Little Boy Saga with Boats Begins
(As mother recalls….) Plastic boats in the bathtub just didn’t cut it. Mitchell was floating blocks of wood, then started glueing and carving boats to see if they would float. The first boat he built too large to sail in the bathtub (pic below) was when he was about 8 years old. Mitchell never named her but he did float that fancy block of wood across the Atlantic inlet of our backyard on a string of thread.
Then he built a tall ship with working lines and sails, nearly the size of our dining room table. She was graced with the name HMS Grace but he never had the opportunity to sail her. Mitch sold her right before we headed to Mexico for the first time.
His First Girlfriend
The next boat was christened Girlfriend although the name never showed up on her sides. Mitchell built the 16 ft dory with his own hands the summer we spent in Colorado when he turned 15. Her maiden voyage was at Kino Bay on the Sea of Cortez…what an adventure. And as the family likes to tell, he eventually ditched his first “Girlfriend” at the back of a hotel in Mexico with an older man.
Then Everette and Mitchell decided that owning a sailboat in British Columbia was a superb idea, so they would have a place to stay when on their work trips. And of course they could enjoy some sailing, too. And so Mitchell became a half-owner of S/V Quetzal. Mitch didn’t have to build it, but he certainly had a lot of cleaning up, sewing sails & cushions, and wood to refinish.
With more boat experience under his belt, the 18 year old decided he would like a different boat; one he owned by himself. So the guys put Quetzal up For Sale and officially sold her on Father’s Day (2017).
It’s probably going to change, but Mitchell just bought a sailboat on Canada Day (2017) that was christened Louve which means She Wolf. In other words, the Bitch.*
Besides the consideration of the price tag, the main features Mitchell was looking for in a sailboat of his own was a full keel and preferably a wooden boat. When many people shy away from wood Mitchell is drawn to wood (and leather). Since his childhood he’s been whittling, burning, carving. It’s a good thing he isn’t afraid of hard work because wood boats are know for all their work.
Some people find it therapeutic to dig their hands in the earth; Mitchell gets those qualities from working with wood. Which is a good thing he likes it, since Louve is all wood with some copper features. Virtually all the wood is exposed…ie the varnish is all worn/flaked off except for one small patch less than a foot square. Much of it is mahogany which should oil up nicely. And once he sanded off the huge oar it was discovered it had beautiful purple heartwood.
I think he likes the challenge of what he can transform before his very eyes.
I can hardly wait to see what Mitchell does with this 26 foot Nordic Folkboat. The After pictures will be amazing. But for now all we’ve got are the Before pictures. So here they are:
*Mitch isn’t overly fond of the name, so he’s considering options. Got some good suggestions? We’d love to hear them in the Comments below. So far the only serious consideration is Sea Wolf.
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