The Trouble with Attics

Or attic rooms as it were. They can hide all sorts of things. We recently went through the tedious process of cleaning out a room in our house that we use for storage. You know, that room that holds stuff you don't know what else to do with, so you "just chuck it in the store room." It starts out as a nice, neatly-organized room, but over time it collects more and more stuff. Stuff that you're just "sure you're going to need someday." Until it gets to the point that you can barely close the door. Then you know it's time to do something. So one by one out came boxes and boxes of stuff until our room was empty and the rest of the house looked like a bomb went off. One by one we went through each and every box, sorting the contents into three piles. One pile to keep, one pile to donate to the thrift store and one pile to toss. Eventually, the "keepers" went back in with new labels on the boxes and the room is nice and neat once again. Two-thirds of the original stuff is gone forever! Meanwhile, we have not only relived much of our own childhoods, but also our kids' childhoods and parts of lives from past generations of family. Along the way we also found some real gems! Such as this copy of a tyee magazine from my University of Washington dayz.

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The Cover Story

In 1968, one of my roommates, Don Whitson, was the art director for the tyee, a campus magazine published fall, winter and spring quarters. Bob Hinz who was the editor, asked Don to create a cover illustration for the spring issue. Don enlisted my help and from somewhere came the "brilliant idea" to body paint a naked model. Why not!? After developing the concept, Harald Sund, staff photographer, got the help from a commercial-photographer-friend Steve Marts who had a warehouse studio in downtown Seattle. Someone made arrangements with Trish Polito to be the model and on a Saturday morning (I vaguely remember hangovers) we proceeded to go where none of us had gone before. Or since.

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Deer Harbor Cruise Highlights

For the last several years one of the high points of our summer has been to attend the Annual Deer Harbor Wooden Boat Rendezvous on Orcas Island. It's a laid back affair in a cozy location and attracts a nice mix of old wooden vessels large and small, sail, power, converted fishing boats and ex-work boats. The sponsors, the Wooden Boat Society of the San Juan Islands, put on a great event with dinghy races, sailboat races, and a barbecue at Deer Harbor Boatworks that includes fresh grilled salmon, locally grown vegetables, locally brewed beers and wine and live music. Though it rained a little this year, mostly it was at night. We had nice afternoons and a couple of spectacular sunsets. Our most direct route to Deer Harbor from our slip in Everett takes us through Deception Pass separating Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands. Catching a slack tide under the bridge usually means hanging out for a quiet afternoon and overnight in Cornet Bay. Our return trip had us nervous about the fog, but the curtain lifted just in time and we slipped  through right at slack water.

Click images to enlarge. 

 

 

The bluest sky you've ever seen? 

The Susan H anchored in Cornet Bay

Jonathan Livingston I presume

Deception Island

Mike Douglas ghosting in his IC one-design near West Sound

The schooner Zodiac, maybe? 

12th Annual Deer Harbor Wooden Boat Rendezvous Sep 2-4, 2013

Nice moustache by Brion Toss

Båten

Pia, a Danish Spidsgatter along side Vito Dumas, a Manuel Campos double-ender built in Argentina

B.C. Forestry vessel, Tamarack

 

Aho'i 

Captain and Tenille?

Fiona

All bunched up with no get up and go

South Pacific veteran SV Emily

 "Bucket of rain"

Wander's bell

Monk, MV Thelonious

Pinuela Bomba

Little Toot

Slocum's Spray replica, Joshua

That's a busy bowsprit

Looky-loos

Nice deadeye. Can you smell the pine tar?

Off to the races

Hardy bunch of daisies survived ten days

Alex on Vito Dumas

Scottish fiddler Brandon Vance & Mark Minkler at Deer Harbor Boatworks

Aah, life growing up in the country! 

Monterey fishing boat

Where'd everybody go?

Reflective art

"Chain, chain, chain"

Get out the ShamWow!

Choke cherries

Raccoon?

The letter "I" 

Exactly

It's a bird! No it's a plane!

Deer Harbor sunset

Say cheese!

.   .   .

Sum kinda jellyfish

This is NOT my fuel bill!!

Lefty loosey, righty tighty? 

Cutty Sark heads into the fog crossing Rosario Strait

The fog lifted her skirts just in time for slack water

Sum kinda white goose, Cornet Bay

Wander, Cornet Bay

10 lbs. of smelt per day is a lotta "pish to pry" 

Tahiti Ketch fixer-upper

 "Ladderville", Camano Island

Last but not least. The 119' super yacht Diamond in Everett. She cruises at 44kts and tops out at 50! And hey, she's for sale for a mere €13,150,000!! Check out the interior photos here: http://www.boatinternational.com/yacht-sales/40303/ab-116-for-sale

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Free Beach Baubles!

First Come, First Choice.

While hanging out on the boat in Deer Harbor, Orcas Island I had some free time, so I picked up free rocks and free pieces of glass on the beach and tied up a few pendants with some free waxed whipping twine. Now I want you to have one, for FREE. — Merridy

Here are the rules: Just send me your mailing address with your first, second and third choice and I will mail you a bauble. One per person until they're gone, so act fast.

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Up a River?

Kinda sorta. Last weekend (August 9-12) we cruised to La Conner for the annual La Conner Classic Boat & Car Show. For those who are not from around here, La Conner, in North Puget Sound, is situated on the Swinomish Channel, an 11 mile waterway connecting Skagit Bay to the south with Padilla Bay to the north. Every tide change creates a torrent of current as all that water tries to find its way either in or out of Skagit Bay and Padilla Bay. Trying to determine when slack tide is so you can tie your boat up at the guest pier without it seeming like you're roping a Sperm Whale, is some kind of voodoo. I followed the published calculus to establish our departure time from Everett. I projected our arrival time based on forecasted wind and wave conditions along with our estimated average cruising speed of 6 knots over the 33 mile route and determined that if we left Everett at 10:00 am we should arrive at 3:30 pm. Hopefully it would be slack. And I nailed it!!! It was dead flat and calm as I pirouetted into the designated spot like I knew what I was doing. The welcoming committee was impressed. We met some really, really nice people over the course of the weekend and had a wonderful time. We're already looking forward to next year's event.

Capt. Gerardo at the helm in Saratoga Passage

Capt. Gerardo at the helm in Saratoga Passage

FACNAR

FACNAR

Mt. Baker 20 years after standing on top!

Mt. Baker 20 years after standing on top!

High and dry

High and dry

Rainbow Bridge, La Conner

Rainbow Bridge, La Conner

The friendly welcoming committee and judges

The friendly welcoming committee and judges

WANDER dressed and ready

WANDER dressed and ready

The flowers survived the overnight downpour! 

The flowers survived the overnight downpour! 

Double-ender HOLIDAY written up in the latest edition of WoodenBoat magazine's Power Boats issue

Double-ender HOLIDAY written up in the latest edition of WoodenBoat magazine's Power Boats issue

86-year-old Roland showing off the 1947 Atlas engine on his 73-foot tugboat, QUAIL 

86-year-old Roland showing off the 1947 Atlas engine on his 73-foot tugboat, QUAIL 

The Atlas cruises at under 300 rpm!

The Atlas cruises at under 300 rpm!

Friends Janice & Roger from ENCORE

Friends Janice & Roger from ENCORE

This one is for Reed

This one is for Reed

This one is for Ryan

This one is for Ryan

This one is for all the orthodontists

This one is for all the orthodontists

@ La Conner Seafood & Prime Rib House

@ La Conner Seafood & Prime Rib House

Moi

Moi

Doesn't everyone need a chalkboard chicken? @Earthenworks

Doesn't everyone need a chalkboard chicken? @Earthenworks

A royal sendoff as we head out the channel

A royal sendoff as we head out the channel

PULL & BE DAMNED hard at work

PULL & BE DAMNED hard at work

Nature's palette

Nature's palette

Leaving La Conner in our wake

Leaving La Conner in our wake

Camano Head after another fast and flat trip down Saratoga Passage

Camano Head after another fast and flat trip down Saratoga Passage

Contrails in the sky

Contrails in the sky

M taking her turn

M taking her turn

Ah b'dee –ah b'dee–that's all folks

Ah b'dee –ah b'dee–that's all folks

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Splash!

Friday, July 12, 2013, two months and a day after hauling Wander to do what was to be a quick bottom paint, new zincs and a touchup of the topsides paint, she finally went back in the water. With almost 1400 screws and over two pounds of Slick Seam squished into the gaping seams, along with a couple of coats of Interlux White semi-gloss Premium Yacht Enamel prepped and sprayed on, I was definitely ready. I was hoping the seam compound would slow down the intrusion of water enough to let the bilge pump do its job while the planks took up again. But, soon after we were back in the water we were up to five pumps! A manual Whale pump, the automatic bilge pump, a small 12V portable pump and two jury-rigged portable bilge pumps with alligator clips to hook to a battery. One of these was a Rule 5000 with a two-inch hose that could suck the chrome off a trailer hitch. There were rivulets of water coming from a couple of spots into both the foreword bilge and aft near the transom. Kind of scary after all that work to make it water tight, but it's all part of the natural process. Once we felt we were at least keeping up, Joe and Gus and I took her back to our slip. Throughout the afternoon we could definitely see progress, but knew that we would have to spend the night monitoring the pumps. Things continued to improve through Saturday and 48 hours later, on Sunday, things were slowing down enough to let us leave and go home. We also knew that with the bottom completely refastened below the waterline and the seams full of compound, things could only get better — and they have. Good for another twenty-five years?

Let's get outta here!

Let's get outta here!

Her backside has never looked so good. I removed at least eight coats of paint from that transom! 

Her backside has never looked so good. I removed at least eight coats of paint from that transom! 

Wander showing her aura. 

Wander showing her aura. 

Prop joolery. 

Prop joolery. 

Joe giving her a quick rinse. 

Joe giving her a quick rinse. 

Trailered up.

Trailered up.

Harvey go! 

Harvey go! 

And we have re-entry. 

And we have re-entry. 

I'll drink to that! 

I'll drink to that! 

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Lost Our Marbles

Yesterday we had a fine trip to the Tacoma Art Museum to see the Eric Carle exhibit. Carle is one of Merridy's heroes and she wasn't disappointed. It was a wonderful show! Wish I could show images from inside the exhibit, but cameras weren't allowed. Eric Carle has illustrated award-winning, classic children's books such as The Hungry Caterpillar, The Grouchy Ladybug, The Very Busy Spider, The Very Quiet Cricket and more. The videos accompanying the show with Carle doing live demonstrations and discussing his life and career were alone worth the price of admission.  Other exhibits at the museum included works by a variety of well-known and familiar Northwest artists: William Cumming, Phillip Levine, Paul Horiuchi, Michael Spafford, et al.

Giant marbles

Giant marbles

Big blue

Big blue

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Snuck this one

Snuck this one

Eric Carle banners

Eric Carle banners

William Cumming, another among Merridy's heroes and a teacher at Burnley

William Cumming, another among Merridy's heroes and a teacher at Burnley

And another — Phillip Levine bronze

And another — Phillip Levine bronze

Leroy, the Big Pup

Leroy, the Big Pup

Warped view

Warped view

Finding N's in M's lunch

Finding N's in M's lunch

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So Slick

We're making progress. The bottom has been refastened, the screw holes plugged and sanded smooth, a coat of bottom paint applied and Slick Seam squished into the open seams awaiting a second coat of bottom paint. The goal is to have the Slick Seam slow down the intrusion of water when the boat is refloated until the the planks can swell, or "take up" again. That could take a few days. Slick Seam is a wonderful invention. It is a wax-based compound that will stay soft and pliable, unlike traditional seam compound that can dry hard and put undue pressure on planks when they reswell. The real proof of its effectiveness will show when the boat is hauled again and the Slick Seam has squeezed out of the seams! The topsides have been pre-coated and are ready for additional fairing and finish coats of semi-gloss white paint. Stay tuned.

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For Want of a Good Screw

After moving Wander into the shed at Harbor Marine so we could have a dry environment in which to paint, we soon discovered that we would need to do far more than slap on some paint and put her back in the water. 1400 #12 x 2" flat head galvanized screws later she now has been completely refastened below the waterline. When Peter drilled into the existing screw holes he found precious few screws there. Holy cow batman, I don't know what was holding that boat together! But, we cannot look behind, we must look beyond and forget the what ifs. She is already telling me how happy she is.

Peter just beginning to drill out the old screw holes with a countersink bit.

Peter just beginning to drill out the old screw holes with a countersink bit.

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The porcupine! Before screwing up tight and plugging the holes over the screw heads.

The porcupine! Before screwing up tight and plugging the holes over the screw heads.

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Into the Barn and Out of the Rain

Well, today we finally gave up on this unpredictable weather (notice the blue sky and water puddles on the tarmac) and moved Wander out of the work yard and into the barn so we can paint. It will be a great place to work. Harbor Marine has this really cool new trailer with hydraulic cradle arms to let them move boats into their great new warehouse workspace.

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Here We Go Again

Hauled Wander out of the water yesterday in Everett to paint the hull and do the bottom. Now, of course it looks off and on rainy for the next week. Never fails. Oh well, let the work begin!

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