18 February 2007

Blustery, bouncy, bumpy Marsh Harbour

February 18, 2007

We’re at anchor in Marsh Harbour sitting out a cold front which NOAA has forecasted to have gale strength winds. We’ve tucked Whisper behind a marina so there is minimal waves, though the wind has been reported at 40 knots. It is as comfortable as can be on Whisper and we feel very safe and warm. We went over to a neighboring boat, a 26 foot Falmouth Cutter. A.O. and his wife, Lindy, treated us to coffee, cake and hot chocolate and lots of small boat discussion. Their boat is very seaworthy and is built with safety as the top priority. A huge bank of black clouds appeared on the horizon indicating the frontal boundary, so we jumped in our dinghy and sped back to Whisper.

We played a good game of Scrabble (score: Kristen 1, Hans 4. arrrrrggghhhhh, says Kristen!). Now we’re about to have a lunch of split pea soup and homemade tortillas. Kit Kat just finished a huge, unauthorized lunch of Iams. Unbeknownst to the competitive Scrabble players, she climbed into a locker under the vee-berth, clawed through two plastic bags and a food bag and gorged herself. Now she is exhausted and sleeping in the clothes locker (or, she’s just hiding from the wrath of Kristen and Hans who are tempted to lock her outside).

Our stay in Marsh Harbour has been extended by the discovery of a crack in the forward chainplate (the piece of stainless steel that holds the forestay to the bow and in turn helps hold the mast up). We had read about this weakness in Vegas on the Vega listserv and contemplated beefing up the chainplate before leaving Maryland, but it looked fine and we decided that we couldn’t replace *everything* on Whisper. Since we knew about this weakness, Hans has been keeping an eye on it and he found the crack before any serious problem (dismasting!) could develop. There is a welding shop here so it should hopefully be a straightforward job and we can start traveling to more scenic harbours soon.