14. Some Rough Days

This is the third time I’ve typed this entry over the course of the last couple of days. I keep thinking, naa, just cool down Dave, and then I delete it. Well, the time has come. I need to vent.

I have not been enjoying the last several days of this adventure. I spent most of my time in Atlantic City just trying, and failing, to do simple chores. I knew everything was going to take a little longer and more effort living aboard, but actually living it has been really frustrating. It took me all morning to get my laundry started, after wandering around an enormous marina, trying to find someone who worked there to give me the code, then wandering around a casino trying to find change to make the broken machines work. Getting groceries and making a failed attempt at picking some things up at the hardware store got me to sunset, and by the time I’d eaten something and cleaned a few things, I was spent for the day.

That night, woke up at 0330 to a funny sound and a very cold boat. The funny sound and cold air were both coming from my furnace. I was out of propane. No worries, I had a second tank that I’d just filled up a few days before. When I went to hook it up, I found that it had emptied itself. I suspect a faulty tank valve, because when I tried to work the valve, it felt wonky, and I couldn’t tell if it was open or closed. So I went back to bed with extra blankets. It got down to 27 that night.

The next morning, I spent a couple of hours taking my empty propane tanks for a ride into town, and meeting new and interesting uber drivers.

Once I finally got underway, I found good, calm, sunny weather for my passage to Cape May. The seas were oily smooth, and I made good time. I wished I could carry on with the good weather, but there wasn’t really any obvious destination I could reach before nightfall, aside from Cape May. I dropped the hook at around 1500.

I had a long list of things I should be trying to fix, but wasn’t interested, and was really tired of troubleshooting and thinking about boat stuff. I feel like I’ve been spending a lot of my time trying to figure out why any number of devices is beeping at me, or not working like I think they should, and it’s really grating on my nerves.

I went to bed early.

The next morning, I checked the forecast and decided to make a run across Delaware bay. The forecasts I’d seen were calling for 1-2 footers. I did not find 1-2 footers. I found steep 4 and 5 footers. I tried for a while to see if I could find a comfortable course and failed. I got my ass handed to me. When the coffee grinder destroyed itself in an epic explosion of beans, I bravely turned tail and headed back to anchorage.

I spent the rest of the day trying to figure out why my propane system won’t stop beeping at me. I could not. I also tried to figure out why my tank tender isn’t accurate. I could not. It was another frustrating day, and I found myself questioning my life choices.

I also found myself wondering why my house batteries are discharging so quickly. I then found myself wondering why my generator isn’t charging the batteries. Now that I’m in a marina, I’m also wondering why the hell I can’t get any AC power onto the boat. Also, as of about 10 minutes ago, my generator wont run. It starts, then stalls. excellent.

This whole enterprise is starting to feel like a huge mistake. I’m feeling very disappointed, and very lonely.

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