Feb 052014

A few days into the new month and so far I’ve only had to swipe my card twice.  Anytime some cunning mastermind comes up with some way to screw us out of money, you can bet somebody will game the system and that is exactly what I and probably a few others are doing.  For example, there are two bathrooms over by the old bait house where I sit and do some computertatin’, cause that’s where the internet connection is.  Soooo, I use that bathroom when over there.  No swiping necessary.  And if I time it right, I can have access to the showers without the need to swipe, because the maintenance man leaves the doors open to dry out the floors after he allegedly cleans them.  Free shower.  Same with the laundry.  One other resident says he does the newspaper trick.  He hangs out at the bathhouse reading the newspaper until somebody comes in or out of the bath room, and follows them in.

Sometimes I feel like I’m living in one of those WWII POW movies or shows.  The ones where the prisoners are digging tunnels, smuggling stuff in and out, all under the noses of the unsuspecting guards.  There’s a certain excitement to being caught.  Just without the machine guns in the guard towers, although I would not be surprised to see that come next.  No matter, they can shove the $125 up their HOA ass.  I ain’t paying it.  When I get to nine swipes, if I do, I will turn in the card.  The plan remains to get out of here very soon.

Speaking of which, yesterday was a big landmark event.  I got my first pump out of my toilet.  Hey, it may not seem like much but you take the victories wherever you can find them.  It looks like the 5 gallon tank will be sufficient for a week and if I am careful, two weeks should be ok too.

Sometime today or tomorrow, I should have the rudder finished and remounted on the boat.  I got the blade off, sanded it down some, painted a new coat of resin over it, and then painted it white to hide the blemishes.  It’s not a top notch job.  What I should have done was strip all the fiberglass off down to the wood and reglassed the whole blade.  But time constraints, money, and patience are all in short supply.  If all goes well, the rudder should last me for a while.  Maybe later I will do it up right or get a new rudder.  Upside is it wasn’t a very expensive job either.

Next up, propulsion.  I need to pull the motor out and run it a bit.  That means doing something I haven’t done in three years, buy some gas.  It only has a three gallon tank, but here at the marina, which carries the ethanol free fuel that I need, it runs $4.55 a gallon.  Other marinas are about the same.  I expect the motor to run fine as it was fully tuned up before I got it.  The only thing I don’t like is that it is designed for fresh water use only.  That means none of the parts, including hardware will hold up for long in this salty soup we float around on here in the Keys.  Again, I will need to go find a money tree and someday swap this engine out for a proper salt water engine.  All in good time.

Finally, I have a bag in the cabin with two big pieces of triangular shaped cloth.  Somebody told me that if I hang said pieces of cloth on the big stick that is in the middle of the boat, the boat will move when the wind blows.  I think they are full of it, but what the hey, if they are on the big stick, at least they will be out of the way.

The plan remains to try and get out of here at the end of Feb. or Mar.  I need to stay in touch with the other marina for available slips.  Were I not tied up with the Mermaid Hunter and this video gig, it would be real tempting next month to go a sailing for a few weeks.  Get everything going and sail up the Keys with stops at Marathon and Key Largo.  Just to get out and see how this little boat does.  Nothing drastic, just some sailing and relaxing.  But, the video gig is growing fast and we are adding more projects for the future.  It’s looking like things may really take off this spring.  So duty calls, as does some money.

I have retired from kayak guiding and chartering for now.  It’s just too time consuming and my knees in particular have been giving me a lot of trouble lately.  All that bike crashing hasn’t helped.  I need to constipate on the computer business, get a few more app projects, and get this thing in gear.

Whoops, I hear the guards outside the barracks and the alarm going off.  They may have found the tunnel.  Gotta go!

Capt. Fritter