What’s happening on Nine of Cups?


Thought I’d bring you up to date on the Nine of Cups projects. There are only about six thousand projects going on at one time (okay … maybe only 6, but it seems like 6,000). The boat is torn up topside and down below with projects in various stages of completion. Considering the heat/humidity factor has been beastly for the past couple weeks, all told, this accounts for the total disruption of life aboard. It seems the first mate minds this much more than the captain who seems oblivious to the mess and works on like the Energizer Bunny.

The biggest project at the moment is repairing the decks. The aft deck is repaired and, in between showers, David has been sanding, priming (two sandings, two coats primer) and preparing to repaint. The heat and humidity have taken their toll and it’s nearly impossible to work for more than an hour or two in the sun without taking a break to cool down and rehydrate. All the stanchions and lifelines have been removed, as well as the deck furniture (the deck boxes).

I’ve been stripping the deck boxes so they can be revarnished. I have to say that it kills me to strip off the varnish that cost so much to buy and takes so much effort to apply, in order to buy more and re-varnish ... but that’s varnishing for you. Looks like the toe rails and cockpit will need stripping and revarnishing, too. Sigh! The deck paint has been ordered, but was delayed in shipment (who knows why?), so it’s put the captain a bit behind. How unusual!

Below decks, part of the disruption stems from all the supplies and tools that are not in their usual stored lockers. It seems foolish to stow everything away after each use when we know we’ll be using the exact same tools/supplies tomorrow, so it’s all out and about … all piled up or spread out on any available flat surface including table, settees, floors, etc. Cushions are off the settee for ready access to more supplies as well as the battery charger which is constantly recharging batteries for all the tools. It’s a obstacle course to get from the cockpit ladder to any part of the boat.

The fridge/freezer has been repaired (hallelujah!), but the gauges are still attached to make sure the fix is final. Oh, yes, and the forward head sole (floor) has been sanded and is ready for varnishing, so that’s a mess, too. The captain’s goal seems to be maximum disruption, I mean projects-in-process, in order to maximize his time when it’s raining topside or he’s waiting for supplies. So far, he’s been achieving his goals.

I have been going through each and every locker and disposing of anything that can be disposed of. I’ve made innumerable trips to the local thrift store … donating instead of buying for a change! We’ve given away books and guides to other willing cruisers. We’ll leave some on board Cups for her new family. Excess canned goods and drygoods have been given away. Three months supply of flour is probably no longer a necessity. I’ve hesitated removing memorabilia and decorations from the walls. Cups will start looking bare and less like home and we still have several months aboard.

Despite my apparent protests, I’m actually quite okay with the situation. We’re working towards a goal that’s definitely attainable and worthy of all the effort. We’ve actually stayed a few nights in hotels when the heat has gotten totally unbearable and that in itself has helped with attitude adjustment.

All in all, progress on Cups is being made. The list is long (no kidding … this is a boat), but we’re plugging along. The Captain will be back on Saturday with a blog post … not sure if it’s van-related or boat-related, but he’ll be back.

And as for Blue, he's waiting patiently, parked beside Cups, hauling wood and supplies for her with nothing so far for him. His time will come!