Who knew Fitting Out could be such fun!
Having only picked up Mojito at the end of last season, and with Nick having had major surgery since then, and Covid lock-down, we have not really had time to settle into her.
She was pretty clean when we got her, at the end of last season, so I just did a quick clean upstairs and a proper clean inside, but now she needed fitting out.
She came with a new soft-top canopy cover that we decided to fit for the new season and to take the old one home for cleaning and repair.
Well, what a game that was - it was like it was the wrong size!
"It's only a few clips ...."
Well, seven hours later, and having had to go and buy an extension lead, so I could hold the hair drier on the zippers that go over the running poles while Nick tries to stretch the plastic, so the zipper ends can be connected. In the end we gave up with them only being half done, and one of the zip pulls snapped off in his hand!
For the next two days Nick's hands were virtually unmovable and my arms were aching. :-(
It's a really hot day and Nick is able to do the zips up the rest of the way with ease, phew!
I decide we need to strip the whole of the cruising deck out and wash her all down, we also remove the winter canopies and put the summer ones on that was easy.
We are right at the far end of the pontoon with only three boats after us, so I spread everything all over it as there was no one else there and after I’d finished hosing, scrubbing and rinsing, I left Nick to finish the buffing off while I scrubbed the winter canopies.
We were both very tired after this and hot so we went downstairs for a short rest a drink and a cool down. While we were chilling I could hear pigeons, yes pigeons!, cooing so I went out for a look and it appears that we now have his and hers pigeon lofts (new Covid pets how lovely!). It seems that the inset engine air-vents on the sides are perfect for them, so now we need to come up with something ingenious to keep them out while still being able to air to the engines!
Also the boat owner across from us had turned up and I have most of the pontoon blocked with seat cushions, drying canopies, two camping chairs that I accidentally got wet and a new dingy warming up in the sun, waiting to be inflated….
“Oh I’m so sorry I cried, I’ll get it all moved”
“No problem, you didn’t know I would be turning up.” he said.
Phew I didn’t want to go upsetting my new boating neighbour.
We had a few short chats with him before he left and he seems very nice, he has a fifty year old wooden boat called Callina. I hope we’ll get to know him better in the coming days/weeks.
Wiping down the seat cushions and getting them back in the right places is like playing Giant Jenga, but we got there.
But the best fun was the new dinghy, which got put back on the boat without inflating it last time, as we ran out of time and were too tired to do any more. So I lay it out to let it warm in the sun then start inflating it - all very nicely - but when I disconnect the pump it goes down again! Turns out I've not put the valve in the correct position!
Lesson learnt, carry on...
It came with a PSI gauge but we don’t have the instructions with us, so I stop and download the manual but I’m unsure of the length so I ask Nick and he tells me a size that’s not in the manual. So I go back to look at the dingy only to find the detail and PSI is written on it, doh!
So I start re-inflating it but I can’t reach the PSI it says 0.25 I can only get it to 0.2 and Nick says to leave it at that as it’s firm enough but then I realise that I’ve not put the bench seat on and when I try to do it it’s evident that this needs to be done with it deflated!
I let it down again, reattach the seat and reinflate it - again- Happy days!
Nick’s attached the dinghy cradle during this time but now realises that he has no straps to secure it and we want to go out, so he removes it again and we put the dinghy in the marina in a free space while we go out down the Medway.
We have a great trip, with Mojito performing well, the water flat calm and sun shining brightly. We drop anchor in a small inlet to have lunch, then continue on to Garrison Point at the mouth of the Medway before turning to head back to Chatham.
We go to bring the dinghy back in and Nick grabs it by the seat and which comes off so now it needs to be deflated to reattach it!!!!!
Talk about Dumb and Dumber do dingy inflation!
We deflate it, dump it in the back of the boat and head home for a cool bath a big meal and an early night.
I can’t help thinking to myself where’s that old dingy, I loved it, it didn’t need replacing!
The next day my right knee and hip felt like they were someone else’s, I wish they were, and Nick’s hands were nearly as bad as they were after our first visit.
Happy days..... It’s great to be back on the water again though.
Get a boat they said, it’ll be fun they said!