Monday, May 26, 2014

A Small Town Remembers

As the first Memorial Day spent 'back home' in 35 years, I wanted to attend at least part of the town's ceremonies of remembrance.

I was selected by the Storden VFW Auxiliary's delegate to the Minnesota Girls State program.  I had to do some research to discover again that girls who have completed their junior year of high school participate.  That was 1979, so yes, 35 years ago, I was an active participant by laying poppies and reading the poem In Flanders Fields.

Storden is a very small town.  America Street (aka Main St) is three short blocks long.  This is MANY cars in town today.

I didn't know how long the services at the church would last.  I hope to have a few moments alone to shoot some photos, and I did.  My approach to the park.  The number of crosses has grown a lot in the past 35 years.

Flag at the memorial at half mast, and poppies at the ready.

And nameless white crosses become personal on the other side.  

Most arrive on foot from the church.  There are a few cars that pull up next to the park, and even a golf cart draws near.

The 2014 Girls State delegate takes her turn to read In Flanders Fields.

The salute!

And Taps.  I heard a young man behind me say 'I always get goosebumps when I hear  Taps.'  I said, 'For me it's tears.'

Honoring the Unknown Soldier

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Hidden problem with Dickinson Diesel Stoves.

Hey, a BOATING post!  Been going through some saved photos, have a few more to add - just to keep things alive...

Our beloved (and at times not so much) Dickinson Diesel stove needs very little:  Fuel to be precise.  That is about it.  We have a 5 gallon gravity feed tank on the upper fly-bridge deck that supplies the Dickinson when it is running.   One winter the stove started to burn down.  Refilling the tank did not help, but turning up the fuel knob did.  For a while.

After a while it got to the point I needed to do something.  Cleaned the stove, changed the filter, etc.  Nothing was a long term solution.  Then while carefully looking at the parts manual I found a small metal screen.  Just like some fuel pumps have.  Sure enough, it was gunked up.  (likely from the old tank and really old fuel).  A quick cleaning and we were back in action!  To clean, turn off the fuel and remove the 'carburetor', then remove the brass fuel inlet fitting.

Remove the 'carb', then take this fuel fitting off.

Inside you will find a small filter screen.  Shown here AFTER cleaning!

Replace the fitting - making sure not to over-tighten, the Aluminum body is soft.  While things are apart, make sure to check the copper U-shaped tube that runs from the bottom of the 'carb' to the actual pot-burner.  I had to replace ours as being a low spot, it accumulated lots of stuff over the years  (was simpler to replace than clean..)

And there you go.  If you are pulling your hair out over your drip-pot stove, check the screen.  What a great summer project to do, before you need to light up the stove next fall.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Cost to not cruise - April 2014

We continue tracking our costs while we are taking a 1-year break from full-time cruising - to see how the two lifestyles compare...  (See link below for more background).

Here is April:

Not-cruising months shown in 'green',  'blue' is for water related lifestyle.

It is perhaps best to look at the rolling monthly symmaries,as you can see the month-to-month has been declining.  Mostly this is a result of no transportation costs now that we are 'here', but also it has taken a little time to even out how to share housing costs between all - which is why the -$24 for Groceries this month :-)

Not much else.  Spring is here.  I noted it because the Grass is starting to show green, and some Tulip bulbs are starting to come up.  Kristi's dad noted "planters" and nitrogen fertilizer tanks appearing on the roads as folks look to 'get into their field' for spring planting.. 


And now, here is the standard explanation these days: If this is your 1st time looking at costs, and want some more background on why we are reporting what it costs to not-cruise on a cruising blog - well, we are taking a break by moving back to Minnesota to help out Kristi's folks.  And we thought it would be interesting to be able to compare our costs on Land vs. on Sea., see more here:

For reference here is a summary of what it did cost us to cruise last year:

For Reference, Costs for Cruising in 2013
Again, following the link above will give you access to more details, or you can click on the Costs label to the right.