Day 140, Year 4: Making Good Progress
Date: Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Weather: Beautiful Day; No Rain; Late Evening Lightening
Location: Boat Lagoon Marina, Phuket Island

Slowly but surely we are making progress. Mark thinks we will have everything back on deck by Saturday which is much faster than we had anticipated. Still I feel like we are moving at a snail’s pace, but the heat simply prohibits moving any faster. Since Mark’s back is still a bit tender, I took on the job of replacing the ceiling panels by myself today. Usually I hold up the pieces and Mark puts in the screws, but reaching over his head is just not a good idea right now. My solo efforts went
slowly, but I have finished the aft cabin and have now moved to the main cabin. Progress is being made. But it is SO very hot down inside the boat that I actually feel cool when I go topsides for a breather. When you feel cool at 90+ degrees, I hate to even think what the temperature is down below. While we are doing this, the crew is down below grinding and sanding away at the mast and boom. They appear to be almost done with that job, so I am just not sure when the three-step painting job
will begin. Because the mast is aluminum, they will first put on an etching primer, then the regular primer, and finally the AwlGrip final coat. We met with Oh this morning to talk about painting the aluminum hatches (something we have added to the job) and about a few details of the boat paint job that we are not totally comfortable with. The overall paint job is fantastic, but there are some rough areas under the varnished cap rail that surrounds the cockpit and on the inside of the cockpit
at the line that joins the cap rail to the painted surface that I am not totally happy with. In their efforts to preserve my varnish job on the caprail, some of the border areas were not sanded down as smoothly as I would have liked. We are still discussing what to do about this. We feel like we are being really picky, but we do want Windbird to be perfect!

Mid-day we took a break and hopped in Ley and Neil’s rental car to do some boat and food shopping. It is a gift to have a free car, so we wanted to make the best use of it.
Mark is working on his computer while I write this log on my computer and he just let me know that last night’s log was post number 1,000 on the website. That’s a lot of logs, but I just can’t imagine not writing a daily record of our voyage. We are going to be back in the US for almost eight months when we fly home in April and I’m thinking about writing a weekly missive while home just to keep myself in the groove. But the real sailing logs will end on April 16 and not begin again until the
1st of December. Then we’ll begin the really long Year 4-5 journey across the Indian Ocean. We have been getting emails from Eric and Robyn on Scorpido who left Langkawi last week headed for the southern Maldives. Their emails are very funny and today’s was the best. They have had almost no wind so they are floating about on a fairy tale “lake” with a full moon guiding them. It is about 1800 miles from here to the Maldives and there are no fuel stops on the way unless you elect to go north to
Sri Lanka and then back south to the Maldives. Most boats can only motor about 1000 miles, so therefore if there is no wind you simply float and hope for wind.