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Old 08-15-2012
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Re: Just beginning to shop around... would love feedback/ideas...

Another semi-mini update. Can't believe it's already August! Still loving living aboard.

Picked up an MSD porta potti. Also picked up a single burner origo stove. I tossed the dorm fridge for an ice chest. Took up less room, electricity, etc. Then a neighbor comes by one day, banging on my cabin, asking if I wanted a fridge. Turned out to be a haier thermoelectric cooler. Thing smelled to high heaven. So I spent some time giving it a good scrub over, took it apart. Literally. Still smelled. Considered tossing it but decided to check the google machine, first. Thanks to ground coffee, the smell is gone and I can actually use it.

I did finally break down and buy a van, even installed an insulated floor in the thing. Was thinking about turning it into a hippie van... you know, eye sore shag rug, bean bag chairs, lava lamp... J/K! Actually, I plan to use it as a make-shift camper during haul outs.

Let's see, what else? I've turned into somewhat of a dock rat... sorta like bljones post describes. I do a lot of scrounging and bartering. Mainly trying to save in the event I do trade up. Boat size-wise, that is. So far, have managed to score stainless steel bimini arcs (which I mounted with Genoa track cars from Catalina Direct), dock steps w/storage (which I didn't really need, but now that I have them...), new dock lines, marine power cord, marine pigtail, a boat bell, dry-dek, and a few tools.

As for the important stuff? You know, the sailing stuff? Have been going down a check list to ensure the boat meets USCG regulations. Also met some folks who own a sailing school. So, have had the opportunity to take sailing and docking lessons. Still have a long way to go.

As for the day to day minutia... I do a lot of BBQ'ing. Becoming quite creative in that department. Am learning about the different birds who frequent the area, who, TG, are not crapping all over my boat. Have been enjoying my aquatic neighbors, as well. Schools of fish shimmer on the water's surface at dawn and dusk. Of late, have been hearing a lot of mysterious splashing around the hull. Couldn't figure out for the life of me what it was. Every time I'd look, nothing. Finally decided it must be a diving Cormorant. Well, I was totally wrong! As it turns out, it's a freaking huge manta ray! Of all things. Think I'll call him George since he seems to have taken up residence under my boat! lol

But anyway... all things considered? Yeah, life is good. Wouldn't trade it for the world.
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