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Date: 18 July 2017. Small Powerboat Option.

janice142

My website has opened me up to new friendships near and far. I post and folks read. Over 3 million so far! That total is beyond amazing to me. I truly am blessed to lead this life. What is even better is when I discover someone mentioning me in an online forum. A fellow boater named Sea Dreaming on Cruiser's Forum said this: CF member janice142 has a blog about life aboard a trawler. Very charming!  I admit I puffed up a notch at that.


That someone I never met reads my site is beyond cool.  This is a sort of legacy few of my generation are privileged to enjoy. Often there is the feeling of being invisible once past the half century mark. I seem have escaped that via my website. I am so grateful folks read my stuff. Gosh though, I wish I was as smart as my Daddy was...
 

Just last year I met Janice and Marty at the St. Pete Boat Show. They recognized me and said hello.

It was wonderful to meet them. They are nice folks!
 

I'm not sure what was scarier: #1) That the photos are current so I really do look like that
or, #2) That it is only going to get worse from here on out. The calendar is not my friend!

I don't now about you, but when I look in the mirror I see a much younger and thinner redhead.

Correction: It was in 2015 I met Janice and Marty. Time surely slips by quickly doesn't it?!?
 

But I digress...
A woman named Keri was seeking advice regarding a life in paradise aboard a sailboat. That is something I can well understand. I wanted that too. We all want our nirvana. Mine's aboard Seaweed. This is my advice to those wondering if boating would work in your circumstances.


Having a boatload of money is not required.
It's helpful no doubt to have a larger pot of gold.
More money equals more choices.


For those considering a sailboat, I shall be so bold as to suggest a power boat (small!) might be an alternative worth considering. You'll be afloat and the view is spectacular.

The same sights are seen from the aft deck of my 23'er as from the mega-million dollar yacht nearby. Frankly my view is probably better because I can anchor closer to shore.
 


A dolphin is swimming just off the transom of Seaweed.


As for learning about this life on a limited budget, I do believe you'll find value perusing the rest of my website. I'm doing it and enjoying life so much more than any could imagine. It's been 9 years on this boat.

She's almost perfect except for the stuff that is broken, needs upgrading or tweaking.

There is always something that draws my attention. More time is spent diagnosing and figuring out what is wrong than in the actual fix. I like the mental challenge, most of the time.

Also, it is wonderful to have a cadre of friends to call for advice when things are going belly up.
 


Cheryl and I went to lunch when we were in Gulfport with our boats. That was fun.
 

Chatting with other boaters offers perspective. My problem of the moment is not the only occurrence of its kind. Another boater has had a similar event. They know how it was solved. Sharing our triumphs is good. I know I appreciate the guidance when I'm going off course. I tend to look for the complicated solution when there is something easy I could and should try first.


Staying in touch is critical. How I do that is described in the
Lonely No More article. If you only telephone when you want something folks will duck (avoid) your calls.

A simple "I was just thinking about you and wondered how you are doing" phone call can reestablish relationships that have faded. I recommend it.

 


Contact is important too for sanity's sake. I remember one Christmas where I saw not a living soul. No signs of life, no cars driving in the distance, no boats moving. It was spooky.

Were it not for the cell phone I would have wondered if I had fallen into one of those *TEOTWAWKI scenarios described in the dystopian novels and by YouTube preppers and survivalists! That last Christmas in Carrabelle was a pivotal point in my life. I am grateful I have a boat that will take me out for an afternoon or weeks at a time. Life is good afloat.

*TEOTWAWKI: The End Of The World As We Know It, i.e. doomsday or Apocalypse causing societal collapse and anarchy.

 

Mother used to say: The ideal boat sleeps two, feeds four and drinks six.
 


I believe that to be true. Mine however sleeps one, feeds two and I don't drink. Finding the right boat is not easy. Deciding what best suits your intended IMMEDIATE use is important.


Don't buy a world cruiser until you have spent time living aboard a coastal boat. Once you know what fits you, selecting your Last Boat will not be overwhelming. You won't be a novice. That boating experience will save you money in the long term. Knowing what you can live with along with what will never work are two items that can make or break this life afloat.
 

As a woman alone I had a few items on my checklist that were important to me:

  • Diesel engine. I bought a boat with a gasser.

  • I wanted a place to entertain where the fellow would not be staring at my bunk. Didn't want anyone to get any "ideas" you know?

  • See out. No caves. I wanted to be able to sit down and look over the anchorage. Watching nature is an important part of my happiness quotient.


This is my dinette area. I do most of my daytime living here:


Continuing with my list of Must Have's:

  • A convenient head. I'm at an age where that's a part of my night ritual.

  • Be able to go forward in a blow to check my anchor. That is not great aboard Seaweed however I can do it. That's another compromise I made.
  • Not too many steps. I have bad knees (three surgeries) so the up/down thing needed to be curtailed as much as possible.


No boat will meet all your requirements. You'll be choosing what will work and making adaptations. I chose an inadequate boat that did not have all I needed. She had enough, and in the intervening nine years (I bought her on Pi Day 2008) she's almost perfect.
 


Chartering a boat similar (ideally identical) to your Dream Boat can help solidify your opinions about life aboard that model. Boat layout is important to me. I wanted a galley up. Many wish more space for entertaining with the galley down below.
 

Ron of Doodle Bug, formerly Aces & Kings, enjoys his go-fast fishing boat. He steers from the fly bridge.

Ron on the fly-bridge of his Viking40.


Ron likes running his boat from the fly-bridge. Lots of folks do like being up where they can watch the waters. That is especially convenient in areas with coral reefs like the Bahamas. I'm not keen on being in the sun so prefer a pilothouse for inside steering.

Read more, learn more, ask questions, fine-tune your plan and then ask for help implementing it. In the meantime visit YachtWorld for eye candy. See what appeals to you and what you don't like.



This is the view from my galley sink. I love that lacy Thames River tablecloth turned into a curtain.
 

As a trawler owner, I wanted my galley up so I could see out while cooking and washing dishes. This is also a benefit because of my age. I drink more because it is convenient to get out a beverage from my reefer aka refrigerator. If the reefer were down below I don't know that I would "feel like" going up and down steps just to get something to wet my whistle.

My friend, looking for his Last Boat, wants a covered cockpit. He calls it his back porch and imagines himself sitting back there reading his Kindle. Yep, you guessed it: he's been in my cockpit reading and found it very relaxing.

I've rattled on a bit. This life is possible however you need to absolutely have the correct boat. I believe for me (and possibly you too) that a power boat, houseboat or even shanty-boat might be an option to consider. I love love love my Seaweed.
 


I can well imagine living out my days aboard her. She's not fancy. Seaweed is my home, my shelter, my safety and my happiness. I would not want to live anyplace else.


Good luck to all those seeking their Dream Boat. I hope you find your happiness and bliss. I have!

I'd love to hear what boats you considered at the beginning of your boat search.
And, what boat did you end up shopping for/buying?

COMMENTS:
 

2017

Categories: Boat Talk, Boats, Characters, Locations,

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