Beside the winch shed, in front of the parking lot at Gannon and Benjamin Marine Railway in Vineyard Haven, the boatyard stores its blocking. When the boatyard needs blocking it needs great stacks of it, to roll boats in and out of the shop and onto the cradles that ride on the tracks down into the harbor.

Dispersed for the winter’s projects, the crew at the yard left the blocking in a jumble. One morning, while they waited for the arrival of a boat on a trailer from the ferry, Ross Gannon and his wife Kirsten Scott re-stacked the blocks. They swept and folded the jumbled tarps. They picked up the bits of trash the winter’s high tides spat out of the harbor. By herself Kirsten raked it all out.

Ross Gannon gets to work. — Ray Ewing

Brad Abbott and Nat Benjamin, who along with Ross own and run the yard, abandoned whatever they were working on and joined in setting blocks and jack stands when the boat arrived. Here and Now was designed by Nat and built in the yard in 2005. On the trailer was a handsome, black 38-foot wooden sloop with obvious deficiencies. In Maine the back of its keel had been sawed off and its rudder and propeller shaft removed. Planks were cut back all around the sternpost. Dimensional spruce and plywood had been bolted and screwed around the opening so the boat could even ride on the trailer.

“It was the fault of the yard where it was stored,” said Michael Naumann, who along with his wife Marie Warburg, are the boat’s owners. “Somehow it was left for the winter with water in the bilge.”

As the timbers froze and thawed through a Maine winter, all around where the ice and water pooled, the boat tore itself apart. The repairs were begun two years ago, but Doug Hylan and Ellory Brown, the boatbuilders in Maine who began the work, found they were without the manpower to finish it.

Ross Gannon and his wife Kirsten Scott doing the chores together. — Harry Ricciardi

“Housing is a challenge to retaining people here too,” Brad Abbott said. “We’re just lucky right now to have a core crew that’s really rooted on the Island. This will be a great project for us.”

Michael and Marie were married on an Island beach while Here and Now was being built. They are both grateful for an excuse to come back. Sailing the boat has become a big part of their life together.

Mostly they live in Germany, but for four to six weeks every summer they move aboard the boat and live along the coast of Maine, where friends and family visit and cruise with them.

Here and Now was designed and built at G&B in 2005, but now resides in Maine. — Ray Ewing

“Marie has been sailing since she was three years old,” Michael said. “I learned when I was 60. When you have that much experience there is no shouting; it is always calm. We treasure our time on the boat.”

At around 80 years old, Michael still feels Here and Now is the right boat for him and Marie.

“The rig is easily manageable. The boat has all the amenities for an older couple. We have an oven. And hot water.”

Ross Gannon, along with the crew in the yard, intends to bolt the new section of keel in, replace the sternpost and put all the planking back together in time for use this season.

“It’s not that challenging of a job,” Ross said. “We’re just replacing some parts.”