At the very beginning of my bike tour I stayed with some very good friends, the conversation turned to money and surviving in this world. I should note that none of us sitting around that table ever have anything to worry about. We all are resourceful hard working people who know the difference berweens dreams and reality. The conversation was getting pretty deep when one of them snickered, well we know how you got your boat. “this ought to be good I thought to myself” and so I asked, how did I get my boat.
The answer had me laughing so hard I almost fell out of my chair, they thought I took a priviate loan from my family. Let me set the record straight, I aquired Sookie through hard work and determination, scrimping and saving and going without. I sold anything and everything I needed to and didn’t borrow one single cent, I was in the middle of a divorce during the whole process, it wasn’t easy. It also took me a lifetime on the water working my way through a dozen lesser boats before I was blesses with such a fine ship
I don’t borrow money and even if I wanted to I cancelled all my credit almost 15 years ago, my fico score is zero and that’s how it will remain, I don’t have a credit card or a golden parachute, nobody is going to jump in and save me and even if I had one I wouldn’t use it. I could have gone on disability at the age of 15 and retired for life, the subject comes up once a year and I decline it, I can make my own way though life, without struggle the rewards are zero. Cycling the pacific coast with double vision may have been the stupidest thing I’ve ever done but the challenge payed off in ways I still don’t know how to describe. Every day out there my life was hanging in the balance, one mistake and it could have and would have been all over.
So back to boats and financing and how to make the dream happen as promised. I spend about half the year voulinteering my services between things that matter to me and boaters who have read too much of the crap I spew on these pages. Sure this blog is 100% honest and transparent but I can assure you many of the things I’ve experienced over the years is a lot more fun when you are reading it in fromt of your fire place in that big leather recliner with a hot buttered rum.
My annual budget is less than 6k often much less. I get between 300-500 a year in donations and appreciate the hell of them and the people that send them but they don’t support this lifestyle. I live frugally, make all my meals from scratch which is usually a pile of lentils with onions and garlic or some other form of cheap meal. When I do get paid which isn’t often I stock the shit out of the boat finding sales on this or that. I am fully insured, not against myself but against all the other idiots out there who have absolutely no respect for other people dreams, i was hit twice this year, both times it took more effort to hit me than it would have to not hit me, I’m continually shocked by how little respect boaters have for other boaters boats.
I have no car, I ride my bike and have for 8 years. To successfully become car-less I had to get rid of my house, move into the boat and take a shitty job, which coincidentally is why my marriage ended, worth it! I’ve heard all sorts of excuses why people can’t go car-less but the truth is they simply don’t really want to which is fine, just stop spouting off about it. I have no phone, no bills of any sort and purchase very little beyond the scope of the boat or things for my recent bike trip. Sure my new 35 degree sleeping bag cost 400 bucks but the one I retired had been used over 2,000 times, do the math, you get what you pay for. I wear my clothes till they fall off my body and then cut them into rags, my shoes have holes through the bottom before they are replaced and I haven’t not been cold since the day I moved aboard almost 9 years ago. I work shitty jobs that pay shit and suck but only long enough to fund the next journey. I haven’t made any concrete sailing plans for the next 12 months but sail we will. I will also spend january and February in Maui working on a writing project and in the spring or fall I will finish the bike tour that my knee pulled me off this year. Between all that I will work when I can, chill and work on the boat inbetwen all that and still have plenty of time for daily adventures afoot and on Brompty. I’m always shocked when people go on diets, I weigh 150 lbs soaking wet, if you want to be fit and heatlty this just might be the lifestyle for you. The truth is we all are really living the way we choose to, if you don’t have a boat it’s your choice. If you don’t make enough money it’s your choice . If you are dating an abusive idiot it’s your choice. Once you realize that everything you have is because it’s what you have chosen life is easy. I chose to be a professional blogger and as such make less than 500 bucks a year living my dream but I’m obviously happy as fuck, every morning when I open my eyes my life is my own.
Everything when it comes to living the dream is easier when you are a couple “dinks” but I remain single because I already have enough anchors in my life. If you are in or planning on a partnership choose wisely, alterior motives will sink your dreams faster than a pilot whale protecting her pup, as will debt of any kind unless you have a passive income, i wish I did :).
No, you don’t need to ask me how I do it, my way won’t work for you, find your own, dive in now because later will never transpire. Hell if my neurotic, flighty, dumb shit ex can do it and she is every day and loving it so can you. The last time I saw her she had 300 bucks and a one way ticket somewhere, from what I’ve heard through the grapevine she is killing it, I always knew she would and that she could once she set her mind to it. I guess what I’m saying is talk is cheap, someday will never come and anybody can do it. You don’t have to circumnavigate to find this life, start small, live large and always have a ton of booze and food on board for the awesome visitors that will show up and make your life truly better. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the best part of this life is the people you will meet.