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Bringing her Home
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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 eager anticipation.

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.

Fortunately, Wednesday 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 rain. 

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 mistakes.

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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