This is nerve-wracking… After 5 months away from the boat, we return to the boatyard in Florida to find out how Soulianis survived over hurricane season. We’ve never left her alone for this long before, and really hope the preparation we did before we left protected her from all the ills that can befall lonely boats: mold, leaks, insect/animal infestations — and who knows what else! Our fingers are crossed.

Hope you enjoy!

Lauren & Kirk

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Episode Dialogue

It’s been almost five months since we’ve been at the boat. After spending hurricane season in the Midwest, driving around the Great Lakes, visiting family and friends, and sailing whenever we got the chance, it was time to return to our boat, patiently waiting for us in a boatyard in Florida.

Heehaw. I see the really good Gulf shrimp.

Kirk told me that he’s not gonna shave his beard until we get to the boat. And that was…

Two weeks ago?

Six weeks ago?

We are 21 miles away from the boat. This whole time on our drive down we’ve been talking about how we’re very nervous about getting back to the boat. Her whole life, she’s been stored indoors, just babied basically. And, here we are,

Putting her out in the pasture.

Putting her out in the hot Florida sun, over the summer. And we kind of feel bad about it. But we didn’t really have any other choice. So we’re worried about what we’re going to find when we get back.

Are there chipmunks living in the anchor locker? Do we have rats in the bilge? Cockroaches in the refrigerator? Termites in the teak?


Raccoons in the cockpit?

Now you’re just getting ridiculous. Worst case scenario is, the leak in the cabin top was bad. Our bilge pump–

Which leak? Three weeks, three leaks

Stopped working, and we’re going to walk into like a foot of water,

A flooded boat.

Over the cabin sole in the boat. Like that–

With black mold everywhere. With dead animals floating.

Best case scenario,

[Lauren & Kirk] Our dehumidifier

[Lauren] Is still running, and

[Kirk] Our tea tree oils have absorbed all the smells.


And the boat smells as clean as a–

Basket of laundry. Cause I left dryer sheets hanging all over the boat because Linda, the previous owner of the boat said dryer sheets like to repel, like to repel! They have a mind of their own.

Linda! Linda Linda, listen.

Linda, Linda listen listen.

This is a five minute clip. You have anything else you want to say?

I just hope that our boat still loves us.


I think my biggest concern is the water. Let’s hope that we didn’t get too much water inside.


Cause we didn’t get to see any rain on the boat whatsoever before we left, and it’s rained pretty much every day since we left.

[Lauren] We were in the yard for about a week and a half, prepping the boat for storage. We didn’t even get like hardly a sprinkling of rain.

[Lauren & Kirk] Until we left.

[Kirk] And it downpoured.

[Lauren] Yeah.

Kirk, we’re here.


[Kirk] She looks so sad.

[Lauren] Awww.

Most of the duct tape is still on.


That’s pretty good. All our zip ties are still on. Oh bees, I didn’t even think about bees.



Oh my god, that bottom looks so terrible.

Yeah it does. It looks awful.

[Kirk] They’re super white huh?


[Kirk] Oh, that’s–

Yeah, it’s bleached!

[Kirk] That’s why we put on the UV cover. Hey mister mast!

[Kirk] Is there water coming out still?

Yeah, it still feels damp. Yeah it feels damp. It’s good. Oh my god. What a dirt ball.

[Kirk] Oh god yeah, that’s so dirty.

[Lauren] I’m surprised even our letters are still on. So this was the duct tape we were talking about, which we had taped over the grommets on the UV cover to prevent them from scratching the hull in the wind. Incredible. Cause, the day we left these were already flapping off.

[Kirk] Yeah.

Kind of feels like we never left.

[Kirk] That’s scary. Oh god it’s so dirty.

It’s so dirty!

[Kirk] Yeah. There’s mildew.

[Lauren] Poor baby.

[Kirk] On the decks.

All right boat-y boat. Doesn’t smell too bad.

[Lauren] What’s beeping?

It’s low voltage. I don’t see any real water damage.

[Lauren] Yeah.

[Kirk] Yeah, Hardly anything. Pretty cool in here, feels dry.

[Lauren] Good job, dehumidifier!

[Kirk] Very diesel smell.

Yeah. Smells a lot like diesel. Smells like an old boat, but it doesn’t smell bad. It smells dry.

[Kirk] That’s good. Okay, issue one down.

[Lauren] Well that worked.

[Kirk] Need to get to work on the electrical here and figure out what’s happening. Is that dry?

[Lauren] Yeah.

[Kirk] Really?

[Lauren] There’s spiders in there though.

Wow. Should we check the bilge?

[Lauren] Yeah. Oh my god. What is that?

[Kirk] I don’t know. That’s not good though.

[Lauren] It looks like something coagulated on the top.

[Kirk] Yeah, that means we got to check the engine. Of our gas tank. That’s diesel, bird.

[Lauren] Really?

[Kirk] Yeah. So, I think I know what happened. Remember how we filled it all the way up?

[Lauren] Yeah.

[Kirk] And I was worried about it leaking out of there?

[Lauren] Yeah.

[Kirk] I think that’s what happened. It was filled all the way up to the deck fill there so, I don’t know we’ll have to look in there but, We got to deal with this electrical first. Power to the boat is fine, so why is our battery charger not working? Says that it’s charging. All right. It might be that it was actually measuring the house bank. Because before we left, remember I swapped the banks to take our house bank offline so that we were basically just living on the start battery. Which was just to run the bilge pump.

[Lauren] Right.

[Kirk] This was done at the recommendation of the battery manufacturer. When left for long periods of time, carbon foam batteries prefer to remain in a slow state of discharge rather than receiving a constant float charge. But we still needed 12 volt power to run the bilge pump, which is why I wired the battery charger up to the start battery. So, I need to rewire that and get us back on our house bank and get those charging again. What do you want to do right now?

I think I should just try to put everything back together. Don’t you think?


[Lauren] What you doing?

Cooking up some dinner, and trying not to get eaten alive by the no-see-ums.

Back in the boatyard. Kirk and I are exhausted. We haven’t done this much physical activity in a long time. Climbing up and down this ladder, we probably each did that like 20 times today. I should probably put this camera down while I climb down the ladder.


First morning in the boatyard.

[Kirk] We’re getting a lot of work done.

Getting some Kindle time in.

[Kirk] Just hanging out.

We slept in the van last night because the bed was already made up so…

Today is the day of real work. Trying to get this boat organized so that we can actually do stuff in here, get some projects done.

It’s a lovely morning in the boatyard. Overcast, mid-70s. I’m putting a no-see-um screen onto our companionway door. Right now the screen that’s on there is a metal screen, the holes are too big and the little no-see-ums can get in so we’re going to put another screen over the top of it and double it up. Check it.

[Kirk] Nice.

Project done.

I’ll let you check it off. Oh yeah it’s just like a little film. Okay.

[Lauren] Wow that bilge holds like, two gallons.

[Kirk] It don’t hold much. Looking a little rusty.

[Lauren] Really?

[Kirk] Yeah, but it’s not bad.

[Lauren] Where?

[Kirk] No, he’s just dirty and old.

[Lauren] He can hear you.

[Kirk] I know. Yeah, I don’t know what that is. I don’t really like the look of that. Mister Beke, mister Beke, All right, well, I think we’re going to put mister Beke away for a little while. Deal with him later, he looks pretty good. Just about the way that we left him.

[Lauren] Nice and dirty.

Nice and dirty!

[Kirk] So that’s the deck fill.

We’re checking one of the last things that we needed to check when we got back to the boat which was our water tanks.

Yeah that’s just like sediment in the water.

Cause we filled them like, 95% of the way, so the water wasn’t completely touching the top of the tank so we were slightly worried that there might be algae, or mold, or whatever growing on any part of the tank that didn’t have water touching it. But it looks good!

At least the first tank. Cool. So, I think we should not be worried about using this water to clean dishes. Definitely don’t want to drink it, it’s got some bleach in it, but.

Oh. I spoke too soon. The portside tank has something floating in it at the bottom. I think it’s probably just sediment that if we flush it out it’ll be fine. Do you concur?

Dr. Harris.


Do you concur?

Do you concur sir?

I am pumping out our portside water tank because it’s got some goobers in it. Do you want to go up there?

[Lauren] Yeah.

[Kirk] Got it?


Real smooth.

[Kirk] What?

Just hit my heel on the helm.

[Kirk] Oh yeah. You could probably pour it on the back of the stern and let it wash that. We pumped most of the black goobers out of there. When we refill it, we put a little bleach in there, let it sit overnight, pump it out, and we’ll be good to go. She’ll be ready as rain. Next on the list was putting our headliner back together. Our old ceiling panels were made out of fiberboard, which attracted moisture and were constantly molding. Before leaving the yard we had removed the old panels, then traced and cut new panels out of a thin plastic material. Now we just needed to cut some Reflectix for insulation and install them both.

[Lauren] Look at this headliner! Yeew!

Look at this. Look at this! Get the close up, up high.

[Lauren] Look who can stand up straight in the boat.

This is the real test with the stringer.

[Lauren] Ah.

Ready? Doink. Oh, yeah. I’m still going to be walking through here like this though.

[Lauren] Aw.

And then as I get closer here it gets really tight.

[Lauren] At least maybe when you’re stationary,


[Lauren] In certain spots, you should be able to stand up.

So this is going to be for over the galley. This is going to be for over the chart table.

So we’ve been in the boatyard for five days, I think this is our fifth morning. Mostly we spent trying to clean up the boat, get it organized again, shuffling stuff from the van. We got the headliner up. Kirk reconnected the batteries, I put a screen in the companionway door. What else have we done?

[Kirk] We made a bunch of decisions.

Yeah. We’ve come up with a bunch of lists of all the projects that we need to do and we’ve done a lot of research tying to figure out all the supplies that we need, talked through a lot of the projects as far as what order we need to do them in. For example one of the projects was trying to figure out if we were going to move the radar up to the mast from the pole that it’s mounted on on the stern. And the reason we wanted to do that was because, one, it would just clean up the stern a little bit, and two, it would prevent shading on our panels that we would eventually install there. We want to put up a bimini or a solar arch. We haven’t decided if we’re going to do canvas or not, if we’re going to hire a fabricator or if we’re going to try to get a kit from Sailrite. We’ve got a decent amount of projects to do, The goal is to be out of the yard in two months. Today is the day we’re going to take it off. We haven’t taken it off yet because when we did we wanted to be able to clean the deck. Today is a nice sunny day, and we finished the headliner project so now, off comes the cover.

♪ Wash me in the water ♪ ♪ Cleanse me in the mercy of your love ♪ ♪ I need a heavenly touch ♪ Look at that. Kirk was really sad about five minutes ago cause he though we were not going to get our decks looking like they used to be.

Well, it’s still not like it used to be, but.

Yeah, they’re already a thousand times better and I spent literally 30 seconds scrubbing the fore deck.

Yeah yeah. ♪ Oh helping hand ♪ ♪ It’s going to help me stand ♪ ♪ It’s going to help me stand ♪ ♪ Cause I just need ♪ ♪ Old helping hand ♪ ♪ Is going to help me stand ♪ ♪ It’s going to help me stand ♪ ♪ Cause I just need ♪ ♪ Old helping hand ♪ ♪ It’s going to help me stand ♪ ♪ It’s going to help me stand ♪

So this is something I’m really not looking forward to doing but it’s incredibly important.

[Lauren] Wow, that’s the piece of hose, huh?

[Kirk] That’s what could sink our boat.