Covid marina life

The coronavirus status around the Salish Sea has is only marginally improved. Mask wearing has increased but folks are doing poorly at staying socially distanced. Case numbers are up from where they were in early May … worse than when everything was shut down in March and April.

Since moving back onto SWALLOW back in June I spend as much time as possible aboard. Every two-to-three weeks I go grocery shopping and stop at the marine and hardware stores for boat task supplies. Days will pass without me stepping foot on the dock.

Momma Kitty checking out the marina activities.

I’ve found my most unnerving activity is taking a shower as that involves using the marina washroom. I take a shower once a week, other days I give myself a wipe down using baby wipes.

I don’t use the public heads so weekly I carry the porta potti holding tank to the dumping station (SWALLOW not having a fixed head is a bonus as without the Thetfors I’d have to move to the pumpout dock).

The reports from those that are cruising is Puget Sound and San Juan Islands are extremely busy. For this reason I’m stayed in the marina as battling for anchoring space is no fun and I really don’t want to use a crowded public dock (where I have SWALLOW moored is behind a locked gate and also the slip means only people that get close are owners of the boat sharing the finger dock).

After Labor Day I may venture out after seeing if the boating numbers decrease. My concern is folks may still be out and about as most schools are not opening and families may continue to cruise.

To keep myself busy I have repaired and done upkeep varnishing to SWALLOW’s brightwork. I’ve converted the handrails, rubrails and companionway to teak oil – much easier to maintain. Also cleaned up the dinghy teak and applied oil.

Montgomery 6’8″ teak looking fine!

The cockpit footwell has some areas where paint had chipped off so I’ve filled the areas with thickened epoxy and applied fresh paint. I also painted the tops of the stern bitts as the varnish was getting tired and paint is easier to maintain.

To better match my lighting needs I’ve moved some cabin lights. I’m still debating the addition of some better placed 12-volt charging ports.

There are a fair number of dings and scuffs on SWALLOW’s hull that I’ve be applylied touch-up paint. Sadly there are also locations where the paint is pealing … seems my prep work done during last year’s haulout was lacking.

Looking better after touching up the dings and scratches.

Did some seam caulking around the companionway and wood stove deck iron. These are the only two locations I’ve ever seen a leak, VERY slow leaks and only in the heaviest of rains, so hoping this will seal things up.

Every day or two I take the dingy out for a row. I find this a nice was to talk with the other liveaboards while keeping a safer distance – sadly about half of the liveaboards don’t wear masks. Looking at the boats is also enjoyable in addition to paddling around the local bay.

Evenings have been spent watching shows on the Kindle and reading both ebooks and the good old paper kind.

Have to have fresh popcorn made on the stove when watching movies.

Browsing the Internet, and downloading the above noted Kindle videos, is a slow and frustrating process. The WiFi and cellular data speeds are achingly slow and during the mid-morning and mid-evening fail completely. Both the marina setup and the region infrastructure are not up to the traffic demands. The marina is especially bad.

Crap Internet at Port Ludlow Marina
This is equivalent to dial-up modem speeds experienced back in the mid-90s!

This speed is in contrast I had excellent service in November and December 2018 at the Port of Poulsbo Marina that allowed for streaming HD video!

I’m currently in a debate about installing a solar panel. Besides the cost I’m hesitant as a solar panel will diminish SWALLOW’s classic looks.

So ends this this update on SWALLOW, Dave and Momma Kitty.

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