11 May

The first night

Although we still haven’t technically taken possession of our new boat, since we were stopping in Vancouver overnight anyway we decided to see if we could stay aboard Rainbow Hunter (which is what she is still called until we can go through some sort of renaming ceremony). We checked with Lawrence and he said sure.

We are in Vancouver on our way to join Tim and Donna Melville to sail around Vancouver Island on their Baltic 42. Hop over to macblaze.ca to read the ongoing report.

This was Leslie’s first actual experience with our new boat. But after 2 days of traveling and negotiating Vancouver traffic and then facing Granville Island on a gorgeous Mother’s Day stuffed full of people, we were a bit frazzled.  So I’m not sure there was any immediate emotional response one way or another. But she didn’t frown so that was good.

Lawrence (our broker) was off on a sea trial so we got someone else to open up the cabin and we snooped around a bit. I found the DVD player that the surveyor had noted but no one else had seen. We read through the old charter manual and generally tried to look like we belonged with little success. Finally we gave up and skipped out for lunch just as Lawrence was coming in, leaving him with a promise to catch up with him after we were sated.

Unfortunately fighting the crowds did little to calm our nerves, but even so we eventually convened back on the boat and Lawrence went over the progress. The water heater had been repaired, most of the rigging done and the Yanmar guys were due Monday.  The webasto guy had the parts but no time so that was starting to look like June. The lift also hadn’t been scheduled yet so that was likely June as well.

We ok’d the bottom paint and discussed the leaky hatch in the head. I was inclined to live with it. After all it was leaking in the room with the drains. But we talked it over and Lawrence invoked the possibility of the water making its way into the core, which is kind of a sailboat bogeyman. So I caved. I’m actually pretty afraid of that particular bogeyman.  That settled, we discussed moving the boat to Mosquito Creek and potential dates for the official transfer. Since we are coming out for the Hunter Rendezvous in June it’s likely we will just come out a few days early and do it then. After that Lawrence turned over the keys to their washroom and the marina gates. He also lent us his parking pass so we could save a few bucks. Then he bid adieu and attempted to escape to his own Mother’s Day proceedings.

So Leslie and I moved the truck and picked up a chilled bottle of Riesling at Liberty Wines and sat back to try and unwind. We broke out the cockpit cushions, a couple of wine glasses and some of John’s oatmeal cookies and broke in our new boat.

The massive binnacle on the 386 is not a plus in my mind, but there’s lots of space to sprawl out and it’s pretty comfortable. We flipped up one wing of the table which should be good enough when there is only two of us.

I’m still puzzled by the mesh sides in the enclosure, but I am guessing Larry (the previous owner) had it done for his Alaska trip to keep the bugs out. But it’s definitely something we will have to do something about before winter. The forward side panels are also a bit awkward since they come back almost to the arch and exiting the cockpit into the side deck is difficult unless they are half undone. No problem when we are stern-in but a bit of an issue if we are exiting or boarding  over the side.

The cabin, which is pretty spacious looked cramped and crowded with all our stuff piled willynilly. We’d brought some pillows and an afghan as well as some sheets. Leslie made up the bed and I tried reorganizing. I guess we’re going to have to learn to put things away. It’s amazing how so little clutter can change the nature of a small space. Something to remember.

Then we went off to dinner. We hit the washrooms in the way back and bumbled off the walls of the boat for a while as the sun set. The water tank was full so I fired up the waterheater and decided to have a shower. We spent some time searching the head for the switch for the shower sump. The manual insisted it was by the bathroom sink but neither I nor Leslie could find it. Eventually I pulled some floor up and found the pump. By running some water down the drain I figured out the sump was on a float switch, so as long as the breaker was on the pump would automatically run. Cool.

Then we hit the huge berth in the aft cabin to crash for the night. My only complaint is that the only lights (out of more lights than you can shake a 10′ pole at) that are useful for reading are way out of reach from anything other than an upright position. Although we have a bad habit of sleeping with lights on, this will be a non-starter when trying to conserve batteries.

Sleep was elusive, between squeaky fenders and too much tension, but we were warm and comfy. That cabin is a great luxury.

Morning had me figuring out the propane system and boiling some water for tea while L tried out the shower. Then we packed up and clicked off all the breakers before disembarking.  See you later.

It was a good first night. And it’s good to learn in small bits. Now we just need to actually leave the dock. I guess that’ll be June.


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