For years we've made it a habit to hang the dinghies on halyards at night. It's part of what we call the "Galactic way" - our general approach to operating the ship. If the dinghies are hanging out of the water, they're a lot less likely to go wandering in the night.
On this last haulout, I saw that the topsides paint was getting scratched up where we hang the dinghy. So ever since we left Valdivia, we've been leaving both dinghies in the water every night, tied to the stern, just like most every other traveling sailboat does.
You can see where this is going.
Last night someone cut the painter of the Little Dipper, our hard rowing dinghy. And it is as gone as a dinghy can be.
We're going to miss that little boat. Elias has rowed around a bunch of anchorages in it all by himself, and we had some ripping sails with it at Amanu last season. We still have the sailing rig, if you're interested.
So, over seven and a half years of sailing we've now had two outboards and a dinghy stolen. I wonder if this makes us slow learners?