June 29, 2008

Another decision point

Graham arrived on Friday night. He brought with him some bad news. Unfortunately, the extent of the dry rot inside the boat was worse than we thought. The wood beam directly below the mast, inside the cabin has quite a large crack. From an initial inspection it seems that the dry rot on the coach roof around the mast continues on down below. The wood worker at St. Davids had a look but wanted the tanks taken out and the bathroom disassembled so that he could get a good look at the mast step before he gave us an estimate.

While we were in Grenada it rained and rained, we found all of the leaks and they were extensive. We ended up having to lay a tarp across the coach roof at night, to avoid running about with bowls and towels. We realized that we had to have the entire roof redone and of course we knew early on that the cockpit had to be completely redone (remember Graham put his finger through part of the cockpit on day 2).

So Graham asked for estimates on these things:
  • Coach roof: Strip, replace rotted plywood, replace hatches, fiberglass and trim in teak to tie into the decks, move main traveller forward on coach roof, out of the way of the companionway and also to allow for a Bimini to be made to keep us shaded during sailing
  • Mast partner components and mast step if necessary: Reinforce and replace rotted or worn wood
  • Cockpit: Replace all sides
  • Bimini: Graham and the sail maker designed a shade cover that we could have up while we are sailing to keep us all shaded. Absolute necessity
  • Missen Sail: Our missen sail won't unfurl since it is to old and misshaped

The yard manager threw out end of December as a estimated completion time!!! Yup, here sets in the major disappointment. Graham came home totally defeated. He felt terrible. You can imagine that if the time for completion estimate is December, the money for the reno's is BIG. So now we are left with another decision point. The good news is we always have options. We are never stuck. It is just time to revise the plan and maybe we will come up with an even better plan than original. Love to hear you thoughts on the options....or maybe there is even an option that we hadn't thought of.....let us know.....if anyone is still reading.

  • OPTION ONE: Fly to Grenada in September and visit boat yard regularly and supervise work. Pros: we are close by Cons: It will be brutally hot, yard is way out of the way, with no beaches, grocery stores, etc, we would need to rent apartment, costs go up, taxis back and forth
  • OPTION TWO: Buy a new boat and continue the work on the old boat and sell once complete: Pros: we might have a new good boat Cons: seems everyone we talk to says that they had renos when they bought their boats, to make their boat passage ready, we would also need to carry the costs of two boats, until the old boat sold, we like our boat (aside from the rot)
  • OPTION THREE: Stay in Canada til the end of January, put the kids back in school and find work: Pros: we could make some more money to pay for reno's Cons: we don't have a place to live or any furniture, we would need to find short term work, we would be disrupting the school year again, I am ready for life changing ADVENTURE not 9-5, I want to be back for Alex to start grade 10, so three years starts now, regardless what is thrown at us.
  • OPTION FOUR: Sail on Dad and Cheryl's boat while ours is being fixed: Pros: we still gain the sailing experience to allow for our March departure across the Pacific, we get to see some amazing places and spend time with Grampa Griff and Nana Cheryl Cons: we won't be making any money to pay for the boat reno's so we will need to carry those costs for the duration of the trip, it may be difficult to sail together(?), the boat might we a little tight
  • OPTION FIVE: Move to the family farm in Tantallion and homeschool the kids: Pros: Graham has always wanted to live on the farm and no one is living there right now, it would be life changing, it wouldn't cost much to live Cons: still no income, unless Graham or I get a job at the nearby mine(?), a bit isolate (ain't no Toronto)

Ok, folks.....what do you think....lets here it.


  1. Hi - well, our comments - our first thought is a combination of sailing with us and checking on your boat periodically. We can adjust our sailing whereabouts so we are never too far (by air initially and maybe later by sea) from Grenada. If there is concern about tight spaces or sailing together too long the combination could include i.e. 2 weeks sailing, one week checking Artemo - and that could be family checking, Graham checking, Graham and Julie checking etc etc. This is also the best way to make sure the work is progressing at the best possible pace (and not GMT - Grenada Maybe Time!) This option is of course a little selfish of Cheryl and I (we want you here) but I think it would also allow you to still consider the possibility of Panama in March. It will introduce you to more of the joys and "unjoys" of sailing and help in the decision-making as to whether you want to head West from Panama when the time comes.
    Other options - I don't think you (Julie) would be happy working until January and likely neither would Graham (or the kids!!)It would be unsettling knowing how short term it is
    Buying another boat - there is NO DOUBT that you would be buying new problems to be fixed. I have not spoken to anyone who, when they bought a boat, did not have sometimes major things to do to it - and that included expensive boats like the Island Packet (2 years old and replace motor mounts) Selling your boat knowing of the problems would probably result in a greatly decreased selling price - and you like the boat!!
    Finally, going to the farm - probably the next choice we would make after the one we suggested earlier. Problem - not being in a position to check on work progress except by internet can be frustrating and has been known to cost people more money and time
    Hope this helps

  2. Hi everyone!

    Hope you are all feeling okay, so sorry to hear about all the repairs needed but then we want you to keep safe on your adventure.this is really not an easy decision to make and we are a long way away but having read your options and the message from your dad I think I agree with his choices, the only big thing of course is finding the money to pay for the work. Like you said this is your 3 year adventure from now and you want to be back for Alex's year 10 so going back to work and school for a few months would take away a lot of time and you are all ready for a complete change. I wish we could see into the future and know exactly whats right for you. Let us know what you decide, take care

    Love Helen, Mark, Charlie & Ollie x

  3. I'd love you see you living in nowhere-ville Saskatchewan, homeschooling your kids and baking pies in your kitchen. LOL what a picture. Life changing move for sure :)

    Or how about Griff's choice. Makes the most sense I think. Couldn't you do some work part time over the net?

  4. You do still have the house in Lacombe too. I bet mom would be happy if you moved back for a bit. Your old job might have an opening.....

  5. we love our house in Lacombe but we also love the renters we have. They are really good. So won't work. Mom is going to have to get over her fear of the ocean and VISIT us on the boat!!! Oh and fyi...I can bake pie :-), Judith taught me. Mark and Helen, we love hearing from you, love it. I am liking Dads advice so far too but I gotta do the math and we have our trip across Canada to discuss.

  6. Hey Julie you certainly have a problem on your hands. I always say though that things happen for a reason. I read all your options and before reading the other comments I thought option 4 and 5 were your best bet. The reason I picked option 4 (sailing with Griff and Cheryl) was because I think for one it is safer sailing together. You are still doing what you set out to do in the first place. Actually I think it would make you a lot happier then option 5 now that I read its a farm in Saskatchewan. Although making pies in the kitchen and home schooling the kids does sound safer to me. Hahaha! Good luck with this hard decision. Have a great trip out west. Trese


    This maybe is out there, but I'm going to suggest option 1 with some modifications.

    First of all Artemo is your boat - I think you've got to stick with her. Part 1 - Move to Grenada - find a place with a highspeed internet connection and Julie start a 6 month contract (and we all know that with your work ethic, you will get it done in 4 and still exceed their expectations). This would finance your apartment - you could do the provisioning, start the homeschooling, intense route planning, etc. And you would be living in Grenada (enough said). Part 2 - You agree to hire the company to do the work on the condition that Graham is signed on as a labourer and they either credit you for his work or hire him for a wage. He could work for free on the weekends to move things faster if you wanted. He'll learn valuable skills in boat repair that could come in handy in the middle of the Pacific. (You'll have to buy a scooter for the commute haha.)

    Staying close to the boat has some real advantages - when they tear off the decking you could see what was exposed. I would recommend documenting the repairs in detail with photos that you could show to a perspective buyer when the time comes, which will increase the value of the boat and allow you to recoup some of the costs.

    Lots to think about, but you are one of the most resourceful families I have ever met and you will make the right choice.

    There is nothing to say that your time with Artemo 'on the hard' won't be one of the highlights of the adventure.

    Inspirationally speaking,
    We had this speaker come in and talk to the branch last week. He lost both legs in an accident, 10 months later, there is a picture of him on top of a mountain that he had just scaled. His motto:

    "It's not WHAT you see is what you get. It's HOW you see is what you get."
    Here is his website:

    Still reading,

  8. Okay, I change my vote.....I like Chris's solution best!

  9. Rebecca, Sam and JulianaJuly 2, 2008 at 5:59 PM

    Hey guys! Hope your cross-canada trip is going well! we look forward to seeing you when you make it back this way again!

    As for all the options, though we are not experts at all, Chris' solution does look the best, at least on paper.
    However, if it does come down to living in toronto again (which i would love), sam and i know of a couple of short-term rentals, one is available in august, and is one street over from bessbourough school, and on the bus line. (though, most things are on a bus line in t.o.!) Let us know, we would be more than happy to help you with whatever you need.
    still praying for you,
    Sam, Rebecca and Juliana

  10. Yes, live on the farm in Saskatchewan, film it, and sell the rights to fox. Just like Paris and Nicole!! Great Idea.

  11. I have to say that I agree with Chris. He has an excellent solution and one that would be win-win for all. Although I would also love the solution you didn't put up.

    Kick out the renters---live in Lacombe, work for AFSC again
    visit your boat periodically to check on the progress
    Visit your mom every day


  12. hey all, We are still at the farm in Saskatchewan, baking pies and homeschooling. We just popped into a town with email and cell phone service! Thanks for all the advice through comments and emails. It is nice to have so many points of view. We are definitely leaning towards going down in September and dealing with the cards dealt. Let you all know where we land. I came across one of Chris's comments in an earlier blog and it definitely hit home. Artemo is a member of the crew and shouldn't be left behind. We should be with the ship that we will put our trust in across oceans and fix/heal her. Thanks again all. Julie

  13. Not sure if it is like the Dominican but my lawyer there told me that I can have two types of jobs, a great job where I supervise, and an ok job otherwise. I think it is great that you are leaning towards the boat, and I am sorry to hear about the delays.

  14. Hello Julie and the rest of the Perry Crew!

    We have finally found some time away from our crazy city life to sit down and catch up with your blog(s) and pictures. We could not believe your bad luck with the boat repairs. What have you decided to do? (I could not find an update on your blog).

    Even though you cannot continue the boat trip in the following months, your descriptions of the BC, AB and SK adventures sound very exciting.

    Of course, let us know if we can help in any way so you can achieve your sailing goals.

    I am looking forward to the next blogs by Alex and Amelia; they are such great writers.

    Big hugs,
    Anna and Paul (of 199 Bayview Heights Dr ;=)