My Travel Blog

The New Rabelo Unveiled!

It’s Thursday May 17th and we are still tied to the dock. Everyone has been working long hours. A great deal of work has been completed since we arrived last week, but we still don’t have an emergency steering system. This morning we cruised down the canal a few hundred yards to turn Rabelo around in an area that was only 41 meters wide. Remember Rabelo is almost 39 meters long, and we had to maneuver around a bunch of squishy plastic boats. Wilco did a great job driving, and didn’t make Hollandaise sauce out of a single boat.

The old Rabelo.

The new Rabelo.

The new pilothouse up.

The new pilothouse down with solar panels on the roof.

We are now safely tied to our dock.  There are five workmen finishing the last touches, but the most important guy, the guy that installs the emergency steering system has not shown up yet.  If our steering system is completed with some daylight left we still might leave today.

Yesterday we took delivery of the most important piece of equipment on Rabelo.  Our brand new bar and wine refrigerator arrived.  We loaded it up with wine and glasses.  Now we are officially ready to go cruising.  I think there is a law in France that says you have to carry at least two bottles of wine for every meter of boat length.  We are a few bottles short, but I’m sure we can make up the difference by the time we get to France.

New bar and wine fridge, and the new stairs to the pilothouse.

Inside our new pilothouse.

Lisa steering from the old pilothouse. Note where the pilothouse ended at the door verses the new pilothouse that has the doors in the same location.

We brought with us four new pieces of artwork to help spruce up our big baby, but haven’t had time to hang them.  The new floors look great, and we now have headboards in the guest bedrooms.  The changes we’ve made, especially the new pilothouse will add to our cruising experience.  Lisa and I can’t wait to get going.

The small bedroom cleaned up.

The small bedroom the way we found it, and the way it will look when our friend Stan arrives.

It’s been overcast and raining all week.  The rain has actually been a nice change, but enough. I can’t believe how hot it is back in Thousand Oaks, CA.  I’m ready for my Southern California weather.  I’m sure it will arrive soon enough in Europe.


About the Author:

Tom Miller graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. He is a consummate adventurer with over 1,000 dives as a recreational scuba diver, and an avid sailor who has traveled 65,000 miles throughout the Pacific including the Hawaiian Islands. Miller has also cruised the canals of Europe on his canal barge and given numerous lectures on cruising the canals of Europe, as well as sailing in the South Pacific. Piloting is also an interest of Miller's, and He has completed over 1,000 hours flying everything from small Cessnas to Lear jets.