On a beautiful 60 degree January day in Baltimore, we loaded our trusty truck and headed to pay Me Voy a visit. This was not to be a pleasure call, and we were not doing this because we had nothing else to do. No. This was going to be a day of getting our faces slapped with plastic, our asses kicked by 46 feet of boat. Again.
"Are you building a fort?" someone asks us as we waddle with the 2x4 bundle.
Oh no it much worse then that. We are putting a plastic cover over a sailboat. It has to be done you see, and since paying the small fortune to get it done was not an option, well here we are.
It began well enough with Travis knocking together a frame, while I handed him stuff.
The building of the frame went fairly quickly and was quite enjoyable. Travis whistled little tunes while cutting and measuring, I fluttered about the deck taking pictures, and fulfilling my other duties ( handing stuff and now also tying knots) and with the sun still high, Chopper was looking a bit more lively. Perhaps there will be time for ball playing, he was thinking. Perhaps we could come knock off now and come back tomorrow, I was thinking. Both of our hopes were dashed as Travis began to unroll the plastic. The dreaded plastic.
We started with the bow, going around all the shrouds, cutting and taping little reinforcing squares, making sure our cuts are straight and in the right place so everything is lined up when we tighten the lashings that will hold the bottom of the plastic to the toe rail. It. Was. Frustrating. The plastic we used was called Ma Ka, and it was reinforced with fiberglass threads. Good for its strength, bad for razor blades. In the end, while a slight breeze blew, I hacked at the flapping plastic with a nearly dull blade, taping whatever I could hold and pull together. I was having my doubts now. Maybe getting it done wouldn't be such a bad idea.
I kept these thoughts to myself as we continued to cover the boat. Going around the shrouds was bad, but I'm not sure it was the worst of it. At least there we could stand up straight. To make progress along the side, one had to hunch over and slightly lean, and hold that pose for roughly three hours. Ouch. We worked each side together, wrapping the end of the plastic around 1x2's which would then get lashed to the toe rail and tightened.
With each pull on the lashing our spirits grew and our sentences became short and efficient. This might work. Almost done. Need to stand up. Soon over. I vacuum now.
In the end, it doesn't look like much. A simple shower cap to keep the wintry rain and snow off our deck. I will not be mad however, if the snow decides to skip its appearance in Baltimore this year. It may be totally insane to long for these warm winter temps, but my toes refuse to feel guilty. They are, without the least bit concern, soaking up the January sun in flip flops. They just won't listen to apocalyptic reason.
After finishing up, we stumbled down the dock to the truck. If you notice in the first picture there's the tiniest little corner on a sign on the top left hand of the picture. See it? We didn't. It read No Parking 4-pm-6pm. It was 5:56 when we finished. Rolling our cart back to the truck Travis and I both had the same thought, "Oh No!" That was all we could muster too. There was not enough energy for a good dose of curse words. And guess what... it was there! Just as we left it. Two hours parked illegally in one of Baltimore's prime traffic areas, causing one hell of a traffic jam no doubt. Just sitting there, without even a ticket! "Oh Wow!" was again all we could say. Dumbfounded, with our tails between our legs, but full of the new energy of gratitude, we high tailed it our of there. All in all it couldn't have turned out better.