What is also true, as we were told when she touched the water for the first time, 'She'll never look as good again as she does right now' and whilst one doesn't wish to contemplate that, I have indulged myself with a few more pictures for posterity.
So having wrestled the staysail out of its bag and attached it, we motored off down the river to find some wind. We emerged into a quiet Solent with smooth water and a light breeze which was perfect for checking that everything was working. Main went up smoothly and jib and staysail unfurled with ease and we pottered about just getting the feel of her and grinning like idiots until the rapidly falling temperature encouraged us to return to the mooring. Job done with the exception of the chute which still needs a bit of setting up as we need to actually buy the cleats we decided on earlier.
What else is on the horizon ? Well the thing I have dreaded I can avoid no longer.... the material to make the cover has arrived. I look forward to many hours wrestling with recalcitrant canvas which muttering the mantra - get someone else to do it....For the technically minded I am using Odyssey fabric made by Marchem, colour 'Sand' with Sauleda binding (colour beige is best match) and two YKK No. 10 zips (beige) again. The fabric is reasonably lightweight as this cover is just for use in harbour and we don't have much room to store it. I will reinforce where the eyelets go for good measure. The plan is a two part cover providing shelter over the hatchway or with a back section zipped on to provide a cover over the whole cockpit.
Also, I appear to be developing a sideline in boat leatherwork. having helped out a friend in fixing their steering wheel cover, I was presented with a large bowsprit traveller which needed some TLC. Having contemplated it, I felt it was worth of some very special leather I had begged to buy from a 'seconds' room at a Northampton leather factory. It is supple and really well oiled, took the curve of the ring perfectly and with a bit of assistance, the owner was able to transform the sorry looking thing to something more respectable (see below).