November 2007

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This was a short work week. I caught this cranky horrid cold over the weekend, and it knocked me out for Monday and Tuesday.
So here I am, again, feeling a little behind on projects, but an opportunity has come along for a little stress-free vacationette, and I’m taking it.
Tomorrow I’m sailing with a friend and client over to St. John aboard his hot-rod Newick 38 trimaran. I’ve often wanted to go for a ride on this rocket, and despite being offered numerous opportunities, I’ve always bowed.
I’ll stay at the owner’s place up on the mountain tomorrow night, then catch a ride back to Tortola with another sailing friend, aboard his lovely little Rhodes-designed Swiftsure 33. This is the same boat I sailed to Antigua a couple years back, a real little gem.
I hmm’d and haw’d a little bit, guilting over the time spent away from my work, but I’ve got to face it; I’ve been burning both ends of the wick all summer now, almost a year (!) without any sailing at all, and it’s time to get out and remind myself what I’m really actually working towards…


Yesterday was a good day. Just before lunch, a sailing friend from the WEYC dropped by. He said he was cleaning out his storage unit, and had a few bits of boating hardware to get rid of, and wanted my opinion on what it might be worth.
Among the things he mentioned were a pair of winches, which interested me a bit. He brought them over half an hour later. A pair of Harken 44 self-tailing winches, the old style with the roller-bearing stripper, freshly re-built and in factory boxes. They’d come off the raceboat he crews on, to be replaced by the newest/lightest/greatest by a manager with plenty of his owner’s money to spend.

“I figure they’d be dear to someone… what do you think they’re worth?”
“Oh, I dunno,” I replied, “How much do you want to get out of it?”
“Well, for you, say, $50 each? I mean, they’re just taking up space in my little container…”

I had the cash out of my pocket and the boxes carted off before he had a chance to reconsider. $100! For two 44 ST’s? Yikes! I wouldn’t have expected these winches, used, to go for less than $500 each… New 44’s are around $1400 apiece..

I used to kid my friend Marty for switching out his 42’s for used ex-powered 48’s, but after sailing with him before and after the switch, I’m convinced that otherwise “oversized” winches are just right; sooo much less effort and hassle, less wraps, quicker sheeting, etc. The only drawback, of course, is the crazy expense of new winches these days, easily the single most expensive pieces of hardware on any boat.
Now my standart Lewmar 42’s can move back onto pedestals for secondary use; stays’l, spinnaker, etc. What a score!

I’m back up! Some fun glitches left ‘means of seeing’ off-line for a couple days, but all is once again well, fine, and dandy.
I hope you’ll all be delighted to hear that I’ve spent the last hour-and-a-bit updating my blog page, utilizing all the latest-and-greatest WordPressy goodness, struggling to make it all look and work pretty much exactly as it did before.
Hurray for progress!