January 7, 2009: Update from Sharon, on Lucky

Ah, we finally went into the water yesterday, after four weeks of work for Richard, and three for me. It feels really nice.

I had planned to drive south with Richard on December 6, but a few days before that, Virginia asked me to stay overnight with her. She was feeling rotten and Sandy and I thought she had the flu. When she vomited a little blood, and I couldn’t find her pulse, I took her to our little nearby hospital, just to make sure everything was okay, even though Sandy and I both thought I just wasn’t a very good nurse.

But the triage nurse, Lucie, who had almost talked me into not bringing Virginia in when I called to ask, had her in a bed in a few minutes, and Lucie and the on-call doctor were hooking her up to intervenus liquids in both arms. Virginia vomited a couple of kidney bowls full of thick black blood the consistency of chocolate pudding.  I said I had almost not brought Virginia in. The doctor said that, if I hadn’t, she would have died by morning. Sandy came at three a.m. and Bill and Connie later that morning. Ten days later, after Bin had stays in two London hospitals, 12 units of blood, three scopes, and everyday bedside company from many of her relatives, Sandy and I brought Virginia back home. She has always had stomach problems, and is now being monitored fairly closely by a team of gastric specialists to make sure she has no more stomach bleeding.

I flew south from Michigan to West Palm Beach a week after Richard and Rick (Richard’s son) had left, and missed the initial mess of the boat being opened and unpacked. When Rick went home, the bottom was ground down to the fibreglas, new matting and resin covered it, and it had two coats of interprotect. Rick worked all day everyday to do this, taking painkillers so he could keep going. Richard and I helped where we could, and I cleaned and unpacked. Richard and Rick installed the new electric windlass and the new chartplotter/depthsounder.

Most nights we fell into bed exhausted, but there was a potluck on the nice new patio here at Indiantown Marina for Christmas, and another on New Year’s Eve, and most Saturday nights.

Some nights we are too tired to cook. Then we go to a nice little Italian restaurant in town.

At these events we get to compare notes on the work everyone is doing, and where we have been and hope to go. The people on two of the boats have been living in the boatyard and working on their boats since last spring! I’ve been here since Dec. 13, and that is more than enough time in a boatyard for me.

Among other things, we have put three more coats of Interprotect and two coat of antifouling paint on the bottom. I sanded and Richard painted the deck and cockpit. And we did a whole bunch of other stuff. But it’s boring reading about it, so I’ll skip it.

The boat is nice and comfortable and clean. But Richard has been pushing himself and is exhausted and his chest is hurting. I suspect most quadruple bypass patients go at their recovery a little more slowly.

I tried to get the rest of the stuff done the last two days myself, because I was tired of climbing up and down the ladder and peeing in the plastic bucket with the painfully sharp edges in the middle of  the night. And I’ve only had time for two Scrabble games. But Richard kept working too, and still hurts. Right now he is at his friend Richard’s, getting his hair cut. We are trying to slow down a little. And it’s warm, and there is no snow.

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