On Friday morning, we continued our work on Beatitude. While Cindy did some interior cleaning, I did a little more sanding on the boat-bottom. I also liberally applied Mary Kate On & Off Hull and Bottom Cleaner to the stains all around the waterline and especially over the rust stains beneath several of the vents and drains. Being out of the water is an ideal time to do this kind of thing. On and Off is miraculous (Although it does eat through two layers of nitrile gloves)! I guess the combination of hydrochloric acid, oxalic acid, and phosphoric acid will just about take care of anything.
Around one in the afternoon, we took a repeat drive up the eastern side of Grenada to visit the Belmont Estate in St. Patrick’s, located not far from the River Antione Rum Distillery. It is a fully functional 17th century estate and plantation situated in a lush, tropical setting. Our tour guide, Meshach (I did ask him if his brothers’ names were Shadrach and Abednego. They weren’t.), was friendly and informative. The plantation’s primary product these days is chocolate although a good amount of nutmeg is also produced. At one time, the Belmont Estate shipped their cacao beans out of the country (to Hershey, for example), but now it all goes to produce their own brand of chocolate, sold only on the island. Mmm, Mmm, Good!
In the late afternoon, once we had returned to our vessel, I turned my attention once more to the hull. In preparation for applying bottom paint, I masked where the bottom paint meets the topsides and around other objects on the hull onto which we didn’t want to apply anti-fouling.
Saturday was “Anti-fouling Day!” We weren’t sure if it was going to happen though. We awoke just before 8 a.m. to the sound of rain beating down on our deck. It threatened and rained lightly off and on up until around 11, when we saw blue sky in the direction from which the weather was coming. That was our cue to get down and dirty… literally! We climbed down the ladder off the boat and opened our anti-fouling paint. We purchased four gallons (the stuff is not cheap!). We both attempted to cover most of our bodies with old scrub bottoms and old Georgia Bulldog long sleeve shirts. This would have kept us mostly paint-free if I hadn’t spilled some on Cindy’s leg. 🙂 It took us a little over three hours to apply one entire coat to Beatitude’s bottom, and then apply a second coat over the heavy-wear areas (like the waterline, the front of the hulls, etc.) We were happy when we were done. It is of course almost 90 degrees with tropical humidity, and we were in long pants and long sleeves. The final product looks great, though! Cindy and I feel a sense of accomplishment in having painting our own vessel’s bottom.