Re Metau
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Neptune
About Our Floating Home
Big Living on a Little Boat
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About Our Floating Home
Big Living on a Little Boat
2005 to Present
The Original State
~ Original State ~
The Berth
(or 'Bed Room')
One of the attractions to this type of vessel is the layout of the main berth. Most boats of this size have as their main bed a V-berth located up in the bow of the boat – aptly named for its shape. Typically you climb in feet first, and sleep facing the hull of the bow.The forward most point or front of the boat. Your pillows will naturally be drawn to the floor, and the amount of calisthenics required to crawl out means responding to any urgent event is doubly challenging. In any event, your bedfellow will be grumpily disturbed.

Our first boat, Points Unknown had a V-berth. I HATED sleeping in a V-berth! It felt like I was in a coffin. And I discovered that I can not tolerate having my legs confined.

Han Christian 33 Ts, however are designed with a Pullman berth on the port side forward of the main salon. This space is so large we have the equivalent of a queen sized mattress, with plenty of room to sprawl our limbs. In fact I don't even need to modify a set of household sheets for our bed.

Our Coordinates
The bulkheadA wall in a ship that divides functional areas and provides rigidity to the hull. that separates the saloon from the berth is the largest, flat surface onboard. Most photos I've seen of other HC33T's suggest that their owners lay with their heads along this wall – facing forward. We originally orientated ourselves this way as well.
Updated Berth
~ Updated Berth ~

But eventually it made more sense to us to rotate 180° and sleep facing aft. This put a long built-in shelf directly above our heads, conveniently located to catch our books, water bottles, anything that needed dumped before drifting off to sleep. And the big flat surface we now face sports a big flat screen TV. I also prefer gazing upon the wide open saloon rather than toward the smaller space of the head.

Air and Light
There are two bronze ports along the side of the cabin top. Both open, but since we're most often bow to wind, we don't get a lot of natural breeze over the berth through them. This is one downside to the configuration. Sailboats typically have a large forward hatch that scoops up the air and drops it down onto the V-Berth.

A friend provided me with some ingeniously engineered side scoops that work very nicely though, and we've hung two 12V fans above our feet, one aimed at each of us. We do okay, but truth be told, there have been some unbearable nights in the tropics.

The bulkhead at our feet has a hollow space of about 6" between, so we were able to use this gap and install an AC vent that directs cold air right into the compartment. The air conditioner, however, is only used when we have shore power from a dock. When not plugged into the grid, our noisy generator would keep the entire anchorage awake, and we don't want to be rude just so we can be comfortable. At least that's how Don feels.

But our blood has thinned properly. We typically dunk ourselves in the evening, enjoying our sundowner cocktails while floating in the ocean and cooling down our cores for the night. And then there's always the hammock.

As far as light is concerned, we have more than is necessary. There are two directional lamps at our feet (probably why people put their pillows there,) and Don installed a gooseneck lamp above our head. There is also a dome light under the gunwale that usually only gets used for mood lighting. And we have a small brass oil lamp hanging near the opening to the berth. It's enough to heat up the area on those rare cold nights, or to set the mood on the hot ones.

Neptune's Hangout
~ Neptune's Hangout ~
Wardrobe & Storage
Under the berth along the front are two lockers with 6 drawers between arranged in two columns. My monster sewing machine fits into one of the lockers like it was custom made for the space! Behind all of that storage, under the mattress are three big chambers. But these are so very difficult to access we avoid putting anything regularly needed in them, and scarcely ever have them filled.

Directly across from the berth on the starboardRight side of a boat when facing forward. side is our hanging locker. It is larger than most closets found in 19th century homes, completely lined in solid teak and even has an overhead light. There is a fairly wide shelf above that locker, and Neptune has laid claim to the area in front of the bronze port – a perfect fur-sunning spot.

Directly aft of that locker was where most HC33Ts located their nav stations. But our unique configuration moved the power panel and chart table aft. In its place we have an open cubby, a large flat counter, 6 deep drawers and another closed cubby underneath. This is also where our 'fireplace' (a small propane heater with an open flame) is installed.

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod
How connected I've become to Re Metau is often revealed to me in my dreams. I have visions of us merged into one entity, she as my roots and I as her compass. Like a chimera, we go sailing as one down some path, be it road or meadow or river, to wherever my imagination wanders. She is like a protective shield to me of sorts, in that wherever we go in my mind, I feel at home.

From the time I was a child, I loved Eugene Field's poem about rocking to sleep in a wooden sailing shoe. And now as an adult, I get to actually live it! I get to see that imaginative crystal light as the stars reflect on the water, and experience that dreamlike sea of dew. It's lovely to watch the moon play peek-a-boo at the port, to hear the lapping waves caress the hull, and to fall asleep in the soft sway of the wind.

Check out our Boat Projects to learn more about our upgrades!
  • New Mattress(Twice)
  • Installed Reading Lamp
  • Added Privacy Curtain
  • Modified Shelving
  • Installed 12v Fans
  • Mounted Flat Screen TV