Marriage exceeded

We have a new winch.  Kinda.  It is really an old winch we had that used a 2hp, 3-phase electrical motor that was too hard to run with the little genset.  Now it is married to a good-sized Honda gasoline motor.  I am very much looking forward to putting this puppy through it’s paces.

I have been using the old weird winch that looks like it was invented in the Dickens era by Gyro Gearloose.  It works but it is slow.  Takes twenty minutes to get a log up the hill. Sal, setting the chokes on the logs at the bottom, would play fetch with the dogs during that time.  I would stand stoically near the old winch keeping the cable laying properly.  Pulling up six logs took hours.

Old Winch

Old Winch

A friend of mine saw the old set-up, “Why are you not using that big winch with the electric motor?”  “Long story.  Mostly about 3-phase power and my small genset.”

“You should have it on a gas engine anyways.  Like a mini-donkey engine, ya know?” 

“Yeah.  But that requires some kind of transmission, clutch and crap and well, I just don’t have the time.  It’s busy out here!”

“I’ll do it.  Get that monster over to my place in town and I’ll do it. Could be fun.” 

New Winch

New Winch

So, I did.  And he did.  And now we have a new-old winch with a gas motor and all we had to do was schlep the 250 pounds of the steel-framed monster in and out of town and now back up to the top of the hill.  We lift such heavy things off Sal’s little Whaler at high tide using the high line. High tide last night was at about 7:30.

Sal turned out a curry at about 6:00 pm.  This after loading a lot of stuff from the other island and a lot of myriad other chores.  Result? Best curry ever.  Indians can’t make it this good.  Then she washed it down with a couple of glasses of wine and we headed off to lift the monster winch up the hill.

I was at the top of the hill setting the pull-line.  The winch was in her boat down at my neighbour’s dock.  She would paddle the boat over from there. One of our other chores that day was schlepping her outboard into the truck to take into town for servicing.  She untied her boat and, in an effort to get a good push-off from the dock, pushed too hard and fell in.

Gawd, I wish I’d seen that.

But she scrambled into the boat from the water quickly and, soaking wet except for her hair, (she is pretty quick when she needs to be), paddled the boat under the highline and we hauled it up within half an hour.  Job well done.  Sal went back and tied up her boat as I monitored the winch.  As the load was nearing the last few feet up the hill, she approached me from the direction of the stairs.  Clothes are sticking to her.  “Fell in!” 

“What? I didn’t see that!”

“Happened over by the dock.  You were doing winch set-up.  But it was OK.  I fall in on average once every year and so I am probably good for this year.  Might have been that second glass of wine.  You know what they say — drinking and boating don’t mix. I’ll go in and have a shower.”

I couldn’t say much.  Laughing too hard.

So, I wrestled and struggled with the monster at the top of the hill for awhile and finally got it in place.  Sal comes out after her shower wearing a cute little Thai housecoat just as the sun is setting to ‘support me’ in my efforts.  She is gorgeous.

Best curry in the world.  Clown-martyr, winch-wrestler and long-line hauler. Beautiful company.  It simply does not get any better.

9 thoughts on “Marriage exceeded

  1. Glad to read you are back home and happy again… It doesn’t get any better does it? I have a question.. Is your only supply of firewood from the beach? We were told not to burn wood from the beach as it would corrode the inside of the chimney.. (we also have a Pacific Energy wood stove) We have lots of trees for firewood we can access on our property, Some, we take down for safety but some come down on their own after a storm… Have fun


    • Yeah, we do. And, yes, it does. Not the chimney pipes so much but definitely the baffle at the top of the stove. It is flaky dust after three years. ‘Why do it, then’? Well, as it turns out, living on a peninsula on an island means that all wood will get to the sea before it gets to us. If we cut anywhere except the few dozen trees around our home, we have to float them to the beach and haul ’em up. So, they are gonna absorb salt no matter what. So, we rationalized buying a new baffle every three years is cheaper than having to fall logs and drag them to a road and then floating them to the site which would only slow the salt’s work. So we take salty dogs from the sea and ‘ruin’ our baffle. At least the log is cut, limbed and usually brought by the currents to our beach (give or take a bit of salvaging now and then). Bottom line: yes, salt eats baffles. After ten years, the stove is fine, tho. Same for the chimney.


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