Poop Happens

by sarah hair Email

We repaired our rigging with a brand new new piece that was a better fit for the home made piece that it was replacing. Including overnight shipping twice and a weekend at the dock waiting for its arrival, it was several hundred dollars to replace this piece which cost around $20.00, even though we did the work ourselves. The work itself was fun enough, with me on the main climbing line, Malia on the winch, and Madison on the secondary lifeline. We still need John to actually climb though, even with the mechanical advantage on the winch and the 3 to one block and tackle. I guess we are still pretty wimpy.

New rigging installed, we tried our hand at sailing the ICW again and headed north toward somewhere. We eventually reached an area that was claimed to be ruins, though all we really saw around there was an old bridge. It was very pretty though and we anchored for the night. In the morning we opted to try sailing again rather than exploring given our lack of landing options ashore.

Sailing proved elusive that next morning and we had to turn to motoring as the tide changed and was rushing past us at about the same speed we were making. We got about an hour of motoring and were headed away from a small town with an amazing-looking park just off the ICW when John did an emergency anchoring maneuver and killed the engine. Turned out we were having sudden engine failure. Everything was overheating.

We spent the afternoon all four of us working on the engine. Madison passed tools from the toolbox like a professional and Malia started and stopped the engine upon command from the cock-pit. John took things apart and put them back together including replacing an impeller which was down to one little half-flap and another quarter-flap from its intended dozen or more requisite flaps. No wonder it stopped working... poor thing was dead dead dead.


"Little black impeller didn't give us much warning, but at least had the decency to break apart on the one and only stretch of ICW we have seen in over 300 miles which had readily available anchoring for several hundred feet. You will be fondly remembered for your consideration."

I cleaned the strainer and other bits and pieces and scrubbed down those hard-to-reach-places that were suddenly exposed while the engine room was torn apart. In the end, the engine was running again and we were able to go whenever we were ready. We decided to stay in Carolina Beach and look up that park a mile or so back.

We ended up staying two days and also checking out the beach, the grocery store, the mini-golf, and a falafel joint. I highly recommend all, especially the mini-golf which had a lot of shade and a well planned and beautiful course. In stark contrast to the mini-golf we played in Myrtle Beach, every hole was a shining example of how to put together a tricky green with 2-3 par but a capacity for a hole-in-one. We all enjoyed the scorching heat on that course where we found a lot of shade and comfortable benches and lawn to sprawl out on while waiting for the other players ahead of us or just taking a break.

Upon returning to the boat last night and deciding that this morning we would move on to the next place, our head stopped flushing. The head, for all you land-dwellers, is the marine version of a toilet. Of course, it stopped flushing in the middle of needing to be flushed, since otherwise we would not have been flushing it and would not have known that it had indeed stopped flushing. John waded through the stinky mess, took it apart, knocked in some ill-placed hair ties and headbands, yelled a lot, cleaned up the strainer and other parts, showered, and declared the head also to be dead dead dead.


"It had been a mediocre head. Easier to flush than most, but took too much electricity. Saw more years and butts than it should have since we ran out of money and couldn't afford to replace it years ago. It will not really be missed but rather replaced."

So far, of losing our sailing capacity through broken rigging that could have killed us, losing our engine, and losing our head, the head is the most inconvenient. I guess you can't really imagine what it is like until it happens to you. Luckily, we have an "auxiliary" head located under my jewelry bench next to my bunk. You can imagine how quickly I want the real head replaced, but until then, everybody poops. Two feet from my bed, under my jewelry bench, everybody poops.

1 comment

Comment from: here chill [Visitor]
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08/18/10 @ 19:08

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