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Cape Town Report 2

Tuesday 24th May

"This is Africa" .... or TIA...!!    Translates rather like "Manana" or "This is the Caribbean"... or "This is S. America" !!  In other words, don't expect too much to happen too quickly.... or too soon.... despite any promises or 'appointments' ....   grrr!!!

No sails removed for estimates for repairs - neither yesterday nor today (nothing heard either) ..... ditto no sign of steelwork I would like done being thought about, let alone started (I know it'll happen eventually, but that's little consolation right now!)....  Nothing achieved yesterday or today on outstanding electrical work, although lots of emails and discussion.... and nothing further today on aligning of alternator (although at least engine and genset were checked over and oil changes etc done last week, in addition to gearshift mechanism being replaced - It was totally corroded and actually broken so no wonder I had problems when I was trying to dock on arrival here!) .... So I'm feeling just a bit frustrated with lack of progress..... especially having felt on Friday that finally the ball was rolling...
Definitely having to relax positively, so as not to get stressed out waiting around for people not to show ....   And getting other work and/or estimates organized is also proving difficult......  Knowing the TIA syndrome here, I knew better than to fix a time when I could think about leaving....  "How long is a piece of string??" is my usual response to the question!   So I'm trying to get on with what I can do in the meantime .... and, apart from getting on with boat cleaning and tidying, that includes the pleasant but lengthy task of replying to lots of emails full of good wishes  - and trying to raise funds for charity, now that I've finally completed a solo RTW.  That's taken a lot of effort and time.

What else...?   Plenty of relaxing and chatting to friendly people here in the evenings...  good music last Friday....  All very nice but I'm tied to the boat and not getting out much although I was taken out by friends on Saturday - nice to drive out of Cape Town and see the rugged peaks of the Stellenbosch mountains in the distance.

  View down to Cape Town from near top of Table Mountain (taken February last year, on steep climb up Platteklip Gorge) 

Wed 25th May

Feeling much better!   Genoa returned repaired and stays'l taken for repair from flogging caused by knockdown and mains'l to be removed for repair tomorrow first thing...    Radio replaced and iPod connection now good.    Fridge looked at and 'expert' coming by on Friday to deal with it (compressor or pump seem to be the problem areas)....   Autopilot drive unit removed for testing/checking/servicing... temp sensor in depth transducer seems to be definitely faulty.....  Need to improve rigidity of rudder reference unit support... too flexible at present.   Trying to organize replacement under warranty of tricolour and anchor lights at mast top - neither are working.

Alastair (who I met on Saturday with his family, while with friends Melvin & Shama) spent a lot of time this afternoon and early evening, looking over PC problems and software and advising on changing items to give less power consumption and more reliable system.   Confirmed old PC and  separate screen were totally 'toasted' by saltwater but sorted out independent GPS 'dongle' to PC which I'm using now - so that's working to give back-up position, course and speed input...finally!  Ordered new 12V PC charger, digital thermostat for fridge, trying to sort out new stand-alone LED replacement screen & also TV software for PC to replace TV function of damaged screen.   Just as he was leaving, he asked if I'd like to help him bringing his boat around here from Hout Bay tomorrow - sounded like a good idea so that's possibly happening tomorrow, if weather is OK.

Alternator alignment .... Philip and Welcome of Southern Marine came by - seems only solution to alternator alignment problem is to replace present pulley with new aluminium one to resolve problem of misalignment .... replacement motor clearly very slightly different from old one replaced last year, hence the problem.

Being now evening, I relaxed and had a meal with the usual friendly Wed evening crowd in the clubhouse - no racing tonight, but people still come by to chat and get together.   Hoping to join a small group on a possible walk up the Lion's Head mountain  this coming Sunday morning - if weather OK.

The only other cruiser here beside myself, Ron on 'Reckless' (a Nic 32), is finally trying to get ready to leave after many months here....He'll be making for St Helena and then on to Brazil, which is possibly the route I'll be taking from here once all my work is finished, but he's finding it difficult to leave after being here for so long...!

Written by : Mike

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