It’s Raining in Iuka

28 Nov

He walked through the door, all cold and wet. His rain jacket was soaked through, and he tried to dry off his dripping clothes so he didn’t track water over the cabin’s wood floor.  As he removed his wet shoes, I saw that even his socks were sopping. I thought to myself, this boat had better lift its game a bit.  I will NOT have my husband suffer and shiver just because she (Bushranger) insists on causing trouble.

It all started when the marina folks convinced us that Bushranger should not be put back in the water.  They convinced us that all she needed was a tarp over her and she would be all set for her two month siesta.  Who would have thought covering a 38 foot boat with a tarp could be such a drama?

First we had to find the proper tarp. So, off we went to Wal-Mart and Lowe’s. We compared large tarps, small tarps, heavy duty…all sorts of tarps.  We selected a tarp that would not quite reach the ground and would not quite stretch across Bushranger, nose to tail (her anchor would still be showing).

Now, the weather forecasters said that it was going to rain from now until we planned on leaving (on Wednesday), but it hadn’t started yet.  So we rushed out and started to prepare Bushranger for her new outlook (she needed to be relatively clean, her mast needed to be lowered, her radar needed to be removed, there were a myriad of things that needed to be seen too).  We kept glancing at the sky – the clouds were gathering and the wind was starting to pick up. 

Finally, we took the tarp out of the package.  But which way was the long edge and which was the short?  The tarp was blue on one side and grey on the other – which side would give Bushranger the best protection? As we unrolled the tarp, we discovered that we had guessed incorrectly regarding the longest edge.  We quickly maneuvered the tarp ninety degrees and continued to unroll it.  But, wait a minute; that was wrong, too! We again had to shift it ninety degrees. Now, the stairs up to the main door were no longer usable – the tarp was in the way.  I was up on the bridge, under the tarp, pushing and tugging, trying to shift this massive tarp until it was even on both sides. Suddenly there was a gust of wind – our beautifully placed tarp shifted a good six feet to starboard without our consent!  Boyd rushed down the swim platform to quickly connect some lines (that ropes to you non-mariners) to the recalcitrant tarp.  We stepped back and noticed that the top of the tarp was flat –which was NOT a good thing.  Flat surfaces meant that water would collect there.  Shaking my head, I retreated up to the cabin (my kitchen was calling – I had a strong desire to create some bread rather than fight with a recalcitrant tarp) and Boyd continued to address the flat-topped tarp issue.  He decided that he could correct the flat-top by ‘tenting’ the tarp with a couple of bimini poles.  So, as the sun went down and the clouds gathered, the tarp went up and, we hoped, was ready for the promised bad weather.

Then the skies opened up and it stormed…and I mean it REALLY stormed! The rain bucketed down.  There I was, in my warm cozy bed, thinking how smart we were to get the tarp up in time.  There was Boyd, also in the cozy bed, praying that the tarp would do the job.

The sun rose the next morning, although you could hardly tell since the rain was coming down and the clouds were so thick.  We wandered down to the marina to see how Bushranger fared.  As we drove up, I commented that it looked pretty good.  I could still see a tarp and it didn’t look shredded; and I didn’t see much of a problem.  Boyd, however, was not happy.  I looked at him – he looked at me and commented, “It’s a bathtub”.  “Huh?” I said.  Boyd pointed out that the ‘tenting’ on top had collapsed and the top of the tarp looked suspiciously flat.  Boyd checked the top of boat.  Sure enough, where the bridge used to be there was a bathtub! It was completely full of water – gallons and gallons of it.

Rightttt…Not good.

So, this is where poor Boyd started to lose his ‘dry’. The ‘weather gods’ were still raining all over our boat. It was time to siphon out all the water that had invaded the bridge.  Time to figure out how to tent the tarp properly to see if we could keep the water from pooling in the bridge in the future. Boyd got out his hammer and saw and went scavaging for scrap wood to create an artificial roof beneath the tarp.  My clever husband placed the large white fenders on top of the artificial roof, to help the tarp maintain a proper angle for the water to run off.  After much lugging of wood, hammering said wood, testing said wood, and covering sharp edges, we now had in place a tarp that might (I emphasize MIGHT) ensure the rain runs off the boat without pooling and causing damage.

We can only hope.  All Boyd could say was ‘thank God for Duck Tape’ (believe it or not that is a brand of duct tape).

 

4 Responses to “It’s Raining in Iuka”

  1. jeanne November 28, 2011 at 14:58 #

    And the labor of love continues. Did you get the snow down there? Saw the forecast was looking mighty wintry…

    • The Robinsons November 29, 2011 at 13:02 #

      …it was cold and wintery — and a little bit of snow. Actually, that little bit will melt quickly which will make our trip back to DC tomorrow much easier. — good thing —

  2. Rod Robinson November 29, 2011 at 04:57 #

    Good job on the tarp guys. Great read LynnAnne.

    • The Robinsons November 29, 2011 at 13:00 #

      Thanks, Rod. That tarp was a true pain in the butt! …but it gave me some great fodder for my blog! Thank you tarp!

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