Dock of the Bay

DOB1There certainly hasn’t been much sittin’ on the dock or wastin’ time since we arrived in Annapolis, but we’re now cosily ensconced on the end of the dock at Petrini’s boatyard in Spa Creek, one of the oldest marinas in town.

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It has a certain charm about it (as does the whole area) and the rates are very reasonable ($690 per month). The centre of town is within walking distance, so we’re getting plenty of exercise – particularly as the 15HP dinghy motor that we shipped out is refusing to start. Just one more thing to fix…..!

Our trip from Baltimore was an easy 4-hr motor down the bay, following the shipping channels out of the port, and passing under some impressive bridges on the way.

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It felt wonderful to be out on the water again even if we weren’t sailing.  You can tell the skipper’s pretty happy!DOB6

The reason for not sailing was twofold – the wind was on the nose (surprise, surprise), and our sails and running rigging (for landlubbers that’s the lines that attach the sails to the boat) need some repair, so we didn’t want to tempt fate this early in the piece.  There’s an opening bridge at the entrance to Spa Creek, so I got my first crack at doing a USA radio call – I think the bridge operator must’ve been scratching his head at this strange Aussie, as I later discovered that radio calls are a much more casual affair than we’re used to at home. It seems obligatory to use the phrase “10-4” at regular intervals. Looks like we have us a Convoy!

It’s been a very busy few days since we arrived, ordering equipment, provisioning, discovering more problems with the freshwater system. Bruce has spent most of his time buried in very small spaces trying to fix leaks.DOB7

First it was the accumulator tank, then it was the freshwater pump itself. The first was removed and the second was replaced with a slightly more powerful unit – but the increased pressure has caused some of the hose connectors to fail, so today it was back to West Marine for more plumbing parts. We’re discovering that maintenance wasn’t high on the previous owner’s list – things have been repaired (or not) in a very dodgy way so it looks as though there’ll be ongoing work on re-wiring and re-plumbing as we go.

The good news is that the marine plumber has worked his magic today, and after many expletives we are now leak-free!! We’ve achieved quite a lot of other tasks too. After endlessly flushing and re-flushing the water tanks with chlorine additive and water purifiers, we’ve finally got rid of the sickly smell from the winterizing process.  Hooray!  Other achievements include installing new power points in the saloon, rewiring the navigation instruments, putting in the HF radio, cleaning the bilges and stocking up on kitchen items.  Next job on the list is replacing the leaky and/or crazed hatches. 5 in total. Looks like another busy week coming up!

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