Another morning feeling like I am living on a postcard. Not a cheesy postcard you find in city streets, but the 10 dollar postcard you would buy in an art galley. The ones you don’t believe were ever real to begin with. In the cockpit I sit surrounded by a glass pool, manta rays gracefully swim around Louise, without creating a ripple to disturb my visibility into the depths below. These are the kind of days that keep us going.

I slept like a baby last night for the first night in a long while. Yesterday I learned that I can use the current that rips through the islands with changing tides as a workout facility. When you jump in the water, if you don’t start swimming immediately, you will be washed away to Antarctica. I put on my snorkel and fins and swam as hard as I could next to Louise. The current didn’t allow me to cover any ground, only to keep myself in one place. It was like one of those pools you see advertised on T.V. where you can adjust your own current and swim in a human sized box of water. Those are weird. But anyway, I free-styled in one place until I was exhausted. Getting over my fear of jellyfish as hundreds of tiny brown ones flowed by me with the tide. I pretended I was Michael Phelps. He wouldn’t be scared of jellyfish.

While in a beautiful place, and a positive state of mind, Katie and I were ready to tackle some projects we have been postponing. I figured it would be hard for anything to put me in a bad mood. Since being anchored here, we spent several hours cleaning Louise’s undercarriage. Her belly accumulated some algae and grub since being power washed in Fort Myers. With masks, snorkels, fins, scrub brushes, and a suction handle, we went to town cleaning her up. This was not an easy project, and I officially suck at holding my breath.

Re-routing the head to pump overboard was the next project. I figured it was time to use our toilet like normal people do. Relieving ourselves into a bucket for 9 months is getting old. Like I said, what could possibly put me into a bad mood on a day like today? Katie was not so stoked on the whole idea, because she knew the project would be far more difficult than I had planned. All I had to do was cut a hose, and rerout it to a different fitting, connecting it to a manual pump so we can exit our goods as we please. She still opted out, and kayaked to shore as she said “Just yell at me if you need help…” hahaha. Cutting the hose was easy. What drained out of the hose was not so nice. Stale water that smelled like…you know what, drenching nooks and crannies not even a well paid plumber would want to tackle. Trying to connect the hose to the fitting was impossible. Not happening. They were nearly the exact same size, both with zero flexibility to become one. I tried everything I could to connect the two peices. Shit. Literally. I was on my own with this one. I walked away from the project slightly smelly and hopeless, but later got our brave friend Nick to help me finish the project.

Despite all the dirty work, the schedule we are on and the life we currently live have been delightful. For the most part, the charming life you all assume we have been living everyday, has finally actually become real. We awake when we awake. I drink my coffee, and eat a peanut butter and honey sandwhich while soaking up my surroundings. Katie eats her cookies and walks around land with Reggie. We spend all day playing in the water. Swimming, floating, snorkeling. Relaxing again later, and then concocting something random to call “lunch”. When we feel like it, we move onto the next anchorage, drop the hook, read books, play guitar, drink a warm beer, and go to sleep at 9. Unfortunately we both have become insomniacs. Often no matter how tired we are, we lay in bed wide awake at night hour after hour. Sometimes we talk, sometimes we don’t. I blame insomnia on the heat. Which during the day, is a non issue because we just stay in the water. But at night, swimming doesn’t seem like the better option.

4 thoughts on “Feeling at home in the Exumas

  1. Great reporting Jessie! My husband introduced me to your blog a few months back; I immediately read all your posts from the beginning and have been enjoying every one since. You’re an incredible story teller! Keep up the good work and good luck with the rest of your journey!

  2. Fitting hoses of even the “correct” inside diameter is often very difficult or impossible. What I have found works a charm is to heat the hose up so it becomes soft and flexible and the use some lube… like dish soap and fairly easily force it on the hose barb. If at shore side with access to 110v I use a Bosch hot air gun which is like an industrial strength hair dryer. Perhaps a good hair dryer might work too… I don’t have one. There are 12v hair dryers. I don’t know if the will generate enough heat. At anchor I boil a pot of water… and bring the pot to the project and shove the hose in until it heats up and softens. The heated hose usually stretches and then shrinks tight over the hose barb and it becomes impossible to pull off… requiring it be cut. Of course use double hose clamps on hoses below the water This is really the only way to deal with MOST hose to hose barb connections. You’ll go crazy trying to force a slightly too small hose on. And it seems that mis matching is more common than we expect. But in the end it’s better to have a slightly smaller hose stretch to fit because it makes for a leak free connection.

    Fair winds and following seas

  3. Katie and Jessie,
    Read somewhere place you razor in a cup with oil to keep the blade from rusting. Olive oil sounds like a maybe. Like your BLOG.

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