January 15, 2019
As most of you know, I have curtailed my public displays of wordiness but I will try to update somewhat frequently over the coming months as I prepare for and move Home Free back to the Americas.
There is much work being done on the boat now in preparation. I have had the propeller balanced and cleaned, new anti-fouling and more. (The care of the bottom results in better fuel economy, i.e. speed/hp and when fuel is a concern, this is a good thing). I have a bunch of new electronics that need to be installed (i.e Iridium), a new supplemental fuel tank that needs anchors and much, much more that I won’t share.
Overall many of those items are threatening my schedule, but I am trying to get the folks doing the work focused on me. That is hard when they have real, big, rich yachts to deal with, but we will see.
It’s also hard in Greek culture. Today I found out that all of the workers had to leave by 4pm because they are not allowed to work past 4 due to union rules. That isn’t so bad I suppose until you realize they don’t show up until 10 or 11 am some days. That’s one vote for fixed price contracts!
Today I had to tell an installer for the Iridium that I wasn’t going to pay his exhorbetent rate to install a remote antenna. I don’t think he will be back, but I am guessing it will cost me 4 hours and 40 Euros to do the work. He wanted 120 Euros just to show up and then a LOT more than that to do the work. Worse, he wasn’t interested in a fixed price agreement.
My other frustration is a direct result of my own ignorance. My boat is flagged in the UK, and on January 1st, the UK changed their rules for safety items. I need a new Liferaft (among other items) and typical delivery times are 6-8 weeks. I have two weeks. One vendor (Galanos Bros) is trying to work some magic for me. I have been trying for four weeks to buy a liferaft from Viking and that has been nothing but frustrating. So it looks like a SeaSafe liferaft will be my choice for the next decade.
The plan for crossing remains largely in place, and I will progress as best I can.
The weather in Greece is horrendous. Of course in Canada it is about -10 now following the weekend cold blast, so I won’t complain about 0C with the windchill here, but still, I only have two pairs of long pants and was counting on the eight pairs of shorts!! Oops!
That’s it, back to work. Thanks for reading.