Thursday, August 29, 2013

A Weather Day and More

Tenedos Bay, Desolation Sound
A weather day is when I choose to stay put because the weather forecast is unfavourable, and unfavourable it was!  It was comforting to know that I was tied securely to the dock while taking on a southeaster in Lund.  My old friends and my new friends felt the same.

The day started out mild.  I made my Bodum decaf coffee, grabbed my laptop and made my way to the cockpit.  Here I enjoyed the morning sounds of Lund while I updated the blog with the day-before events.  It was agreed the night before that we would meet at Nancy’s for breakfast so I rowed ashore to join the others.  We sat and chatted as if we were cronies and met here every day.  The topics were
endless, funny, witty and educational.  A couple hours later we scoped out the Pollen store (and I bought a bamboo scarf), we spent some time in the Tug-Guhim Gallery and Studio.  Proprietor and sculptor, Debra Bevaart was on site sculpting a finely detailed bear out of soapstone from India.  The finished pieces in the store were jaw-dropping beautiful: seal heads, seals, and dancing sea stars.

Connie zeroed in on a baby seal head.  Artist Debra had just put it in the
Debra Bevaart (l) and Connie (r)
showcase the day before.  While Debra’s work is very fine, the stone the seal was carved from added a twist of beauty to this piece.  Connie just had to have it.  I had a deep sense of good feeling when Connie made her purchase, not sure why, but I did.  I on the other hand had to walk around the store with my arms crossed, chest high, to refrain from touching and wanting….

If you are ever in Lund, I encourage you to visit Tug-Guhim Gallery & Studio.  If you have an unquenchable desire to have a stone sculpture give Debra a call 604-414-0474.  Her work has been commissioned worldwide.

If you recall from past posts, I had a wobbly prop shaft and went to Campbell River to
Lund Pub gang
deal with the problem.  Well, the problem returned and had me deeply concerned that it was going to be a costly fix this time.  I had the honour of three gentlemen, Len, Dave and Rick, in my presence at Lund who offered to be eyes and ears to observe what happens when I start the engine and put it in gear at the dock.  It was determined that between 800-1,000 RPM I have a vibration.  If I push the throttle through, the vibration immediately settles down.  This is an issue I can take care of when back at homeport. I feel somewhat relieved but disappointed that of the two qualified venue I had questioned,  neither bothered to make the observations we did.  Arghhhhh matey,  water under the bridge now.

Len, on Did It, decided to change his impellor.  Remember, we have sister ships, same everything except hull colour; his is blue and mine is white.  He had all the necessary parts and tools — impellor and impellor puller.  After some time, Giselle and I went below to see how things were going.  They weren’t!  The impellor puller was not working so I rowed to my boat to get mine.  Bingo!  Mine worked for him.  He pulled the impellor, examined it, compared it to the new one and determined there was a huge
Racking them up!
difference in the number of blades.  Back to Ta Daa I row to get one of my spares.  My spare matched what he pulled out.  Slathered in dish soap, it slid in perfectly.  Once the engine was started we excitedly observed fresh bubbles spitting out the exhaust.  This was a good sign.  Well done, Len!

That job completed and being dinnertime, the six of us (Rick, Connie, Steve, Giselle, Len, and I) decided to go to Lund Pub.  Dinner was delicious.  I had coconut curry muscles and Thai chicken wings with Giselle.  They were lip-smacking good.  The laughs were endless. 

The night did not end there.  Connie challenged Len to a game of pool.  Little did she know that Len was much better than an amateur; he was a competitor and champion back in the day and he has not lost his touch.  Len toyed with her for a while then wham! Bam! Smack, the 8-ball was gone. 

The night still did not end there.  Teams were struck.  The shots were creative. I was on
Family of otters 
a winning team and a losing team.  We left the Lund Pub with staff shaking their heads as we shut her down for the night. 

It was one of those nights that you could not plan so many laughs; it was natural, spontaneous and contagious. 

Yesterday morning brought more rain and a forecast of 25 knots of wind from the southeast.  It was decided at 0700 that Did It and Ta Daa would depart Lund at
Jellyfish the size of dinner plates!
0900.  We were heading north and into Desolation Sound.  Tenedos Bay was the destination.  Steve had already left, heading south to Nanaimo. Rick and Connie were also heading south.  They did not get an early start so it was questionable how far they would get before getting blown into a port or anchorage (update – they made it to Pender Harbour). 

When I left the winds were light, it was raining, and visibility was limited. I turned on my radar and it proved to handy.  There were no near collisions but it is great to brush up on radar skills while underway.  I did spot a blip on the screen that I could not readily see as the boat blended well with the fog – white boat and tan-coloured canvas. 

Once in Tenedos Bay, I felt the pressure of choosing an anchor spot for the two boats.  I
anchored in 60 feet of water, stern tied, and then Len anchored and came along side to raft.  Other than my stern tie, it was a smooth operation.  A few extra minutes allowed us to better position the ties, which gave us both peace of mind. 

While getting my fishing gear ready I was delighted by a family of three otters fishing.  They were whistling to each other.  At first I thought it was a bird but soon learned they were communicating.  Their catch became dinner when one otter pulled the fish (perch like) ashore and they rallied around to get their share.  The otters were well aware of the spectators so they kept moving along the shore looking for a secure location.  A kayaker got a little too close and they retreated to the water.

Blue inside and out.  Little fish came from ling belly.
Len and I headed out fishing.  A first for me was teaching him what I know about fishing, which is very little.  I gave him the buzz bomb to use and I tried the alien looking thing.  Once on the little shelf I thought my line was on the bottom so I reeled it up a bit.  Not on the bottom — it was a fish.  Len bonked it for me and I lifted it into the boat.  We fished some more and decided we would take one more pass over the shelf and again, I thought I was on bottom.  No sireee, it was another fish but much bigger.  Len bonked and I lifted into the boat.  We were amazed at the blue colour.  I had never heard of nor seen a blue ling cod.  I felt that I would have to Google this before we feasted on it.  One friend on Facebook asked if it was radio active!

I even emailed Academy instructor KT who has a background in marine biology.  In short her email said we were good to go and it would be delicious.

Seals at low tide.
This morning, Giselle and I rigged and dropped the crab traps.  I have never heard of anyone capturing crabs in Tenedos Bay but we sure would not get any if the traps did not go in the water.  The waste from fileting the ling made perfect bait.  Giselle picked her spot and I picked mine.  The competition was on as to who picked the best spot.  We agreed we would pull them up between 3:00 P.M. and 4:00 P.M.

Giselle and I discovered an island covered in seals.  We went back to our respective boats to get our cameras. It was peaceful to drift past the seals just observing and taking pictures.  We toured Tenedos Bay (it was Giselle’s first time here) then headed back to
Keeping an eye on us.
the boats.  It was time for a swim in Unwin Lake.  Just as we were ready to go swimming the boats next to us had a challenge with an anchor.  It seems that the sailboat, who came in after the power boat, laid his rode over the other fellas and the sailboat was in the way of the powerboat weighing his anchor. 

A simple fix would have been for the sailboat to release and reel in their stern tie for the powerboat to up-anchor.  No, not the decision they made.  Instead, the stern tie stayed in tact and two men on the sailboat stood guard with boat hooks — WTF?  The skipper of the powerboat, a Kiwi, deserved a medal for his tenacity to loosed and lift the anchor but it proved too much for his windlass.  He finally had to strongly suggest to the skipper of the sailboat to move.
Anchoring fiasco.
  It was a bit of a fiasco and took much longer than needed.  Once the sailboat moved, the powerboat lifted anchor and departed.  Len and I had offered to help so he swung by to offer his thanks.

Off to the lake we went.  It was a short but beautiful forest walk.  The lake was warm and refreshing.  Giselle brought some home-made chili to eat before walking back to the dinghy.  While eating, it started to pour rain; it didn’t matter, we were wet from swimming.  All went quiet.  The only sound was the sound of the rain hitting the lake.  It was nature’s music. 

Raining on Unwin Lake
I was once told that nature noises offer us the much-needed negative ions to counter the positive ions that we receive daily from electronics, overhead lights and such.  I believe it!  The sound of the rain on the water, the sound of the birds and squirrels in the trees was very calming.

Enough of that!  We have crab traps to retrieve.  Out we go so eager to see who won the competition.  My trap was the furthest out so we fetched it first.  Nada! Zilch! Skunked.  Disappointed I was really hoping for crab in Giselle’s trap.  Skunked again.  The bait was still in tact so we dropped the traps behind our boats – we had nothing to
Unwin Lake

Tonight is my cooking night.  We are going to have the ling.  I am going to BBQ some and prepare a coconut curry sauce for the rest.  So I now need to research tasty recipes. 

Update:  Dinner was delicious and we ate more than we should.  We all concur that blue ling is delectable.  And yes, when you cook it, amazingly it turns white.  

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