Still knowing nothing other than I wanted to start, my first boat restoration was pulled off entirely by committee. My community committee. Gate 3, Sausalito!

Someone knew of a retired flat bottomed cedar skiff, currently serving as a planter outside a realtors office in Sausalito.  It showed up.  

The shipwrights took turns teaching me some basics; how to sharpen tools, scraping, sanding, elemental metal work, how to make oarlock pads and how to seal a dried up old bottom.  They lent me tools.  All kinds of paints, goos fasteners, oars and accoutrements were freely and generously given.  Someone offered to paint the name.

Locally, there was a famous wooden boat named the Diana Dollar.  Tongue in cheek, I decided to name her the Diana Dime. 

Launch day came and a good amount of neighbors and friends treated it as if it was a momentous occasion.  Finally in the water, friends on the docks threw dimes at me, as blessings.

Without fully understanding what I’d taken on, I realized only then, that I now owned my first wooden “yacht”.  I had access to the water beyond a shoreline and I had better quickly learn how to row, what with the fierce afternoon winds, common to the bay.

My first real step into becoming a waterman.

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Diana Talley has been around wooden boats since the 1970s in Sausalito. She is a shipwright by trade. She has built sailboats, fished along the Pacific Coast, and moved to Port Townsend in 1990, creating Taku Marine, a boat repair service she ran with her late partner Rick Petrykowski until the mid 2010s. Now retired, she still lives in Port Townsend.


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