We arrived as usual on Thursday night, leaving work a little early to beat the traffic. I wasn’t looking forward to the weekend as much as usual because I knew there wouldn’t be much sailing involved; we were committed to installing a new lid for the aft water tank, and removing the fuel tank! But a 3-day weekend in Sausalito on Cool Change is never a chore – it is always fun no matter what we are doing.
We had expected to spend Thursday evening with Rick’s parents, but that fell through at the last minute so we had an unplanned evening all to ourselves. We decided to first have a little sip of wine at the local wine bar. Rick had researched that they carried our favorite Zin – Red and Green. I was looking forward to my first glass of wine in 4 weeks, due to my restrictive diet, so I wanted something good. We had a great time, having not just one but two glasses each – oh dear. Then Rick took me to a new Mexican Restaurant he had discovered – sort of a Mexican Restaurant with an Italian flare – and I had an excellent boillabaise, perfect for my diet. What a lovely first night back in our favorite little town.
The next morning, we started our project. Rick had painstakingly searched for exactly the right materials to shape a new lid for the aft water tank, arranged for it to be cut to his specifications, and then routed the edges himself. He brought along all his tools, a couple of saw horses, as well as stainless steel screws, and food-grade silicone. It took us all day Friday to remove the previous silicone and prepare the surface of the water tank for adhesion. Friday night we had a nice little dinner on the boat and watched a movie on our laptop.
Saturday we spent most of the day again on the water tank lid, filling the previous holes with silicone and doing the final prep. Rick then pre-drilled all the holes all the way around the lid and through the tank rim, beaded the silicone around the top of the tank, and gingerly set the lid down over the tank. He then hand-screwed each of those screws, spaced 4-inches apart, all the way around the lid. Job Accomplished!
I knew that the next day’s project of removing the fuel tank would mean we definitely could not go out on the water again until it was reinstalled, so Rick and I agreed to go out for a short motor late in the afternoon. We longed to restore our souls with the smell of the sea air, the roll of the waves under our boat, and the sight of the expanse of water in the middle of the bay. We had everything we needed for dinner so we decided to spend the night out on a mooring ball at the Sausalito Yacht Club.
But first we motored out towards the Golden Gate Bridge. Just as I was about to turn around to head back to the mooring ball before dark, I realized that if we motored just a little further, we might be able to catch the sunset through the Golden Gate Bridge. We motored a few more minutes, and there she was – another picture-perfect sunset.
The next morning, we tackled removing the fuel tank – what a mess. So, “we” is probably not accurate – I fetched tools and rags and flashlights, but Rick did most of the work. I actually spent most of my time scrubbing the foredeck to remove some seasoned stains and bird droppings while Rick slaved away with diesel fuel. A few dockmates came by to help lift the tank out through the companionway. Once on the dock, they found a pinhole-sized red spot in the bottom of the tank that was the culprit causing red-tinted diesel to ever so slowly leak into our bilge. We are now getting the bottom of the tank replaced by a diesel tank repairman (yes, they exist) and will be putting the tank back in the next time we are down to Sausalito in a week.