Packing Up

When we first saw Maluhia, she was being kept in a heated indoor storage unit. In order to proceed with her purchase, a survey and sea trial were scheduled on our behalf. This meant a thorough inspection, a boat launch into the water, and a short sail on Lake Michigan. After all, she is 20 years old. The boat passed with flying colors with only a few minor things that needed to be attended to. Because of the distance between us and the boat, we had the marina take care of a few items on the survey list and had them apply new anti-fouling bottom paint. (This anti-fouling paint helps keep living organisms from attaching themselves to the bottom of your boat. Trust me it happens!)  Since we would be living aboard and plugged into shore power (AC) quite a bit, we also had them install a galvanic isolator to protect our boat from potential electrical issues while “plugged in.”  (a good investment!)

Getting ready to move West onto a boat requires a lot of packing, planning and downsizing. After we put our house on the market, it sold in three days! We went through the entire house and made three piles, dump, keep, and donate. Then we went back through the keep pile and decided if it was coming on the boat or going into storage.

Pack or pitch     More to pack

We weren’t only packing up what we wanted to take from home onto the boat, but we had to prepare the boat for shipping as well. This required us to make another trip to Manitowoc to complete the following:

  • Winterize the boat add Antifreeze to the bilge and pipes to keep from freezing.
  • Wrap a 42 foot mast in bubble wrap, carpet, duck tape, and plastic wrap.
  • Repeat with the boom and the roller furling.
  • Remove all of the halyards  (lines of rope that run into the mast) and replace with messengers (temporary junk line) to prevent the halyards from chafing during transport.
  • Remove all shrouds from the mast (metal wires that hold up the mast)
  • Remove all electronics from the mast; lights, radar etc.
  • Tape and secure all drawers and cabinet doors on the inside
  • Bubble wrap anything in question
  • Remove everything from the boat exterior; anchors, dodger, antennas etc., that could possibly blow off the semi during transport.

Mast prep for shipping     Hmm..this won't fit in the car...

Back home we felt like we were really making progress, but as the time ran down, we started detaching ourselves from a lot of the items in our keep pile. “Will I ever wear this again?” and “Will this actually fit on the boat, or better yet, in our car?” were the questions we kept asking ourselves. We weren’t renting a U-Haul. The plan was to fill my car and drive it across country. Anything that didn’t fit in the car was not coming with us. Everything in our keep pile that wasn’t in the car, now fit into a 10×10 storage unit, and we stuffed that full as well.  It’s amazing all of the “stuff” one accumulates over just a few short years. We found great joy with donating, selling and downsizing in general. Moving on a boat forced us to make a decision about those items, that we subconsciously avoided for so long.  The truth is, we had already detached ourselves from those items a long time ago by placing them in the back of the closet, or hiding them in the junk drawer because we thought we “might” use them again someday.

Storage!     Will it fit?

We were all packed and ready to go, except for one minor detail. Our semi that was supposed to pick up Maluhia was currently on the East coat and kept getting delayed. Then Hurricane Sandy hit and that pushed him back even further. It turned out, he couldn’t get a truck up to Wisconsin before near the end of November. So, we proceeded to hang out in North Liberty, Iowa for a few more weeks. By the end of November we had attended several going away parties that included family and friends. We were delighted to see everyone, and very thankful for all of those that came to give us their well wishes.

Surprise party!     Good times, good friends Dinner party     Dinner party

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