|heading to the swap meet (and recycling centre...)|
“What is that?” I asked Evan who was holding something metal with wires coming out of it.
“A boat part,” he said
“Something we don’t have anymore…” he mumbled, as he headed out of sight.
I wanted to ask why we had a boat part we don’t need, for something we don’t have, on our very weight sensitive catamaran. I wanted to point out that I had sacrificed some of my cutest shoes in the name of saving weight. I wanted a chance to complain. So I followed him. And found him with a stockpile of stuff sporting wires and metal. Some of it still in packages, new packages.
And all of it was stuff we have no need for. But that Evan would like to be compensated for, or at least assured that the crap we’ve carried for 2000 miles doesn’t end up in the basura…
To a non-boater, a cruiser’s swap-meet looks more like a bizarre junk bazaar than anything. Every boat has a supply of random stuff that is potentially too useful or valuable to toss, but that still takes up precious real estate in our ever-shrinking living space. It might be spare parts for an auto-pilot that went kaput, or a worn, but still functional, outboard that was replaced with a shiny new one, or charts and guide books for the place you’ve already been.
The solution is a swap meet. But unlike a swap meet that occurs in harbours further north, cruiser swap meets often have more sellers than buyers. The good news is this means that if you do find just the right part you can get a screaming deal. The bad new is that most people want your metal bits with wire coming out of it even less than you do.
What typically happens at a swap meet is you go home with pretty much the same amount of stuff you left with. Anything you get rid of ends up being replaced by something you find. It’s kind of like taking the contents of your garage and dumping it in your neighbour’s yard, while your other neighbour offloads his stuff into your yard… And if that’s not bad enough you need to keep an eye on your kids. When you’re not looking, people give them stuff…
So the moral is I should have just kept my cute shoes and sworn off swap meets.