Early Spring Blues

As March dribbles to an unspectacular close, boat work still languishes. We’ve had one or two days this month that were reasonably weather-friendly for outdoor work. The rest of the month has been cold, snowy, rainy and windy.

I did manage to sort out the rigging measurements I needed to order mechanical connectors for my headstay, but have discovered that a phone call to the rigging shop is necessary to actually get the right parts. This is territory I’m unfamiliar with regarding sizes and thread count (gauge?). I have questions, like: “Is pin-hole diameter the same for clevis pins as it is for eye fittings?” Seems like a dumb question until you think about it for longer than you should. A conversation with the rigger/on-line rep will help me sort it out, along with other questions spawned in ignorance.

Fortunately, March wasn’t miserable and cold everywhere: we spent half the month in southern Spain.

We left this:

Representative photo only: We actually boarded the plane through the slush of an ice storm. It was miserable, cold, sloppy weather.

Representative photo only: We actually boarded the plane through the slush of an ice storm. It was miserable, cold, sloppy weather.

. . . and got off the plane in Rota, Spain in weather like this:

62 degrees and brilliant sun shining through a cloudless blue sky.  We soaked it up.

62 degrees and brilliant sun shining through a cloudless blue sky. We soaked it up.

One of the wonderful benefits I have for serving 28 years in the Navy is free travel on military aircraft. As long as they have open seats, my wife and I can ride along for no additional cost. We had a late-winter vacation – incredibly luxurious and inexpensive – in a sunny warm place in Europe. It was fantastic, and restored our attitudes and endurance to wait for spring.

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2 comments
  1. Anonymous said:

    Excellent post, Rick. I lived in Rota as a boy for 6 months when my father was stationed there for a short rotation. I remember curfew and the threat of being shot after dark by the Guardia as exciting memories. Walking along the beach and seeing pumice pieces floating by. I remember the bullfights I went to in Spain and the bodegas we visited. I remember some sort of small land snail that was everywhere that the locals collected and boiled up for meals. Not my favorite. I remember the sights and smells of the markets with all the baskets of rich, savory spices wafting through the air. And getting used to the siesta period in the afternoon when nothing seemed to move. Thanks for the memory lane trip.
    The guys at Rigging Only will fix you up quick and not be at all critical. I look forward to ordering from them again soon. Great experience. They seem to have some really good prices on running rigging too. Might check that out.

    Warming up quickly now. Got bit by my first mosquito on the way in the door last night. Soon we’ll be sweating while working on our boats. At least the epoxy will harden now. Cheers. Greg.

    • Rota is a nice place, and Spain in general is very nice. After having live in Naples Italy, I’m even more impressed with the Spanish citizens and government. Don’t get me wrong- I loved Naples and the Napolitanos, but life there is only slightly organized chaos. I wouldn’t change Naples for any reason – that’s part of it’s charm. Spain, however, is orderly, the government officials take care of business, its beautiful, and the the citizens seem to be proud of their wonderful country. That may be different from your memories, as a lot can change over a few decades.

      Yes, Rigging Only is the supplier I will use, and I’m looking forward to their knowledgeable help.

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