Journey's Blog

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

January 2012, The Race is On!

We started planning our adventure about 15 years ago when we were in NZ/Australia. We were backpacking/tramping around for a few months and had the opportunity to charter on The Great Barrier Reef in Australia and The Bay of Islands, NZ. Both experiences were life changing and we vowed to start looking for a boat once we returned home. That was in 1996. Well, things don't always turn out the way one plans. We didn't buy our first boat until 2000, mostly because we spent time between working for a few months then taking off and backpacking to SE Asia for 6 months, getting married, going back to school, having a baby, caring for sick parents..So, in 2000 we bought a 25 foot trailerable O'Day which we sailed up and down the Hudson in NY. We moved out of NY to CT and spent the summer of 2002 sailing LI Sound from Orient/Greenport NY to Niantic, CT. In the fall of 2002, we drove cross country with our 18 month old and our trailerable boat for a new beginning. We moved to Port Ludlow, Wa. on the Olympic Peninsula. We always knew we were going to get a bigger boat so after a year we started on the quest for a new boat!

So the fun of buying a boat....We started looking through every Latitude 38 book, online searches and local searches. Once we put in our parameters on searches only perhaps 6-10 boats would come up in the world!!! Our parameters were based on money, size, no teak decks, 2 staterooms, cut away skeg hung rudder, comfortable cockpit to name a few. Friends of ours told us about a boat in Maine that their friend was selling and they thought it would meet our needs. I was not a fan of buying a boat on the other side of the country so we just politely said thanks for the info and moved on. We flew to San Diego and San Francisco looking exhaustively and to no avail. Slightly defeated, we came back to Wa. and checked out some boats in Portland, Seattle and the surrounding areas. This was all over the course of a year and after a few near acquisitions that fell through we decided we needed to take a break. Our friends being persistent, mentioned their friend in Maine again. Feeling weak, we asked for their friend to take some photos and send them to us as the computer pics were grainy. So on a damp day, I went to the mailbox to retrieve the mail and an envelop from Maine arrived. I stood at the mailbox, opened the envelop and then ran down the driveway, into the house yelling at my husband, "We are sooo buying this boat!" He wasn't sure what to make of my yelling and excitement until I showed him the pics. We couldn't believe it! The boat had all the things we wanted, in the price range and she was in pristine condition!

John called the seller, flew to Maine, and she was even prettier in person! Joe (the previous owner) was kind to help us get the boat ready to be trucked to the West Coast. Although the boat made the journey just fine, the truck broke down 1 time delaying her arrival as well as the drivers mother had fallen sick and he had to leave the truck and boat for a few days with another delay! Joe was scheduled to fly west to help us recommission her so we were all waiting and coordinating schedules daily until she finally arrived in Port Townsend, Wa. So with the massive support of friends, we all got to work, cleaning, painting, rigging, and sorting items. It took us 3 weeks to the day for splash down! That was in 2004

We have continued to learn systems and idiosyncrasies of our boat, Namaste. We have added extensive equipment in preparation of our plan such as:
New Main Sail (North Sails) with Stack Pack
Profurl HeadStay Rolling Furler
New North Sail Head Sail
New Running Rigging
New Mercury Inflatable
New VHFx2
New AutoHelm
Garmin 4212 ChartPlotter/Radar
Full Enclosure for Cockpit
Electric Windlass
Rocna Anchor
Fortress Anchor

PART 5 January 2012. The Official Countdown Begins.
So our lists have proliferated! We have the "must have" list and then "would be nice to have" lists. Thankfully, the Seattle Boat Show is the end of January so it is always a good place to meet people, ask questions, take classes and get good pricing on items. Our agenda at the Boat Show the last few years is taking the free seminar classes and the inexpensive Boat Show University classes. We have learned massive amounts and made some great connections. We often feel overwhelmed with all the information as everyone has different plans, different boats, different amounts of available money and time as well as different goals. Sorting through all that and determining with your mate what are your goals, timeline, financials will help focus on the end result of taking off. We consider ourselves middle of the road for various reasons. Many are doing with a lot less (no water maker, no electric windless, no dodger, smaller boat, etc) and others are doing with all the bells and whistles. We encourage any extreme as long as it is safe for all on board. For us, we have a child on board, so safety is important, and we like comfort so having the boat set up for comfort such as space, dry, as much mechanical ease as we can afford is on our agenda.
Our list to be added to the outfitting is as follows;
1. Wind generator
2. solar panels
3. new RIB/engine
4. Dingy Davits
5. Electric/charting redundancy
6. swim ladder
7. Self tail winches on mast
8. new stove/oven computers
10. haul out/bottom paint/raise water line.
This is not the whole list but more or less the high dollar projects. Just writing all of it is scary. We have a house that has contents that will be sold along with cars, house to be rented, designating a family member to oversee financials/mail.