Our Initial Departure
The best laid plans and all that. Despite claiming that we would not allow boat projects to delay our departure, we are leaving three days after our initial date. To be fair, it’s not all due to boat projects. But the frame for the solar panels was certainly NOT seaworthy.
After the initial plan to have a stainless frame for the 630 watts of LG solar panels crafted fell through, I cobbled together a plan myself in a hurry primary using materials I could easily scrounge together. Once it was all installed, it was clear the frame would never withstand an offshore trip. In fact, I wouldn’t have taken it for a trip around the bay. So, with the input from many people, design modifications were hatched. Abundant thanks go out to Mike Cameron and Paul Szego for design help, labor and welding. We had a 13+ hour day Tuesday pulling it all together. I still needs a tweak or two, but I feel confident in sailing to Florida with it.
The other significant delay involved the Vessel Documentation Center. We never received the initial Certificate of Documentation, meaning we couldn’t clear into a foreign port. We hatched a plan to head to Florida first, instead of Mexico, and have the COD forwarded to us there. Then I was able to reach the Coast Guard and request priority handling of the reissue; they would overnight the COD to the marina. We had gotten far enough along with our Florida plans that we decided to stay that course. By Wednesday, still no COD. I reached someone with the renewals department of the Vessel Documentation Center that day and the clerk verified my number and said she would check into it. Long story short, it had not yet been reprocessed and delivered, but she had taken care of it before calling me back. The marina office called a short while ago and the package has arrived!
So, we are taking care of the last minute things, stocking perishables, topping fuel, all the usual stuff, and plan to depart this evening. We will turn on the DeLorme InReach when we leave the dock.
Finally, the part of this grand adventure where we sail the seas has arrived! In the words of Captain Ron, “if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen out there”.