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We tried to pour the keel for Shrike over the weekend. We also tried over the Canada Day / Fourth of July weekend, but the little propane stove that we used just couldn't generate enough heat. This time, we used a bonfire, and it worked too well. We had a large number of aluminum pots that came with the house that we weren't using (we have nicer stainless steel ones), and melted the lead in the thickest-walled one that we could find. Unfortunately, we piled the bonfire too close to the pot, and it melted. I'd guess that we lost sixty to eighty pounds of lead, which I'll have to replace with tire weights.

The tiger lillies are in bloom in Palenville, and the blackberry bushes are fruiting. There's nothing better than fresh black raspberries picked straight off the bush on your own land....

Also, there's a swimming hole! Several, in fact, apparently, though I've only been to two of them: the one just downstream of the Famous Swinging Bridge of Palenville (tm), and one about ten minutes upstream at the base of a 3-4 metre waterfall. The upstream one is practically the size of an Olympic swiming pool! And for most of it, you can't touch bottom! Sadly, that doesn't include any of the part right at the base of the fall, except for one spot under a natural water flume. The waterfall itself is actually three separate falls, one of which makes a nice shower. Apparently, the downstream hole, though smaller, has water suitable for leaping from a rock outcropping.

I'm so thrilled that we have good-quality swimming within trivial walking distance of the house. (It's a shame that it isn't remote enough to be clothing-optional, however.) The lack of nearby water was my only reservation about the place. Apparently, there's a lake suitable for sailing up at the top of the mountain that I can see from my bedroom window.

Despite the lead smelting mishap, Shrike is in great shape now, and we should be on track to finish her next weekend if I can find a suitably heavy steel pot. She's fully rigged now, and there's a watertight hatch for bulkhead D. Best of all, we have a solution to the rudder bearing problem! I brought the trailer tires home, so that linuxspice can run out this week to replace them, and I have an appointment with a sailing club near where we live on Thursday regarding membership.

It'll be close, but I think I'll have her in the water for Chautauqua, after all.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jul. 19th, 2005 11:05 am (UTC)
The swimming holes sound just fabulous. It's as winter as it gets, here.
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