Wednesday, 30 May 2018

It's always something ...

On a "short" voyage at the beginning of the nineties, I sailed Traversay II from Canada to the Marquesas to Hawaii and back home over a summer. At Nuku Hiva I met Marv and Sue on their beautiful boat "Susitna".

Fast forward to 2010 when Mary Anne and I visited Marv and Sue at their B & Breakfast on Te Ngaire Bay on the north shore of North Island, New Zealand: "Why did you stop cruising on Susitna?" I asked. "It was always SOMETHING" was the reply.

And so it is with us. Three days before finishing our ocean crossing at Neah Bay, Washington, the refrigerator died. The freezer, a separate thing, was still fine. Various ministrations with vacuum pumps, dry air from SCUBA tanks (I don't have the recommended nitrogen), more extended vacuuming and a recharge rendered the fridge serviceable again.

Then our visit to the museum of pre-Columbian artifacts in the Neah Bay museum was canceled due to too much wind for us to safely maneuver in the unfamiliar marina ... so we stayed anchored. No sooner was the decision made to stay safely anchored then the US Coast Guard turned up to do a safety inspection on our vessel.

This was quite un-traumatic. The boarding party were well dressed, courteous and efficient. A few minor compliance issues were addressed in which we had complied with the spirit though not the letter of the rules. The only warning that rankled was the caution that our life jackets were not US Coast Guard approved "as required". They were, in fact, high end SOLAS life jackets approved by Transport Canada as required on a Canadian registered vessel under Canadian law. Should we have different life jackets for each country we visit? Do the big Chinese freighters have US rather than Chinese life jackets? Ah well, it was only a warning, but it reminded me of the recent news story in which a Canadian student was arrested in the eastern US for driving without a licence being told "Ontario licenses are nor valid here."

To top things off, that new/failed/warranty repaired alternator on the engine died again today. Relief was instant when I discovered the belts were totally slack and a hex bolt was lying in the bilge. I really should have used a lock washer the first time! But the alternator is now again up and running.

Tomorrow (insh'allah as the saying goes) we will find ourselves back in Victoria, BC, 25 months after setting sail. Nineteen miles to go!

At 2018-05-31 00:54 (utc) our position was 48°09.68'N 123°43.51'W

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