Its 2:30 pm on Monday, I’ve been unemployed for 10 of the last 12 months the budget is shot and my list of boat projects is growing faster than the US budget deficit. Fuck it I’m having a beer.
I never sweat the small things, say what you want about the economy the real numbers are out there for everyone to see. When I spent my life savings on my little cutter many may have called me a fool and for good reason. Now almost three years later my investment has proven itself a wise one. I’m nowhere near finished with my refit but the boat is a safe dry haven paid in full and a home with no faults tucked away on my secret island almost ready to launch.
I’m often asked what the actual cost is and the only answer I know to give is everything you have. Cutting the lines and saying goodbye to one chapter to open a new one was the hardest and smallest part. Now my address is general delivery and the world as small as it might be with my aging dog is still my oyster. How to continue is a challenge I suspect all voyagers deal with on a near monthly basis.
Because I have chosen to stay in the Salish Sea till Chloe goes to the big field in the sky”which I hope will be many years form now” I have it pretty easy. The only problem is that most work in this area is seasonal. I can work and get paid a very high salary all spring and summer buts that’s when I want to be sailing.
With parsimony a little is sufficient; without it nothing is sufficient; but frugality makes a poor man rich. ~Unkown
We all have the dream of a partner who wants everything we want in life and just as badly but that’s not my reality. My reality is that I’m alone on this journey and that’s fine by me. It wasn’t that long that I was freezing my ass off in Wisconsin dreaming of warmer winters and a boat, any boat that would carry me on a magic carpet ride from port to port experiencing everything the world has to offer. Doing it alone is far easier that the alternative.
“So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself: who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?”
~Hunter S. Thompson
In the blink of an eye I found that boat but she was in a million pieces and once again budget restrictions had me chained to the dock. Now just short of three years into my 5 year refit plan the boat is finally at a starting point to where I have few restrictions, the dock lines have been cut and life is good. I’ve been hoarding a can here and a bag of rice there to the point where I have a pretty good stock. Every upgrade had been in economy for the long term. It has cost a fortune to get the boat where she sits but the extra time and money I have spent will ensure greater safety and more reliability and a boat that is as fun to look at as she is to sail. Now I can sit back take a breath and enjoy the fruits of my labor.
“I’ve got nothing to do today but smile.”
I have friends with all manners of boats and budgets and while we all have a different ideas of what we need and want we all work equally hard to maintain our chosen lifestyle. I met a gentleman last summer who had brought his mega yacht and full crew from the East Coast through Panama and up to Alaska for the summer and was on his way home. We discussed the cost of our cruising lifestyles and he admitted it always cost more than he had budgeted but that it was always worth it.
On the occasions that I run out of money I never worry about it. I have a boat full of supply’s and it gives me a well needed opportunity to do cosmetic work. Sookie is my calling card so I always keep her in top form. It may be a struggle here and there but the ends justify the means. Its 49 degrees today and will be warm all week. With each small project checked off the list I’m one step closer to floating my little home.
As far as boats and budgets are concerned I cant predict yours any better than I can the weather.
From the log of Sookie 2014 Preparing to launch. Tomorrow looks like it may be partly cloudy with a chance of rain.
There is nothing in saving money. The thing to do with it is to put it back into yourself, into your work, into the thing that is important, into whatever you are so much interested in that it is more important than money. ~Henry Ford