Tides Begin To Change (Doree Days - Part 3)

Jake had become depressed, mindlessly staring into nothingness as the boat gently rocked back and forth. Ever since he drowned his phone he seemed to have no entertainment, no communication, no meaning. It's true, we were isolated out there in the harbor in a way - we had no transportation beyond the limited gas supplied dinghy, we had little money for simple perks and no definitive friends in the area.

"The suns going down, nothing to do but sleep now", he'd say.

This was the state of affairs just less than three weeks into living on this boat they called the Doree by Newport Beach.

Myself, I was not depressed. Itchy feet perhaps, but my longing for movement rarely comes from true stagnancy, but rather the desire for something different, the unknown potential of the next move that has yet to have developed.

The sun did go down that day, Jake was on the boat and I'd gone to shore to write, as well as wait on Benny's arrival to the island. Benny arrived with a case of beer, good beer, he'd taken my advice and gotten a mixed bag of experimental beers from the Sierra Nevada brewery their "campers" had brewed.

We buzzed back to the boat, sure enough, Jake had gone down with the sun. Still, we cracked our beers and conversation. It started with showing Benny the progress Jake and I had made on the boat, then quickly steered towards the potential of our southbound adventures - the ports we'd see, the girls we'd meet, the stories we'd tell and future foreign beers to come.

We talked about these potential adventures and past adventures, all sorts until now the sun was threatening to come up and our box of beer was coming to an end. I felt like I knew Benny better after this, which was helpful given that I was starting to question the whole thing. Before this I saw a lack of work ethic, a lazy kid looking to get over with some dream of making a film, not being a part of it. While there was still some truth to all that, it didn't matter nearly as much. He was a dreamer, for sure, but he was expecting something different than what we were getting, he didn't have all the information, he had the fortitude to get things done, there just wasn't any "done" spelled out, no end in sight to shoot for. We were on the same boat for now.

We got chipping away on that boat the next day, closer to the afternoon as it were, we were on to the hull of the boat now. We had the little row boat, balancing on the side trying to push the row boat right against the hull of the big boat to catch the paint chips as we scraped them off. This was not incredibly practical, chips easily found their way to the water and eventually the harbor patrol took notice while making their rounds.

They gave us a warning with threats of fines and the like, we'd have to find a better way, but never really would. We'd try a few things, dry dock was the real answer, but this was not a cheap solution. Instead we'd try to do this more on the sly, also scooping out paint chips whenever possible.

The week went on, sanding and chipping by day, running around the peninsula by night drinking cheap bottles, hitting the bars and making stops to our cigar shop hangout. By Friday Benny had gone back to Santa Barbara, Mitch dropped in shortly and bestowed a bottle of whiskey upon us as well.

We sipped that and also picked up a visitor, a girl we'd met one way or another, she came with beer and talk of photographing the boat some day, instead of the night we found ourselves in. We gave her the tour of the boat, which at this point seemed to include a trip to the cigar shop and the beaches fire pits.

Sunday night rolled around and along with it came Benny, back from his duties as pizza delivery guy up north. Also, being the employed one amongst us, he once again arrived with a case of beer. We acquired a deck of cards somehow by this point, so we stayed up all night playing poker using nuts, bolts and washers as chips.

We had another visitor the next day, a guy that had found Jake through Reddit, an online forum. His timing was good, as this was the day we were finally painting the boat with the first epoxy layer and things were looking sharp. Mitch arrived later and was equally impressed to see his boat coming together. It was a huge morale boost at a time when things were starting to get repetitive.

The Reddit guy made a trip to shore for whiskey and beer, all in time for a big cheers by sunset on the day's success.

Mitch headed back to Hollywood leaving just myself, Jake, Benny and the Reddit. We did the only logical thing, head towards the peninsula. We puttered over and the dinghy ran out of gas half way in the dark. We had a gas can back at the boat and started our pathetic paddling efforts, but luckily a guy on a nearby boat took notice and offered Jake a ride back to the Doree to grab the gas can.

We filled up and made it to the dock and set out into the night. First stop, as the established norm, was the cigar shop. Closed. So next, to the beach of course to find a fire ring to crash. We found one and approached and for the first time the group around the fire rejected our presence. Defeated, we headed back to the dock and buzzed back to the Doree.

More chipping paint the next day, more sanding that was consciously getting old. Tides were turning. Luckily the next day would inject some change with a visitor of my own, right on time.

September 23, 2012 to October 2, 2012