~ Bottom Cleaning, Swabbing the Deck, and Hull Inspection ~
~ Bottom Cleaning and Hull Inspection ~
~ First Cleaning of Our Old Girl ~
— The Way She Was When We Found Her —
Day of Discovery
The very first time I ever went sailing, it was a night sail and we were all there to have fun…not necessarily learn how to sail. Well, that was almost ten years ago and I am so happy that, but-if-only for a short time, I can now say I am a sailor. Admittedly, I’m not an accomplished sailor who can actually set sail on her own and solo-circumnavigate the globe, but a woman who has actually started to learn and understand the complications of sailing. I love it…even still; though it is no easy task.
It’s been almost a year now since we first found our San Juan 24, and Nico and I have been steadily bringing our old girl around…after much elbow work. You see…? When we found our old–or should I say ‘vintage’–sailing yacht, she had spent many-a-days floating about in her slip; neglected and full of dirt-daubers and cobwebs. Even a bit of a puddle in the bilge, in addition to everything else, couldn’t sway us from falling in love with our SJ-24. It was as if she’d been waiting for our little family to come along and keep her company…for all those years she’d been neglected.
But…alas! We are bringing her around now and she has spent some time on a local lake, leaving a rooster-tail wake behind her. Our old girl is fast! And, because she is a fixed keel with a 4 foot drop and sitting on a very shallow lake that is in the process of being dredged, we have the very real worry of running aground and damaging the keel before we can ever really get her into open water and turn her loose.
That said… We aim to do just that: get our boat to deeper waters and see what she’s really capable of, even though we are still learning and know we should be in no hurry to put ourselves into a situation we aren’t capable of handling just yet. So…in the meantime, we will putt about our shallow lake and learn the art of sailing; learn how our old girl handles; how fast she can go without hitting the bottom.
As for running aground, we’ve already been there and done that. Lucky for us, we had a line of sailing friends there to pull us out. That, we know, is a luxury that we will likely not have when or if we ever run aground out there…somewhere. But then again, that’s just one of the things that make a sailor seasoned. I welcome the risk!
*A full life worth living is worth the many chances you’ll take to get there*