The past days have been quite an emotional rollercoaster. Monday morning the bearing arrived at the shop (yippee), but then Christian and Adrian spent a frustrating day hanging head first in the engine compartment, trying to wiggle parts together. Imagine the scene: two sweating, swearing guys lying on the floor, each one stuck with head, one shoulder and one arm in the engine, barely able to reach the things with one hand. (There’s never enough room around engine on sailing boats. Adrian suggested that every boat should carry a gnome taped to the end of a long stick…) There was lots of dirty talking going on (stick it in! harder! no, stop, put more vaseline…), but in the evening they were running out of time with the connection still not done. Knowing that we had an appointment to get the boat into the water in the afternoon, work started at 6 o’clock in the next morning. By ten the thrustbearing and its housing was in place, but the CV joints wouldn’t go in–there just wasn’t enough space. Fearing that we’d have to remove the engine to get them in we fixed a pulley to the mast trying to pull the engine block far enough to get them in–still a few millimetres missing. They undid the engine mounts, pulled again–and finally all parts were in. At 1 o’clock Pitufa was hanging in the belts under the crane, at 2 we got into the water–quickly, check under the engine: no water coming in, hurray! Then we started the engine and suddenly water trickled in from the exhaust. Shit! Tell the crane people we need more time, fasten the hoseclamps even more (always fearing to break them) and finally the flow stopped. Another scary moments followed when we put the engine into gear, but everything held and Pitufa could finally float into freedom again :-)

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