It is easiest to forget the unseen. There has been several occasions where particular areas, nooks, and crannies have been ignored aboard our humble abode. The reason being – fear of what lies beneath. I stated in my last post, there is not much that truly scares me. Amongst my fear of commitment, mayonnaise, and the dislocation of fingers, there are areas of Louise I can hardly bring my eyes to meet… God forbid I witness what is really there. I’m too scared.

Where the old, weak bladder connected to our toilet wiggles underneath the couch on Katie’s side. The possibility of urine leaks where I connected the hoses. The rusty storage shed underneath Reggie’s bed… where water collects as it rains. That one Bird box (cat box) compartment on my side, where we used to keep Bird’s litter, soggy bits of litter still reside. The deep, dark bilge, reeking of diesel, oil, and dirty hair. These little nightmares, remain unkept. What you don’t know, won’t hurt you. No one wants to breathe mold, smell sewage, get an old piece of litter stuck under their fingernail, have a spider crawl up their shorts, eat an aunt, or more recently have a lizard jump at your face. Do you understand what I am saying? No need to attend to these areas. Unless it is an emergency.

Lets not forget about the entire part of our house that faces the sea floor. Louise’s belly. This large area, has been lacking attention for longer than it takes to bare a child. Sure, we were attentive to this region as we traveled the Bahamas. The water clarity was that of air. It was nothing but entertainment to keep her belly clean as we cruised from island to island. It was like we were snorkeling, working out, and making our home more efficient all at once. Win, win, win. Well, it’s been awhile since either of us have seen what it looks like down there… Why? Again – fear of what lies beneath. Recently, I insisted on facing the facts (Katie wasn’t as excited about this plan as I) With snorkel gear on, I ungracefully flopped into the marina, to witness the coral reef we dragged down from Fort Lauderdale. Let’s just say if Louise were a plane, there would be no flight.

I scrubbed, scraped, scrubbed, and scraped some more. The amount of living things I removed from Louise was slightly disturbing. The dead fish floating around me in the marina…comforting. Mini shrimpy things squirming all over my skin when I got out of the water, even more pleasing. Katie worked on the bottom of Madbob (dinghy) and Darbie (kayak) while making sure the tarpon twice my size, were not seeking me as an appetizer. A morning well spent. Minus the fact that I only finished a fraction of the job, and I suck at holding my breath. Oh well, it’s start.

Thank the lord we don’t have a bigger house. Thank you Katie for cold beer and moral support. Thank you Reggie for keeping your eyes on me at all times and protecting me from vicious sea life. Thank you George and Donna for rewarding us with delicious bbq pulled pork sandwiches.

11 thoughts on “Belly of Louise.

  1. Wow! You had that much critter growth on top of bottom paint? I’ll make sure my bottom is fresh before I head to the salt next fall. Hi from (almost) springtime in West MI.


  2. Hello. I’m glad I found your blog. Very interesting to say the least. I’m from Chicago but have lived in Fort Myers Beach for the past 10 years. I just want to say you guys are pretty cool doing what you are doing. It’s nice to follow. Thanks, and “Fair Winds and Following Seas”!

  3. …and that ladies, is why I hire my diver once a month for $47 to scrape and scrub-dub-dub! 2 divers, 20 minutes, clean bottom (the boat’s), PRICELESS! Previously, I did it like you. Went like this: 6 pack-$6.00, lost scraper-$7.00, bandaids- $3.00, Neosporin-$4.00, 2nd 6 pack-$6.00, anti-anxiety meds (herbal smoked kind)- $20.00, 1 beer for the ever-present critic-$1.00, The same $47, without the hangover, creepy-crawlies and injuries.

    As always, happy to share!

  4. “Eat an aunt”?? Glad I’m not in your family!
    I just gave my boats bottom a thorough cleaning too, as departure prep for the Bahamas! Fortunately, I’ve got scuba gear to help reach those deep parts. 🙂

  5. Can’t tell from the video but it looks like your prop is pinkish. This means you are not protecting you metals correctly. If it is pink then it might be too late to save. You need to get a zinc on the end of your prop nut ASAP! Just wanted to send a friendly heads up.

  6. Wait til the Chesapeake–when pulled out in Oct, the Elissa II sported a BEARD!!!! UCK–really looking forward to those Northern CLEAN waters!!!

  7. I might have missed it as I skipped around your posts some (just bought a 2-27, getting inspired), but what marina are you in on Stock Island? I’ve been to a couple, and didn’t recognize yours from the pictures/video. Thanks for writing and photographing!

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