Saturday, July 09, 2005

old skills on a slow news day

Today I bought another 100 feet of anchor line for my little boat. The previous owner only had 100' total (of only 7/16", too) -- enough for anchoring in 15 feet of water on a calm day. The new line (1/2") came with a galvanized thimble installed, but I wanted another at the other end, so I bought a thimble, too. At the boat, I did whatever boat stuff I had to do, and sat down with the new rope and thimble. This must have been the fastest splice I've ever made, because the rope was very lightly laid. I guess it's been almost 10 years since I did any marlinspike work, and I was pleased that I still knew how. It came out quite well, too! The old line seems much tighter laid, and hard. I would have preferred to connect the two with a short splice, but a 1/2" shackle through the 2 eyes will have to do. I don't think I want to fight with that old stuff.

Edit: Summer, 2007. Screw it. I cut the thimbles off and connected the two lines with a short splice. Came out well. Never liked that old rusty thimble anyway. Picked up a 3# Northill on eBay. Overpaid, too, but it's great. I's almost New Years Eve, 2007 now. Summer seems a long way off.

Edit: March, 2011. Sold the boat. New owner very happy. Wife very happy. I have mixed emotions. Will I buy another boat? Highly unlikely. Since the M-I-L got sick, we see the need for simplifying our own lives, and clearing out extraneous things. Boats are extraneous things. We had 40 years of boating; that's enough. Time to move on. Here in New Jersey, there are plenty of party boats for a day of fishing. But my Springtimes will be boring, and I won't be able to bitch about my poor fishing skills any more. I think I'll still remain boatless.

April 2011. The boat is sold. Third boat gonzo. Will there be another? I'm trying to say NO! but, what the hell, if the right boat came along at the right price... who knows? I'm appreciating the bump in my cash flow, though, but I still have that farken' salt water coursin' thru my veins...

Friday, July 08, 2005

a dreary day

rain and rain and rain. Rain in Free Acres brings me back to my Summer days here as a kid. The beating of the drops on the roof and the darkness, accentuated by the heavy shade brings it all back.

Back in 1950, one night, we had a huge storm. Lightning and thunder, like the hammers of hell were let loose. We had an outhouse then, and my father needed to use it. He had lights strung under the eaves, and flipped 'em on, ran like hell around the bungalow, and when he returned, he was soaked. "THAT'S IT!" "NEXT YEAR WE'RE GOING TO HAVE INDOOR PLUMBING!" he yelled. And we did. In 1951, we added a john, and another room, too. From shack to mansion.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

July 4th on Maryland's Eastern Shore

We had a spectacular fireworks display in the tiny town of Rock Hall on the night of July 3rd. Somehow, the town got a fighter plane flyover to start things off, and followed that with 45 minutes of nonstop pyrotechnics. In previous years, we just stood on the dock at the foot of Sharp Street, by the Waterman's Crab House, but this year we thought we'd sit on our little boat (named the T3) at her slip and hope for a good view. What a surprise! The view from the boat was unobstructed. We had a full view of the entire fireworks barge, and got to see everything better than we had hoped. Being on a boat, we also felt the rumbling beneath us.

Rock Hall, MD has a year-round population of 500 or so. This swells to 1500 in the Summer, and being a peninsula, has marinas all around it. There are over 2,000 boat slips in Rock Hall.