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Melissa & Dave - Adventures at Sea

Day 1 - Kid Lock Adventure

I awoke early at 6:30am to start blogging.  No we haven’t even left yet, but I had to finish up the electrical systems blog post before I could clear my brain to get ready for trip blogging.  I don’t know why Dave thought that was funny.  Seems totally logical to me.

After that we packed up the last of the gear, and headed to the boat.  About noon my brother, Charly, showed up with his wife Laurie and three kids (Camdyn, Quinn, and Scarlet) in tow along with Scarlet’s best friend.  Figured a trip through the locks for the kids would be an adventure for them.

My nieces and nephew just keep growing!  Note to self – need to spend more time with them!

We anchored in Lake Washington for an hour or so for the kids to go swimming and so I could make lunch – a giant taco bar feast.  Three kinds of meat – chicken with homemade tomatillo sauce, slow cooked pork shoulder with the same sauce, and ground beef with traditional taco seasonings.  Plus all the fixin’s – cheese, homemade salsa, guacamole, refried beans, and corn tortillas.  That and an endless supply of sangria polished off the day.  Last year when we took the kids swimming some were afraid to jump off the boat.  Not so this year.  They were begging to do it!

As we motored towards the locks – we have to get 5 bridges to raise up for us – Scarlett and her friend were fascinated by Dave blowing the air horn to signal the lock master.  Scarlett wanted to try it out for herself.  But she gave herself quite the shock when it came to actually blowing it because its so loud it spooked her.  And that was the end of that fascination.

Upon reaching the locks, Scarlett and her friend wanted to sit on the side with their legs hanging over, but wanted to know “will we fall” and “will there be a splash”.  I guess their idea of the water going out of the locks was much more dramatic than the reality – which is that they didn’t even notice we started to lower down as the water was let out. 

With Dave at the helm, and Dave and I on the lines – the actual locking maneuver was piece-o-cake.  We got put on the wall in the big locks (typical because we are usually one of the largest boats so they load us in first).  But there was another boat that frightened everyone in the locks.  We came across him when we tied up just outside the locks waiting for the green light to go in.  He tied up and came over, glass of rose wine in hand, to ask what the procedure was.  Turned out he had just bought the boat and had the wife and kid along – figuring that a trip through the locks would be a fun way to start boating.  Hmmm.  Maybe not the best way to start out if you don’t yet know how to handle your boat.  Which he didn’t.  He was very humble about it – but he had no idea how to steer and how much power to give.  So he kept hopping around the locks a bit like a frog – at random and with big jerky movements as he punched the throttle.  All the other boats had people on deck with boat hooks to fend him off should he come near them and potentially punch a hole in their side.

While in the locks, Dave remembered that he had left the “long line” in the trunk of his car.  Dang it.  If we go to Princess Louisa, we will need the long line to stern tie to shore in order to anchor there.  A quick call to Jim and Margaret – and they agreed to go grab it before heading over to meet us at Shilshole Marina.  This is “insurance” that will make it so that we can almost certainly find ourselves a mooring ball there and not have to anchor!

After the locks we pulled into Shilshole Marina fuel dock as we needed to fill the tank.  But, when we finished fueling, the main engine wouldn’t start.  Dave fiddled with it, using the battery boost charger from the main house batteries and got it started.  But that made us all wonder about whether the starter battery also needs replacing.  

When Jim and Margaret arrived, we greeted them (and their daughter) with a glass of sangria.  Then Dave went on a spider hunt at sunset.  At the Carillon Point marina, Apsaras has become completely infested with spiders.  Fortunately, only on the outside.  But they are obnoxious and leave droppings everywhere.  They tend to come out at sunset.  So Dave takes the vacuum cleaner around and using a flashlight to be able to see them better, and sucks them and their sticky webs up.  The goal this trip is to vacuum them every evening in hopes of cutting back their numbers dramatically.

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