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In spite of the nice showers, and friendly people all around us, Rebecca and I are not marina people. We knew this almost instantly after docking here at Port Louis. While many folks place a high priority on the conveniences that life on a dock provides (shore power, water from a tap, restaurants, pools, etc.), privacy is much higher on our list of must-haves. Having a boat tied a mere 2 feet away from each side of ZTC doesn’t provide a lot of that, especially given that most of our living space is at deck level.

  • Note: Being close to other boats means that we have to wear clothes more often, which increases the need to do laundry, and laundry is not fun.

So why are we here in the marina? Carnival was the initial motivator, and things are ramping up all around us for the coming festivities. Beyond that, we do have a couple of maintenance tasks that are a bit better to tackle when on a dock as opposed to at anchor.

Which tasks specifically? First, we need to pull our engines and change the lower unit oil. How is this accomplished? Great question. Although we have yet to do this, apparently one can use a block and tackle attached in some way to the hard bimini to raise the engines up out of the well. While they are up, I also need to try to deal with the engines’ anodes as I sheared the bolts off when I tried to change them back in Virgin Gorda. The other big maintenance task is replacing the throttle and shifter cables that control the engines. Over time, the cables get stiff and we’ve heard that the only way to effectively deal with this issue is to replace them with new ones. Again, we have never tried this but have researched how other PDQ owners have done it. Hopefully none of these tasks will be over-the-top challenging.

One of our friends shared this photo of how he gets his engines up out of the wells.

Why would it be better to complete these tasks in a marina as opposed to at anchor? Imagine the trouble that would ensue if a squall occurred and we started dragging anchor while our engines were offline. That would not be fun. We expect to get to work on these things after Carnival and following their completion, I think we’ll be bidding adieu to the dock life and returning to a nice (semi) private anchorage.

On a completely different topic, has everyone been paying attention to Emily? I know the folks in her path sure are. I hope the damage is minimal and that all our friends with boats in that area stay safe.