When we were cruising on Callipygia we maintained a more-or-less-daily journal in which we recorded pretty much everything that happened, in more-or-less detail. We called this the "Boat Notes'. We included trip-related information that didn't get into the Deck Log, as well as day-to-day details of boat management. What broke, and how/when it was repaired. Who we got parts or advice from. When we paid the bills, and who we met. How we felt, and wildlife seen. This is where we put all the items we didn't want to forget. Notes of discussions with service people (this saved us $5,000 once when we got in a dispute), what we ordered and when. We pasted business and boatcards in here, since we could usually remember about what date (or where we were) when we met someone. When we got sick, we put in here the name of the doctor, and what medication was prescribed.
Entries were hand written (small), and when we took things apart we made drawings in here of how things were put together. When we inventoried or measured things, we made notes in the Boat Notes for future reference. We taped small papers in here with scotch tape if we wanted to be able to find them someday in the future.
We put the day and date in the margin and drew a box round it, so it was easy to find a particular entry when leafing through. When we did a maintenance item, we put an "M" in a circle in the margin, so it was easy to spot if we forget to put it in the maintenance log. If something broke or needed attention we put a big asterisk in the margin, so it was s easy to find that if we forget to log it in the defect book. The older we got, the fuzzier our memories became, so we relied on various tools like the Boat Notes to help us to refer back to when, and whether, something happened.
At the back of the book we keep track of their daily expenditures, totalling the amount for each day.
One college-ruled 100-sheet spiral notebook lasted about a year and we found the Notes to be invaluable on more than one occasion. Now, that we're RV'ing, we use pretty much the same format for our RV log. Under the date in the margin, however, we also make a note of where we started the day, and where we ended it if we moved. In the latter case we also record the starting and finishing odometer, and thus the miles traveled.
Copyright 2005 The Trouser Rollers. All Rights Reserved.