Friday, June 7, 2013

Rites of Passage

Its summer. Despite the fact that the calendar says its is not yet officially summer, the fact that the daily temperatures are flirting with the notion of spiking upwards towards the 100 Farenheit mark means its summer no matter what the calendar says.

Maura has indulged in the American teen rite of passage of running around with friends, swimming and catching up on all the tv she missed during the school year. Kitty enjoys the summer rite of passage of dancing in the sprinklers as they make a vain attempt to keep the green stuff from turning a crispy brown. Sailors have rites of passage too.

The first rite of passage is for your surveyor, no matter how good and how thorough to miss something big on your pre-purchase survey. This will be monumentally time consuming, or expensive or both. Happens to everyone. Expensive miss? Check.

Another sailing rite of passage is to have your engine fail at a time when it would be a really good thing to have your engine. Like when coming into a narrow, busy marina lane and no, boats do not have brakes. Check.

Then there is the first time overnight at anchor when you hear the weird bacon sizzling noise of tiny crustaceans doing god knows what around your hull.Check. Running aground. Check. Ripping a sail. Check. Anchor refusing to set/dragging. Check. See? These are all rites of passage that everyone who sails will encounter eventually. We are no more cursed or blessed than anyone else. I just figure its all part of it and make a check list to count down the inevitable.

With the heat coming on gang busters, we had the opportunity to experience yet another rite of passage. In order to keep the refit moving forward, it is an absolute necessity to run the ac while sitting in a windless marina. An ac that requires an intake through hull. An intake through hull that will eventually, suck up some poor unsuspecting sea creature to its demise. I was hoping we would get a squid because they tend to be squishy and a little easier to extract but no. Our sea creature is of course an over achiever so what did we get? A big, fat  fish. That sucker was seriously wedged in there.

Mark tried everything he could to get the fish out without resorting to cutting the lines. He tried working on it from the outside, the inside, from every conceivable angle but in the end- due to a 90 degree angle, the lines had to be cut in order to remove the now very dead fish. Mark was annoyed that the intake was designed in such a way that he could not rod out the intake. You know what that means. he is busy redesigning the intake/strainer set up to avoid this. Ceol Mor will be getting a completely redesigned ac system that will allow rodding of any and all through hulls.

Refit project list expanding project by project despite your best efforts to whittle it down? Check.


  1. I admit this: I am laughing out loud. That's pretty darned unbelievable!

  2. Believe it! This has happened to us twice on our watermaker's raw water feed line. The first time the fish was just up into the hose, just inside the seacock. The second time the little guy made it all the way to the 3-way valve where he got stuck. Of course, I had twisted the valve back and forth a few times before I discovered where the blockage was so he was not exactly in one piece anymore. Geesh!

    1. YUCK! All of our through hull intake/strainers are currently being redesigned so that hopefully we never have to resort to cutting lines again.