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Aurora Restoration Project Part 23
by Christopher Wilson - Published March 24, 2016

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Many people have told me in the past years "this ship will take many millions of dollars to bring back and there's no way you can do it. You should just sell it for scrap"

So far these same people are stunned over the progress we have made. Could you let a ship like this go to scrap?

We will work hard to not only save the Aurora but to make sure that every single day she moves forward in her restoration.

Never let people tell you that you can't. There is nothing in this world that you can't do no matter who you are there is always a way regardless of age or disabilities.

Back to the story.

We left off with Butch calling us out with a couple of our crew members waiting behind him.

I am not about to allow this to happen. So I walked onto the deck and I told him that today was his day to go. He yelled back that I should come down to the dock and talk. So I did.

I came very close to him and said it again. It's your time to leave and I need you to do so quietly.

I don't think he had expected me to walk up to him. He appeared a bit shocked. I could see in his eyes that he was going to have another one of his fits.

Right about the time the other crew members made themselves known. He was now one and we were three.

We escorted him effortlessly to gather his belongings and then off the property as we changed the locks right in front of him. He knew it was not a good idea to come back or cause trouble.

Over the coming years he buddied back up with Indy and amazingly enough Butch seemed to pull his life together becoming a radio personality. I didn't see that coming.

Now Indy was down a watchman. His boat was a disaster. Butch had left it looking like a meth ridden homeless camp.

Indy spent the next days cleaning out all of the mess that Butch had made. Indy and I developed a better understanding of one another to what I was willing to tolerate from him. Indy knew I was doing him a favor by allowing him to stay here and have some dock space free of charge.

It was back to business. We had lots of work to do in order to make this ship presentable if we needed to find a new home at the end of our lease.

I had two options for a new location at this time. One option was a small Marina in Stockton California that I had been lightly negotiating with. It had new owners and they seemed to see the value of having a grand ship at the Marina to draw clients. They were anxious perhaps a little over anxious to give me a lease with my demands. So I had my attorneys draft one up.

The other location was in San Francisco and was the most beautiful location that I could ever imagine. Right next to AT&T park. The person in charge was also willing to give a lease but I knew this location would be difficult to acquire if not impossible. ( Remember I don't like the word impossible. )

After a couple of weeks I had my lease in hand for the small Marina in Stockton. It was a very one sided lease as I knew they wanted the ship at their marina much more then I did. It was maybe the most one sided lease I could think of but it was designed to keep the ship safe. I didn't expect a lease to cost so much to have put together. There was a great deal of investigation into putting this together.

I presented this lease to the owners of the marina owners knowing full well that I or the ship may never even see this location. They read the lease but the look in their eyes told me that they didn't understand the majority of it's contents. Just the same the owner and general manager signed and it was done. I was expecting to edit the lease but nope they signed it.

Meanwhile things were heating up in San Francisco. The lease holder of the pier really wanted the ship at that location even if he had to help financially. He wanted to make it possible. I was game to work towards that of course. As long as I could keep the Aurora safe.

At least if San Francisco failed, I had a backup location.

Our job now was to make the ship as beautiful as she could be with months before our lease in this small town would end.

The real work is about to begin.

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