Settling In

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Sat 25 Sep 2010 23:59

Alongside Yacht Club de Chile, Valparaiso
Weather: Mostly sunny, mild

I am starting to settle in to the yacht club environs. The Mediterranean moor is a bit of a pain, as getting on and off the boat is not so easy. The lines need to be reasonably tight to allow for the various states of tide and the near constant surge. This means Sylph’s bow is at least three feet form the dock and to get ashore I have to do a tight rope walk along one of the bowlines.

The marina area is small but the facilities are good, with showers being the most important feature. Upstairs is a posh restaurant, it looks a little beyond my budget and inclination, though a nice lady who works there and gave me a lift into town yesterday tells me during the week it is cheap but prices double over the weekend. They allow me to buy a cold beer to take back to the boat which is nice after a day working in the sun on the boat.

Which is basically what I have been doing over the last couple of days, getting stuck into a bit of upper deck maintenance. I have been mostly attending to minor little rust spots that inevitably break out over time in a steel boat. Unfortunately one of them has turned out to be not so minor. As I ground away at one little spot of rust bleeding through the paintwork on the coach house beside the dodger, the rust revealed beneath was quite extensive, and now I have another hole I need to seal up. To do the job properly I really need to remove the dodger and weld a new bit of steel in but two things probably preclude this. The first is the difficulty of removing the dodger, I am concerned that I may well damage it in doing so and do not want to be stuck here with this problem. The second is the lack of power and therefore not being able to do any welding. So my intention is to patch the hole with some fibreglass and hope that the repair will last until we get back to Australia. So this is my immediate concern.



As to my medium term plans, they are a bit up in the air at the moment. I have ordered a new headsail from North Sails in Buenos Aires and this will not be ready until the end of October. Due to customs problems between Chile and Argentina I have been advised that it is best for me to go to Buenos Aires to collect the sail and bring it back as personal luggage. This then is my main reason for coming to Valparaiso, it is near the capital of Chile, Santiago, and travel from here to Buenos Aires should be relatively simple and cheap. Also the climate is much better here then in Puerto Montt, so hopefully I will be able to get a lot more maintenance done. There are a few unknowns I need to work out, one is how much it is going to cost to stay in the yacht club for a bit over a month. If it inexpensive I will stay, but if not I will need to work out somewhere else where we can lie low for about five weeks. And my other major concern is finding a minder for BC while I am away for about three or four days. Undoubtedly we will resolve these issues over the next few weeks.

All is well.

Bob Cat:

I have been around for quite a while now, for a cat. As my dear readers know my needs are simple; a bit of sunshine, some palatable food, somewhere comfortable to lay my head, some company - a few cuddles never go astray, and of course plenty of sleep. And then, mostly, I like to sit still and watch the world go by; or better still to dream about it going by … zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.