19 December 2007


One of my non-sailing friends asked for details on this trip to Hawaii and I couldn't for the life of me figure out what he wanted. I listed all sorts of details on the boat and the crew list and that sort of thing. Then another friend wrote back what was probably blindingly obvious to everyone else.

"How do you cook and sleep on something 47 feet long?"

I answered that question but also added the more important one, how do you stay clean for 2 weeks with rationed water?

Simple, keep a bottle of this in the cockpit. You see a squall coming, you wash your hair. Then enjoy the rinse when the rain starts. If you get stuck without enough water to rinse, it's a bucket of saltwater for you.


Anonymous said...

And do you have diapers like the astronauts?

EVK4 said...

Mag, there's this amazing little contraption on a boat called the leeward side. As long as you have one of those you don't need astro-diapers.

Carol Anne said...

Actually, there are a couple of other options that I learned on church missions in Mexico in places where rainfall is a rare occurrence.

For daily cleaning, put a cotton sock over your hairbrush and brush your hair. The sock soaks up much of the daily accumulation of sweat and oils. If you have thick hair, you may have to brush your hair layer by layer to get it all, but the sock works remarkably well.

If you want a deeper cleaning, get cornstarch, and massage it into the hair in generous quantities. Leave it in for 20 minutes or so to soak up the dirt, and then brush the cornstarch out of your hair -- start with a bare brush, and then finish with the sock.

EVK4 said...

Carol Anne, do you think it might be better just to wear a hat? That's the direction I'm leaning in right now.

Anonymous said...

Over the leeward side? Euuugh. How nasty. Do you drop the toilet paper in the ocean too?

Pat said...

A typical forty-seven-footer would be civilized enough to have a head (marine sanitation device) that can either store waste or treat it, and uses salt water so as not to use up vital fresh water. The boat is also likely to have autopilot and self steering. A backup, for when hand steering or close attention to the boat is required, is the good old bucket (with a rope attached to a sturdy handle or bail).

The leeward side is convenient, but an awful lot of drowned sailors' bodies have been recovered with their zippers down. All it takes is one bump off a wave, and if a tether isn't worn or if it wasn't adjusted properly or fails... the ocean is a very lonely place.