If you are following my blog, you may have read my last post about Whittaker Pointe Marina. Boy was we happy to pull from the docks of those greedy privileged folk.
The plan now was to head to hurricanes which was a 30 minute drive but a 6 hour sail. We left early in the morning with plans to get the boat set up and ready for the crane in the morning. As discussed it would cost $175 to remove the mast and another $175 to put it back up, no on the hard fee for the mast ( which was a good deal in our minds for doing everything ourselves ) IT was going to be a hot and miserable next few days but the plan was to remove the mast, do all the rerigging, rebed everything on the deck with epoxy, and get that mast up in 4 days… Hustle hard because hurricane season was upon us and we needed to get out of North Carolina before our insurance goes up to accommodate being in a hot zone.
Ok so day 1:
We were told that the channel in was plenty deep and would easily make do with our 6 ft draft… Well… The channel into the spot where a crane could be is actually 5 feet at deepest but luckily the mud is extra squishy and we were able to get through it anyway…We tied up the boat and the crane had arrived shortly. We were ready but we were not allowed to start until the hurricane employee showed up. He showed up an hour late. We set the timer and got the mast off is 45 minutes. After finishing up we were telling the men thank you and somehow it was mentions that the crane is a 2 hour minimum. We didnt think much of it we figured that was factored into our $175.
Day 2/3: John worked his butt off redoing all the rigging in the hot sun from 8 am – sunset. Hurricanes has an ice maker so it was refreshing to always have cold water but boyyyy was it hot! I gradually pulled anything that was on the deck out , checked for rot, sanded around the holes and cleaned them out and then filled them back with epoxy. Jenton played at a neighbor boat who was a mother of 3 very well behaved children. Once then went down they all rode bikes around the boat yard and had a blast collecting shark teeth.
Day 4. We were ready.. John went into the office to talk about a package he was expecting and to inform her what time the crane would be arriving today. She pointed out that the crane was here for 2 hours the last time and John told her no, that is was one hour because they were waiting on her guy to appear, She then made this a point to argue about and was very upset that we couldn’t take responsibility for the crane fee because she required an employee to be there who honestly just told the crane operator where to go.. We could have don’t that… but regardless she was upset that it was on her to cover that. So this time the employee was only 15 minutes late… We got the mast up in 50 minutes. John did all the work on fastening, climbed up and down the mask , guided the crane where to go and we were STOKED that it was over and we could be on our way…
Well, Surprise the bill was handed to us. They charged us for 2 hours both ways’ $45 an hour charge for their employee, and a mast fee for being on the hard. oh and they require a 2 week minimum slip fee..
To be honest : Had they been honest about it all we would pay the bill we agreed upon but instead they pigeon holded us into using their services, and charged us a ridiculous sum for work that we did all by ourselves. For the price they quoted us for we could have saved the energy and had someone else do all the work but we chose to be frugal.
At this point John is pretty upset but hes one of those folks that get extra clear headed when drama arises and will spit facts all day until he comes to a fair agreement. So into the office he went, Before a discussion could even begin it escalated to a yelling match between the husband and wife against John. Her excuse was that they never had a 2 hour minimum and wasn’t informed, and our argument was that wasn’t our problem. It wasn’t just that tho, it was also all the other charges that were not mentioned in the. 3 phone calls we had with these people before getting out boat over to them. Bottom line was we were not going to pay for it and their solution was to continue to yell at John. After some solid time John asked the husband to stop being demonstrative towards him when they are just trying to have a conversation.. The owner clearly doesn’t know what that word means and continued to yell at him saying that he never laid a hand on him and has cameras to prove it.. John explained what the word meant and the owner proceeded with “If you even think about leaving a negative review I will sue you for infringement of character”.. Well sorry to break it to you but thats not how that works and best bet we immediately left reviews. His response to John explaining to him why he couldn’t sue us was a super mature ” Oh so your a mechanic and a lawyer now ” John gave him a final offer on $10 more than what we agreed upon before coming here, paid in cash. He agreed but I suspect its because he was sick of being schooled by a man half his age.
Its sad to think that we probably aren’t welcomed there any more, But we did hear from other locals that have been there awhile that that type of behavior and unexpected bills from them happens a lot and if you back down to him raising his voice he wins which is his strategy.
Hurricane boat yard is cheap, and is a great place for DIY work.. However.. The owners are shady and if you aren’t clear on the prices be clear. They have no shame in adding onto the bill just to see what you will pay for.