Friday, January 21, 2011


Another Opportunity for the captain

Yep. Captain Jonesy has had another "opportunity" to make boat repairs in exotic places. We have been having bizarre problems with our fresh water system. First, the water pressure pump got noisy and air would burst out of the faucets when you turned them on. The pump would also run for long periods of time - a lot, grinding and whirling.

So, Jonesy climbed down into the bilge and replaced the  fresh water pump. This is a tough job because he had to unbolt our reverse-osmosis water maker pump to get access to the water pressure pump. This is also why we always have spares on the boat - ya never know when stuff is going to let go.

We left French Harbor and Fantasy Island and motored just a little over an hour over to a more remote bay here on Roatan island - Jonesville Bight. This settlement is called Jonesville because a lot of the families are named Jones! We anchored in the bay, dropped the dinghy and went to explore.

Check out this bar (and brothel) which is really just an old boat anchored in the middle of the bay! We stopped for lunch at the famous "Hole in the Wall" restaurant on the water which is just that...a scruffy but tropically flavored open air restaurant.

There were plenty of critters about - several dogs and this beautiful Macaw.Because of a past injury to it's wing, it couldn't fly so he was free to roam about. The  boa constrictor on the other hand was an unwelcome visitor. What? Yep, boa constrictors are native to these islands. This one was just a baby and was hiding up in the raftors on top of one of the hanging tee-shirts (I told you it was a funky place - there are tee-shirts nailed to the ceiling). See his little head and body in the gap? I poked him from the bottom of the shirt - what fun!

Well, although Jonesy's replacement of the fresh water pressure pump did get rid of the air in the lines and the pump was running less often, but it still ran a lot. Oh, and the bilge pump which gets rid of water that has accumulated in the lowest part of the boat, kept running too - at least once every couple of hours at first, then a lot more frequently. Crap. And, even though we were making water from sea water, the tanks weren't filling up like they should. Over a period of several days we searched the bilge for water leaks. No sign of water anywhere!! No dripping hoses, pipes, units...nothing.

Finally, we saw the water trickling down - oozing from out of the fiberglass structure of the boat. Yep. some water line inside of the fiberglass was leaking. Great. Jonesy had spare tubing (again, with the spares) and he squirmed around the bilge and installed new lines to bypass the hidden ones. But, there were 4 hidden lines and he only had enough tubing for 2. Well, that DID slow the leak, but it was still flowing pretty good.

Not only were we concerned about the water leakage, but we were also waiting for our mail to be delivered to the island. Important stuff, like our replacement credit cards for the ones that creeps got the number and made fraudulent withdrawals. Oh, and a knitting book and a marine identification book too. So, we hoisted up the anchor and headed back to French Harbor to track down our package and get hoses to try and replace ones on the boat.

Yesterday, we picked up our package that had been held for ransom in customs. Why? Because we had to pay duties and sales tax on the 2 books and on my 4 knitted Christmas Stockings that were being returned to me from Knit Picks! It doesn't matter that I knit them, sent them to the states for the photo shoot, and now they were being returned - I STILL had to declare a value and pay. Also, my "author's free copy" of a knitting book with my patterns was in our mail and same thing, I had to pay duties on it. Geez - what a hassle.

Anyway, today Jonesy tackled the other 2 water lines. You guessed it. The one that was leaking the worst was the last one he replaced - #4. So far it's been several hours and the water pressure pump is quiet - ahhhhhh. Success. In case you're wondering if I helped - yes, I did my part. I stayed out of the way and fed the mechanic whenever he needed it. That's my job (and I knit).

See that black shiny grit in my hand? That's some of the "ash" from the recent volcano eruption in Guatemala! I have a little baggie of the stuff - it's so pretty! Imagine this stuff coming down instead of snow and you've got an idea of what Guatemala City had.

So, we're planning to head to the grocery store tomorrow to restock, then we'll head back out to gunkhole (move along the coast stopping at various "holes" or bays along the way) back up to the eastern part of Roatan island.

Nice post. Thanks for sharing!
Im exhausted just reading it. Glad that it all worked out in the end. That is just awful that someone stole your credit card #s. Lets hope that this is going to be a quiet peacful beautiful week for you and jonsey. Huggz, Darrell
Wow Terry, that must have been scary trying to fix those hoses. I'm glad everything worked out. I'm afraid I'd never make it living on a boat, but I admire your (and Jonsey's) spunk!
Good luck!
Ann H.
I love the description of your "job"!
I love your life... I have the knitting down, just wish the hubby wasn't such a land-lubber.
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