A Glimpse of The Sweet Life – Sailing Our Dream Boat

A Glimpse of The Sweet Life – Sailing Our Dream Boat

We’ve dreamed of living on a sailboat for almost a decade and now we’re right on the cusp of making it a reality.

Jason and I believe we make our own destiny…in the sense that we can’t just sit back and hope our dreams will magically come true. You’ve probably seen the quote, “Dreams only work if you do” and I think it’s oh so true. Which is why we’re jumping in with both feet!

We also believe in leaving the door open for serendipity, and that’s where we are right now: at the crossroads of serendipity and making dreams.

The day we looked at the almost perfect catamaran the owner, John, was there to greet us.  We quickly chatted about our desire to live on a boat, our minimal experience sailing and our eagerness to learn.  He invited us to stay a while over a glass of wine but we had other appointments, so we asked for a rain check.  A couple of days later, we went back to continue the conversations.  We soaked up Johns stories of sailing, living on a boat with his wife and two fur babies and his tales of close calls out on the water.

The next day was the day we met up with our friend Sheldon for our first crewing experience.  John quickly looked up the weather conditions and warned us it was going to be a rough trip as the wind was not in our favor (that should have been our first clue).   So, he said he expected updates while we were out to sea.  And oh, how thankful we were we made a new friend that day.

What a world of difference! Talk about back to back, night and day experiences. A prepared captain, a well maintained boat and proper planning…this is the sailing sweet life I was yearning for!

It was another experience filled with valuable lessons but in a laid back, no drama way.  Soooo much more enjoyable.

florida coastal cruising
knot tying practice

Planning and Sailing

Captain John took the time to show us his way of sailing from start to finish.  We used his favorite website WindGURU to find the best weather days to sail, we downloaded an app called tides near me, we looked at options for anchorages along the way, set up a route and waypoints through the navigation gear, prepared the vessel for departure, started the motors, threw up the sails, anchored out, slept like babies and then we got to do it all over again on day two.

florida coastal cruising

Our trip did have one small hiccup!  Halfway through motoring into our first anchorage we had to shut down an engine due to overheating.  John claimed “I promise this has never happened before.”  Thankfully he had plenty of spare parts on board, so we replaced the impeller and shortened the hose because one of the metal hose clamps had dug a pinhole into the plastic tubing causing the impeller to overheat and fall apart.

sailboat repairs

We were not turned off by this issue in the least bit. Together we diagnosed the issue and made the repair in about 20 minutes.  We understand no matter how well maintained a vessel might be, there will always be issues to deal with.  We’re ready for the challenge and the mechanical adventure that comes along with it.

We Made an Offer

Just before we hopped on the first boat in St. Augustine we put down an offer on John’s Leopard 43.  I’m guessing that’s one of the reason’s John was eager to pick us up and take us sailing on his cat.  There are still a lot of steps before it’s a done deal and plenty of places the deal can fall through in-between.  We are keeping level heads and keeping that excitement at bay until it’s signed, sealed and delivered.

If we end up with this boat, the experience of sailing with the owner for a couple of days was invaluable.  If we don’t end up with this boat, the experience was still fantastic and we learned heaps, so we are winners either way!

putting in an offer

What’s Next?

The next step is our survey and sea trial.  Now, I am sure plenty of you want to know what our offer was, what expenses are ahead and when our ASA sailing classes start.  We will share all of that with our next few videos and articles…so stay tuned and we’ll see you then!

Thoughts?  Negotiating tactics?  Favorite sailing apps?  We love hearing from you so tell us what you think!  You guys are our community of friends and have shared so much with us through this journey.  Thanks for being here with us and for all the encouragement!