Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Shitter's Full!

Last weekend Scott and I took the holding tank out of our boat.  It is important to know that the "holding tank" is what holds all the contents of our marine toilet.  It was huge, cumbersome, took up a significant amount of precious lazarette locker space and it needed to go.  Once we're in the ocean we won't need it anyway, as ships are allowed to pump the contents of their toilets overboard.  This is probably news to you non-boaters, and I'm sorry to be the one to give it to you, but yes, poop (even from cruise ships) is pumped into the ocean.  Something about parts per million...

Anyway, in order for us to remove the tank I had to get into said locker with said holding tank in such a way that would have made a Cirque du Soleil performer blush.  Seriously, any one that has ANY issue with claustrophobia has no business working on a boat.  This is not the first time I have had to crawl into a compartment the size of a car trunk to do "work".  This was, however, the first time I had to crawl into a space that held, for lack of a better word, our "shitter".  Toxic level? We'll give it a "3".  Disgust level?  Off the charts.

Don't let my smile fool you folks.  This is not fun.

Luckily, we'd had the tank pumped out before winter, so *most* of the contents had been removed.  In order to get the tank out, I had to unhook two hoses (poop in, poop out).  Remember, I am in a teeny tiny locker, it's about 105 degrees in there, and it smells.  Bad.  I unhook hose #1, and it comes off clean.  Phew.  I adjust myself ever so slightly, wipe the sweat out of my eyes with my arm (not using my ecoli infested hands!), and go for #2.  It comes off.  Not clean. Out pours a couple cups of the most disgusting yellowy-brown lumpy liquid EVER.  I scream.  I bang around in the locker.  Pound the tank with my screw driver.  Scream more expletives.  Basically, I throw a temper tantrum as best I can while contorted into a pretzel.  This is NOT fun.  In fact, it is downright disgusting. 

Look at all the room we created!  Note the taped off hoses.  Yep.  Those held poop.

Eventually, I lost my marbles and had to get out.  This was after about 40 minutes of being in there, sawing, cutting, sweating, unscrewing and maneuvering.  Scott relieved me (he is really good at stepping in and calming me down in my moments of "frustration") and after much manipulation, we got the holding tank out.  For good.  We're going to put a much smaller holding tank in it's place.  We'll use it in lieu of pumping overboard when we're in a harbor, anchorage or near a beach - we don't want to pull an "Uncle Eddie" when we're among neighbors.

You're welcome.

Love,
Brittany & Scott

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Jerry Whipple should have stuck with the lazy river

I am not Jerry Whipple, but I might as well be.

Every now and then you read a news story that seems just too good to be true.  And then it is true.  And then you laugh.  Really, really hard.

Such is the story of Jerry Whipple, who started out July 24th in the best way possible: floating on a pool raft in the ocean, under the Florida sun, with a beer (or two, or three...?) in hand.  Unfortunately, Jerry Whipple had one too many and passed out cold.  A boater spotted him about a mile offshore and honked their horn, which did nothing to rouse him.  The Coast Guard was called.  Jerry was rescued.  The story hit the press, and one lucky bastard dodged a Darwin Award.

Read the full story here.  Enjoy.

Love,
Brittany & Scott

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Engine is IN!!

This is a VERY big deal.  It makes us giddy with excitement.  To put it in perspective - I guess it's sort of like getting a new car.  Or maybe a really souped up washer/dryer.  Or a riding lawnmower.  Or a puppy. Whatever, you get the point....Christmas has come early!



To quote Scott directly:
Check out the pics! I think this is the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen… after you of course!
Vroom vroom!!

Brittany & Scott

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Marine Superstitions

I have always been somewhat of a superstitious person.  I try not to walk under ladders, I don't put new shoes on the table, black cats crossing my path sort of creep me out and if I break a mirror, I don't like it.  However, superstitions don't rule my life.  If a black cat does cross my path I don't sequester myself in a room saying Hail Mary's or anything - but if I can avoid it by crossing the street or turning around quickly (i.e. changing my path - clever huh?) I will.  In my opinion, if there is even the remotest chance that I actually can control/avoid 'bad luck' - I'll give it a crack.  I don't want to tempt fate.  The universe works in very mysterious ways...

No world is more riddled with superstition than the world of the sea.  I've always known of the true blue sailor superstitions such as "bananas on a boat are bad luck" (you'll slip on the peel and fall overboard), dolphins swimming with your ship is a sign of good luck,  "don't whistle on a boat" (it will raise a gale) and, yes, I've always been aware of the sexist superstition that "a woman on a boat brings bad luck" (apparently, we 'anger' the sea).  I was not aware, however, that a NAKED woman on board will actually "calm the sea" (hence the naked figureheads adorning bows).  Riiiiiigggghhht.  Anyone else see a little discrepancy here?  I've got to hand it to those sailors of yesteryear though, they really knew how to work an angle.  I wonder how many seasick women ran around in their birthday suits when a storm hit or the waves got a little out of hand? Very 'age of Aquarius'.

Turns out - there are some pretty wacky nautical superstitions out there. Here are a few gems:
  • Black traveling bags are bad omens for sailors.
  • Avoid flat-footed people when beginning a trip BUT the bad luck can be averted if you speak to the flat-footed person before they speak to you.
  • Avoid red-headed people when beginning a trip BUT (like the above) the bad luck can be averted if you speak to the red head before they speak to you.
  • The caul of a newborn is protection against drowning and will bring the owner good luck (FYI 'caul' is essentially the amniotic sac....ummmmm who OWNS this sort of thing!?!).
  • The feather of a wren slain on New Years Day will protect a sailor from dying in a shipwreck.
Really, who comes up with this stuff?!  And to anyone out there who owns any part of the amniotic sac and carries it around for good luck - please seek help.

Sailors were (and are) a very superstitious bunch, and I'm guessing it has everything to do with the fact that once at sea, they had very little control of the world around them and adhering to these little tokens and rituals helped them to feel that they had a hand in their fate.  Superstitions provided a sense of security and confidence.  That, and the fact that sailors liked their women in the buff.  Who can blame 'em?

There is a tremendous amount of power in belief and maybe - just maybe if Scott and I offer Neptune some libations and goodies along our journey (hope he likes Rum!), he'll take good care of us (wink)! It's worth a shot (literally)! 

Fingers crossed,

Brittany & Scott

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Dog House

Did you know there are companies out there whose sole purpose is to provide watch dogs for places like junk yards and boat yards?

I sure didn't.  But, then again, I don't think too much about guard dogs at all.  Until I see something like this:


With no dog anywhere to be seen.

I had seen this little dog house, and figured it was for the owner's dog or the home of a former yard doggy who had crossed the "rainbow bridge".  That was until one of the guys at the yard, Bob, (who works, seemingly, every day on his beautiful wooden sailboat and is always one of the last to leave) said with a sigh as the warning alarm went off, signaling closing time;

"Well, I'd better get out of here.  Gotta be gone before the dogs show up..."
"What?  Dogs?  Show up?" I asked, confused.
"Yeah, they have a security company that drops off three dogs.  Big, mean looking ones.  One of 'em gets chained to that dog house out there, the other two roam the yard."
Roam the yard!?! What the..!?!
He continued, "...They drop them off at night, and then pick them up in the morning."

Yikes. 

As if that wasn't enough - Sunday we realized on the drive home that we had left the yard without throwing away the leftover pizza we'd had for lunch (Boat yard tip: cleaning up after yourself is proper etiquette...yes, even in a boat yard...especially in a boat yard).  Being the good tenants we are, we called Russ at the yard to alert him to our faux pas.  He just laughed and said not to worry, that if any rodents get into the pizza, the dogs will get them...

"Oh yeah, raccoons, possums...you name it - they get 'em.  You should come here reeeal early one morning, you could have raccoons for breakfast!" he chuckled.  Charming.

Since learning this, when the "end of the day" alarm sounds at ten to six, we pack up with more haste than ever.  We don't want to run into this pup on the way out...or ever for that matter.

Hi, I'm Fido with "Attack K9" in Chicago.  I'm just "one of the team"!

Love,

Brittany, Scott & Fido

Thursday, June 17, 2010

We finally went SAILING!

I'm saiiiilllllllllliiiiiiinnnnnnng!

Scott and I finally got to go out sailing last night with some of our favorite sailing peeps (these guys have known me since I was a little tyke) on my dad's boat.  We have been itching to actually be on a boat that is IN the water, and mother nature couldn't have ordered a better night.  Check out pics below.  The wind was light and out of the North East, but we ghosted along on a calm, flat sea at 5-6 knots chatting, laughing, drinking beer and just plain enjoying the beautiful night.  Wonderful.

The beautiful city of Chicago in the distance

El Capitan - chillin' with a Cuban.  Cigar.  Not a Cuban person.

Harlan, wondering silently "did I put the clothes in the dryer"?

AJ - the most dapper gentleman of them all.  He gets manicures.  "No paint. Only buffing".

Beautiful.

Is it just me, or does everyone look stoned in these photos?

Red sky at night, sailor's delight...

Lots of love,

Brittany & Scott

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Bottom is painted!



It's as easy as 1,2,3 (4,5,6..)! 

We painted the bottom of our boat!  She looks ab-fab, if I do say so myself.  Scott and I started the day, bright and early at 9am.   We were eager to inhale an undisclosed amount of VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) and make the bottom of our little beauty look pretty again.

If Saturday was a "3" on the toxic scale, we made up for it on Sunday! (Yes, we wore respirator masks this time).  But boy oh boy does she look good! 

We started with 3 coats of Interlux InterProtect 2000e epoxy barrier coat (the gray stuff) - followed by 2 coats of  West Marine PCA Gold (rebranded Pettit Ultima SR 40) in blue, then topped it off with a thick coat of PCA Gold in red.  We learned that applying these coats on top of each other while the paint is still "tacky" really strengthens the bond.  Made sense to us, so that is what we did.  We've also read that by applying two different colors (red and blue), you can see where you are "at" when the paint starts sloughing off. (Lesson time! "Ablative" paint eventually comes off in the water, the idea is that when it comes off, so does all the corrosive sea life that attaches to it- like barnacles, for example).  The layers act like a gauge of sorts.  Again, seemed to make sense to us - but the real reason we have two colors is because West Marine only had one gallon of each.  So that made our decision easy.  I like the red better anyway. 

We still have to paint the areas under the cradle pads, and we'll bang out all of those when she's in the sling ready to be launched, after which we'll do one more coat of red over the whole bottom to even it out.   If you have done your math correctly, that is SEVEN (count 'em - SEVEN) coats of barrier coat/bottom paint (SIX of which we did in ONE day).  There is even a calculation to figure out the number of brain cells lost during painting with super toxic copper paint!  It is equal to the square root of the number of coats multiplied by the number of coats...Square that number and move the decimal two places to the right*.  Voila!  It was worth it though,  Eric (the owner of the marina) came by and gave us another "NOA" (nod of approval) and said, "Now this is how a bottom job should look - you guys did a real nice job".

I feel bad for the poor saps who have to scrape it all off one day.

Love,

Brittany & Scott

*I completely made this up, but it sounds about right to me.

Monday, June 14, 2010

"Wax on, Wax off" or: The Brilliance of Mr. Miyagi

I love movies.  I've always loved movies.  I also REALLY loved Ralph Macchio in "Karate Kid".  Who doesn't recall the classic line "Wax on, wax off " and the subsequent arm cicle demonstration by Mr. Miyagi himself? 

Turns out - that really is the most effective and efficient way to wax (by hand, at least).  But I am getting ahead of myself...

This weekend was another chalk full of boat work.  On Saturday, we recruited three friends to help us wash, wipe down, buff and wax the hull of the mighty Rasmus  (Shout out time!! Thank you John-Mark P., Christina Z. and Scott B. - you all get first dibs on bunks in the islands!) .  Thankfully, it was raining cats and dogs here in Chicago so there was really nothing "better" to do than sweat and drink beer in a musty boat shed (nothing says 'boat' like the smell of fiberglass and epoxy! Mmmmm!).  To quote John-Mark: "There is no place I'd rather be.  Well, it's on my list of top 500 places to be today".  Yep.  You heard it here first folks, we made top 500!

There are only 499 possible places he'd rather be!

Christina "Wiping buffing compound residue is FUN"!

Favorite quote of the weekend - Scott B.: "Will I look like a total chotch if I take off my shirt?"

We had something of an assembly line set up.  Scott M. or Scott B. would use the big heavy duty buffer (it was quite a work out, as you can tell from the glistening Adonis above), Christina would follow and wipe off the remaining buffing residue, John-Mark would apply the wax with a sponge, and I would follow and wipe off the wax in a "wax on, wax off" motion a la "Karate Kid".  Worked like a charm.  We now have a shiny, clean boat.  I could even see my reflection in the hull!!

Does this feel reeaaally zen or is it just me?

Even Eric Renter (the owner of the Marina) came over to us on Sunday morning and gave us his nod of approval (we get VEEERRRRY excited about the Eric "NOA"). 

It was a very productive day - with significantly less toxin exposure than the previous weekend.  That was a nice surprise.  I'd give it a 3 on a scale of 1-10.

Scott: First, wash all boat. Then wax. Wax on...
John-Mark: Hey, why do I have to...?
Scott: Ah ah! Remember deal! No questions!
John-Mark: Yeah, but...
Scott: Hai! [makes circular gestures with each hand]
Scott: Wax on, right hand. Wax off, left hand. Wax on, wax off. Breathe in through nose, out the mouth. Wax on, wax off. Don't forget to breathe, very important.  [walks away to get a beer, still making circular motions with hands]
Scott: Wax on, wax off. Wax on, wax off.

With love,

Brittany & Scott

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Abby Sunderland Feared Lost at Sea

For those of you who don't know her, Abby Sunderland is a 16 year old American trying to break the record for the youngest person to circumnavigate the globe - solo.  She is also the sister of Zac Sunderland (see a post about him I wrote here), who set the record (for a brief time) in 2009.  A rescue effort has just been launched to find her after she set of her emergency distress signals some time this morning.

"Sunderland apparently signaled emergency beacon locating (EPIRB) devices on Thursday after losing contact over satellite phone with her family." (LA Now, June 10)

As a sailor who knows exactly how serious setting off your EPIRB is - this news resonates through my entire body like a direct hit to a funny bone.  A million things are going through my head.  As I sit here, at my desk, listening to music, snacking on gummy bears, there is a 16 year old girl somewhere in the middle of the Indian Ocean, in 25 foot seas, with winds reaching an excess of 50 knots, alone, probably terrified, and most likely - fighting for her life.  The nearest ship that has been diverted to rescue her is 40 hours away.  A lot can happen in 40 hours.

I don't mean to be dramatic or bleak - and I am hoping and praying for Abby - but I also can grasp the seriousness of a situation like this.  Finding a boat in the middle of the Ocean can be a lot like finding a needle in a haystack.  Luckily, with modern technology and equipment like the EPIRB (which is, essentially, a distress signal and transmitter device used to aid in the rescue of ships and planes) this once virtually impossible task has been made possible.  However, there are parts of the worlds oceans that are as remote as the moon in terms of the potential of anyone getting to you.  Planes are useless for ocean rescue, helicopters are limited to coastal rescues, and unless there is (by chance) a ship passing nearby, timely rescue is unlikely.

What makes this news even more heart wrenching (and what I shudder to type) is the simple, obvious truth that this could happen to us.  This is the kind of thought that really makes you take a slow, deep breath.  This is the kind of thought that makes you take a good, hard look at what you are doing and give it a healthy dose of respect.  We all know how precious and fleeting life is.  We are all reminded that none of our tomorrows are guaranteed.  For some of us, however, this is precisely why we go to sea - to seize and realize our dreams.  It's exactly why Abby is out there.

Abby has a fantastic team behind her and has been trained in all aspects of crisis at sea.  I have no doubt that every effort will be made to bring her home safely.  In the meantime, I will keep her in my thoughts and prayers.

Love,
Brittany & Scott

POSTSCRIPT 6/11/2010: Abby Sunderland is alive and well!  Her boat has been spotted by a plane and while her boat has been dismasted, she is fine and awaiting rescue from the ship that has been diverted to her.  This is fantastic news and a very happy ending to what could have been a very tragic story.  You can read more about Abby on her blog here.

Monday, June 07, 2010

It's a Major Award!!

I have never won anything in my life.  Okay, not true... I've won lots of things....but I've never won a RAFFLE - until now! 

You may or may not have read about Scott and I going to visit Raymarine's Mobile Tour that was taking place at West Marine to scope out all things electronic for our boat.   We got a lot of great information (we also nearly lit ourselves on fire when they told us what it all would COST, but that is besides the point...).  As we were leaving, we filled out one of those postcard things that you then put into a big clear bin filled with other people's postcard things.  It was (drum roll please!) a way to collect info with which to spam you later a raffle...

Fast forward to last Thursday; I am getting ready to head into my yoga class when my phone starts ringing. Uncharacteristically, I answer it and lo and behold, it's Shawn from West Marine!
(ring ring) "This is Brittany" (this is my standard "I don't know this number" business-y greeting)
"Hi Brittany, this is Shawn from West Marine"
"Hi Shawn." (I'm perplexed)
"Hi, well, I'm calling to tell you that you have won the raffle you entered back when you were here for the Raymarine mobile tour."
(A wave of excitement washes over me - I WON SOMETHING!??! REALLY!?! REALLY!?!...until I realize I have NO idea what we won. Like, not a clue.)
"Wow! That's great!!...(awkward pause)....um...(tenderly) can you remind me what we won again?"
"You won a $400 Raymarine autopilot remote!"

He then goes on about how I can come pick it up at anytime and how that'll give us the perfect opportunity to talk about all the other thousands of dollars worth of equipment he's hoping we'll buy from him. I don't have the heart (or the time) to tell him that we are probably not going with anything Raymarine on our boat - let alone an autopilot - so we will have no use for a remote for one. 

Was the raffle rigged to give us that extra "nudge" to buy our entire electronics suite from Raymarine?  Perhaps.  But I don't care.  Just like Ralphie's dad from the cult classic "A Christmas Story" (which -random factoid- happens to be one of my favorite movies of all time) - winning, no matter what, just feels good!  It's that simple.  Even if it is a tacky leg lamp that is likely to offend the entire neighborhood or a ploy to get us to spend thousands and thousands of additional dollars.

Also like Ralphie's dad, we will proudly accept our winnings...We might, however, (cough) put it up on eBay (cough) for the cash instead of displaying it in our window for all to see.
Sigh, if only winning the lottery was so easy.

Love,

Brittany & Scott

Friday, June 04, 2010

We've sanded the bottom....uh, now what!?!?!

If you haven't noticed, Scott and I are of the "lets cross that bridge when we come to it" variety.  We don't plan too much.  Partly because we like to keep things flexible, and partly (okay, mostly) because we don't know enough about what the heck we are doing to actually plan the next step.  Ah, the beauty of naivete.

Take the bottom of our boat, for instance.  We scraped and sanded the HECK out of it this past weekend.  We felt great; we accomplished a lot and I am pretty sure I developed some serious tone in my upper arms (I have asked more than one person to "feel my muscles").  We've been 'high' on all the work we did this past weekend that finally, yesterday, we just kind of looked at each other and said, "So, now what do we do?"

Well, the obvious answer is "paint the bottom".  Psh.  As IF anything is that cut and dry on a boat.  A quick "Google" search (can you tell that I *love* Google?) gives us about 8 million options to go through.  I just do not have that kind of time (or attention span for that matter).  So we ask around.  Of course everyone suggests something different.  The main problem we have is:  we're not exactly sure what we scraped and sanded off...(wince).

The bottom of a sailboat is a shockingly complicated thing.  Boats are submerged in water, and the tricky little H2O molecule is wily and nimble.  As such, you have to be VERY diligent to make sure those little molecules don't penetrate certain layers.  If it does, your boat gets blisters (or worse).  Yep.  A boat can get blisters....and they look just like, well, blisters.  Luckily, our boat has none (Bullet: dodged).  Typically, the bottom of the boat has MORE than a few layers paint....there is a gelcote (the ultimate H2O barrier, over the fiberglass), then some sort of primer, then a "barrier coat" and then a few coats of some type of anti-fouling bottom paint (the "offensive line" if you will).  We *think* we might have sanded down to the primer, or maybe we just took off a few years of anti-fouling?  We aren't really sure.  Ooopsie.  In addition - I just read how toxic paint dust is and how you should thoroughly protect yourself from it and not let it get on your skin. Check out my sister here:


Guess we should have been wearing protective suits.  Whoops.
 
When we were stripping the hull, one of the guys at the yard came over, took a look and asked "You gonna put an epoxy coat on her?"  I just looked at him, paint chips all over me, my hair a total mess, sweat dripping down my face and fogging up my goggles and shrugged.  That was my first clue that we were in for it.  The next clue came loud and clear when the yard's owner walked over and said "You guys stripping the bottom?!.... Oh man, you're reeeaaaally opening up a can of worms there!".  Awesome.  He was right.  Do you know the cost of bottom paint for a boat?  It runs (on average) $200-$300 a GALLON!  To make matters worse, you need a ridiculous amount of the stuff for multiple coats.  Covering our hull in dollar bills would be cheaper! The cost of all things "boat" just never ceases to amaze me...

But we'll figure it out.  And we'll continue to have fun doing it - learning and laughing at ourselves every step of the way.  Scott ruminated about how it's unfortunate you only become an "expert" at doing something AFTER you've done it (and messed it up, no doubt).  But I guess that's just life, isn't it?

Here's to clean bottoms!

Brittany & Scott

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

We've got a new look!

Hey everyone - we're getting "with it" and have added additional pages to our blog!  Yes, you heard me correctly - additional pages!!

This is a very simple thing to do, but being that I am technologically challenged it took me a while to figure out.  But I did! 

Poke around, go ahead - I dare you.  Click here or here or here or here or here....all SORTS of fun stuff!  OR, you can just scroll up a hair and click on those pretty orange links.

Anything else you'd like to see? 

Come on now, get your head out of the gutter!

Love,
Brittany & Scott                                                                                                                                                       

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can....

I don't even know where to begin. Suffice it to say we got a LOT done this weekend. Hooray for long weekends (and thank you, Veterans, for our freedom - you get a big Z-snap from me!).

Because I am mentally and physically exhausted, I will charm you with a photo montage of work. We calculated that over 36 man hours went into our boat this weekend. Here is photo evidence of what we did, complete with witty and pithy captions IF I can come up with some...I inhaled and absorbed a LOT of toxins this weekend.  I apologize in advance.  Level on toxic scale:  10 out of 10.  For sure.

First, we re-bedded the fuel tank cover. To give you perspective, this is looking down into our (empty) engine compartment from our cockpit. The cover itself was machined specifically for us, and the caulk is boat life I think. Either way, it is very sticky and gooey.
BONUS: This bad boy is NOT going to leak.
At least that's the idea.

 Easy as 1, 2, 3!!

We then cleaned off all of the through hulls (aka, holes that go "through" the "hull" of the boat) with acetone and alcohol, sanded them down, added new teak backing plates, and caulked the bejeezus out of them so that they stay in place for another 35 years.
BONUS: Scott got to finger paint with caulk.

        Step 1                            Step 2                           Step 3              
 
We also painted the engine room. Two coats of epoxy paint (white) to be exact.  It looks so nice and clean and ready for a brand new engine! Vroom vroom!
BONUS:  An engine room to make someone with OCD proud.

Note:  Next time more fans are needed.  Daddy got a little loopy from the fumes. Another Note:  Do NOT do this hungover. 

We then chiseled the ENTIRE bottom of the boat with 1" chisels. I will repeat this for effect and so you know *just* how insane this job is.  We CHISELED the ENTIRE BOTTOM OF THE BOAT with ONE INCH CHISELS.  This was either incredibly foolish or really smart. People around the boat yard kept coming up to us, checking our progress and asking what we were using. Then, with an approving nod of their heads they'd say "Wow, some people spend a whole season doing what you are doing in 2 days!". This sort of made us proud, but then made us wonder, "what ARE we doing exactly?!"

Further research into "scraping paint of the bottom of a boat" (actual Google search) had one site mention dry scraping (what we did) as "masochistic":
Dry scraping: The ultimate nightmare. Not only a great way of damaging your boat, but also exhausting, slow and painful. I generally recommend this technique only for small dinghies and people with a lot of time and too much energy. The advantage of this technique is that it requires neither fancy equipment, nor anything seriously dangerous or unhealthy.  If you are masochistic enough to strip your boat by dry scraping it, make sure that you are using quality tools.
Yes. I would agree with that. The pictures below do not do it justice.
As far as boat work goes, so far this is pretty much the worst yet.

  I had paint chips EVERYWHERE on my body.  I mean EVERYWHERE.  It gets in your pores, in the nook of your arm, in your eyes, between your toes, in your ears....and it ITCHES (did I mention it was 90 degrees this particular day?  Yeah).  Scott broke out in a mystery rash.  I would also recommend wearing gloves, as my hand above had been washed about 5 or 6 times before that photo was taken (I, of course, did NOT wear gloves).  I STILL have paint under my nails. 
BONUS:  The shower afterward, despite being 40 minutes of scrubbing your skin raw to get it clean, is heaven.

Sigh.  My little sister Chelsea is a trooper.  She REALLY helped make this job more fun.  Quite a feat.
Post work beers are in order.  Daddy and his daughters.  Mmmmmm......beer.

As if all THAT wasn't enough.  We didn't stop there...oh no!  We were like workers on speed.  My amazing sister Chelsea and I (after Scott and I scraped the rest of the hull clean) sanded the entire bottom with orbital hand sanders and 80 grit sand paper.  This job also requires a lot of patience, safety goggles, face masks, and some serious arm muscles (thank heaven for Bikram yoga).  I am so sore today - typing hurts.  I also just sneezed and I'm 100% sure paint powder came out. 
BONUS: MAJOR full body work-out.  Pretty sure we burned at LEAST 1000 calories doing this for 5 hours.


Oh, and remember the grabrails from a couple of weeks ago?  Yeah, we put those back on!! Hooray for putting things back ON the boat.  This was kind of a big deal for us since all we seem to be doing is removing stuff. 
BONUS: DUH!  Putting stuff ON the boat!

 Hi there!!  We are back and SNAG FREE NOW!! Hooray!

We also scraped the plastic covering off our lifelines to see what kind of shape they were in.  Surprisingly, they are in great shape.  We are just going to leave them uncovered because a) it looks cooler b)  we will NEVER be hiking out on this boat (the days of hiking so hard my lower half goes numb are over!!) and c) we'll be able to actually see the corrosion when it happens.
BONUS: Scott did this, not me.  He doesn't like me with sharp objects in my hand because he thinks I use knives carelessly.

Why HELLO there little life line.  Lookin' good!

So - while everyone  else was at the beach, out and about, enjoying bbq's and reveling in this beautiful 3 day weekend, we were working in a boat shed on the south side.  We put blood, sweat and tears into our little boat.  Well - no one actually cried.  But both Scott and I did go a little "mental" on day 2 of chiseling.  Luckily, our breakdowns were at different times so we were able to talk each other off the ledge which worked out perfectly.  Either way, it felt AMAZING to be at the yard, working away - inching closer and closer to the finish line.
BONUS:  New friends at the boat yard.  Love boat people.

This entire weekend made me think about a marathon, and how you just have to focus on the mile at hand, chunk by chunk, and just plug along.  You couldn't look at the whole hull and grab chisel in hand and just go at it.  You needed to break it up into "digestible" sections.  And the next thing you know, the job is done. 
BONUS:  Beer, no matter how cheap, really DOES taste sooooo good after a long days work.

I felt a lot like the little engine that could this weekend.

 MAJOR props must go to my dad and sister, Chelsea, who took time out of their weekends to work on our boat.   We are eternally grateful and love you both to BITS...bits I tell you.

Love,
Brittany & Scott

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