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10th March 2007 – Weekend Visit to the boat

On route, we stopped at Target (a store) to look at plates Maryanne had seen, and thought might be good for the boat. Kyle agreed, and we loaded up Kyle’s arms with plates, bowls, etc. Finally we had a new set of crockery, the first in our marriage (actually they are plastic plates – but perfect for the boat).

We arrived at the boat yard, and I was concentrating so much on avoiding the end of a mast (laid down on the ground) that I failed to notice that I was not pulling up to our boat. Maryanne pointed out that our boat was actually down the hill and in the water! What a surprise! It actually floats. The mast was not yet fitted, but she was afloat – finally in her home medium. We scrambled on board and found projects still underway, and nowhere really to sit, but the boat was coming along nicely. The heating was practically done – all the hardware and vents installed. The windlass was on, but not yet the naval pipe, and a the mast was laid next to the boat, almost ready to step – all the extra wiring, and most of the extra fittings were attached. We took a few pictures of Footprint in the water – mostly to take pictures of the water line at its (most likely) lowest point ever!

We checked out the heating installation, which looked great, they had even managed to save a small cupboard we thought we would have to lose! The only concern was that the exhaust was routed through the buoyancy tank in the stern. This tank has no access (other than a hard to get to access plate at the foot of the bunk). Where the exhaust came up through the floor of the cockpit locker (which was not designed to be watertight, and is known to collect rainwater) was our biggest concern. There was no protection to keep water from filling the buoyancy tank.

We took more measurements, and unloaded a few more things from the car to the boat (engine spares, bedding, etc). We broke for lunch at the Mexican Café, again(great food!), and decided that since the boat was in the water we should perform the launching ceremony that day.

Before returning to the boat, we went on a fuel hunt, we needed to buy propane (for the stove and refrigerator), and kerosene for the heater – harder to find than you might think!

Back at the boat we prepared for the ceremony. I set up the shot and Maryanne practiced her speech “I name this ship Footprint; may she share with all who sail in her, safe passage, and a long life full of love, laughter and adventure.”

View the movie!

Once we were both ready we rolled the camera, and as Maryanne ended her speech she swung the bottle, and almost missed, bouncing the bottle around the deck. Good job we are not superstitious. Takes 2 thru' 4 were failed memory moments, For “take 5” she managed a better aim, hitting metal – but the bottle didn’t break. Further takes, she chose a sharper point of metal - the same! Several takes with camera batteries low warning!! Oh boy, this was not going to plan. After several more failed tries, I took the bottle and smashed it hard on the forestay tang (pointy bit of metal), and finally the ceremony was over. The bottle broke and freed itself from the netting, spreading broken glass all over the bow – it didn’t even break where it was supposed to (along the pre-scored line). We were glad we had no witnesses. We were not disappointed or worried about the ceremony – but laughed plenty and consider it a perfect launch. We returned home chuckling regularly.

We hoped the next time we visit the boat may be for the official hand over (weather dependent) – once that is done we can really move aboard.

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