Hopefully this is a sign that life might be returning to normal. By that I mean that I have enough bandwidth to write in this blog in the same year that the photos are taken.
Early on the morning of March 6th, 2022 Tavish and Deirdre were warming the engine on their “Harlequin”. They were headed north to the Great Bear Rainforest on a continuing filming project for a First Nation there. And they were in my way . . . So we said our Mariner’s good-byes . . . they hope to be filming for at least two months and they steamed away . . . There is something about the comings and goings of mariners, seeing Tavish and Dierdre disappear around the corner . . . when will I see them next and under what circumstances . . . Rounding Cape Caution traveling in opposite directions like last year . . . whatever our paths will be, I always get a lump in my throat seeing Tavish heading off once again…..
The “Official” start to Spring is not the arrival of robins, nor first snow-drops poking through the snow or some minor celestial event like an equinox . . . . no, no, no.
The true start to the spring season is the opening of the boat house gate and the rather scandalous promenading of the COLUMBIA III as she comes out into direct sunlight for the first time in 5 /12 months. I often hear Heavenly Hosts singing glorious praises as she slides out of the shed . . . ok, ok, that’s a bit over the top but it is always a really big deal for me, mainly because it indicates that I have hit the “GO” button on the conveyor belt that is going to keep me, the COLUMBIA III and many other players hopping in all the preseason preparations that seamlessly (I hope) flow into our touring season . . .
and the shed always seem so huge when it is empty . . .
A few last items from my house . . .
and off Steve and I went, stopping at Whaletown to pick up Jonas for extra help. We went straight to the Ocean Pacific travel lift. There is something deeply disturbing about having the heritage vessel 20′ above the water! I never really relax until she is safely back in the water again . . . If you ever want to “wear my shoes” you can YouTube boating travel lift accidents and you will understand my anxiety.
By chance one of the big sheds was available so we had the premier accommodation for the week.
The usual sanding and scrapping . . .
And then the painting begins . . .
Here’s a little “tour”around the vessel’s underside . . .
This is a close-up of the cooling pipes that cool the main engine without any corrosive salt water coming into contact with the Gardner engine. These pipes, the wooden protection around them, the copper cladding behind them AND the planking behind all that were removed and replaced as needed during our hull refastening in 2014 . . .
And final anti-fouling paint touch-ups in the spots the jack stands covered.
Note the masts are still hinged down because she will be going straight back into the shed for spring painting.
And back in the water!! Phew!!!
Now time to load up on sand paper, tools, paint, stain, paint brushes, respirators, masking tape, paint trays and rollers. The real work begins April 1st.