Kiwi Yoga

Saturday, August 8th 2020


It looks like the weather will be cooperative to re and re the Kiwi Grip in the cockpit today. I managed to get the washed out and partially hardened Kiwi grip scraped off yesterday before the rain started again, quite a mess. Before I try this again, I have to re-tape the borders which I’m getting pretty good at. I found one of the messier parts to this operation is removing the border tape just after I’ve rolled out the Kiwi grip. You have to put the tape on, keeping in mind it is coming off in sections no bigger than the section you can comfortably apply and roll out before it starts to set. Because of the somewhat awkward narrow deck configuration, you need to be a bit of a contortionist to pull the tapes off.

I definitely found myself several times thinking …if my foot slips this could turn out very badly. I actually thought of putting on a life jacket at one point. The consistency of Kiwi Grip is kind of like mayonnaise only it doesn’t clean up quite as nicely as mayonnaise, rather like doodoo to a blanket.

Try to picture removing the tape almost dripping in the product, the sun blazing over head drying it faster than one would like, one foot stretched out between the life lines on the edge of the toe rail, big toe straddling one side of the rail trying not to step in the fresh paint with the opposite arm stretched out at its limit on the coach house opposite with the free hand picking at the edge of the tape which now has decided to not let go! Your other foot is gripping just behind the live edge of the paint behind you and you’re not sure it will hold. Oh yes … and the wind is blowing the dog off the chain. You just can’t quite free the tip of the masking tape to get it started no matter what language you use to persuade it, your hand is now covered in the paint! The only thing to do is to try to get the small exacto knife to pick the edge of the tape free so you can peel it back, but where did you put it? You are frantically looking for it while trying to remain calm and keep your yoga pose with your big toe about to be separated from the rest of your toes. The knife, of course, is just out of reach.

The clock is ticking, the paint is drying in the Sirocco wind, blasting across the deck giving the boat a slight jerking motion on its taught mooring lines which test your resolve to remain composed and out of the wet paint just below you on the deck. You push off out of your pose hoping your toe doesn’t slip and you fall into the freshly painted deck. Phew, you make it back to the partially standing pose, the pain in your back very notable. You grab the the knife with the now paint covered hand and resume the position that is now called the Kiwi pose. You get the edge of the tape started and pull on it at the right angle so the line separating the fresh paint and the deck makes a clean edge, but half way down the section, the tape tears lose and is caught by the wind like the tail of the kite! It’s covered in paint and you are almost paralyzed in the kiwi pose. First the paint covered kite tail slaps the side of the freshly painted coach house leaving a deposit of fast drying mayonnaise smeared there,  then it flips across your chest depositing more mayonnaise on you chest hairs. You are trying to concentrate on the kiwi pose so you don’t either fall in the paint or pull your now over extended groin muscle. Fortunately, there are no spectators. You frantically push off the coach house holding the tape like a venomous snake, all the while trying to maintain your balance, and reach over and try to deposit it in a plastic bag already overflowing with similar snakes. The snake has its teeth firmly attached to your paint covered black murder gloves and will not let go, still secreting paint on whatever it touches. You manage to shake it lose. Now, with time running out, you resume the kiwi pose and frantically but with the composure of a heart surgeon, try to start the edge of the torn tape still stuck like crazy glue to the deck with the knife edge, and once again the wind turns the tape into a flailing venomous snake. This scene repeats itself for the next two hours. By the time I have finished, it’s dark and I am in an altered state of mind, physically distraught, covered in paint lashings. I’m sure water-boarding would have been a more pleasant experience. 

During the night I wake to the sound of hard rain.adrenal Kiwi paint is a water base paint, rather like latex. From my bed now fully awake, adrenaline pumping through my veins, I realize there can be only one outcome. If I’m lucky, and the kiwi grip kicked before the rain hit it will be fine, or the alternative which is what happened and is why I am starting from scratch this morning and getting ready for another yoga class, the rain will splash over the still wet surface and then dry all over the sides of the cockpit making an absolute mess of the whole cockpit.
It’s Sunday evening. It rained on Saturday. I managed to scrape and sand the cockpit Saturday morning before the rain and remove all the old paint except the splatters on the vertical sides of the newly painted cockpit the week before! I can go to sleep tonight with the knowledge that the Kiwi Grip job is finished but that the clean may take several years of sanding and repainting each vertical of the cockpit. I keep telling myself that because I’m single handed, no one else will even see it. (bull s—) it will bug me till I fix it. I may never leave !

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Comments

  1. Alek Petkovic says

    The glaringly obvious thing that you were missing through all of this was a supervisor. Someone like me, who would happily be there for you to remind you to tone down the language and who would point out your mistakes and encourage you to learn from them. I just wish I could have been there to do that for you.
    Seriously, it looks great mate and we all know, that if you did the job, then it will last the distance.

    Cheers, Alek.

  2. Rob Terstall says

    Hi Glenn

    Talk about perseverance. You certainly have it! I understand that sailing these days is not a good idea. There are hundreds of yachts in the Caribbeans that cannot leave their anchorage due to Covid19 restrictions. If they try to go to another country they are refused entry, and must return to the country they came from. Have you considered these restrictions? Or is the idea to not make any landfalls? What about an emergency situation? I would be interested in how you resolve these restrictions.

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