whistles through trees, but it screams through our marina.  It literally sounds like someone opened the Ghostbusters containment system next door.
  4. Halyards slap against masts, and canvas flaps struggling to cling to its vessel.  The water of the marina is whipped up into small waves that beat against the hull with a repetitive splashy/slappy sound.
  5. It’s really, really loud.
  6. Zippers scrape the deck, blocks rattle, and the whole boat feels the vibration  of the lines oscillating in the wind.  It makes an annoying humming sound.
  7. Not sure if I mentioned it’s kind of loud.
  8. Rain sounds like we have a tin roof, so conversations tend to become polite yelling matches as we struggle to be heard over the din.
  9. Everyone in the marina hunkers down in their little boat cocoons giving the area an uninhabited feel.
  10. It’s loud

Guess who doesn’t sleep when there is a storm raging outside?  That would be me.

Even at Anchor, there’s fun to be had.

As the work day was coming to a close, hubby had a thought.  That usually means work for me, and this time was no different.  I filled the water tanks, and got things cleaned up and ready to sail.  Ok, I don’t mind the work so much if there is a reward.  I’m kind of shallow that way.

As soon as he arrived, we dropped the dock lines and took off for Treasure Island.  We anchor there frequently, but there was something new this time.  the Treasure Island Flea Market was scheduled to be opened.  Additionally, in Jack London Square there was a food festival.  We figured since the Flea Market was closer we would do that.  We hopped into our family car, the dinghy, and zoomed to shore. There were stilt walkers, loads of food trucks, plenty of bars to pick up a libation of choice, and phenomenal weather.  Vendors were selling everything from antiques, to campers, to plants.  In the pet section was someone selling vegan dog food.  Now that’s unusual.    What’s next, carnivorous cows?  I tipped my hat with appreciation to the creative endeavor and moved on.

Then I saw something that took…my…breath…away.  Not kidding.  It’s a suitcase that has a dollhouse built into it.  There were versions that were very gender specific, others that were gender neutral, but all of them awesome.  Here’s the thing, you have loads of room to use it as a suitcase.  With this, you don’t need to worry about an activity for your child where you are going.  The furniture is Melissa and Doug, so you know it’s good quality, and dolls are included.  There is a full size, and a carryon size.  Ever try to keep a small child engaged in an airport during a lay-over.  Enough said.

We still had a lot of daylight, and the kids were getting hungry.  Some brilliant person (me) suggested we should dinghy from Treasure Island to Jack London Square and check out the food festival.  It turned out, that was sheer genius.

During our walk-through, we found Brazilian Breads.  It’s gluten free little rolls that are kind of between a doughnut and a dumpling.  They are HEAVEN!  I’ve looked up a recipe and am going to attempt to create these lovelies.

Then we found a place called Core.  All I can say is WOW.  Veggies never looked so good!  We had the Thai zucchini noodles with a coconut and lime sauce that put smiles on all our faces, and a coconut meat bowl with apples, cinnamon, and honey  that tasted like sin.  It was amazing.   Our tummies were literally singing!

Hubby and I were dying for a bloody mary at this point, so we headed to Scotts, ordered our desired beverages along with steamed clams for the table, and enjoyed being out of the heat.  It actually felt like a vacation.

We headed back to Treasure Island, tummies full and happy, and let the kids have some beach time.  Then it was on to Reverie to watch the sun set and put the kiddos to bed.

The next day, as we were sorely lacking in any breeze, we motored back to West Point Harbor.  A brief shower for Reverie to get the salt off, and we were pooped.

 

 

Napa Haulout. Again??!!??….

No, this is not a duplicate post.  After our first Napa haulout, we quickly discovered that the new through hull that had been put in was leaking.  Water is best kept outside of a boat, so it was pretty evident this needed to be fixed pronto.

Unfortunately, a series of events prevented us from getting put back on the hard right away, so we sailed home to Redwood City and made arrangements to return to Napa.  This next trip overlapped with the school year so the girls would miss out on a few things.  They were decidedly bummed, but that’s life.  We would also have to do some night sailing, something we have not enjoyed in the past. This was decidedly a bummer.

I did a  Costco run, got everything put away, and started on prepping the boat.  With water tanks topped up, and the heads pumped (thank you Hubby!) we dropped the dock lines.  None of us wanted to be out, but we found ourselves enjoying the sail.  It was ideal conditions and Reverie happily sped through the water.  I finally got a decent picture of the marine layer cascading over the hills into the bay.

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Finally got a decent pic of this!  Next time I’ll try for a movie.  Fingers crossed!

 

 

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Getting dark

 

 

We overnighted at Treasure Island this time and anchored without a problem, then in the morning set off for Napa.

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The Red Rock.  It marks the boundary for three counties.  Pretty sure it’s never going to be build on.

 

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The kids entertained themselves creating a movie theatre in legos.  The ensuing movies were hilarious.

 

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Not much has changed since the last time we were on the Napa River!

 

We docked easily and found ourselves in the midst of the same neighbors as the day we left.  The guys pulled us out of the water, had the part taken care of, and put us back in water in a matter of a few hours.  That was the fastest haulout we have ever had!  We stayed at the Embassy Suites that night, taking advantage of the swimming pool, and had dinner at a restaurant downtown called Mango.

This was our second time at this restaurant, and it did not disappoint.  The pricing was very reasonable, the food was literally heaven on a plate, and the restaurant itself was a delight to be in.  If in Napa you MUST go here!  This was a wonderful way to celebrate the 15th anniversary of our wedding.  We had a bit of a walk downtown, and returned to the hotel for the night.

The next day, we made our way to China Camp from Napa.  Last time we were here, the kids didn’t get their beach time.  We were determined to rectify this situation.

Napa Haulout P2- Calistoga Petrified Forest

Hubby decided he had worked hard enough and it was time for a fun day.  We were not entirely certain what we were going to do, but for the love of God it was going to be a blast.  I mentioned to him the Petrified Forest we had been informed about at the TI.  It was in Calistoga, so would require a bit of a drive, but what’s that to intrepid explorers of our caliber?

We hoped into the rental car and began our quest for ancient stone-ified trees.  Even though the street signs were pointed the wrong way, we found our destination with little trouble.

Five minutes before opening time and there was already a small line of cars.  That’s a good sign.  We paid our entrance fee, familiarized ourselves with a map of the grounds, and took off on the path.  Quickly, our eyes trained themselves to recognize the many pieces of petrified wood scattered all over the place.  They ranged in size from tiny slivers, to chunks, and even full stumps.  Then we arrived at one of the excavated trees.

There’s something quite disconcerting about touching a piece of wood that feels nothing like wood.  We were even able to count the rings!  This site is the location of the largest petrified trees in the world.  The forest on this location 3.5 million years ago included  relatives of the Giant Sequoia, Pine, and Oak.   To see these mammoth trees, now stone, was awe-inspiring.  We also got a nice little nature walk to boot!

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“The Queen”: 8ft Diameter, 65ft Length, and a live tree growing through it!

 

Back to the gift shop and the kiddos were on a high.  Since we live on a boat, souvenirs are pretty much a no-go; there simply isn’t room.  Luckily, we can take photos and walk away with the best souvenirs of all, great memories and new knowledge.  Sometimes the best homeschooling is done on the road.

Back to the boat yard, and Reverie was sporting a new color.  The job was well done, and we were back in the water in no time.  The next day, we stared our sail back to Redwood City, our hulls ready for another two years of fun on the water.

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We think Reverie looks swanky in black!

 

 

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Finally back in the water.