Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Kristi's Big Adventure!

Sadly no pictures to go with this story -- I was too BUSY!

We left Winter Cove yesterday morning, bound for Ganges.  We needed provisions, and to fill our water tank.  We arrived with not a lot of time to spare for Al's appointment, and the public dock was FULL.  We dropped anchor amid some boats on buoys, one owner questioning our position, but he was satisfied when Al said we were only staying an hour or so and he wouldn't be leaving the boat.

In anticipation of being able to fill our water tank, we had done two loads of laundry on the way to Ganges, and our gauge now said we had none.  But now we couldn't get to the dock to get water.  Hmmm.  We had planned to flush and clean the watermaker in another week or so, once we went north of Nanaimo, but I guess we could move that up.  Well, we HAVE to move that up.

So the next problem to solve is:  how to get groceries without Al leaving the boat.

That was solved by me taking my first solo adventure with the dinghy!  I was a bit nervous -- OK, quite a bit nervous.  Ganges is a busy harbor, with boats of all sizes coming and going, and float planes adding to the mix. I put my wallet and shopping bags in my backpack and Al came with me to the dinghy to review operations of the engine.  I have not operated it since last summer!  And never without Al right there with me.

I think the most difficult time I had was finding a spot at the dinghy dock!  (Busy harbor, you know!)  But I wedged the dinghy in between two boats and killed the engine.  Then I pulled myself along the length of a neighbor boat, pushing with my paddle, trying to make more space.  I was going nowhere.  So I took my line and climbed into the neighbor boat and yanked, then climbed into the NEXT boat and yanked some more.  Then I climbed up onto the dock.

But my dinghy was probably three feet from the dock still -- further than I wanted to throw my lifejacket, since I would want it when I returned with grocery bags and may have to crawl over more boats again to get to mine.  So I carried my jacket with me.

I was a bit shaky with nerves, and discombobulated.  So I forgot about going to the liquor store to check the wines, darn!  I was just set on getting groceries.  I had even forgotten about finding an ATM and getting more cash, but luckily I had enough to cover what I expected to spend.  There was NOT an ATM at the grocery store, and I didn't feel like pushing a cart to the bank, or carrying three bags of groceries around town, so I returned to the boat without TWO errands completed.

There was another couple looking for a tie spot when I got done loading the dinghy.  She said, 'We'll take your spot if you're leaving!'  I warned her that it was my very first solo adventure, so they stayed well back.  I wasn't TOO embarrassed by my exit.

It took three bounces off the swim step, but I finally grabbed it and got secured to Viking Star.  Mission Accomplished!  We have groceries!  But I forgot onions.

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