Twice as long… Twice as much

There is a saying in the boating world that, any project that needs to be done is going to take twice as long as you think it should and cost twice as much as you thought it would. As it turns out, this saying is very accurate.

As you know, if you have been following our story, there are a number of things we wanted to add or change on the boat prior to our departure. After a career in sales, I am left dumbfounded by my dealings with a number of trades. From them just not showing up to provide a quote, to them showing up, taking measurements and then just vanishing  into thin air never to be heard from again.

So I have been left to do these projects on my own. Now I’ll be the first to tell you I can likely build it, but it will look like I built it. Not necessarily like a skilled tradesperson built it. On a boat there are very few flat surfaces, lots of round edges, angled walls and tight corners. More challenges for the amatuer. So everything I do is usually done twice. (I cut it three times and its still too short 🙂 ) I just keep telling myself, and Barb, it’s a learning experience.

I’m also still working my “real” job so it’s off to the office in the morning then working on the boat in the evenings and weekends. I see now why many who have done this before, quit work six months in advance and concentrate full time on boat preparations.

Twice as long… Here’s how it goes. We wanted a hardtop to cover the cockpit area. I checked with a few local builders and yes they could build one. It would be custom fibreglass work so they would not give hard and fast quotes only estimates and those came in around 25,000 dollars YIKES. There is a company in Florida called Dedicated Marine and they build hardtops for Lagoons and have the molds, their price just shy of 6000 US.

We decide to go with them so I make the call. It just happens to be the last call they take before they evacuate from the hurricane last October. Fortunately they and their shop survive but understandably they are a bit behind schedule. The hardtop is shipped in January but the truck driver decides his truck is too big to fit into the marina area so he takes the top to his yard 40 minutes from the marina. I have to rent a truck, grab the son in law and a buddy of his,  rush over to the trucking yard, transfer the crate to the rental truck, drive back to the marina, unload the top, secure it to the boat, load all the garbage and packing back into the rental and get it back to the rental place for 7 pm closing. Didn’t make it. Finish up the next morning. Take a deep breath, count to ten, or twenty or sometimes 100. It’s just the way it goes.

It’s amazing / frustrating / scary, that as the days count down to your departure the to do list gets bigger not smaller. But here’s the reality, the boat could leave today. Not everything is done, she is not as pretty as we want or has all the “stuff” we want but she is safe and mechanically sound and that’s what really matters. The rest if it gets done great if not, and once we are out there, and decide we really need /  want it we can get it done somewhere. After all they say cruising is just fixing stuff in exotic locations.