The damn floor grate broke apart again. Which means I allowed myself to give up on it and called a shipwright to get a quote for the floor grate of my dreams. I sent him some pictures and dimensions and even met him on the boat to get a better idea of what it would take to reimagine the cockpit floor. Well, his quote was the stuff of nightmares, so Mack decided to take another stab at fixing the floor.
This time we weren't messing with glue or epoxy. Mack discovered 5200, an adhesive caulk made by 3M that's about $12 a tube and recognized as dangerously indestructible. He took extra time to pluck or sand out old adhesive before reconstructing the floor and sealing it together. He bought new dowels and replaced the missing ones. For about 3 weeks, he tinkered around in the garage, trying not to go crazy from the annoyance of detail work.
Once he got it all rebuilt and secured, we made the rogue decision to apply a thin layer of varnish. Varnish on the floor is tricky because you don't want things in the cockpit to be slippery, but we decided a thin layer wouldn't take away too much grip and would do wonders for the look of the wood.
We were right.
When we first started outfitting our dinghy, we bought an electric motor, mostly because it was so quiet and zero stinky. When we got our proper dinghy, we were amped to take her on adventures with the electric motor. Well, then we went to Catalina and motored around the harbor. The electric motor meant we had to haul a battery into the boat, connect it to the motor, keep everything dry so we don't die, and remember to disconnect the battery so we aren't left stranded. It also went about as fast as a drunk snail. We are not responsible or patient enough for an electric motor.
For Valentine's Day, Capt. Mack decided to show his affection by buying his one true love a powerful new Tohatsu motor. And me, the person he married, I got to make the DMV appointment to register the dinghy now that she has a motor tag. I should've been a boat.
In addition to the motor, he also got his girlfriend a tiller extension. And then he went on numerous dinghy rides out in the harbor trying to make it ride on a plane. I got left at the dock because "it works better with just one person." This, ladies, is what getting phased out looks like.
Despite the rejection, I like this motor a lot actually. It's not too heavy for me to manage, although I still don't like to take it off the motor mount and put it on the dinghy without a just-in-case line attached. It has a little shifter from reverse to neutral to forward, which I like because there is something defective in my brain that can't remember which was speeds up and which was slows down, and it those motions were gears, my screw ups would be painfully obvious. It starts with one or two pulls. And it seems powerful enough to get us where we want to go.
The motor mount we had was a little small for the new Tohatsu, but with a little re-engineering we made it work. We had to recede the screws so that the clamps could be tightened down and change the angle of the holes to make it wrap around the stainless rail better.
A motor isn't exactly the most romantic gesture, but at least when he comes home from his solo rides in the dinghy, he brings back beer.
Here's one of Kenutu's darkest secrets. None of her exterior lights were operational when we bought her. The bulbs for the running lights were all corroded and the spreader lights had broken covers and had blown bulbs. When we moved into the marina and had to be inspected, we got a kick in the pants and decided to suss out this lighting thing.
When I say we, I mean Mack.
He dug into Kenutu's nose and tracked the wires leading to the running lights. A few snips and clips followed by a couple of bulbs and he had it fixed. Good thing too, because the sun was setting and, well, we don't have lights outside!
Like moths to a flame, we suddenly became transfixed with fixing and next up was the spreader lights. I'm not sure how he ended up getting those things on because HE PUT A TELEVISION ON THE BOAT, but when I came out, there were three moons in the sky instead of one.
The girl can officially go out at night now.
After Quantum Sails bailed me out of my sail sewing debacle of the genoa, we turned to them to put UV fabric on the jib. Since we chose Heather Beige for the new bimini, naturally it was our choice for the genoa. Ladies and gentlemen, Kenutu is full on transitioning.
I don't know what it is about this classic khaki but she seems smarter, more sophisticated, timeless, classic. Her dull deck paint and mismatched topsides don't even look that bad with this neutral color coming in. Pretty soon she'll have her bimini and dodger and then we may just have to start calling her Madam Kenutu.
Two people dumb enough to think anything is possible and smart enough to bumble their way into discoveries.