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Bringing her Home
Shortly after inking the deal to buy the boat, I called
my regular hauler, Steve Morse, to schedule a day to bring
the boat home to Maine. With his end-of-season
commitments, coupled with the fact that I was going away
for three weeks in November, we finally agreed upon
Tuesday, November 30. I looked forward to the day in
The week before, Steve
called to tell me that he'd had to bring his truck in for
some transmission work, and wasn't sure if it would be
ready in time for our scheduled day. That wasn't a
big problem, as all parties involved--the previous owner
and I--were flexible, but still I hoped the original day
would work out.
Unfortunately, it was not
to be, and I found out on Monday that the transport would
be delayed until Wednesday, weather permitting. The
forecast was for rain and possibly frozen precipitation,
so all I could do was hope.
was warm enough in the morning that all precipitation was
falling as rain, so with that positive development we were
off and running. I had planned to meet Steve at the
boat at around 0900, so I left for Boxford at about 0630.
I had only light showers most of the way; the real rain
only began as I neared the Massachusetts border.
I arrived at about 0820, and
with Mark, the previous owner, loaded the remaining wooden
pieces (some charred; some not) into the boat and my
truck, and removed the blue tarp that he had over the
boat. With everything ready, I took some photos and
we retreated to his house to wait for the truck out of the
When Steve arrived at about
0900, we went back out to help in any way possible.
Earlier, I had had a dream that Steve had arrived with no
one home, and had picked up the wrong boat (Mark's "new"
Seabreeze Manatuck was also on site), so obviously
I didn't want that to happen!
By now, the rain was coming
down at a good clip, and it was pretty wet outside--but
nothing compared to the way it became later on.
Steve got the boat loaded in short order, and pulled
forward to the driveway to tie things down and to load the
masts onto the trailer; we decided that the mizzen would
be better off stored inside the cabin, so I went on deck
to slide the mast in through the companionway and all the
way forward, leaving only about a foot or two hanging
outside the boat. The boat was wide open, with no
ports or hatches installed, so it was soaked inside--not
that it really mattered.
While Steve worked on the
masts and getting things ready, I walked around and looked
at the boat from a variety of angles. Seeing her
completely uncovered for the first time, and out in the
open where I could see the whole boat, I remembered why I
was excited about this project--she sure had a beautiful
hull, despite the sad damage from the fire.
With the mast secured and
oversize banners installed on both ends of the truck, we
were ready to hit the road. I was to act as a sort
of informal escort vehicle on the way home, so was to
follow Steve and the boat in my truck. As it turned
out, this made for a relatively relaxing drive for me, as
we went only about 50-60 MPH the whole way home--a good
thing, since the rain was coming down in an epic manner.
It was hard for me to see
with all the spray from the truck and trailer ahead, but
nonetheless following the big rig was easier than it might
have been going alone. That said, the trip was
uneventful. As we got close to home, I noticed the
aftermath of several accidents and cars off the road,
presumably from hydroplaning or other rain-related driving
At the house, I showed Steve where I wanted to put the
boat, ideally. Unfortunately, the boat barn was full
of other boats at the time, and the new boat would not fit
and would have to wait her turn. The location I
wanted to put her was where I had stored my boats in years
past, before the barn was built, on a flat area up a short
hill next to my garage.
Unfortunately, the slight hill--with the top two inches of
topsoil liquefied by the heavy, heavy, driving, biblical
rain--proved to be too slick for Steve to back up, and his
truck just spun its wheels. Therefore, the boat
ended up farther forward, next to the garage--good enough
for a temporary location. In some of the heaviest
rain of the day, we worked to block and support the boat
in her new home. It was absolutely foul out.
With the boat successfully
unloaded--and since I was soaked to the skin, despite my
Grundens--I decided that before
heading inside for a hot
shower, I should go ahead and remove all the wood bits
that I had thrown into the cabin down in Massachusetts.
I collected all the pieces and threw them down to the
ground, opening up the cabin for later inspection.
With my significant plans for reconfiguring the interior,
most of the parts would be of little future use, other
than a few pattern pieces, but I wanted to save them in
case I needed any reference items later. For now, I
just stacked them on the ground beneath the boat.
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