Swedish midsummer and doubts

For the celebration of the Swedish midsummer´s eve and midsummer´s day we had decided to take La Vie for a sail up to Väddö and my (Ulrikas) sister and family.

The sail was very slow since there was little or no wind and we had to motor almost the entire way. We tried sailing a few times – just because – but 1,5-2 knots is way too slow, and no fun at all. The motor lets us go around 5 knots or just above, so that´s not very fast either…

When we finally arrived the midsummer lunch was already over and all the people had gone home to prepare for the evening BBQ.

We were going to be anchored in the middle of a tiny bay, the depth meter showed about 2-2,5 meters and we threw in our anchor. Since we knew it was pretty muddy there we backed up a little bit to let the anchor sink in and set.
Then suddenly we heard kind of a thump sound and looked at each other, “I think we just lost our anchor”, Joel said. No way!

I just felt like turning around and going home instantly, but Joel started looking for a second anchor. I didn´t actually know we had one so I guess that made up for my initial reaction. We did find a second anchor and we used it, but chose to use the stern anchor line that we moved to the bow. The bow anchor line was a little thinner and when we think about it had probably been worn by age, weather and wind, but it was unexpected to us that it would break.

Then it was time to go ashore, using our new dinghy for the first time. We haven´t gotten to buying a motor so it´s manpower only! It felt a little unsteady at first, especially with trying to fit the dogs and some bags in and making everyone sit still.

The evening was very cosy, nice people, food and then some beer and cards. We made plans for the next day – to go diving for our lost anchor!

At night, or early morning, the wind started coming in. I woke up by the sound of our anchor line kind of squeaking as it moved a little on the cleat (?). I couldn´t sleep as I was convinced it would break, or the anchor would let go, or the cleat would break off and we would have to rush up starting the engine before crashing into the shore. Nothing happened off course and I fell back asleep when the wind abated.

After breakfast we spent a couple of hours actually free diving for our anchor, but as the visibility is about 10 cm and we couldn´t know exactly where we lost it our efforts were pretty lost. We also rowed the dinghy back and forth across the area with a long rake but still, nothing… and we gave up.

Some family and friends came aboard and visited the boat, the weather was great so we got a chance to kick back and relax on the deck for a while.

But then we made an unpleasant discovery… our toilet tank content had somehow emptied back into the bowl and then over the edge and onto and under the floor… This has happened twice before, but at those times the content was less and stayed in the bowl. We´re still not sure what the exact problem is and how to fix it properly, but we are hoping it was just some mistake made while operating the flushing function.

On our way back home, again we had no wind and had to motor. Since it was sunny and really warm it felt great anyway, but when about halfway we had 6-10 knots head-wind we tried to cruise for a while. We didn´t move very fast so we had time to check everything properly. So then we discovered a chafe on the headsail, we have a furling sail and the “roll” is below deck, so a “connection” between the furler and the sail has been almost completely chafed through by the edge of the deck. It´s really badly fitted and we didn´t realise until now exactly how bad it was.

We also concluded that our fuel level meter is not working at all, unless we have a magic engine that´s not consuming any fuel…

The days leading up to our little midsummer trip has been really rainy and other discoveries have been made. Leakage from a screw in the teak floor of the cockpit had dripped onto the cushions of the stern/aft cabin, so in Joels search for the origin he removed the inner roof – revealing a HUGE moisture damage!

Water is leaking from the mast foot running under/inside the roofing and along the wall, we need to find and fix the exact leak and then probably remove and change the roof lining, just hoping the damages are not huge under there too…

The sun-powered fan we bought for our front cabin is not working properly, so we removed it and have to change it for a new one. So at the moment there´s a very big hole in the roof, just covered with a bucket for now.

In conclusion – the list of improvements just got longer and we started doubting. So much more needs to be done before we can set sail for the horizon. Our means to fix the boat are running low and time is running out…