It’s been a while since I’ve posted, so I figure I need to give a round-up of what’s been going on and what our near-term plans are.
As of last Friday, I am on sabbatical from work. Technically, that means I’m retired, though it isn’t a permanent retirement and I’ll be going back to work in a couple of years. I went back to our former hometown after our move to St. Marys for my last month of work, couch surfing with various friends so I wouldn’t impose too long on any particular one, and returning to St. Marys for the weekends. Thank goodness that’s over now. The end of my term at the World’s Busiest Airport was bittersweet as I said farewell to a great bunch of folks, and they even said some nice things about me.
We’re still unpacking boxes from the move, and throwing out or giving away even more stuff we don’t have room for. We’re also working on getting the house in good order physically. The outside needs a good scrubbing and a coat of paint. Trees need trimming.
As for the sailing plans, here’ the deal. There are some things I need done for Madge before we head out long term. I’m in the process of ordering a new mainsail, but need to make some final measurements — which I can’t complete until I can liberate the dinghy from the garage — targeted for next week. It’ll take about 4-6 weeks after ordering to get the new sail. In the meantime, I’m going to get my open water diving certification. In addition to the new sail, I have to replace the genoa winches, have a new VHS radio installed, replace the lamps in all the navigation lights and replace the forward hatch in the front cabin. We’ll be living aboard for some of that, but staying close to home as we work out the details of our provisioning and equipment/tools/parts inventory. Somewhere in all of that we’ll take a break from mid August to mid September to attend some joyous events. My niece gets married in Memphis on August 15th, and “No. 4” grandchild is now scheduled to arrive on September 9th. We have a couple of short hops scheduled with friends in October, then we’ll head south in November.
Until we head south, my posts will mostly be about the preparations, for those of you interested in stuff like that. At least that should help you get acquainted with Madge and how we’ll be living for most of the next couple of years.