Monday, November 22, 2010

List Obsession + Homesick for Friends & Family

Lists lists lists lists lists!
I'll admit it - I have an obsession with making, keeping and crossing off lists. This habit is great in some ways - I'm generally really organised and know where everything is. However, there is a darker side to the list keeper - that horrid, ugly thing that lurks behind me even while on holiday... stress! 

Braving the engine room.
One job I never planned on doing was cleaning out and organising the engine room - a room I have always tried to avoid. It's dirty, hot, squishy and full of weird tools, pipes, spares and machinery. Now, I love Rene but he's not a very organised man - the engine room has never been sorted through. When we bought the boat 3 and a half years ago, the engine room shelves were brimming with all sorts of mysterious things. All that has happened in the time since then is that Rene has added to the mystery and mess by piling more things into the dim depths. Duty called - my super power was needed! Like all super heroes, I had my moments of self doubt 'why me?', 'I'm not that good', etc. but, with persistence, I survived and the engine room is now clean(er), is rid of old/broken things and is organised (for now!). While pulling out all manner of bizarre and curious things, I learnt more about tools and oil and grease and things.. though not enough to get back in there in a hurry!

Another job completed this past week has been scanning the 'Ships Manual'. Originally written by Max, (the builder of Anhinga back in 1983) the years of use, sea air and sunlight were taking toll on the book - so now we have a digital copy. It's such an impressive feat - 70 pages of details on how to troubleshoot and care for the boat in fantastic detail. The manual has helped us so many times to figure out how to fix or maintain various parts of the ship. 

'Brrr - I love air conditioning!'
The wet season seems to have arrived here in Townsville. With the torrential rain comes increased humidity - especially when all the portholes and hatches have to be closed (still, less humid than having them open!). We managed to buy a really cheap second-hand air conditioner and this week we fired it up. I sewed a cover (making the dinghy cover has given me skills!) so it can work efficiently inside one of our hatches. It is such a blessing to have a cool cabin - especially for Rene who works inside on his laptop and can't escape to the cold lands of shopping centres. 

Brewing up delicious chutneys..

It's 2 weeks since my sister and Tam left and I've been feeling a bit homesick. I miss all of my friends and family from down south. I really wish I could just go over to one of their places for a dinner, some wines and soul chats or games or music or whatever! I guess this is one of the downsides to travelling long-term. Only a few more weeks until I can visit!

I'm really enjoying cooking up chutneys for Christmas gifts this year. The most recent batch is soooo hot that just cutting up the chillies had my eyes watering like crazy. The boat smells amazing and I hope everyone enjoys them as much as I have loved making them.  

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