Getting to Work on Bear

I cannot believe I have been at the boat for a week now. The time is already flying by, and I know the time before Margaret arrives in early May will slip away just as fast. So, I have put together a detailed spreadsheet of work that needs to be done before we start our regular pre-splash chores. While much of the list is fairly easy, there are a few significant jobs, like completing the refinishing of the teak in the cockpit and tracking down a troubling battery problem we are having. We should be knocking out the biggest job of them all – replacing the chainplates – in two weeks time when a friend of ours, Brian, has generously agreed to give me a hand for a long weekend. As luck would have it – and I am not really complaining, because the boat fund can use the infusion of cash – I am also in the midst of teaching two online courses and doing some other contract work, so I am spending nearly as much time on the computer in the boat as I am on boat work.

The skipjack Lady Helen out of Chestertown with Bear in shrink-wrapped in the left corner of the picture.

The skipjack Lady Helen out of Chestertown with Bear in shrink-wrapped in the left corner of the picture.

Over this past week, I have settled into the boat and finished a few jobs, but my real accomplishment has been researching the jobs I still have to do and ordering parts. Being organized in this way has reduced a lot of the anxiety that I usually associate with big tasks like the chainplates and has also allowed me to work more efficiently because I am not discovering I need additional parts or tools in the midst of a job. In addition to planning and working this past week, I have also endured fairly cold temperatures and some wicked wind. Fortunately, the shrink wrap is still on the boat, blocking the wind and acting like a little greenhouse whenever the sun comes out. In fact, the cockpit has been delightful any time the sun shines. And, even more fortunately, it seems like the cold weather is behind us with highs in the upper 60s rolling out on the latter half of the 10-day forecast.

Head on the salon table.

Head on the salon table.

I have been taking some video of all the bigger jobs I have been doing and intend to put together some project-based videos. But with all my other computer work already taking up a lot of time, I probably will not be able to stitch them together until we are out on the water. So, stay tuned for those. And I will continue to periodically provide some updates, both here on the blog and YouTube until then. Of course, Margaret will be continuing to publish the last of our cruising videos from last season over the next couple weeks.

I should just finish by saying how lovely it is to be here along the water on the Eastern Shore in spring. Even though the weather has not exactly cooperated, it is a welcome change from the conditions I left behind – and Margaret is still enduring – in central Illinois.

Another sunset view from the corner of the yard.

Another sunset view from the corner of the yard.

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2 Responses to Getting to Work on Bear

  1. Guy Axtell says:

    I have had a great time watching your last years videos ! It brings us a lot of great memories sailing the bay ! We keep our Tartan 37 on the lower Potomac, Virginia side, at Olversons Marina.

    Can’t wait to see more video of your travels this summer !

    Safe sailing !

    Guy & Virginia Axtell

  2. nice spread sheet, on some projects I will use a gantt chart through MS Project. Very seldom do i hit the target dates or budget, but its boating

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