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25 March 2016

Random Bits & Bobs Brought To You From Indiantown, Florida

Have you ever thought to yourself, I wonder what's been happening lately at Indiantown Marina? Well, here's your chance to find out. Yes, that's right - it's time for some random bits and bobs brought to you live from Indiantown, Florida.

Nigel, I’m sure you’re a nice guy and good fun at cocktail parties, but your book is kind of a snore.
 
Our engine isn’t working, so I’ve been reading Nigel Calder’s Marine Diesel Engines book. The cover promises that you can “be your own diesel mechanic.” What the cover doesn’t tell you is that you’ll die from boredom reading the book before you even get around to trying to fix your engine.


Scott sounded befuddled when I told him my views on Nigel’s book. He thinks all of his books are fantastic because they’re so detailed and technical in nature. Well, there’s the problem right there – they’re technical. Scott’s technically minded. Me, not so much. When I read a book, I’m looking for mystery, romance or aliens from outer space. I’m not really looking for dense text in small font and illustrations of fuel filters and glow plugs.

But, I’m soldiering on and plowing through Nigel’s book. This weekend, I’ve got fun things planned thanks to Nigel. I’m going to check out our air and fuel filters. I can barely contain my excitement. When I asked Scott where the air filter was he told me to look for a blue hairdryer shaped thingy-magingy. He knows how to translate technical speak into words I’ll understand. I think this is it.



Why buy something new, when you can repair what you already have. 

Our teak shower grate kind of fell apart, so I’ve been trying to repair it using waterproof Gorilla glue to reattach all of the slats. Usually, I love doing arts and crafts projects. Give me a bottle of glue, markers, sparkly glitter, construction paper and a pair of scissors and I’ll happily sit for hours making things. I kind of thought fixing our shower grate would be along the same lines, minus the sparkly glitter. Well, so far, it isn’t looking all that great, but at least it’ll be functional. I was thinking of using sparkly glitter to camouflage the areas where my gluing technique kind of fell down, but for some reason, I don’t think Scott is going to go for that idea.



Reality often looks better through the eyes of an artist.

A couple of weeks ago, some ladies from Stuart were at the marina as part of their plein air group (which is fancy French talk for painting outside). Here’s what I love about art – you start with reality, see it through your eyes and put your own spin on it. Oftentimes, what artists come up with looks so much better than reality, like this painting that one of the ladies did of the boat storage yard. Trust me, it looks a lot better in her painting than it does in real life.


I used to take painting courses when I lived in New Zealand, but don’t really have room on the boat for all the tubes of paint, supplies and canvases required. I’m looking for a new arts and craft hobby which doesn’t take up much space. I was thinking embroidery or needlepoint – any other ideas you might have?

I keep seeing dead fish floating around my boat. And they stink.

There have been a number of dead fish in the marina and for some reason they all end up down near my boat. Take some dead fish in stagnant water, add temperatures in the mid to upper 80s and you have a recipe for some really bad smells. Not sure what caused them to die – possibly toxic runoff from Lake Okeechobee into the St Lucie waterway? Fortunately, after a few days, they end up sinking to the bottom or getting eaten by some creature who isn’t too fussy about its diet. But, unfortunately, as if by magic, a new one appears shortly thereafter.



I won the lottery!

Well, not really. But I did find $400 hidden away on our boat that I had completely forgot about. It was kind of like winning the lottery. When we went to the Bahamas last year, we strategically hid stashes of cash around our boat, like many cruisers do. They were so well hidden, that I never found one of the stashes until recently. Such a fun surprise! I wonder how may other boats have money squirreled away that the current or previous owners forgot about?

Whatever you do, don’t mention grandma’s underpants.

I started volunteering for an afterschool reading program. The other day I was reading the kids Three Cheers for Catherine the Great by Cari Best and when we got to the page where grandma hangs up her giant underpants on the clothesline, everyone got a serious case of the giggles. Who knew underpants could be so funny? Kids are a good reminder to not take life so seriously.

Wouldn’t you get the giggles if you saw this picture (beautifully illustrated by Giselle Potter by the way)?



What’s made you giggle lately? Would you rather read about grandma's underpants or diesel engines?

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14 comments:

  1. I don't want to read about either. It did make me laugh though.

    Awesome on finding that hidden money. I'm guessing you're not searching the entire boat to see if there is more hidden money.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend Ellen. ☺

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    1. Finding that money was one of the highlights of the month :-) I've done some more poking around, but haven't find anything else. I guess the previous owners were smarter than me and remembered where they stashed stuff and took it off the boat before they sold it to us.

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  2. So what's up with Mr. Engine Sir? I know a bit about them, if that would be helpful... And I 'splain pretty well!

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    1. It turns on, but it won't turn over. Might mean something in the fuel system? I'll try the air and fuel filters and see if that makes a difference. If not, then I'll pout, then have some dark chocolate and read more of Nigel's book. Any thoughts on what it might be? The glow plugs were replaced last year.

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    2. To make sure we're using the same terms... When you it turns on, but won't turn over, you mean the engine indicators (gages, idiot lights, alarms) come on when you turn the key on, right? But when you actually try to crank the engine to start, it doesn't move?
      That would be an electrical/starter motor issue, not fuel.
      On the other hand if it cranks over (insert cranking sound here) but doesn't fire and run, now you have a likely fuel issue. Email direct if you like, I love troubleshooting by long distance! ;-) sionnaketch32 at Gmail.

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    3. Hi Keith - just sent you an email.

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  3. Well, we are on the same page about Mr. Calder's book. I've tried. I really have. But i can give him about two pages before the snoring begins. Really, how do people like Scott and Mike do it? He can read Nigel Calder before bed and he doesn't even drop the book on his face like I do. I'm bringing my paints on the boat. Last summer I painted a goddess on a rock. I like her. I might do that again sometime.

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    1. Honestly, I can't figure Scott out :-) But, fortunately, at least one of us enjoys reading about diesel engines. I'm just glad it's not me. I got rid of all of my painting stuff when I left NZ. I do miss it, but probably not going to happen again.

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  4. Is the battery up to snuff?
    Fully charged? Water topped off?

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    1. Hi Richard - our batteries don't seem to be the problem (we don't have a separate starter battery). The engine cranks, but doesn't catch - not sure if I'm explaining that right - which makes me think the problem lies in the fuel system somewhere.

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  5. You are too funny! I love how you can put a positive and humorous spin on about any subject, boring as hell or not. I left that manual and technical reading to Mark, as well as the engine work. Over the years, I have found that I was more of a burden to him, always asking what I could do or how I could help, wasting a lot of time in the process. The last years, I would stand-by doing my own thing and just let him ask for help when he needed it. It kept everyone sane.

    Finding money on the boat would be my highlight of the month as well. Except for the fact that we would have known we lost it before that (since we keep track) and be pretty bummed about not finding it. Which actually did happen, like that time that we had hid $1000 and I needed it to pay for our wedding event in St. Martin and I did not find the envelops. That was the worst day of the month, until I realized it had been packed into our clothes bags after emptying the bags three times! Good luck with the engine! What will you do with the "lottery money"? Something fun and nice? :-)

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    1. If Scott was here, he'd definitely be taking the lead on the engine. So, I guess, in a way it's good he isn't as it's forcing me to learn a little bit about engines.

      Although I track every penny we spend and know how much we have in the bank, for some reason I never have any idea how much cash we have on hand. So, it was a lovely surprise to find that money. I'd love to say that I was going to get something fun with it, but I've got it earmarked towards some unexpected bills.

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  6. I started to think that store bought greeting cards are too expensive, so I bought a few supplies, (they fit in a small plastic tub), and I'm going to make my own. There are websites to help out with the written sentiments, and hopefully this will fill my creative self, and save money. It is too early to tell. (SV Denali Rose)

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    1. Greeting cards are so expensive and homemade ones are so much nicer! I think that's a great idea for a hobby that doesn't take up too much space. And your friends and family will love them!

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