Since we are wintering over in Oriental, we decided to watch the “Dragon Run” to bring in the “Year of the Dog”. I am sorry to say that we didn’t go out to see the “Croaker” drop. (Instead of the “Ball drop” they do a “Croaker” drop to celebrate the New Year.)
These drummers provided the background beat for everyone who brought pots and pans as noise makers. According to Chinese legends the dragon comes to the village in mid-winter to eat the children but loud noise can scare him off; so lots of people brought pots and noise makers to scare the dragon off.
The Oriental tradition of touching the Dragon brings luck in the new year.
Some of crowd came dragon prepared.
Lo and behold there was a second dragon last night. This one looked like a young dragon that snaked thru the crowd looking for young children to eat.
He was moving around so quickly; it was hard to take a good picture.
At midnight the Croaker will drop as Oriental ushers in the new year.
Of course, no sight-seeing trip is complete without a selfie. It was a cold night but full of laughter and good wishes by all.
Some years when we start on our trip south we have “issues” with our boat… sometimes large and sometimes small. This year was no exception, the issues were more of the medium to large range this year rather than being smaller. This season started off with Rich having to clean off the prop in 48 degree water! He was NOT a happy camper.
He has on vest with hood, a shorty and his full body suit hoping to stay warm or least not freeze to death. The only thing he is missing are diving gloves.
At least he had the hookah, making it easier to get the job done.
The next “issue” was the autopilot wouldn’t hold a course in rough conditions. Good thing we weren’t in ocean doing overnight sailing.
Then our heater started working only when it wanted to. It was a very good thing that Rich brought the new electric blanket with us so that even without the heater we were able to pre-warm the bed at night before getting into it.
Oh and of course the hot water heater (that had stopped working last summer). So when we arrived at Deaton’s, the first thing we did was order a new water heater.
The water heater was heavy and in a spot where it just fit in the engine compartment making it difficult to remove.
The new hot water heater was a different size than the old one (of course) so Rich had to weld up a new frame to set the new heater on. The new heater was much lighter and smaller to handle so it went in far easier than the old on came out. I am glad to report that it works great. The energy requirement is less and the engine water heater loop is far more efficient than the old one so the water heats up much faster when we are motoring.
We returned to the Goose last Thursday; boy is it cold! Rich’s first job was to clean the fouled prop. The water was about 48 degrees and the captain was not happy to go swimming.
Dressed for the challenge, Rich heads to the water. He really could use some diving gloves. He was happy to report that the hookah worked great.
After only one day of sailing the starter failed to work and Rich had to replace it with our spare. We also discovered that the heater system won’t stay running; it has to be restarted almost every time. Oh well, it’s a boat and something has to be broken or life just wouldn’t be right.