Time Flies

Dang it, we’ve been so focused on researching parts, welders, and magicians for our exhaust elbow that we completely forgot that October is our Anniversary month for Little Cunning Plan. We’ve been at this thing for three years now. Frankly, it’s about as hard to believe as the ages of our kids and the fact that we’ve been married a lifetime. I guess the lesson in that is that if you just start, then put one foot in front of the other, stay focused,  and write about what you love a blog that records the history of your process somehow emerges. Before you know it you have three years, 220 published posts, 2,664 comments, and visitors from 125 countries. Sure, some of those are spam robots, but still. It’s mind boggling.

Happy Halloween. If you are not spider-friendly you should probably stay away from my garden this time of year. Yeah, she is slightly out of focus. I don’t like to get too close.

Looking back at our first post I see how many things have changed in three years and how far we’ve come with ‘the plan’. We no longer have our Cal 34 (although we still miss that boat and the kind of sailing she allowed us around here) and we are deep into the months of refitting S/V Galapagos. We still have a house, and while from the first post it looks like we were of a firm mind to rent out our home when we leave the dock, now we’re not sure about that. Sell? Rent? We still don’t know for sure. I imagine the correct answer will reveal itself.

In spite of the fact that I do most of the writing on this blog, Mike continues to hold the record for the most popular post of all time in the entire universe. But I’m not bitter. I can’t really blame people for being wowed by photos of Orcas in Commencement Bay. That visitation was a stunning example of his ability to communicate directly with his watery brethren. I live in humility; outshone by his dark magic ways. We got 720 hits that day alone. That post was in March 2012.  I will never catch up to that.  Not ever.

We still live here. Enjoy garden photos while you can.

Shortly after beginning this blog, we discovered the concept of comment spam. I am vastly amused by this, especially since we put the security filters in place. Hardly any spam comments get through to the actual blog but it is still entertaining to go into the spam filter and read what robots have to say. Occasionally they come up with some pretty creative phrases that make one think; like this one from today’s batch:

“Make your own art work look like the result of mastication”.

You know, I’d like to meet the robot that came up with that. I’m pretty sure that he’s seen some of my art work and I have a bone to pick with him.

The boat reviews on our website get an incredible number of hits all the time, even though almost or all of those particular boats have been sold. People like to read those reviews and I miss writing them. If I have any regrets about buying Galapagos, it’s that in choosing a boat, the search then has ended. That means people aren’t really that interested in showing us boats anymore. And I really like looking at boats. I learn so much from looking, even if I’m not buying. If you have a boat you’d like me to look at and write up, contact me and we’ll see if we can set something up.

Mike sailing Moonrise during our bittersweet last voyage on a boat that taught us to love sailing.

This past year has been a whirlwind of activity since buying Galapagos back in October 2013. We enjoyed our time in Astoria and still miss our favorite places like Three Cups Coffee and Blue Ocean Thai. But we really do not miss the drive down, and we don’t miss worrying about the boat when the Pacific Coast storms hit that area. She is safer, snugger, in her slip here in Tacoma where we can tend to her, work on her systems, and enjoy her. How did we ever spend our time before we owned a big old sailboat? I guess we just need a project.

Here are a few before and after photos of S/V Galapagos that showcase the progress we’ve made this year. It’s impossible to list all of the projects that have been completed. Refitting a sailboat is such an organic process. One thing leads to another. I’d have to keep a running list to keep track of it. And we are not organized enough for that. These are the big ones.

October 2013’s engine room.

Current version of engine room, more tweaking going on continuously.

Current version of engine room, more tweaking going on continuously.

The salon in 2013.

Salon now.


Workbench then.

And workbench now.


Anchor locker then.

Anchor locker now.

Aft cabin then.

Aft cabin now.


Aft head walls then.

Aft head walls now.

In the coming year we hope to add refrigeration to the boat. We would also like to do some minor remodeling of the aft cabin and the salon. I have not given up on having a settee that is easy for both of us to sit together cuddled up to watch movies and a bed that is wide enough for both of us to sleep comfortably. And, of course, we hope to get to do some sailing, too.





16 thoughts on “Time Flies

  1. Very well written blog and excellent photos to boot. We only found your blog when you were looking for Galapagos! Being a power boater, we admire you both for choosing to live with a smaller carbon footprint than we do. Hardly ever see power boat blogs (less drama I suppose). Thanks for all the beautiful photos.
    Bon Chance on the engine exhaust disorder (EED).

    • That is so gracious, Al! Thank you for being a reader. I don’t know about the carbon footprint but we do love to sail. That being said, I would not be surprised if someday we have a trawler, or maybe an old fishing boat. Who knows? So few years left, and so many boats to love.

  2. Did it make you tired all over again looking thru all those photos of so much labor/time energy expended. But what a wonderful reward the after photos must impart!

  3. I hope you do get a chance to write some more boat reviews – they’re fantastic and is how I first found your blog as well! Congrats on your anniversary – looking forward to many, many more years to come. Your blog is always one I look forward to reading.

  4. Since you didn’t ask, I will tell you the most bothersome utility on Discrete Charm: refrigeration. Noisy, uses electricity like it was going out of style, worry about recharging, and finally got some salt water on the control panel=$400 kaput. It’s gone from the boat.

  5. Our boat started out with an ice box. The prior owner used some marine ply to divide it 1/3 freezer 2/3 frig. They then installed a large cold plate in the freezer. They then drilled a 2 1/2 inch hole in the dividing panel and installed a fan attached to a thermostat in the frig side. The end result is we have temp control on both the frig and freezer sides. The freezer won’t keep ice cream frozen but it will freeze meats and vegetables. The compressor lives under the cockpit. It is one of our two big power hogs (Autopilot is the other) but we have been able to keep up pretty good with 540 watts of solar panels. So far, other than a thermostat failing we have had no problems.

    • That sounds like a setup that is similar to what we are thinking. Our fridge space is huge, and looks like there was freezer space at the bottom. My dream is to turn that into a freezer drawer, with fridge unit on top. We are considering the Cool Blue condenser unit. They are pricey, but we saw them at the boat show last year and were really impressed with the quality and how you can service them yourselves. No one we know has one, though. http://www.technauticsinc.com/

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