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Old 17-10-2014, 09:22   #76
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
how can someone not living this lifestyle(and who never has) actually intelligently comment on it or give info of a use-able nature.
yet it is a fact of life that folks will do exactly that.

life is an adventure meant to be LIVED.
I have lived the lifestyle. 5 years living aboard, 6 months of it at anchor while working a regular job. And from this girl's perspective I'd rather haul jugs of water and lug my laundry to the Laundromat on my bicycle any day of the week rather that fighting the crazy rat race we're living now. It's the freedom that will make it all worth it for me, being outdoors instead of in a cage all day, and being with my husband 24/7 sounds wonderful to me. We have been together 36 years and not only love him, I like him better than anyone else I know.
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:28   #77
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

oldrag---awesome..is how i feel, but i have yet to meet the man of my alleged dreams...
even sola, this is a rewarding lifestyle.. it feels good to watch those grow and develop in it, as well as grow and develop one's self.. is LIVING!!!!!!
kinda like camping out in the coldass but gorgeous mountains for a few years.... bbrrr--- not all lifestyles fit all souls.
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:34   #78
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

True, true, Zee. I know many people who think we're crazy and say they wouldn't do what we're planning for anything in the world. That's good. More room in the anchorages for us. It will also leave a job open for some other soul who wants the opportunity to sit at my desk. They can have it with my blessings.
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:40   #79
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

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All in all, we both wish we could have remained aboard for the rest of our lives but feel very fortunate to have had so many years of living aboard. Phil
That points to a problem many have in that they set such an ambitious and often unrealistic goal on things in life expecting them "forever." Then it runs years and instead of taking pleasure in that, somehow there's disappointment. Well, nothing in life is forever. Our current lifestyle is that we'll do what we're doing as long as it works for both of us. When it doesn't we'll make adjustments but we will not regret or feel disappointed. We all should know that eventually, whether at 60 or 90, we'll face physical limitations. If a couple builds a lovely two story home and raises their children in it, are they abandoning it when the size and the stairs become too much and they move into a smaller condo? Of course not. We worked hard for our careers and in them. Were we abandoning something when we retired? No, we were just moving into a new stage of life. We liked our careers. We still use some of the skills and do occasionally do work in the fields of our career. Our initial thoughts were total retirement but then we found ourselves back into some things. Is that abandonment? I don't think so. I think it's simply being flexible and open minded enough to find what works for us today. How our lives will be 5 years or 10 years from now, I have no earthly idea. Of course, 5 years ago, I never would have suspected our lives today would be as they are.

We often seem scared and really scare our kids into not trying things for fear they might not work out. A young person loves music and desperately wants to try a career in it. Parents fear it not working out and discourage them. You should use your degree and get a "regular" job. Well, you know what, if it doesn't work out, regular jobs will still be here.

We go so far as to ask high school and middle school and even sometimes elementary kids, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" I can't answer that yet. My wife is against us ever growing up and has made me feel the same way. Does any young person have the knowledge or experience to know what they want for the rest of their life? Of course not. All I want for any kid or adult is that they are "happy." Happiness is the worthy pursuit. Not a specific job or career or house or lifestyle. Simplify it, pursue happiness. I remember that I wanted to be a taxi driver as I thought what could be better than driving a car all day. Now I drive cars as little as possible. I do know a girl who told her father at 8 or so she wanted to be a boat driver and she is a captain now.

I don't like the word abandoned. Changed course. Went to the next thing. I'd reserve the word abandonment for those who do abandon children or family.
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:51   #80
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

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Originally Posted by oldragbaggers View Post
I have lived the lifestyle. 5 years living aboard, 6 months of it at anchor while working a regular job. And from this girl's perspective I'd rather haul jugs of water and lug my laundry to the Laundromat on my bicycle any day of the week rather that fighting the crazy rat race we're living now. It's the freedom that will make it all worth it for me, being outdoors instead of in a cage all day, and being with my husband 24/7 sounds wonderful to me. We have been together 36 years and not only love him, I like him better than anyone else I know.
My spouse of 25 years and I have just begun the transition to full-timers. We spent nearly 3 months living and sailing our boat down from the upper Great Lakes to Lake Ontario, lining up for our run down the St. Lawrence next year. This is the longest we've lived on the boat, and both came away LOVING IT!

What you say about loving being together 24/7 was so true for us as well. For us, the boat life brings us even closer together. And as Zee says, it's not hard, or easy. It's just life. It's who you are, and what you bring to the game. The freedom, the simplicity ... for us, it is a much more rewarding life. I already miss it, now that we're back north for at least one more Canadian winter.
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:56   #81
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

Good post (as usual) BandB. Which brings me back to what I said before, I don't like the word "failed" either.

We have lived aboard 3 times on different boats and at different stages of our lives. Each time we did it we enjoyed it immensely and felt enriched by the experience of it. Each time we "abandoned" it and moved back ashore we had a good reason to do so, a decision that was made because at the time we had a different objective that was more important to us at that particular time than living aboard a boat was. Sometimes it was professional/career reasons, sometimes it was family. None of those moves made us feel like we had failed at living aboard a boat. We just had other things we wanted to accomplish, and we did.

We know this time will be the same. We are already in our 60's so realistically our days our numbered, aboard boats and otherwise. We hope it's a really high number, but who the heck really knows. I have health issues that may put a stop to the party sooner rather than later. Doesn't matter, whatever time we get will be a gift and when it's over we will feel like we were successful at achieving a goal we set out for ourselves many years ago.
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Old 17-10-2014, 10:07   #82
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Re: Abandon living aboard

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Guess I am a type 2-3-4-5 cruiser... or a life time junkie. I lived aboard 10 years and raced intensively in my 20s and 30s in Vancouver. Moved to Europe in my late thirties and went boat less for 3 years...A dark time in my life!!! Bought and restored our present boat after that (living on land arghh) ...it is an addiction I tell you!! I am getting ready for my 3rd Atlantic crossing, first one was a singlehanded adventure. Note all in the same boat. We, my family and I just finished a 14 month sail about ...Denmark to the Chesapeake via the Canaries, Cape Verdes and up the chain from the Martinique. We discussed continuing but we have been back a year and are getting mails from around the planet. Why did we come back...our kids 11 and 13...this is their time to establish links those links to land.
In all I have spent over 25 % of my life in boats..I am an oceanographer as well so sailing is my hobby and my job my passion. I have spent months at sea...

People quitting: When living aboard in Vancouver I used to watch the folks from the prairies who wanted to live their dream. They usually sold the ranch, bought a new boat and commissioned it in Van then set off south...NO clue! never sailed seriously in their lives just had a dream. Lots of them either sold the boat in California or shipped her home. That can be a tough trip breaking boats and people. Very few made it mostly because the reality is IT IS NOT A JIMMY BUFFET Song or something out of the sailing rags.. It can be but it is also a lot of hard work and the sea is not kind! It just is!! start easy build up.

Communities or types
Type 1 The weekend sailors who have a different perspective, racers as well. They love sailing but enjoy all the land based luxuries. Lots of adrenalin rushes...YOu push boats to the limit when you race. Lots of friends but they have drifted. Here deep connections can be rare, most are adrenaline junkies. I still am!

Community 2. Those early years I spent in the arms of my liveaboard friends.. We all had same problems and were a very tight community. Many of the folks from that time are still friends although thousands of miles and decades away. Many of them dreamed of taking off...few did. Many were just happy living aboard and tinkering on their boats.. they are still happy either with their dreams or living them!

Community 3. The offshore community... you don't get into this until you are in either in a kick off harbour..or you have made your first multi day trip... say Norfolk to Bermuda or Plymouth to la Coruna.. Las Palmas.. Here you run into the wanderers. This community is very close and open.. You may only see them once or you may see them in the next harbour or the next. One forms friendships fast, we all help one another be it with expertise or bits and pieces.. you are always fixing something. Friendships tend to be intense. It is very hard to leave this community.. I have suffered withdrawal after every trip!!!

Money: you will never have enough just go... the art is to appreciate what you have and not lust after ...a bigger boat..car..winch. Go now.

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It is either in you or it is not. Take it easy, watch the weather and enjoy!!!

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So, there are all these categories. Why should you commit to any one of them? Why don't you just live like you want to?

I have been living aboard since April, including a 3000 mile round trip migration to Finland and back. It's a combination of cruising, passage-making, and living on the boat, boat-bum style, while I work in places where I don't have a house.

I'm back on my mooring in the UK, which is not very convenient living, without walk-on access and shorepower. I love being on my boat, but I have plenty of interests on land, too. So for me it's not any kind of a "lifestyle" -- sometimes I'm on board and sometimes not. Sometimes I'm on board for months at a time; sometimes I spend more time on land (but I sail at the very least, even in the depth of winter, for at least a few days every month!).

Some people can't afford to maintain a residence on land, if they're going out on an extended cruise -- that's a bit of a different situation. If I were not working, I might like to rent out my houses for a few years and concentrate on cruising -- sounds like fun. But that doesn't mean you are required to "cut all ties to land" forever. Just live like you want, in whatever combination suits you and your family. For me, personally, there are far too many attractions on land for me to want to abandon land forever. And there's nothing whatsoever wrong with spending a year or two on a boat and then desiring to spend more time on land for a while -- that is not a failure.
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Old 17-10-2014, 10:21   #83
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

Wifey B: The question of all that time with spouse pops up. Oh I freaking love it. I mean sometimes for us the worst part of jobs was having to go all day without being with him. Yeah, I know some will call us sick. And for those, living aboard might be problematic. Do you share hobbies or have totally separate? When you get home from work do you immediately lock together for the duration or do your separate things? Did you both hate it every time he traveled on business?

It's important to plan things based on your relationship. I know couples who prefer less time together but really savor what they have. Even separate vacations, which I so totally can't for real grasp but it works for them. I know one couple that has lived aboard for 10 years and she regularly gets away and goes to visit relatives and friends. I know people who are at home together but seldom in the same room. Drives their cat crazy cause can't be with both. Well, if that's you, then consider that in choosing the boat.

There's no right or wrong, but just sure as heck know yourselves and be honest up front. The make accommodations. I don't think "love" can be defined. Look it up, the definitions suck big time. That's because you can't define feelings and it's different to every person and every couple. And you try to pattern after others you'll screw it up royally.
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Old 17-10-2014, 10:50   #84
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

"We lived aboard ten years and witnessed the death of the dream in the majority of those we met. The Cruising World stereotype does not match the reality of the experience. Only the truly committed will survive and I would describe them as counter cultural in their beliefs and their views on life. It is not an easy life, but the rewards outnumber the difficulties. Good luck and good sailing."

I have seen the dream "fail" a few times. I would only use that word when after years of preparing a boat, a couple sets out and doesn't like it on the first passage. I knew people who did this, left Seattle and when they got to San Diego sold the boat. That was it. They had no idea what sailing off shore was like.
But other than that type of thing, I think using "fail" just because you don't stay out cruising for 10 years to life is incorrect. I've lived aboard at the marina for years while working and went cruising 3 times for 2-3 years each time. I had no plan to drop out of society and just live aboard. Just did what was fun for as long as it felt fun. Why pressure yourself to do anything else?
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Old 20-10-2014, 14:04   #85
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

A few years ago we were anchored off the same marina where we are now and I woke up to notice a ca. 40' cutter anchored to close for my comfort. I saw no dinghy or anyone aboard and I decided to raise my anchor and move away since there was plenty of space and only this one other boat. Later I asked at the marina office if they knew of the owners of the cutter and we heard this strange story.

We were told that the couple on the newly anchored boat had purchased their vessel in Tampa Bay two or three weeks earlier and sailed around Florida to the St. Johns River. After anchoring they jumped off their boat with some essential possessions and swam to the docks. They left a message on the broker's door to sell the boat. They abandoned their living aboard dream with an urgency I've never seen before.

My guess is that they made the cruising commitment without proper preparation for their basic needs. I think it's best to move aboard for a while and adapt to the boat before setting out.
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Old 20-10-2014, 14:13   #86
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

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A few years ago we were anchored off the same marina where we are now and I woke up to notice a ca. 40' cutter anchored to close for my comfort. I saw no dinghy or anyone aboard and I decided to raise my anchor and move away since there was plenty of space and only this one other boat. Later I asked at the marina office if they knew of the owners of the cutter and we heard this strange story.

We were told that the couple on the newly anchored boat had purchased their vessel in Tampa Bay two or three weeks earlier and sailed around Florida to the St. Johns River. After anchoring they jumped off their boat with some essential possessions and swam to the docks. They left a message on the broker's door to sell the boat. They abandoned their living aboard dream with an urgency I've never seen before.

My guess is that they made the cruising commitment without proper preparation for their basic needs. I think it's best to move aboard for a while and adapt to the boat before setting out.
Wow....that's pretty extreme, and very sad.
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Old 29-10-2014, 10:58   #87
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

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I've abandoned living aboard 3 times now..... and counting! I find it's best to just say to yourself "until it's no longer fun" or "until I want to do something else". Doesn't have to be a lifetime commitment! As soon as you move aboard your friends and family will be telling everyone "they're sailing around the world.." Then when you return home for a couple months you will spend a lot of time explaining that you never were "sailing around t he world"
You can say that you sailed around W.ater O.ceans R.ivers L.akes D.ams thats the world

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Old 01-11-2014, 09:58   #88
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

My husband and I have lived aboard at our mooring with school age kids for a year before taking off for a year (saved money not paying the mortgage and renting out the house and continuing working) Not being at a dock is the big thing. If you are cruising you are not living at a dock and this would be the first thing you should try. Get off the dock for about a month and see how that goes. Personally, I hit the wall at 4 months and want to go home, my husband can go forever. We have done this drill 4 times in 43 years. Yet we have bought another world cruiser and we are on a tight budget and have decided to give it a try, at least this time we don't have to rent out the house so I can come home if I want to and that is a huge difference in my mind. Anyway, if you want a reality check, get off the dock and see how you do.
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Old 01-11-2014, 10:20   #89
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

It is great advice to get off the dock.
The pre-cruise planning is usually all focused on the boat, selling or renting the house, getting the paperwork in order, etc that the important aspect of actually learning how to live aboard and even away from the dock is over looked. From the little things to galley storage and arnagement to the huge things like power management.

Moving aboard and heading south without some learning curve is the best way to "fail at cruising and living aboard" I know. Well that and a husband being a diehard sailor thinking his wife likes to bang to windward or always needing to eek out that extra knot of speed when doing so makes for a **** ride.

We just had the first big rain of the season here on the mooring in Morro Bay CA and of course our outboard is in the shop so we are rowing in the rain. This is California rain so it is more like a mist to others around the world but there is no sugar coating last night taking the kids friends back to shore after they were over watching movies....it sucked. But we have also lived aboard long enough to know that the good times outweigh the suck. The problem becomes if you get a load of crap in that first month without any good times....then a lot of people pack it up.
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Old 01-11-2014, 10:27   #90
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Re: Abandon Living Aboard

awesome and so true!
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