Thursday, February 28, 2013

Boat envy

A brush from some boat work we did.
When we went to see a movie at another kid boat, I have to admit I got a little jealous. Their boat is quite a bit newer than ours, has a nice modern layout, and is just not as tired as our 20-year old boat. I realize that they have a lot more money than we do (they still own their house and are having a vacation home built in an exotic locale) and spent way more on their boat than we did. But you have to appreciate a boat that looks clean after you have cleaned it.

The feeling only lasted a short time though. I actually love our boat. It is home and it is right for us. The boys can live in it and drop their cars on the floor without ruining a perfect finish. It's our home now.

Also, what we are finding is that having a newer boat does not preclude spending a ton of time and money on fixes. The spending-too-much-on-boats club has a lot of members.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


We bought some mint (for mojitos, of course) and basil. We will see whether (1) they survive our brown thumbs* and (2) we are allowed to bring them into the Bahamas. We already failed a little by putting the mint and basil in the same container as they have different sunlight needs.

*The aloe plant that another boat on the dock gave us is already looking a little yellow despite being "indestructible."

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Here fishy, fishy

We went fishing at Anglin's Pier last night. Even if you're not fishing there is a great view of the ocean (although you have to pay a small amount to get on the pier). Sometimes there is really good shrimping--a woman we talked to at Sailorman said she got 60 pounds with very little effort. But there haven't been any good shrimp runs this season yet.

Monday, February 25, 2013

So did you win the lottery?

We have been asked indirectly and directly how we can afford to quit our jobs and live aboard a sailboat. No, we did not win the lottery or inherit money. So, just how can we afford to sail off?

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Oh, mast off

When we had our 26 foot Pearson on Lake Michigan, one year we lowered the mast ourselves with a couple of guys. I'm not saying it was a good idea, but it happened. Another year the crane operator dropped the mast due to mishandling. There were no serious injuries or damages. Today when we had our 67 foot mast taken off to have some work done, it was a whole 'nother ball game.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hurry up and wait

So far there was not a hitch. The workpeople, to be sure--riggers and
what not --were most annoyingly slow; but time cured that.
Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
We are reading Treasure Island right now. It was written in 1883 and yet here we are in 2013, waiting for the riggers. They recently informed us that they could not install our new mast tracks without taking the mast down. Nevermind that two weeks ago they said they could.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The unmitigated joy of it all

We went to the boat show in Miami on Friday. It was cold, gray and rainy. Our jackets were not waterproof. Mark was being difficult and prompting disapproving looks from strangers (sometimes as he ran straight into them). As is often the case in such moments, I felt like a failure as a mother.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


There is a woman who works at the marina who loves animals. She stays after work to feed the stray cats that live in the marina.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Happy Chinese New Year!

Every now and then vendors and others associated with the marina throw random parties. Probably because boaters spend so much freakin' money.*

Monday, February 11, 2013

Tour de boat

Mark and Conrad wanted to give you a video tour of the boat. It's a length and kid-focus that only a grandparent could love--sorry. But it gives a glimpse of the boat (only the port side is shown; the starboard side is similar except that there are closets instead of a galley). It's also messy because of the ongoing projects.

Friday, February 8, 2013

The party don't start 'til I walk in

Brit and Sandy from Halcyon (who are awesome) took us surfing. The jetty got some nice waves off the passing boats and Mark and Conrad were able to stand up and ride a wave in. They were stoked! 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Fear factor

Most European catamarans have hatches in the floor of the boat so that if your
boat turns upside down ("goes turtle"), you have a way to escape. What the...?!
The kids are going through a stage where they are afraid to go to their cabins alone. This predates the boat. At my parents' house, it applied to the bathroom two rooms away from the kitchen where everyone was gathered. It could be related to the "Bloody Mary" discussion started by someone in Conrad's first grade class.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Attitude adjustments

The dot at the top is Matt. We really need to dig out
the good camera. Or get a better photographer.
After hauling (me) and being hauled (Matt) up the mast yesterday, we were both tired, sore and depressed (because after all that, the Wi-Fi repeater seems to work way better with the antenna in the cabin of our boat than on top of the mast). We were starving and really just wanted to order a pizza and call it a day. Matt was really strongly hinting that he would much rather get a pizza than cook. It sounded something like, "Let's just get a pizza."

Friday, February 1, 2013

When you get weary of spending money...

The dinghy that came with our boat was given to the previous owner by his friend. It basically washed up on shore and sat outside the friend's condo, deflated and partially submerged, for something like 4 years. The sun and salt water caused the Hypalon coating to wear away in many spots, which is the death knell for dinghies. Everyone thought it was mold and would give us suggestions on cleaning it. Also, it had been previously painted with paint that was wearing away and leaving a chalky residue on anything that touched it.

When we bought the boat, we had planned to replace the dinghy. A month and countless dollars later, we're less inclined to pay thousands for a new (to us) dinghy. Also, dinghy theft seems to be the most common cruiser-related crime in the Carribean, so we're in no hurry to dump a ton of money into something that is such a desirable target.