Monday, August 25, 2008

Kindness Abounds

We have run into the most helpful people! This situation is just one example...

We blew a high pressure stabilizer hose on the way to Saco from Portland on Saturday. After anchoring near the mouth of the river, Vicki started calling around to find who could make a hose for us while Norm cleaned up the oil in the engine room (yuck). We called two local boatyards and, of course, they weren't open on Saturday. But then an amazing thing happened... we got call-backs from both on Saturday afternoon. And they went out of their way to figure out who could make the hose. One guy called around, found out that Napa could make it, called us back to tell us, and offered to take us there in his car. That didn't work out because we couldn't get to his boatyard in the dinghy and then to Napa before they closed. The other guy told us about someone 30 miles away who makes hoses and offered to take us there when they opened on Monday.
It turns out that we cruised upriver to the town of Saco, moored at the yacht club, and Assistant Commodore Gil took us to Napa in his truck... and also to the grocery store... and to the gas station to fill up the dinghy gas can... and would have taken us pretty much wherever we needed to go. We gave him gas money plus a tip and invited him aboard Tide Hiker for lunch. He does canvas work, so we gave him a dinghy cushion and the dinghy cover to repair which he did in an afternoon and delivered back to the boat.
Take a look at this bay. What a pleasure. We are moored in a narrow channel with the Yacht club to Starboard and a sandbar to Port. As we "horse" around on the mooring, we come within 10 feet of the sandbar. Gil told us when we arrived, "don't panic when you see the sandbar, but you will be ok with 10 feet of water under you". We trusted him and it all worked out alright. There are two towns here, Saco and Biddeford separated by the Saco River. We walked to both yesterday. We will stay 3 days here and relax and get hair cuts and pizza. You can see the sand bar below and the dam on our stern, also below. We'd come back here in an instant.

The cruise up the Saco River was beautiful. Here are a couple of pictures. We were the biggest boat on this river in a long while. We got lots of stares; but, we kept focus on the beauty as we motored north.

Today, we got the hose made at Carquest Auto Parts. And, we got a spare. Norm installed the hose and finished the cleanup of the engine room. Additionally, Rick Tierney gave us his old Autohelm 6000 unit since he was replacing his with a Simrad unit. Norm took the controller unit and installed it on the bridge so we will have total control of the auto pilot from the bridge as we have from the pilothouse. We'll tell you how this works when we leave on Wednesday.

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