Snow in May

Yes, in Iowa, it can snow in May. It’s been a long haul to break free of winter. The ground is still too cold for tomato plants to grow very much and a lot of flower seeds still sit in their packets waiting for the mariner to prepare the garden beds.

The temperature will be in the seventies today, after an overnight low in the low forties. Tomorrow the forecast is for sunny and 90°. That’s Iowa for you. Iowa’s best seasons are spring, which runs two weeks in late may, and autumn, which runs two weeks in late September.

The mariner had a small landscaping business many decades ago. It is still fun to look at a plot of land and envision what can be done to make it a spectacular landscape – an artist with a blank canvas. So gardening includes a lot of hardscape work.

The mariner has a 17 foot 1982 O’Day day sailer. It had an accident being blown into a low bridge; the deck had separated from the hull on the port quarter and the boat has seen some tough years as well. I bought it for the price of the trailer plus 500 bucks for the boat. I reunited the deck with the hull and sailed it for a season or two. The centerboard didn’t work well when under way and the boat did not come with a motor. In a stiff wind, sailing was, shall we say, in an undetermined direction.

Marty in O'Day

The mariner lived on a twelve acre farm at the time and stored the boat in the implement shed next to the tractor. I raised the boat off the trailer and dismantled the trailer completely – every piece. Rust spots were sanded; new wiring would be put in. The mariner painted the trailer with a car finish white.

We sold the farm and moved to town. The mariner had no place to store the boat. So the mariner built a forty thousand dollar shed in the back yard to house the boat. For the money, the shed is also a wood shop, storage for garden tools and supplies and has a vehicle bay.

Shed 12-12 007

The poor boat hasn’t seen a drop of water for two years. This summer, there are plans to completely refurbish the boat. With only a sail cuddy, it ain’t exactly a passage boat but don’t forget – the mariner lives in Iowa.

The late spring jams things a bit. Late garden preparation, rewiring and building storage in the garage, and refurbishing the boat.

It is still my goal, however, to sail in the Chesapeake Bay this fall. It won’t be pretty but it will float and steer. It will be fun.



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