We are as prepared as we can be for winter. With the ongoing drought we can’t proceed with firewood accumulations or tidy the property with burn piles but everything else is pretty much done.
We have cleaned the chimney and the wood stove, upgraded the septic system, cleaned out debris from the eavestroughs, and stocked the freezer and pantry. Some of our family were here for Thanksgiving and stacked tons of firewood under the cover at the front door for easy access. All of the spring bulbs are planted and shrubs have been repositioned in the garden. There are very few urgent chores left to do and it was a beautiful day on the water, so we thought we would take a bit of time this morning to go out on the boat and drop the prawn traps.
Now, I should mention at this point that we rarely attempt prawning anymore because something always goes wrong. Past disappointments include stolen traps, traps lost to tug boats, traps which opened prematurely releasing the catch and any number of other mishaps which long ago convinced us to give up our nets and buy our shellfish at the store. But, as the optimist in me might say, hope springs eternal.
At 8:48 am we dropped the traps and I took this lovely photo to memorize a really pretty moment on the water.
Then the engine on the boat died. I had forgotten my phone and E had only enough power on his to get a quick call for help out to our friend Kathy. She brought out 7 gallons of gas but it wasn’t enough to get us going so she was then kind enough to tow us back to the marina. She is a good friend to have.
Our gas gauge isn’t working but we have lived here long enough not to run out of gas. Seemed unlikely that it was as simple as running out of gas but once safely tied up to the dock E put a few more jugs in and took the cover off the engine to try to figure it out. We have also lived here long enough to know not to go out on the water without charged phones but…
Another friend came down to the dock to help us out. Brad, I have mentioned in four previous blog posts when he has helped us with mechanical problems. He is another good friend to have. This island, thankfully, is full of them.
They put fresh gas into the water separator and fresh gas into the onboard fuel filter. After five hours of further tinkering and 75 more litres of gas, the boat was working well enough to retrieve the prawn traps. We finally had some success on that front as we were rewarded with 130 prawns.
Ok, so what did we learn living off the grid today? Always carry extra gas, always have your charged phone with you and, if you are going to insist on living on a remote island, find your self some friends who will literally stand on their head over water
to help you