Just completed my first six months of Wannabee status. Lived on a 1968 Classic Plastic, which I bought for the same price
as staying in a crappy apartment for six months. I wasn't sure where I wanted to live or if I wanted to go back to working in my profession (big bucks but stressful) which made the boat seem like a good/romantic choice. It isn't an easy lifestyle, and I found I worried about the boat filled with all my possessions when it was out on the hook so I put it in a nice marina ($250 per month with free wifi) after my tippy dinghy
tipped over when I got into it with a bag of trash, and got a membership
at a gym 2 miles away for $35 a month that had great shower
facilities and long hours. Despite no running water
or a decent bathroom, it was overall a pleasant experience but I decided I would go back to work instead of continuing my hobo lifestyle. The new professional I am working with is letting me stay in a nice 1500 square foot home next to the office at no charge for as long as I care to, he bought it as an investment and it was empty after being completely updated and after living in my boat constantly cluttered by tools and projects the starter home feels like a mansion and the simple amenities like an oven
, W/D and shower
seem absolutely luxurious! During the warm months it was great to be on the boat and I especially liked eating breakfast in the cockpit
watching the sun rise, but I got tired of being a little cold all the time lately in NC despite having shore power
heat and a Heater Buddy propane
heater. When Sandy passed close by, I learned where all the little leaks
were that I thought I didn't have. At high tide the water
goes about 4 inches over the finger pier, inconvenient with dress shoes or when carrying stuff on and off the boat and I did manage to drop a cheap cell phone
and a coping saw overboard
. Newbies don't realize that even gales can be a little scary even when you are tied to a dock
(squalls terrified my gf when she visited,) and I have a new appreciation for how resilient a person must be to live on the hook, cruise
the open seas and repair/maintain their boat in a foreign country without shore power
and a hose. The first time I took my gf for a little putt putt cruise
the impeller failed (I had a new one on the counter I was about to put in) and I had to get towed in, duh. After the total experience, I feel like I am living in a mansion in my little house and after taking my stuff off the boat I can now work on it and not worry about sanding
dust and can use my boat as a boat without having to tie everything down for an hour which gradually made her a dock queen (even a bow wake can make a mess on a boat which is lived on.) I won't get too deep into composting toilets, but when I put mine in the cockpit
for a few days and left a piece of carpet on top of it that had gotten wet (it was cold, never saw the flies) there were white creepy things crawling on the bottom of the carpet (yep, those creepy things) when I picked it up. Cleaning
dishes out on the dock is a nuisance and going to the laundry
to do clothes isn't fun but overall instead of paying rent I now have a nice boat that I have fixed up and am very proud of that I essentially got for free. During the six months I spent almost nothing but labor on the boat (maybe a few hundred dollars for butyl tape and epoxy) and despite the dock fee, gym etc it was easy to live on 500 or 600 dollars a month. Moreover, I know that if the Big One occurs, I can put six months of rice and beans on the boat, drop the line off the mooring
ball the boat is currently tied to again, and escape to NeverNeverland.
I got a lot of great advice and learned tons about sailboats and sailing on this forum, but understand how some can feel that the elitist members are a bit harsh and even found myself starting to resemble them after a while so I took a break.
I've done numerous satisfying hobbies in my life, but I'm still most enthralled with sailing and don't plan to ever sell my 34 foot boat and who knows maybe someday once I get tired of working again I will give liveaboard
status or even cruising another try but in a warmer climate.
Thanks to all that share their expertise, especially to Bob/Connie and Maine
: truly class acts.