As preparing my boat for launch has been taking so much longer than anticipated, every few months I am renting
a boat to spend a day at sea. Get my fix as it were. We found a place for $150.00 we get a 22' Catalina
until 8:30 the next morning. Their website says it has port a potty, AM FM CD player, solar
power for the batteries and all required safety
The first time we rented from them we sailed around the bay for the afternoon. We had a marvelous time and were so proud we were actually able to make her go where we wanted to. "Next time" we vowed "we go out into the ocean. Several months pass and precious is still on the hard
. I can stand it no longer I need to sail.
We arrive at the dock
Saturday morning we tell dockhand our plans are to watch the sunset before returning. Winds are favorable for sailing out of the channel so an hour or so later we leaving the channel entering the Pacific Ocean
. We go nowhere really we just sail around watching dolphins
and pretending we are really sailors. Laughing at our own lack of skills. We decide we should watch the sunset astern as we sail back in the channel. A very poor decision as we completely lost
the view to Point Loma. As its starting to get dark, I send my son Josh below to turn on our lights. He reports lots don't work. We drop sail and motor
in arriving at the dock
just before full dark.
Months go by. Still Precious is on the hard
. I'm not working on her as much as I was at first. I need to remind myself why I am working so hard. It's time to sail again. This time my son and his wife split the cost with me. When I call to make my reservation I share with the woman the problem we had last time with lights. I ask if there is anything I can do to ensure the boat I get has working lights. She kind of got an attitude with me. "We always intend for everything to work on our boats".
We arrive at the dock Saturday morning. As we prepare to shove off we check to see if lights work. They didnt. We ask the dock hand to find us a boat with working lights. 20 minutes later we shove off. We motor
out to the channel and stand out to sea. As we leave the channel entering the ocean, all wind
dies. We watch everyone else motor away. We don't need to drop the outboard
. Sitting still is as much a part of sailing as flying along at four kts.
It's a marvelous time. We sit just outside the channel. We were visited several times by dolphins
and I think I saw a whale. We watch a beautiful sunset, turn on our lights and start up the outboard
to return to the marina. Ten minutes later all power dies. Tensions are high as we motor back in complete darkness. Knowing we could easily wind
up with a ticket for being on the water
or equally possibly, get hit.
Several vessels pass by, most yelling at us! We almost made it in when we see a power boat
coming at us far too fast. We yell and sound our horn. At the last moment he sees us and veers away missing us by mere feet. I don't know how to express the relief I felt when we finally tied off at the dock. The next day I fire off an email
sharing my experience. I get a call from someone who is properly apologetic and offers me a credit.
Months go by. Precious is still on the hard. By now I have learned what I truly have in front of me. I chastise myself for not working harder, as I call to reserve our boat. I called the manager asking if he could insure I had a boat my family
would be safe on. Having learned enough by this point to understand its my responsibility to keep us safe, I purchase
. What the heck, it can be back up on my boat in case I have electrical
issues someday. I NEVER want to be out at night without lights again
We arrive at the dock Saturday morning. I check in and the nice young lady informs me they have a boat set aside for us. I'm thrilled as we pack up our dock carts with all the crap I think I need for a few hours afloat. I find the dockhand and ask where the boat is. "All the way at the end" he tells me. The first thing my son does is check power. Of course there is none but that's no tragedy since I do have lighting
. Nevertheless, if we can get a working boat that would be preferable. I return to the deckhand
. I tell him that's got no power and he tells me to go find one that does.
"Mac said there would be a boat here and ready for me. The girl in the office just called you. Do I really have to hunt for it"? I ask. The dockhand tells me that she called him and he gave it out thinking they were me. Now we didn't see anyone enter the office. Nor did we see anyone sailing away, but who am I to question a mans honesty. I just want a boat. The gentleman spends about ten minutes finding us a boat with full power and shoves us off.
The winds are not favorable. The are coming from straight up the channel. We raise sail rather than using the outboard. We need to learn to beat upwind anyway. A couple hours later we are finally approaching open ocean. My son comes up from below to inform me the port a potty leaks
. There is a big puddle down below. We reverse course and sail back to get a new boat. There is still enough time to go sail around the bay.
As we return we discuss how a business could maintain there equipment
so poorly. My daughter in law, who is kind of a hothead, wants perks. She works my son up a bit where he's informing me how we should get an upgrade. At this point I point out "we give them $150.00 once every few months. You go in there with a bad attitude and they can decide were just not worth it. When we return you find us a boat and I will go see if <name> is there.
As I'm walking up the dock my son catches up to me and informs me he was sent to insure I was sufficiently stern. I again point out that I don't care about electricity any more I do have lights. Although leaking waste is a problem. We enter the building and I ask for the man who has been helping me. He's off today I'm told. "can I help you?" The gentleman asked.
I gave him the readers digest version of my experience. He goes and confers with another man who comes out to inform me that he doesn't think they can satisfy my needs. "We rent these things every day, usually for half days. Nobody stays out after dark. How about we just give you a refund!"
So here are my questions. First am I expecting to much? I don't need a working cd or anything. Hell i would be afraid to use the battery
. I was shocked that they decided i was more trouble than i was worth when all it takes is charge a battery
the night before i arrive. My inclination is the competitions boats are probably in about the same condition. Is this true?