Tuesday, February 05, 2008

February 5, 2008 - Whangarei

Yesterday morning a front passed through, bringing rain and wind with it. We spent the morning running around town, following up on the part orders we placed before the game yesterday and picking up some more consumables for the painting and varnishing projects. We can't get the engine mounting foot that we need here, so Sten found a local guy to fabricate the part for us, as well as some replacement bushings for the the bat car system on the main sail.

We also picked up the foam for our cockpit cushions - which was twice as expensive as it would have been in the states. I asked the upholsterer if there would be a charge for him to cut it down to fit in our cushion covers, as he could do a much nicer job of it with his professional equipment than I could with an electric meat knife. He replied that it depended on how difficult the cuts would be. As I pulled the cushion covers out of one of my giant L.L. Bean tote bags, he started eying the bag. I've gotten used to this - these bags get commented on all the time. He motioned to his assistant to come over and take a look at it too. "Tell ya what, I'll do the cuts for free, if I can take some measurements of your bag." Copyright infringement in exchange for free services? No problem.

The highlight of our day was the long awaited arrival of a shipment of Hardy's wine at the local version of Walmart - The Warehouse. As part of their Waitangi Day Sale the entire range of Hardy's was half off - 4.36 NZD a bottle, which comes out to 3.40 USD a bottle. Now, this isn't great stuff. But it is drinkable, especially at that price. We bought seven cases for ourselves and a couple for friends. As we loaded up the back of the car, Sten commented that "this was why we bought the wagon." Within the hour I brought back some people from the boat yard who don't have wheels, so that they could stock up on plonk too.

Back at the boat yard I had to face the challenge of finding a place to store it all. Sten volunteered to rip out some air conditioning ducting to make some more room, but that seemed a bit drastic. Then I remembered that there were four old life jackets, which came with the boat, taking up some easily accessible storage space. They clearly had to go. I brought them up on deck and tossed them over the lifelines to the gravel below. Lou, whose wife Ann had come home with 8 cases, called out across the boat yard "Man over board."
"It was them or the wine," I responded.
"I like your priorities," he called back.

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