Friday, July 16, 2010

June 30, 2010 - Newport Harbor

The last time we ran our watermaker, after an hour of output it stopped working. I can't remember what else was going on at the time but Sten didn't have time to tackle the problem. Five days later we needed to get it to flush, or we risked damaging the membrane. So Sten has spent the day working on it, which, as always, involves tearing apart the main salon.

We invited Bill and Laurie over for dinner, which is becoming a wonderful Wednesday evening ritual for us. It has been a cold and blustery day here in the harbor (during which Sten proclaimed that he didn't think he could do a winter up here), so French Onion soup seemed like a good choice, and besides it would let us use up the last of our Caribbean onions and South African gruyere. So while Sten wrestled with the watermaker I escaped from the chaos down below and caught the launch into town to run to the Farmer's Market for bread, salad greens, and dessert.

Every Wednesday afternoon a group of local growers and purveyors set up their booths on Memorial Drive, just east of Bellevue Avenue. In addition, there is a Stop and Shop, a natural foods store and two liquor stores a block or two south on Bellevue. With all these provisioning options it is possible to keep the pantry well stocked while anchored in Newport Harbor, even without access to a car.

When I got back to Mata'irea Sten was on deck waiting for the pumpout boat (VHF 09), cheekily named "Royal Flush," to pull up alongside Mata'irea. Pumping out our holding tank is a new experience for us. There were a few times while circumnavigating that we used our holding tank, but it was always for a very short period of time and we always put out to sea shortly afterward so we could empty our own tanks. But here in the harbor, we had to find someone to take our effluent away.

How entertained were we to discover that they guy driving the pumpout boat was Bill Bolinder. Bill used to own Redney's, one of the original surf shops in town. Sten spent many a morning of his childhood calling Redney's to get the surf report. Bill brings the same sense of humor to his current gig that he did to running a surf shop.

While pumping us out he confirmed something that we suspected: the vent hose on our holding tank is clogged up. We need to clear or replace that hose to keep those not so pleasant odors from venting inside the boat instead of outside as is supposed to happen.

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