Monday, August 22, 2016

Well, this is fun!

Grace woke to a strong smell of diesel inside the boat. I got up fast, lifted the deck board, and looked down into the engine compartment.

Remember yesterday? I ask, "Will the diesel and the oil continue to seep into the engine?"

Sam answers, "No, not without the engine running."

I'm now looking at the result of the diesel and oil having continued to flow, and to fill the engine to overflowing. Sam hadn't closed the fuel stopcock. I closed it and swore. Only mildly, you understand.

I phone RCR and updated them, and cursed - only mildly, you understand - the rain that had started, and which is forecast for the whole day. RCR will pass on the information to Ian, the man who'll be fixing our boat. He'll be with us later, they say.

1:45pm No Ian. I phone RCR to chivvy them up.

"I'll check with Ian, and phone you back."

2:30pm I'm still waiting for them to call back.

2:45pm I call back. The pump has not been delivered as promised. Ian's working in an area with bad phone signal, and can't be contacted. I repeat my 8:00am update about the bilge flood. She seems to know nothing about that.

"Surely it's on your system?? You do HAVE a system, don't you?"

"I'll speak with Ian as soon as I can, and get back to you."

4:15pm No callback.

5:00pm The rain stops. the sun comes out, and boats and people are steaming as they pass. I'm steaming, too, but not because I got wet. People brighten up along with the weather, their customary greetings now more animated and genuine. Our solar panels begin to push some real power into Kantara's batteries, and eventually, the sun seems to do the same to me, too.

7:00pm OK, this is getting ridiculous. I know from experience that RCR engineers are excellent, but I'm seriously beginning to doubt the capability of their office staff. Time was that "I'll get back to you" meant that I'd hear from whoever it was, one way or the other. I'd know what was going on, where I stood, what I might expect to happen next. As it is, we're left feeling that no-one actually cares that we're very low on battery power, with weather forecast that's not going to replenish it, we can't use the engine to do it, and we're going to need water soon, and we can't drive the boat to a tap. And I'd have to carry a full cassette over a mile to the nearest Elsan point.

I'll be on the phone to them again first thing tomorrow, with my best teacher's-not-pleased voice.

So tonight, it'll be Scrabble by the light of one LED lamp, in order to conserve energy for essentials like the fridge and the water pump.


  1. Having just renewed our RCR membership today, reading you report of a lack of action does not instil me with confidence it was money well spent. Hope you get your problem sorted soon.

  2. They do need to get their communications sorted out, certainly. The hands-on, practical side of the company is first-class in our opinion.