s/y Nine of Cups
Tying the Knot - Back to Opua
April - May 2011
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Entering the Bay of Islands and returning
to Opua from the Chatham Islands was
like coming home. We arrived 11:30 pm
on a moonlit, calm night and anchored in
Matawhi Bay, just off the little port town
of Russell. After a sleepless night...too
calm, too quiet and still on  our 3-hour
watch cycle...we moved the boat to a
mooring off the Opua Marina.

We're excited to be back and rearing to
get going on the ever-lengthening
"to-do" list. Everything  needs to be
complete by the end of May for our
scheduled departure of Fiji.

We hauled out 3 May and splashed on
18 May. During that time, we had an
inordinate amount of work to
accomplish while out of the water.
First things first...we ordered  a new
mainsail after the blow-out off East Cape.
David has been complaining about our leaking
hatches for a couple of years now. We bought
rebuild kits for the  Lewmar hatches which cost
almost as much as new hatches which reduced
the leaking, but didn't cure the problem. This
time we're trying Maxwell/Weaver hatches,
made in Australia, and hoping for a better result.
Our return to Opua "tied the knot" for our
circumnavigation of New Zealand!.
There are still some areas of delamination
in the deck and David tackled one on the
starboard aft deck in order to secure a
turning block mounted in that area.
The boat never seems all that big until we
haul out and start painting her bottom with
anti-fouling paint. Marcie applied two coats
to the hull and three on the leading edges.
Marcie worked on polishing the topsides,
but in actuality, David did most of it.
Marcie's afraid of heights.
David masks the boot stripes in preparation
for repainting them.
Our hailing port read D_nv_r, CO...evidently  "e's" don't wear well. The cost to have it
done was expensive, so we opted to do it ourselves using some adhesive stencil material
Marcie had purchased previously. The results came out rather professionally, we thought.
We managed to get our "out of water"
tasks done in two weeks. We spent our last
night in the sling ready for a morning splash.
Back in the water, Cups was looking fine
as she sat in her berth on the work dock at
Ashby's Boatyard.
After splashing, we still had nearly
two weeks of workdays. Despite
working every day including Easter
Sunday, we were barely ready to
leave Opua when our departure date
arrived. We altered the "to-do" list to
the  "must-do-before- we-leave" list
and left several chores to be
completed in Fiji. Phew! We're
exhausted.
Chores accomplished in Opua:
Haul out                                 New prop paint   
New anti-fouling paint             New mainsail
Repainted hailing port              New bimini
Repainted bootstripes             Replaced anodes
Replaced water htr hoses        2 new hatches
Topsides clean/polish/wax       Repack stuffing box
Stainless clean/polish               Repaired staysail
Repaired boom at gooseneck  Refurbed prop seal
Repaired staysail furler            Repaired dodger
Replaced/repaired reef lines    Tuned rigging
Replaced engine oil gauge        Polished fuel tanks
Repaired propane solenoid      General cleaning &
Replaced forepeak locker sole      airing all lockers
Repaired speed transducer

Dental/doctor appointments      Provisioning
Chores to be completed/done in Fiji:
Strip and varnish topside brightwork
Aft deck repair needs priming and painting
Port and starboard side deck repairs
Mast boot still leaks
Install remaining three hatches
Replace gasket on galley portlight
Strip, repair and varnish name boards
Dinghy  lettering

Cruising = working on your boat in
                exotic places
At last, ready or not, time to go. A good
weather window appeared at the end of
May and we took advantage of it.

Come with us to Fiji. Yeah, there's
more work to do...always... but we'll
have fun, too. Come on...you need a
vacation!
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WHEW!