Head Aches

Reader, let me tell you about July 18th, because aside from the picture above, we have no photographic evidence of that day. We awoke and headed to shore to discuss our head woes with the professionals at Journey’s End Marina.  We wound up buying a crazy expensive gallon of magic goo the service manager swore broke up all kinds of calcification in plumbing lines, and a few odds and ends to help us bust through whatever clogs were apparently plaguing us.   We were determined to get to the bottom of this for both heads, as we were totally over this ongoing battle!  

I snapped the photo above as we were leaving the dock and heading back past the local Coast Guard station.  It was still a foggy soup out there that morning, as you can see. 

Then we spent hours (and I mean hours) working on the forward head to get it unclogged.  This involved me in the head pumping water, Patrick in the anchor locker auguring plumbing hoses, and a lot of very unsavory rinsing of the tank by both of us via bucket exchanges.  Trust me, you don’t want photos.   Finally we thought we might have gotten to the end of it all and we rinsed and rinsed before putting the crazy expensive magic goo in the bowl and lines to sit overnight. 

The aft head was also recalcitrant; we augured more of the riser in the tank that Patrick had worked on earlier in the month when it clogged the first time.  Once that seemed like it was as good as it would get, we decided we might as well pull off the main hose and make sure that wasn’t clogged up with calcification, just to be sure, and what do you know,  it was totally blocked.  So Patrick replaced that hose…but the pump was weirdly building back pressure.  So then we decided it had to be the joker valve (which closes off back flow when you flush the toilet out) — there’s practically nothing else left it could be!   But we had already used our last spare joker valve, so we would have to go back to Hamilton Marine for another one.   Fine.  We crossed our fingers and toes that this would solve it once and for all.   Magic goo went in, and everyone’s peeing in a bucket until tomorrow. 

After all of that, we couldn’t face cooking dinner on the boat, so we headed to shore for drinks and dinner at Archer’s on the Pier.  Lobster grilled cheese hit the spot. 

The next morning we headed to shore, and I brought all our laundry.  Safe Harbor Rockland has a really nice facility with great bathrooms and showers, and free laundry in big brand new LG machines.  Detergent, dryer sheets, the works.  It was perfect! I brought my computer and worked on blog posts while the laundry was going.  Cecelia and Patrick walked to town and brought back food truck breakfast waffles, which we enjoyed on the dock. 

We borrowed a courtesy car from the marina after our laundry was done, and headed to Walmart for some additional head-clearing chemicals and a few groceries.  We also stopped at another food truck near by – The Zack Shack – and had delicious burgers and onion rings.  Highly recommend!  

On our way back we looked for a place that could fill our propane containers, and we found MaineOxy.  Patrick got to chatting with the owner about his awesome classic Ford truck outside.  The owner filled our tiny propane tanks up, and even brought them over to put them in our trunk—and then he wouldn’t take our money!  What a nice surprise.  We headed back to Hamilton Marine for the umpteenth time, this time for a joker valve.   Then it was back to the marina and back to the boat with all our clean laundry and purchases.

Moment of truth – what’s that joker valve look like?  Well it’s definitely not supposed to look like the one on the bottom we just pulled out of the pump: 

No wonder there was back pressure! Popped a new one in and miracle of miracles, it worked.  More magic goo and more prayers for continued success.

A few other projects got done too, like reattaching the spare anchor holder and scuba tank holder that Patrick made for our anchor locker. 

Cecelia helped us test out our new rangefinder after dinner, and we were glad to see a beautiful sunset and a gorgeous moonrise after this very, very tiring day. 

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