Things That Go Whirl In The Night

The water pump-pressured, purred and grunted briefly with a whirl, then clicked into silence. Was there a leak in a line or tank? No. The pump would have continued to run. The water lines in the back of the boat could have a slow leak. Maybe the work that I did on them before winter failed. I spent several hours in a space the size of a kitchen cabinet working with power tools at hard angles next to fuel lines, a furnace and our autopilot a few weeks prior. Was water slowly seeping out of the line and collecting somewhere in the stern? Again, No, I thought. It was a difficult installation with low light and I could have easily missed a step. I should inspect the water lines this weekend and add new clamps at the junctions. I bet the water tank control quadrant is ready to be replaced. Then a new thought seeped into my brain. The water pump might be on its last legs. We have a spare but is the circuit rated for 10 amps or 15 amps? What was the PSI of the spare pump? I waited a few minutes, listening intently for the water pump to grunt and whirl. Okay. All Clear. It was just pressuring up. Eleanor rolled over and planted a cold foot on my lower back.

The Wisdom of Hankus Pankus

The wasps would fire out of their dark cavern, darting and swooping in black madness while Hankus Pankus gazed about the marina with a look of total zen. He would disembark onto the thin wobbling finger pier and return shortly with a case of Yuengling and a smile to disappear until the next sighting. For all of his eccentricities, Hankus Pankus was friendly, wise and caring. Our conversations taught me important lessons without the pain of personal experience.

Part I: Bad People and Bad Intentions

One lesson was to not look like a liveaboard. That’s harder than what it sounds like. We live in little spaces, and it’s easy to set “things” on the deck or to cluster the cockpit. One pot or pan that needs to be cleaned turns into a few rusting bicycles, plants and a bag of trash. Our rule was that we should always be able to disconnect and go in 45 minutes. This rule has been a challenge to keep, but it keeps us simple and humble.