Saskia Stays On Boat Alone
I love being alone. Don’t get me wrong, I love being with Miguel, but I really need my time alone as well. When I was living in the apartment, that was not a problem, but living together on a boat, taking time for yourself can be a bit harder. Miguel does not like the idea of me being alone on the boat. I have to admit: when I wasn’t living here, I did not pay much attention to noises, if something sounded different if the pump went on for longer or not and so on. But that did change. So when the time came that Miguel was going to his family for a couple of days without me, I wasn’t too worried. Miguel was. He always worries when he is away from Saetta, with or without me. There are so many things that can go wrong. But with me alone on the boat, he also worries about me, the gentleman :). So to prepare we discussed the electric panel (what needs to be always on, what needs to be turned off whilst being away..), the seacocks, the gas. We both left for Porto, and after a few days I came back, Miguel stayed with his family. I checked all the things from the list (open seacocks, turn on dehumidifier, open gas) and started unpacking my bag. When I went into the bathroom to put away my toiletry bag, I heard water dripping. I know it is not a good sign when you hear water dripping, so I opened all the cabinets and doors: no water to see. I stuck my hand as far as possible in every corner I could find: nothing felt wet. But I definitely could hear water. And although I really didn’t want to, I decided to call Miguel. With him on the phone I checked the water pump, let it run, turned it off. Try this, try that. It seemed to me that the water running was getting less, so we decided there might be a leak in a water pipe. We agreed I would keep the water pump off and only use it if I really had to. It worked for me, but I didn’t really feel satisfied. There was one place I hadn’t checked out: the lazarette. I wanted to, but before we left, Miguel had stored all our extra sails there, and they are way too heavy for me to pull out. I decided to walk to the neighbour and ask him to give me a hand. With the two of us, the job was quickly done. I checked everywhere I could, but nothing seemed to be wet, so I went along with the ‘don’t-use-the-water pump’ plan. I kept on checking the bathroom though, and at some point, I could hear the water again. It was raining, but not massively, so I didn’t think that had anything to do with it. But then Miguel mentioned on the phone that behind the lazarette, there is the gas locker. His thought was: maybe there is water in the gas locker and it is draining from there. I went outside, and whilst I was outside another neighbour came by to check on me. Miguel had sent him a message, asking for help. With some flashlights, we checked the outside and there it was: a steady stream of water coming from the gas locker. Found it! I felt a big relief, but I also felt like a massive idiot, for not checking outside earlier! To be sure I hosed down the deck, whilst keeping an eye on the stream and listening inside to the water dripping/running. At the end of the night, the only conclusion could be that this was the sound I was hearing before. Great start of my time alone on the boat, but at least we found the problem and only my ego was slightly hurt!
Many thanks to Michael and Ed for helping me and checking in on me! The rest of the week went by very uneventfully. Miguel came back and when he had to leave 1,5 week later for the family again, he was much more relaxed to leave me behind.