Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Too much PT

My yacht is finally back on the Vaal, thank goodness. Tim and I went down to Durban on the weekend to fetch it in a Mitsubishi Colt 3.0l V6 which was kindly lent to us by Rob. The weekend went like this. Woke up at 05:00 on Saturday morning to fetch Tim at 05:55 and then drove down to Durban which is an 8 hour drive at 110km/hr. Not great fuel consumption but not too bad, coming from the super meagre 2l diesel we were expecting the worst. We were not disappointed on the return trip. Packed up the yacht, dropped the mast which proved to be a non event, packed everything ready for towing early on Sunday morning. Tried to pump up the tyres of the trailer but after finishing the first tyre, the pump had an internal malfunction and blew the fuse in the car. Not knowing this, someone else at the club let us use his car so we blew his fuse as well. Way to go boys!. Spent about 30 minutes trying to get the tow hitch to work since it was rusted completely solid. Nothing that a rain of hammer blows and lots of Q20 couldn't sort out though. When we tried to manoevre the trailer the one wheel just slid along the ground instead of rotating, not a good sign.
Tim has just purchased 1/2 of an 36' Atlantis which he tried to convince me to take a 1/3 share in. I was surprised to hear that he had shelled out for 1/2 because it is quite a lot of money but in retrospect, I am really happy that I declined. It would have been the wrong thing for me to have done since Caron is not that enamoured with sailing and there is a definite upper limit to the amount of money I am prepared to spend on it.
Went to collect the keys from the now ex owner who kindly offered us accomodation for the night not to mention supper. They were having people over for a braai in any case so two extra people didn't really make much of a difference. After the day I wasn't that keen on going and I don't like imposing on people that I haven't even met but we 'had' to go there anyway to collect the keys. Amazing how when Tim needs to do something it's a 'have' to whereas when anyone else needs to do something it is definitely a negotiation.
Had the usual awkward vegetarian thing which I solved by buying a vegetarian burger beforehand and then putting it on my plate in the place of the spare ribs and sirloin. I'm sure most vegetarians would empathise with this, what happens when one goes out, for instance, to a braai is that there is normally lots of salads and stuff, more than enough to have a good meal but the carnivores just can't take the sight of a plate without some dead, half incinerated ex animal on it. So you get comments like "Are you sure that you've had enough?" and one can see the host desperately thinking about what they could possibly rustle up to take the place of the ex animal. They really don't need to but they just can't help themselves so to solve this, I came prepared with a veggie burger which did the trick. No awkwardness on the part of the hosts and no empty plate for me.
Quite a pleasant evening which really highlighted the differences between Johannesburg and Durban/Capetown living. In Johannesburg weekends are the brief interlude marking the end of one and the beginning of the next week whereas in Durban, weeks are what separates one weekend from another. In durban it is all about life style, in johannesburg it is all about the work.
Woke up at 04:30 on Sunday morning, had breakfast and thanked our hosts for the evening, it really was kind of them to have put us up. Hitched up the trailer and started the drive but it really felt like the trailer was dragging so we stopped about 3 times in the first 2km to check the bearings and sure enough there was something really, really wrong. After only a couple of km's the bearings were hot to the touch and the brake drums where untouchable. We both had visions of having to strip the wheels and rebuild them from the bearings up while the vagrants around the bonfire 50m away watched us. Not good! Fortunately Tim spotted a place where the brake rod went through a tight sleeve which wasn't moving because it was rusted fast. More blows with the hammer, lots of Q20 and a couple of twists with some vice grips and the problem was solved although it took several more stops before we were completely happy.
Had our usual political/religious/scientific/philosophical arguments which I thoroughly enjoy. Came up with an interesting point which goes like this. One of the fruits of being a christian should be that said christian commits fewer sins than he would otherwise have done if he wasn't a christian. Now measurement of sins is a little tricky because it leads to awkward questions like what exactly is a sin and are all sins equal which I, for one, am not going to venture an opinion on. One can however draw a comparison in that sin, like divorce is very much frowned upon in the church and unlike sin we really are able to measure divorce. Unfortunately divorce in or out of the church affects approximately the same number of people which begs the question, if the frowning on divorce does not lead to an appreciable difference in the divorce rates can one say that the frowning on sin in general does not lead to an appreciable difference in the sin rate. If so, what exactly is the point of the religion if it does not lead to an appreciable difference in how one lives one's life? Phew, that was a mouthful.
Got back to Deneysville at last after yet another 8 hour drive, very thankful to have this part of the journey over and done with. Put the mast up which is quite a mission because as you push it up you have to move closer to the fulcrum and as you move closer, you have less leverage until the mast starts to support itself whereupon it gets easier. The problem is the period just before it starts getting easier, I pushed so hard against the mast with my should that I have a 75x5mm blood blister across my shoulder from the pressure of the mast. It looks like I have been caned across my shoulder.
Finished getting the yacht ready to sail again and left for home which we got to at about 19:00, pretty exhausted and very glad to see Caron again. Fuel cost for the weekend was a cool R1500.00 (max consumption was 22l /100km) which is what I would normally expect to spend in about 3 months of normal fuel consumption. Ouch! Great to be home.

No comments: