24 March 2014

3 Things I Never Thought I Would Say

Ever since moving onto our boat full-time, I've found that things come out of my mouth that I never thought I would say. Living on a boat sure is different than living on land!

1.  "I better hurry up and wash the dishes before it rains."

When you live on land and it is time to do the washing up after dinner, most people clear the table, take the dishes to the sink, rinse them off using an obscene amount of fresh water and then pop them into the dishwasher. This isn't the way it works on our boat. We carry a limited amount of fresh water and try to conserve it as much as possible for important things like drinking and cooking. Wasting our fresh water on dishes just isn't in the cards for us. So when it is time to do the dishes, we grab a bucket and haul up some salt water. Then we wash the dishes in salt water out in the cockpit. After the dishes are clean (and salty) we then give them a very frugal rinse in fresh water. Just enough so that you don't taste salt when you're drinking your morning coffee. Dish washing isn't simple on our boat and when you're doing it outside, you sure as heck want to make sure it isn't raining!

2. "It's too windy to take a shower."

Washing ourselves is a lot like dish washing on our boat. We do it outside in the cockpit. There is no shower on our boat. There isn't even a bathroom. You'll be happy to hear that we do have a toilet, but it sits in an alcove which is open to the rest of the boat. (If you're going to sail with us, we all need to be really good friends as privacy is at a minimum.) Fortunately, we do have a solar shower which heats up the water quite nicely after it sits in the sun for a few hours. We hang it up on the boom and have a shower sitting down in the cockpit while wearing our bathing suits. Usually the whole process works quite well, although I do need Scott's help to wash my hair. But if it is windy outside, the last thing you want to do is sit in the cockpit and take a shower. So when it is too windy, I pass on the shower. I think my standard of personal hygiene has really gone downhill.

3. "Can you move the table? I need to go to the bathroom."

Our boat is 26' which is a bit on the smaller side than many we see out there cruising. This means that there isn't room to have a permanent table in our saloon. Instead we have a folding table (which hangs up next to the toilet when not in use) and we attach it to the partition between the saloon and the toilet and v-berth when we want to do things like eat. This means that if you suddenly decide you need to use the toilet during dinner, everything needs to get moved off of the table and put on the counter so that the table can be moved out of the way. These days, it pays to check if you need a bathroom break before eating.


  1. Try fresh water rinsing the dishes with a spray bottle. Before we got a watermaker we conserved water also. We washed them in salt water and then used a small hand pump, spritzing bottle to rinse them. We could rinse off everything and only use about a pint of water. Plus the pumping action gave you a fabulously pumped forearm much like Popeye's.

    1. The spray bottle idea is great - thanks for the tip! And looking like Popeye without eating all that spinach will be a real bonus!

  2. You've tolerated each other's smells all these years...ah, love

    1. I agree - only love would account for tolerating our new low standard of hygiene!


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