Almost lost our mooring ball!

By Mike Jastrzebski


Not as in the dangerous, we could have lost our boat way, but more like a I should have thought things out and planned accordingly way.

As of today we have been in St. Augustine for a full month. I have been working on the rewrite of Stranded Naked Blues, and Mary is working part time in town. We’ve been paying for our mooring ball monthly and I planned to go down to the office when I took Mary to work. As an afterthought, I called the marina to let them know that we were going to stay another month. That’s when they informed me that I had to be off our ball by eleven since I was set up to leave today and they had reservations for all of the mooring balls. They would have one available tomorrow but we would have to move to an anchorage or a slip for the night.

The biggest problem with this scenario was that Mary had to go to work and I would have to move the boat myself. Not a real big problem except that when I went to start the engine a few days ago it wouldn’t start.

I did’t see this as a big problem, the engine turned over fine, it just didn’t seem to be getting fuel. I figure I probaly need to change the fuel filter and I planned on doing that this week when Mary was home. I didn’t want to give up my writing time to work on the boat.

Fortunately, as I dug out my work light and prepared to change the fuel filter, the phone rang. It was the marina informing me that one of the boats that had a reservation for a mooring ball had just called and changed their reservation to a slip.

I breathed a hugh sigh of relief, closed the engine compartment, and took Mary in to the dock so she could shower before work. At that time I went to the office to pay our mooring fee and while I was in there another boat called looking for a mooring ball. No doubt about it, I lucked out and I sure as hell am glad I thought to call the office this morning.

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About Mike Jastrzebski

In September of 2003 my wife, Mary, and I moved aboard our 36-foot Sailboat, Roughdraft. It was our intention to take the boat south from Minnesota to warmer climates where I would write a novel. Six years later I have completed 3 mystery novels. I have published the first two books, The Storm Killer and Key Lime Blues as e-books and trade paperbacks. The third book, Dog River Blues will be released in early 2011. It is my intention to use this blog to share what I’ve learned while trying to get published. I will also blog about the trials and tribulations of living on a sailboat. We sailed the boat from Minnesota to Mobile, Alabama where we lived for two years. We also spent three months living in Key West. Currently, the boat is docked in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. In 2011 we plan to take the boat to the Caribbean where we plan to drift until it is no longer fun.
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6 Responses to Almost lost our mooring ball!

  1. Richard Norman says:

    Better get that engine started Mike, you never know when you might have to use it in a hurry.

  2. Ain’t it the truth, Richard.

  3. Barb says:

    That is what I call a CLOSE shave! Glad you did not lose your spot!

  4. You can imagine how happy we are about that.

  5. gerald dowling says:

    Hi Mike, and what other Surprises does Mother Nature have in store for you for Thanksgiving. My non-cranking was not on a buoy, but a slip and we finally gave up and called the mariana’s recommended man. He came over with a can of WD Forty or Fifty sprayed it into the breather since I didn’t have a carburetor and the darn think cranked on the next try. To this day I do not know how he did that or why it happened, I just know after that I carried two cans of WD-40 mounted in the engine room. Happy Thanksgiving to all and If you are still there Easter I’d like to take you guys to breakfast.

  6. It’s always something, Gerald, isn’t it? Love to see you at Easter assuming you’re here and we’re still here.

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