Monthly Archives: April 2015
Saturday 11th April was the first day that I started feeling like my old self. I had a shower, washed my hair and we jumped on the ferry to pick up one of Mr Din’s cars. Bill needed some more paint, sanding discs and other hardware bits and I needed to pick up some food and, more importantly, wine. I’d got a few bits in the marina shop and from the fruit and veggie man but we needed snacks, bread, and store cupboard stuff as well as the wine. We headed to Starbucks for coffee and later had lunch out. Every day normal stuff to a lot of you but a treat for me. When we got back Bill started masking the stanchion bases ready to attach them the next day.
Sunday 12th back to work again. We still didn’t have any stanchions or guard rails so the next job for Bill was fit the bases in between the new toe rails. Bill was able to reuse some of the bases but I had bought 4 new bases as well as 6 new stanchions in Port Solent and brought them back with me. Bill attached the bases with bolts and a layer of sikaflex under them.
Unfortunately the stanchions can’t be fitted yet because they need bending to shape and that’s classed as an in the water job. We have so much to do we have to prioritise and stick to jobs that we’ve decided to do before we get dropped in, which could be next week. The deck looked great when he’d finished but still missing a lot of fittings.
I had managed to remove the blue tape from everywhere; it takes ages to remove it neatly. I changed the bed and fitted the lovely new mattress cover, fitted sheet, pillow covers and pillow cases I had brought back with me. They had been wrapped round the stanchion bases to protect them. I like putting my washing outside to dry. Bill had created a bit of a back yard for us. The boat to our left is an old tub that looks like it’s been there for years but on our right side the boats have been coming and going and our ladder always gets moved because it’s in the way so Bill has put it on the other side. Bill has his ‘workshop’ under the left hand side of the boat out of the sun. The dinghy is our front fence and I found a couple of old chairs lurking around the hard stand. So we have our tea breaks in the garden.
This is Harry the Hornbill, he’s beautiful and very young but he’s decimated the tree in front of us eating the new leaves. He watches us sitting in our garden.
Monday I got up early to start my joggy trots again. I had bought some lovely new trainers in Kent with James’s help and wanted to try them out. It was like running on air. Bill spent the day waxing the hull, which is the last job he needs the scaffold tower for so we could hand it back.
Tuesday and Wednesday Bill worked on preparing more woodwork. Among other things he sanded down the cockpit grating. It came up like new, as did all the other bits he’s renovated. I removed the very last of the blue tape, I still keep finding bits, and continued writing my blogs trying to catch up. At the end of the day we went to the pool, the first time since I’ve been back.
Thursday was cockpit day. The winches, clutches and cleats had to be removed so Bill could start preparing the new teak decking that he intended to replace the treadmaster with. Unfortunately the bolts that had to be removed to get them off were covered by the headlining and Bill struggled to get underneath it. To take the headlining panels down is a major disruption, which is why Bill chose to paint around some things on the deck rather than remove them.
It took several hours but between us we eventually achieved it. You can see the contrast between the new paint on the cockpit combing and the old GRP in the cockpit. The cockpit painting is another ‘in the water’ job.
The big sheet winches had to be removed too, which had Bill contorting into awkward corners of the deck locker and under the headlining above his workbench. Eventually they were all cursed into submission!
Finally the treadmaster had to be ground off creating an awful dust cloud but leaving a lovely smooth surface for Bill to start creating his teak bridgedeck that he’s always wanted.
Friday I went for my usual trip on the ferry with my friends to do our shopping with the little Chinese ‘man with a van’. When I got back Bill had started making the pieces for the new deck. The first piece had to be made curved and took Bill a while shaping it with a bobbin sanding head on his drill.
It fitted exactly.
For the next piece he used a jigsaw, he pointed out that he was using my Dad’s old jigsaw, I think Dad would have approved of its use, that’s if he didn’t cut his hand off in the process!
By the end of the day, after many times up and down the ladder, he had produced this; it’s going to look stunning when he’s finished it.
We were supposed to go back in water on Monday but we’re not ready so we’ll have the rudder put back on instead.
Meanwhile Bill is creating another mystery object, what can it be?
Meanwhile in Malaysia Bill had been getting on with his jobs, he took the steering and gearbox out to overhaul. It was fortunate that he did because a steering flange had broken in half and I had a last minute call to order a new one.
The gloss paint had arrived so he was getting on with the topcoat painting. There were the same issues with painting in sections and being very careful with drips and sags. The topsides were harder to get a good finish than the hull because of having to paint around windows, shrouds, etc but of course he managed it.
Once he had painted the 2 topcoats, with a very light rub down in between, he had to wait a few days then remask on top of it so he could paint the side decks and coach roofs with the anti skid granules added to the paint. It’s difficult to see in this photo because the sun is so bright.
Monday 30th March the day after the wedding James and I walked back over to the hotel to join everyone who had stayed overnight for breakfast; this included Thomas and Sonal. Afterwards we picked up the car and we all returned to Angela’s house, I with a heavy heart knowing I would have to say goodbye to everyone. I finished the last of my packing and loaded everything in the car. Kirsty came round to let me have one last cuddle with Logan. So it was goodbye to Dave and Pat and Lesley, Angela’s friends, goodbye to Kirsty and baby Logan, he’ll probably be walking next time I see him and finally goodbye to my sister Angie and Terry, I hope you have a lovely honeymoon and a wonderful life together; there were lots of tears
Thomas and Sonal in their car and James and I in Alan’s car paid a quick visit to Mum’s grave to lay some flowers then headed down to Havant to ‘invade’ Claire and Gordan again. We spent the afternoon in Chichester where I had to buy a new backpack to get all my new clothes back to the boat. We had a wonderful evening with them but the next morning James and I had to leave for the airport. Thank you for having all of us Claire. I forgot to take a photo of us all so I’ve added one of the lovely Chichester Cathedral instead.
James had to fly back to Scotland so it was another goodbye, not sure when I’ll see him next. Be careful James, love you lots. x
I continued onto Amanda’s to return the car and spend my last couple of days with her and the family. Jasmine and I were laughing at the photos I’d taken of the wedding.
During the afternoon I completely unloaded the car and laid everything out on her floor to repack. Some of the heavy stuff had to go in my hand luggage because my bags were way too heavy with all the boat bits I was taking back.
Wednesday 1st April turned out to be a lovely day so Amanda and I went to Wisley gardens. Unfortunately we forgot it was Easter holidays and it was full of Mum’s and kiddies but there was plenty of space for everyone.
The daffodils and the spring blossom looked delightful. Amanda and I had a wonderful day wandering among the flower gardens. I was probably taken as a child but I don’t remember it. We decided to beat the rush and have an early lunch before continuing on our tour. The café was filling up fast but we enjoyed a delicious lunch together.
Afterwards we went into the tropical greenhouse. Haha there were plants in there that I see in the wild everyday but it was lovely to wander. A little robin followed us in, probably my Dad coming to watch us.
It was nice and warm in there but we kept our layers on. It smelt exquisite with all the lilies and orchids in flower. The orchids were all suspended from the ceiling with wire; they looked really eerie just hanging there.
The centre piece was a magnificent waterfall which was very reminiscent of the ones we have over here but it lacked the sounds and smells and, of course, the heat. The tops of the beautiful banana palms were touching the roof and trying to get out. Some how it seemed sad seeing these beautiful plants hemmed into such a small space, a bit like a horticultural zoo! When I get back I’ll post some photos of the banana palms on the island.
We continued our walk passing the alpine garden that I loved so much. I needed to get back and finish the packing so we didn’t linger too long.
Thursday 2nd and the packing was finished so we spent the morning chatting. It’s a very fine balance between staying with someone and having some quality time together every year or so or being able to pop in whenever you want, which you don’t normally find time to do in a busy life style. I felt I had some quality time with my sister and Tristan and Jasmine. It was hard to say goodbye; more tears.
Sally came to pick me up and take me back to where I’d started, at her house outside Gatwick. We had a lovely evening together out at a local restaurant for a scrumptious meal, my last meal in the UK for a while.
Goodbye Sally, thank you for being my airport taxi. X
Thomas and Sonal came to the airport to see me off. I was very nervous about getting everything on the plane. Emirates were very good they didn’t even weigh all my bags together luckily and the 35kgs went into the hold. I still had my pull along bag, which weighed 20kgs, my rucksack with my new clothes in which was probably about 5kgs plus my computer bag so altogether I got about 60kgs on that plane.
The last goodbye was to Thomas and Sonal, it was sweet of them to come to the airport particularly as my flight was at 10am. Take care you two, love you both lots. x
Goodbye England for a while.
So I started on my long journey back landing at KL airport the next morning, which was the equivalent of 2am in the UK. I had booked an afternoon flight back to Langkawi in case the plane had been delayed. I managed to get my entire luggage on the airport train to go one stop to the other terminal to catch the Air Asia flight. I spent the day wandering around the airport until check-in then finally got caught for costs. Even though I had booked 30kgs on the air Asia flight they picked up that I had 35 so I paid MYR222 (about £40) for the extra 5kgs. That was ok I deserved to pay something.
The flight to Langkawi was only an hour. The resort is on the edge of the flight path so I made sure I sat on the left hand side of the plane and got a good view of the marina as we came in to land. I could see Camomile sitting waiting for me. Bill was waiting to greet me with a big happy smile on his face.
Home again, home again, jiggerty jig.