So I might have exaggerated in my title, maybe a little and maybe I’m a little tardy in writing this? Unlike other boat owners, we currently don’t live anywhere near Blue Tale, sadly. So when we need to have major work done, we save, scrape, and hire someone or a company to do it for us. There are many times that I feel like a fraud, especially when I look at Tate & Dani of Sundowner (another Westsail owner); they are awesome and we totally admire their zest!! Though we shouldn’t compare, but it’s hard not too. One of our ‘to do’ projects was to pull the mast, strip & repaint, replace standing rigging, and whisker stays. Part of the reason; when I was up the mast this summer, I noticed lots of corrosion on the mast and both booms, my tri-lite & strobe were corroded out and some of the connections at the mast/rigging were questionable. We also wanted to inspect and if need be replace our seacocks.
Anywaaaaaaays, I looked up a marine shop north of Sidney, BC called Blackline Marine Inc. at a place called Canoe Cove Marina and made arrangements to bring BlueTale over on October 7, last Monday. I spoke with Brent and Matt, both long term employees and managers who seem to really love working there. Brent & Matt were great, very helpful, and patient. So in order for this to happen, Sophia (aka ‘Awesome Half’) made the flight arrangements, and I took time off from work. I flew down on Saturday and got into Victoria at 11pm and by the time I got my truck and drove out to BlueTale, it was 2:30 in the morning. I prepped the boat on Sunday, and conned our friend Donna Sassaman to loan me her husband Bill for our sail (motor) on Monday; actually, I don’t think it took much prodding for Bill to help me out. They’re great people and have helped us out lots and have loads of sailing/cruising experience & knowledge.
It would probably be a more interesting blog if there was more adventure involved in the trip, but it was pretty uneventful trip, except for a river otter trying to get on the boat Sunday night. We left Cowichan Bay Marina at around 9am and made it to Canoe Cove Marina at around 11am. It was a great trip over with some good wind (I wished we had sailed) and good conversations with Bill. We met Brent at Blackline’s dock area, tied up and then waited for Donna to pick us up and take us back to Cowichan Bay so I could pick up my truck. Back in Cowichan Bay I took Bill & Donna for supper and then headed back to the boat to for the night and then meet up with Brent & Matt on Tuesday to go over the plan for the partial refit.
An added bonus, my buddy Dan came out and joined me for the night. Dan’s a Search & Rescue Technician with the Canadian Armed Forces, stationed in Colwood just outside of Victoria. We met when we were both in the navy back in 1987. A great guy with a cool wife (Christi) and cute little daughter (Carson). After I dealt with the boat on Tuesday (details in my next blog), I spent some time with another old friend Rosemary (also an old Navy friend). I primarily stayed at Dan & Christi’s place for the remainder of my trip (came back on Saturday); Dan had to fly solo with his daughter while I stayed at his place (Christi was unavailable), so Dan and I took the task on. Personally, I think I did awesome, though I didn’t think a 6mo/old could poop so much. – Rob