Thanksgiving on a Sailboat

thankful_edited-1When you own a sailboat, your life and priorities change.  Celebrating the holiday is much different than at home.  For me, I am most thankful that Joe has finished changing out both toilets (“heads” in boat-speak)

Let’s face it, replacing the boat toilet and permeated hose is the grossest job to do on a sailboat.  Luckily, Joe is up for the challenge, and just finished changing out the hoses and toilet in the forward head.  What a guy!

FullSizeRender(17)Previously, he changed out the aft master head, hoses, macerater, and vented loop.  So, by finishing the forward head, he will have replaced most of the sanitation system on the boat.

So, what do you do with the old toilets?  You wait for recycle day here in Fort Lauderdale, FL, and you place them out in front of your sister’s house with other old boat items.

This is actually a brilliant idea- to recycle unwanted items.  Your old junk is treasure to someone else.  So both heads were placed outside at the curb and bets were placed as to whether someone would take them or not.  Sure enough, the thrones went home with someone, much to my surprise and amusement.

Head 101:  For all my non-sailing friends, there are basically two types of toilets on a boat- manual and electric.  Manual toilets have a hand pump or lever for flushing.  You literally have to pump to fill the bowl, pump to flush and pump to empty the bowl.  Electric heads, you push a button, or a series of buttons to control the water level and flush.  My boat has electric toilets for convenience.

Some heads use seawater for flushing and others use fresh water.  Most offshore sailboats use seawater heads, because fresh water comes at a premium, and my sailboat is no different.

There is actually a debate among sailors over the use of toilet paper- some flush and some do not, instead throwing the used toilet paper away in trash bags.   (Do I hear a collective “eeewWW?”)  The reason behind doing this is that toilet paper clogs the hoses.  For me, I fall into the flush camp, but use paper sparingly.

I could go into other topics such as composting heads, vacumn flush heads, etc., but I won’t today.    After all, it is Thanksgiving here in the US, and many of us are cooking for the feast or sitting down to eat dinner and give thanks.  Wouldn’t want to gross you out.

Anyway,  I am thankful for the new heads on my boat and for the adventure we are on.  What are you thankful for?  Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones!

  11 comments for “Thanksgiving on a Sailboat

  1. November 26, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    It’s all in what’s relevant in each of our worlds!! Having had an RV/5th wheel, I totally understand the “head” thing and how important dialog about it’s many “issues”. Blessings to you and your family….sending hugs………………….

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 26, 2015 at 11:36 pm

      Hope you have a wonderful day! Hugs back at you!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • November 27, 2015 at 12:12 pm

        Sitting here in the early morning darkness, I still can’t grasp that Thanksgiving has come and gone!!! I think so much as happened (for ALL of us!) in the recent months that the days seem almost surreal. Blessings, hugs and prayers for safety comin’ at ya always………..

        Liked by 1 person

  2. farmquilter
    November 26, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    I hope your are enjoying Thanksgiving with your family! I love hearing about your nautical adventures!! I bet those heads are decorating someone’s garden, planted with flowers!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 26, 2015 at 11:37 pm

      That is what I was thinking too! Hahaha!! Happy Thanksgiving!!


  3. Barbara Kiehn
    November 26, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    I am thankful for family and friends that I love. Definitely thankful I met you, all those years ago, hope to see you soon. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 26, 2015 at 11:38 pm

      It will be to see you, Barb! Hugs to you and the family!


  4. moondance38
    November 26, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving! We always recycled usable stuff by putting near a marina dumpster (saving dumpster divers from extra work!) or leaving in a marina lounge. We also flushed paper and never had a problem!

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 27, 2015 at 1:15 pm

      Harriet, great idea to leave it at the dumpster! Will file that away. Looking forward to hearing about your favorite places in the Bahamas! Have a wonderful cruise!


  5. Becky
    November 26, 2015 at 9:45 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 27, 2015 at 1:12 pm

      Becky, hope you had a fabulous day! Can’t wait to hear all about it!


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