Today was a wonderful day in paradise, which I just couldn't quite appreciate yet. Another restless night and I slept in until 8AM and then had a granola bar and a cuppa; but didn't have any appetite for anything more. I made sure to keep on drinking lots of water while I puttered around the boat and finally got around to some of the chores I'd been procrastinating on doing. I started the day off by cleaning up the cockpit and polishing the winches and wheels, all of which were looking a bit grimy. Then I finally temporarily pulled down the zipper covers on the dodger by using some fishing line (I'm beginning to like this stuff) so that the zippers would be protected from UV, the flaps point into the wind and if it gets underneath them they pull up and remain in that position. The bimini will have to wait a bit, since I cannot yet stretch that far to get them attached. After the successful work I did a quick inspection of the lines and found very bad chafe on the outhaul. I hadn't found this before because I climb up on the coachroof from the starboard side all the time and this time I happened to be on the port side and the chafe was only visible in the furled position from that side! The chafe was so bad that I immediately cut out the section and also added the broken spacer back in, which I had had manufactured at FKG two weeks ago. I am going to have to look at this carefully, I believe that a protrusion at the end of the boom is causing the chafe and that the spacer only works with the full sail out, not when it is reefed and since I travel with a reef in the mainsail almost all the time this might be an issue in the future.
Since I had the splicing gear out already I wanted to finish the dinghy lifting system, but found out that the M8 bolts I'd purchased were too short for the dinghy so those have gone back on my shopping list, but I did get the lifting system lines for the rear of the dinghy spliced cleanly into their eyes in the lifting ring, the third and final supporting line will need to wait as I need to adjust that length in tests so that the dinghy gets lifted evenly with bow a bit higher than the stern (drainage). After all that work I even tried swimming around the boat for a while, but remained fearful that the cramps that I was still getting would be a problem - I grew up with the rule about not swimming for at least 30 minutes after eating because one could get cramps and drown and, despite having read that this has been debunked, still heed it. The swimming went well and the waters Grand Case were almost still today, so I took a sponge along and cleaned some of the exhaust marks from the generator and main engine off the hull and quickly did a waterline brush for the first little signs of green stuff growing above the antifouling. Everything below the waterline looks good with no growth at all.
I'm writing this after dark, there is not a breath of wind outside and the waves are almost nonexistant. Unfortunately this means that the little flying things from land can make it here. I had all the hatches open and the cockpit LED on as well as some of the cabin lights and the first little wave hit. Small and bothersome so now the hatches are shut and most of the lights have been turned off so that the other boats make better light attractors than does Zanshin. I recall the last time this happened here - the whole underside of the dodger was black with these thingies! I should add that I'm now a bit more sensitized to the new fever that has hit the islands, “Chigunkaya”. The vector is the tiger mosquito, the same as carries Dengue fever, and the first cases were here in Grand Case, then on other parts of the island, then in Jost van Dyke in the BVI and also on St. Barths. In the waiting room at the hospital in St. Barths I talked with the only other patient who lived on the island and had been struck by Chigunkaya just over a month before. He said the fever was nasty and one had no energy at all to do anything, but now he was back in the hospital because his right hand had gone numb and the wrist wouldn't move and this symptom had been going on for a week, all remnants of the fever and there wasn't much that could be done except to wait it out. As he works in a restaurant on the island, he was unable to return to work.
I've returned after a bit flying-thing hunting - I might just get one of the car vacuum cleaners for cases such as this, it is less messy than the paper towel method I haven't brought out my big vacuum cleaner in a while but if another wave enters the boat through the hatch I think I might just bring out the big gun. It might be overkill, but they are walking all over the brightest thing in here, the LED monitor that I'm using to type this, and crawling through what is left of my hair.... I had to turn on the generator anyway so those nasties were left with no chance against 1400W of vacuum power!

Footprints on the swim platform Rather than footprints in the sand today I got footprints on the swim platform after coming from the water.
(2014-03-02 12:28:16 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/11.0, 1/50s] ISO 100)
Footprints on the swim platform
Outhaul chafe Closeup of the chafed section of outhaul line next to the sail.
(2014-03-02 15:17:26 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/125s] ISO 100)
Outhaul chafe
Outhaul Chafe The outhaul was badly chafed and had to be repaired immediately today. I cut the chafed part out; and instead of a splice I put in a bowline since it is next to impossible to splice used line.
(2014-03-02 15:41:35 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/3.5, 1/250s] ISO 100)
Outhaul Chafe
Outhaul Chafe The outhaul was badly chafed and had to be repaired immediately today. I cut the chafed part out; and instead of a splice I put in a bowline since it is next to impossible to splice used line. I had FKG in St. Martin machine a replacement spacer ring for the outhaul and installed this
(2014-03-02 15:30:29 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/16.0, 1/60s] ISO 100)
Outhaul Chafe
Outhaul Chafe The outhaul was badly chafed and had to be repaired immediately today. I cut the chafed part out; and instead of a splice I put in a bowline since it is next to impossible to splice used line.
(2014-03-02 15:36:07 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/7.1, 1/400s] ISO 100)
Outhaul Chafe
Grand Case sunset The actual sunsets just never get old, but the repeated pictures might...
(2014-03-02 18:10:06 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/14.0, 1/30s] ISO 100)
Grand Case sunset
Bugs on the screen These guys swarmed in tonight when the wind died; but 1200 watts of vacuum cleaner did the trick.
(2014-03-02 19:22:22 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/60s] ISO 100)
Bugs on the screen
 
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