Thursday, November 15, 2007

Hong Kong - The Final Leg

On Wednesday, we traveled from the boat yard to Hong Kong, taking a fast ferry across the mouth of the Pearl River from Zhuhai to Hong Kong Island. We took a taxi from the ferry terminal to our hotel, the Ramada Hotel. They upgraded our room to a mini-suite on the 28th floor with a lovely harbor view.

2007-China-289xThursday was a tourist day spent visiting the parks and seeing the main sights.


In Queen Victoria Park, Kurt tried out the foot massage pebble trail. It hurt while on the stones but afterwards the feet did feel better.


2007-China-308xThe parks in Hong Kong city are surrounded by 2007-China-307xmodern skyscrapers. Water features, both still and running, are common in the parks.






2007-China-317x We closed the day by taking the tram that ascends one of the hills (a big, steep one) behind the city. Stunning views from here.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Construction Photos

As we leave the boat yard, here are a collection of photos showing the current state of our boat. [NOTE: Some photos are of the hull #2 not our hull #4 but we are all about the same stage of construction.]


Four sedans are being built simultaneously. They are in two rows of two. SD462-02 is on the right and SD462-04 (our boat) is on the left. Hulls #3 & #5 are behind (bow to stern) of hulls #2 & #4.




This is the port side view. The salon is a "wide body" (i.e., it goes all the way across the hull) on this side. Access to the boat deck above the salon is via the external steps. The metal "box" in front and below the pilot house provides head room for the steps leading to the below deck accommodations.


A starboard side view of the boat. This side has a side deck that goes from the aft cockpit to the fore deck. In the space in front and below the pilot house window will be a fiberglass storage locker.



2007-China-026 A starboard side view of the hind section of the boat. The side deck is sheltered from the rain by the boat deck. A door in the bulwark provides access to docks when tied up on this side.




Looking down into the salon from the steps to the boat deck. The hatches in the deck provide access to the engine room. The door to the cockpit from the salon is at the end of the salon.




Looking down into the pilot house from the steps to the boat deck. The steps leading below are on the left in this photo and descend under the metal box at the forward center of the pilot house. The lower helm station will be to the right of the metal box.

2007-China-061 Looking down and forward into the master stateroom. It is located directly underneath the pilot house. A water tight bulkhead separates it from the compartment containing the heads and the shower. A 340 gallon fuel tank is just visible at the bottom of the photo. A total of four tanks tucked around the boat contain over 1400 gallons of diesel fuel.

2007-China-277 A view looking towards the bow and the anchor station. The electric windlass will be mounted on the platform attached to the deck. The anchor area is dropped about four inches so that a barrier prevents the mud and goo brought up with the anchor from draining down the entire deck.

2007-China-278   The foredeck is quite large, nearly 11 feet from the boxes at the front of the pilot house to the anchor station. Width is nearly 14 feet at the pilot house. The cutout on the deck is for a hatch into the forward stateroom.


2007-China-281 Looking toward the port side of the cockpit. The propane locker will be tucked in the corner of this side just below the salon window. The cockpit is about 4 feet deep. To the left is the transom and the 8 inch drop down to the swim step. The hull extends underneath the swim step.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A Night at the Opera

Stella Kimley arranged a group outing to attend the opera, "A Wedding on the Execution Ground." There must have been nearly a dozen and a half of us in the group.

The story in the opera is based on the account of two young Communists executed by the Kuomintang (KMT) during a 1927 purge of Communists. The opera was the combination of a love story and political education done in the style of classic Chinese opera.

We enjoyed the show but it was 2 hours long with no intermission (a long time between potty breaks).

Opera Ticket

Thursday, November 8, 2007

My Take on Chinese Traffic

We watch with wonder the traffic here in Doumen. The boat yard is about 20 minutes from the hotel by foot and we get to observe driving both to and from the yard. 

Similar to the "pirate code" in the Pirates of the Caribbean movie, traffic laws here are "guidelines" and not really rules. People do a good job of avoiding collisions, but you see lots of behavior that will make you shake your head in disbelief.

While there are lots of cars and trucks there are far more scooters and small motorcycles than in the USA. The scooter drivers view any paved surface as fair game so you'll see them driving on the sidewalk, shoulders, between lanes of cars and even in the lane of oncoming traffic. Car drivers would do likewise but aren't as small and maneuverable.

Because everybody is hyper aware of traffic and wants to avoid collisions, it all seems to work.

For pedestrians, you have to take an aggressive approach. Don't be foolish and step in front of a moving vehicle or scooter that has insufficient time to stop but also assert yourself when crossing a street even though there is oncoming traffic.

It is similar to riding a bicycle in traffic in Seattle. You have a right to be in the road so don't be intimidated into giving up your right.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Working Through Designs

We are back in the Seahorse boat yard. Having decided to not play tourist on this trip, we've got the ability to spend more time with the Seahorse personnel refining the sedan design.

Hulls number 2 through 5 of the sedan are being built as a batch and are significantly different than hull number 1. Consequently, there are quite a number of things to work through.

In addition, we are trying to decide on some the options that we want installed on our boat that are above and beyond the standard items (e.g., trash compactor, microwave/convection oven, etc.). It is important to get these down now so that sufficient power cabling is run as the boat is built.

Also, this is a way to get such baseline things as cabinetry designed (e.g., height, location, etc.) where we'd like them.

We have hotel reservations in Hong Kong for our last two nights (11/14 & 11/15) before heading home. Other than that, we are able to spend as much time as necessary at the boat yard.



Saturday, November 3, 2007

Cruise Photos

I offloaded photos from yesterday's cruise. Since we were on the DavidEllis, the photos are of the DoraMac.


Looking back at the DoraMac.



At anchor




Marcia taking a swim

Friday, November 2, 2007

A Day on the Water

We spent the day cruising on the DavidEllis and buddy boating with DoraMac to a small bay about 3 hours from here. The weather was lovely and the bay scenic. This was our first opportunity to actually cruise on a Seahorse Marine boat.

Tonight the surveyor we've hired to check on our boat as it is being built, Ray Wolfe, will take us to see the local fruit bats (3 foot wing span) as they leave their roosts in the trees. After that we'll talk shop with him about the boat.

I'll try to post photos tomorrow.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Subic Bay

We're currently at the Subic Bay Yacht Club staying on Dave & Dorothy Nagle's Diesel Duck (DD 462-02), the "DavidEllis". Dave met us at Clark Field last night when we flew in from Macau. It is 1-1/2 to 2 hour drive from Clark to Subic.

Andrew Chan (DD 462-08) and his friend T. Y. were also on the flight. Andrew and T. Y. are staying on Ruth & Randall's boat the "DoraMac" (DD 462-05).

The weather here is pleasant, mid 80's, and the sky is generally clear. The sky is even blue (!) and not as polluted as in China.

It looks like we'll do a day cruise tomorrow, 11/3, to a bay about 3 hours from here.