Do you ever remember that saying “The best laid schemes o' mice an' men / Gang aft agley?” taken from a Scottish poem, ‘To a mouse’ by a certain Mr. R. Burns. Well I bloody well do! Project X started off so well, a wooden dinghy, with sails and at a great price (free that was), Clare happy with my excursions to the garage, (lots of brownie points scored including, dare I say, housework and ironing), finding myself in rude health, the sun shone brilliantly from above, the fact that everybody in the whole wide world seemed to love me, and God seemed to pat me on the head saying ‘good boy John’. Oh yes life was good.
Did you happen notice the word ‘was’ carefully hidden within the previous terminal line of the above paragraph? You did? Well I guess you have some foreboding of what’s coming next then. A cautionary word at this point for the next paragraph is not for the squeamish nor those faint of heart.
As I was saying it all started off so well until firstly, about 3 weeks ago, I was struck down with one of those embarrassing conditions which are quite humorous until your good self becomes the victim. Yes I’m talking hemorrhoids' here. Oh you may mock, you may well even titter a wee bit, but I’m here to bear witness that I’d rather suffer from severe toothache or even have a couple of digits removed via a rusty hack saw, than go through the personal hell that hemorrhoids' bless a person with. So began 2 weeks off work sitting on inflatable furniture, unable to do bugger all on Project X, in fact unable to do bugger all point blank that is apart from applying medication and potions to the unmentionable area of my body! Did I also mention that everybody in the world loved me? Ah silly me, just so over confident again, I’m now officially the black sheep of the entire Wooldridge clan due to some issues of not being a best man at my brothers wedding (best man? I didn’t even go) and enlightening my aged parents with some hard, truthful facts about said brother (the golden child that is). Ah well I could go on about this for some considerable time but me mate Rob would just shout at me, call me Mr. Angry and tell me to let it go – cheers Rob, you’re a star.
Anyway on to more pressing and important concerns, Project X. From what seemed a promising beginning project X has taken a slight turn for the worst. After closer inspection I’ve decided to replace both fore and aft topside pieces on both port and starboard sides (tis becoming quite nautical this is...). This being down to the fact that the little lady was stored belly up outside for the previous couple of years. The upshot of this is that water has seeped up the edges of the ply between the gunwhales’ causing to much rot to repair and leave a sturdy support for the rigging and rollocks etc. unfortunately this will mean removing all the horizontal deck pieces to affect a decent repair. Secondly I’ve stripped the multiply layers of paint from the lower using Nitro Morse craftsman gunk (lovely stuff just avoiding splashing it on anything you value!). This has revealed 4 previous repair patches none of which were too healthy, so these are to be redone. At the present time the plan is to construct a couple of supporting frames to support the hull right side up to allow the decking strip down to commence. So that’s where I’m at, work’s going to be delayed for a tad whilst I notch up some more brownie points, cause according to Clare I’ve reached my limit. So it looks like kick boards for the kitchen then……