Day 7, Year 5: A River Runs Through It
Date: Monday, November 2, 2009
Weather: Still Hot and Sunny
Location: Rebak Marina, Pulau Rebak, Langkawi, Malaysia

Things went a little pear-shaped today. Everything had gone so smoothly since our return that I suppose it was time for a little challenge, and so it was. The story began yesterday when we tried to open the valve to let water into the forward toilet. We’ve never had a problem with it before, but this time when Mark turned the valve we got no water. It appeared that the handle delaminated where it is connected to the valve. The only solution was to do as we did with the forward head valve and replace it. Since Mark was so successful with the first replacement while in the water, he thought he’d try it again. But this time it didn’t work. In order to remove the old valve he turned it once, twice, and then the third time he could feel the whole through-hull turning and we had a nice little river of water flowing into the bilge from the front of the boat to the back. In the engine room, it sounded like river was flowing but thankfully we have two bilge pumps and both were working nicely. One pumps 2,000 gallons of water an hour, so no worries about sinking. But then the hard work began. Mark got out the dive gear and went down to try and see what he could do to hold the through-hull in place while someone else would turn the valve to remove it. He came up with a plan and just about that time our friends Donna and Gerry of Scot Free II arrived in the Rebak Marina. Mark went over to help them dock and then they came to help us with our little dilemma. Gerry worked in the boat and Mark tried every tool imaginable to keep the through-hull from turning with no luck. He finally gave up and wrapped a piece of twine around the base of the valve where the river of water was flowing in. This stemmed the flow to that of a small stream so all should be fine overnight. At the end of the day, we made the decision to have the boat lifted out of the water tomorrow to do the job. We are doing what they call a Splash and Dash where they lift us out of the water and leave us in the slings during the lunch break. This costs less than being taken out of the water and put in a cradle for a few days. When lunch break is over, we go back into the water. So hopefully we can get the old valve removed and the new one in place in that amount of time. We’ll also try to get the bottom power washed to remove the lovely green growth covering the bottom paint and we’ll clean off the prop. Getting hauled out is expensive, but we have no choice this time. Let’s just hope things go smoothly and we get the job done. We’ll let you know tomorrow how things go.