Steel Lucipara 2 gives us confidence out at sea, but right now, her hull material gives us pain. There are rust spots all over the deck. If we don’t treat them, they will only get bigger and can eventually lead to holes. So over the course of four days, Floris sands them down until he sees the shining metal underneath. He then degreases the areas and paints over them, layer by layer. The hull needs touch ups, too, so Ivar does the same on the outside to give Lucipara 2 her blue look back. We also re-mount our toilet, install a new GPS antenna and replace a stay that was showing the first signs of wear and tear. There’s enough work on our to-do list to keep us busy for a few weeks.
The fact that we’re not alone makes it all more bearable. Around us, the crews of SY Eastern Stream, SY Vera, SY Stormalong, SY, Ithaca, and SY Pazzo are also busy working on their boats and preparing for the Pacific. As everyone longs for diversion from the chores, we use every opportunity to have BBQs together, go on hikes, and check out the local jazz festival. Besides good company, they are also great helpers. Jaap fills our gas bottles and dive tank, while Linette shows us how to make a wind catcher. “I can’t wait for that to come in handy”, Floris comments, his mind already on warm Pacific nights.
All of us venture into town numerous times to buy as much groceries as our boats can fit. “How much flour do you think we’ll need in the coming 10 months?” Ivar wonders. “How much of everything, really?” We have heard that doing groceries in the Pacific is both a challenging and expensive affair, so we get as much as possible in Valdivia’s many grocery stores and markets. Our large backpacks accompany us on every trip to town until every compartment of the boat and the entire front cabin is filled with food. “Do you think we have enough until we reach New Zealand?” Ivar wonders. “If not, we just have to go on a diet”, Floris jokes.