Saturday, December 27, 2014

The First Party!

We had our first "test run" party on the flouse the day after we closed.  Serendipitously, that Saturday not only was Virginia in town for the annual girls weekend pub crawl, but also was the annual Oakland Alameda Lighted Yacht Parade.

Dom spent the day down on the flouse, with a horrible cold, removing debris from the previous owners and taking some basic provisions down like our patio furniture, so we had some place to serve and relax.  In addition, he checked to make sure the water supply worked, the toilet flushed, the hot water heater functioned.

As the house had sent vacant for a few years, we had no idea the shape or stability of some of the working systems.  Luckily all seemed to work pretty well.

While Dom was working away, I was down on Park Street with a group of fun gals catching up on our annual retreat.  Usually we travel to new cities and terrorize their streets, but for a variety of reasons Alameda seemed to make sense this year.  I left the group a little early to check in with Dom, who is now ill to the point of going home to bed, and to make sure we had everything somewhat in order at the flouse.

A small group of friends from the Encinal Yacht club showed up with libations and snacks, and then the tipsy girls showed up slightly later, just as the lighted parade was getting started.

The parade this year was quite small, with only about 15 boats entered.  It honestly felt like it was over before it began.  That said, it was a great event to host a small quick party to see how the flouse responded.

All told we had 16 people on board, found that all of our household systems worked fine, got a ton of ideas/suggestions for future renovations, and were grateful for all of the supportive and kind words our friends had to say about our new adventure.

The only way the night could have been better is if Dom had been feeling well enough to be there.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Back to the Estuary

For the past year or so we have been earnestly looking to purchase our own home in Alameda.  It has been an uphill battle as prices are expensive and the inventory in town has been limited.  We got VERY lucky this year when one of the floating homes in the Barnhill Marina came up for sale.
We went for our first visit on November 8th and after a crazy, fortunate string of events, had our offer accepted and closed on December 5th.

The floating house (or the flouse, as we've been calling it) was built in 1969, and was one of the original houses in the Marina.  Richard Boland had partnered with Barney Barnhill to fulfill his vision of a floating house community on the Alameda Estuary.  Alas, upon reaching out to Richard, we found out that our house is not one of the ones he built.  We inquired at the Marina to see if they knew anything of it's origin and they had no idea.  At this point we know that our home is a bit of an orphan and is definitely different in size, construction and hull material than most of our neighbors.  If anyone has any ideas of where to look for more information on this history of the marina or the flouse, please let us know!

We are beyond excited to back on the Estuary and will be posting updates on our adventure here.