Going Solo

The Aggada Da Vida at anchor in Lopez Sound.

The Aggada Da Vida at anchor in Lopez Sound.

I haven’t done much writing lately because I haven’t spent as much time on the water. As I write this, I sit on the Aggada Da Vida watching the sun come up over Lopez Sound. The quite, the solitude, and the beauty are what give me the inspiration to write. It is the serenity that I find out here which gives meaning to my life. It is this solace that I long for, like an addict looking for a ‘fix’, every time I return to society.

The reason I haven’t spent much time on the water is because I’ve excommunicated myself from the Rock ‘n Row. My marriage has been struggling for a couple years. To give us both time to pick up the pieces, I’ve moved off the boat.

I once asked for feedback and constructive criticism about this blog on the facebook page. One reader recommended that I not make it so personal, that I should focus on the sailing more. I know Stormy has struggled to separate blogging about his personal life from blogging about his sailing too. I’ve decided not to separate the two because I can’t. Boating is my personal life. Everything in my life has played second fiddle to the marching drum of my desire to live a life of self sufficiency and voluntary simplicity on a boat in the San Juan Islands. I am a haunted man. I could no more quench this desire than make water run uphill.

…Fast Forward

US Yacht 27

Hauling my new US Yacht 27 for some serious repairs on the bottom, and a couple new coats of paint.

I wrote the above entry in July. Fast forward a month. I am now sitting aboard the Weasel P, my new 27 foot US Yacht sailboat sloop. As I write this, I am anchored in Echo Bay of Sucia Island. I’ve just spent the last week hauling the boat, fixing structural cracks in the hull, and giving her several new coats of paint. Now I’m enjoying my first solo trip on her.

I haven’t blogged in a long time and I’ve missed it. Blogging is an outlet for me, but it’s also a way to capture the adventures of my life. I want my life to be an adventure, and I want to share my successes, failures, frustrations, and epiphanies with others. I miss interacting with my frequent readers, too. This summer, I had hoped to share my success and failures, but all I seem to have experienced are failures.

Cracks at the top of the keel. The previous owners had run aground a couple times. These were just stress cracks in the gelcoat, so no water penetration.

Cracks at the top of the keel. The previous owners had run aground a couple times. These were just stress cracks in the gelcoat, so no water penetration.

I sold the Rock ‘n Row to my ex-wife for $1 so that I could get my name off the title and thereby allow myself to move on and get a new boat. I didn’t expect to find a new boat so quickly, but I was able to scoop up this US Yacht 27 for only $3,800. It’s got good sails and a great outboard. The interior is roomy and comfortable. My first sail boat, the Sea Muse was a US Yacht 25, so I knew that this boat would be a great sail and I had a fairly good idea of the structural issues to look out for.

The biggest problem I ran into with the Sea Muse was the rudder. It had split at the seems and so that was the first thing I checked when I got the new boat hauled. Sure enough, it was just starting to split. I ground out the seams, filled in the gap with fiberglass, and recoated the top with new gel coat. I think I got to it just in time!

Rudder Repair

The rudder was just starting to split at the seams. The wood was a little wet underneath, but still structurally strong.

The previous owner had also run the boat aground a couple times. There were stress cracks on the keel and the starboard aft hull. Only one spot was actually leaking water into the polyester fiberglass. Again, I ground them out, replaced with epoxy fiberglass where necessary, and recoated the cracks with new gelcoat. I’m no expert, so we’ll see if my fixes get the job done when I get her hauled in another couple years. I’m pretty sure nothing I did could have made the problems worse though, so I take solace in that.

Moving Forward

I’m not fond of the name Weasel P. I’ve never re-christened a boat, but I think I’m going to do it this time around. I’m open to suggestions! Please leave a comment if you have an idea for a good boat name.

Now that the dust is beginning to settle from the demolition of my relationship and I have a good, seaworthy boat, I’ll start blogging a lot more. It sure feels good to sail again!

Repairing sailboat hull

Only one crack on the starboard aft hull was deep enough that it was leaking water into the polyester fiberglass. A little grinding, new epoxy fiberglass, and gelcoat will take care of that!

I am also on the hunt for work. My ‘cruising kitty’ for the summer has dwindled, despite a serious lack of cruising. I’ve basically set myself back two years. I need to save money and fix up the new boat. I’m now starting to set my sights on summer 2015 for a solo expedition up the inside passage. I’ll write more about that, you can be sure.

sailboat bottom paint

With the structural issues repaired and several coats of new paint, she’s ready to go back into the water!

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5 Responses to “Going Solo”
  1. Lisa says:

    Best name we ever gave a boat . . . “Dagnabit”. Think about it, fits a sailboat exactly!

  2. You need John Vigor’s denaming and renaming ceremonies for renaming the boat. You can find them on the interweb, probably on his website. I know what you mean about blogging being a personal experience. I notice that when I keep things impersonal, people comment more, but I don’t really know why. Whatever. I write because I enjoy it. Love the photo. Wish we were still up there.

  3. Sorry to hear about your relationship and the Rock n’ Row. I wish you much better success moving forward.

    Renaming can be fun. We renamed our boat using the Bluewater Sailing renaming ceremony. http://www.bluewatersailing.com/documents/renamingceremony.pdf

    Lots of fun. We recommend liberal use of wine and the bell. It really made things fun.

    Fair winds,


  4. Kelly says:

    Sonador del Viento. Wind Dreamer in Spanish. Correct spelling would have an ‘enye’ in place of the ‘n’. It is pronounced nya instead of en and the ‘V’ is pronounced like a soft b.
    Bueno suerte amigo.

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