Four days of heavy rain sure can disrupt the best of plans for spring commissioning. The sanding, painting, and polishing all get postponed as I try to find some chore to tackle below deck. I check the hoses and clamps on the diesel, tighten the loose handle on the ice-box, then organize the storage lockers. I even give the stove and head a good scrubbing.
Marine stoves and heads have a way of getting filthy whether they are used or not. I distinctly remember cleaning them thoroughly when I moved ashore last fall. For a moment, I suspect that Charlie Sheen had been partying aboard this winter, but the liquor cabinet is intact, and I move on to other theories.
There are plenty of other projects in the cabin, but they should wait for drier weather. Sanding the teak trim, along with some minor epoxy work both require the hatches and companionway to be open. Those jobs will be addressed another day. Besides, no matter how comfortable a cabin may be, it begins to feel claustrophobic when forced to spend the day below. By noon, I decided to call it a day, and head for the library.
I don't know how many others from the boatyard make use of the Acton Library on rainy days, but I suspect I am not the only one. When the librarian asked for a local address, I told her I was on a boat, and our conversation never missed a beat. Several people browsing the aisle of nautical books only strengthened my suspicions.
I spend an hour or so on the computer, check out the updated version of Don Casey's This Old Boat, and read several chapters from an out-of-print book chronicling the history of the Fall River Steamboat Line.
What really grabs my attention, however, is a 24-foot tile mural that lines the entryway. Sponsored by the Friends of Acton Library, and created by artist Marion Grebow, the "ceramic quilt" illustrates the history of Old Saybrook, as well as the maritime significance of the town's location at the mouth of the Connecticut River. It is an impressive, informative, and unique piece of work.
See,...rainy afternoons in May aren't always my least productive days.
Grebow Tiles: website