Charlie and Phillip and everyone else who have been so helpful.... thanks for all your practical advice from experience. I really do appreciate it.
I think I need to do some explaining to some very nice people who are trying to help me in this forum. How do I say this... My very first experience in the tropics was aboard the Training Ship Golden Bear back in early 80's. The ships port was Tahiti
and my brother (Engineering 1985) and I decided to take the ferry
across to Moorea. We brought or snorkel gear
and spent the day snorkeling getting burned to a crisp. Anyone who has ever been there knows how amazing it is. Getting to the point, I eventually knew from there that after I retired, that I wanted to retire in the tropics and what could be better than owning a boat in the tropics where I could take MY boat and go where I wanted to go on MY schedule to see the world if I chose to do so....not somebody else's boat to their destination
on their schedule to some ugly industrial port.
So now, over 20 years later, between saving my pennies, my wife saving her pennies, some smart investing and a land inheritance, my wife and I can retire real soon although we cannot sail off over the horizon just yet until my son is in college in 4 years. I can't leave the Bay Area just yet because of my visitation schedule with my son....which is fine. I wish I could spend MORE time with him. I married my wife three years ago so you got the picture as to why I am land locked for the next few years.
So for now, the best thing I can do to kill time by working until that day arrives. So lately, I have been getting online to see what kind of boats are available and how much they cost...which is how I ran across this forum. It's time to explore exactly what I want to do with retirement
. I am the type who likes to research
the hell out of something before buying
...even the simplest of things. It's fun if not anything else.
I hate it when others talk about their money
, they are braggarts, and it's not something I like to talk about to anyone. But I need to paint
a clear picture of my situation for those that are helping. I can afford a boat that is clearly larger than any two people can handle plus live off my investments. I feel blessed. Enough said.
My dilemma is that I am finding out I need to scale back more than what I have been picturing in my head
for many years...at least according to what I am hearing in this forum. I trust you guys...especially the ones who are out there doing it! What I am hearing is that going much above a boat in the low 40's LOA
is asking for more work and more headaches than it is worth. I was visualizing higher....the Lagoon
57 is a gorgeous and very sensible and seaworthy
looking boat for example. I don't think I would feel like I would be in a floating cage in a boat that size for weeks at a time. I don't want to be in something the same size as a ships lifeboat. I do understand that buying
something as complex and as large as the Space Shuttle would require a commensurate amount of maintenance/expense and have the subsequent breakdowns. There has to be a happy medium.
So I have two questions swirling around my head
regarding size which is keeping me from thinking "practical" by the definitions of practical in here. I have been looking for boats to charter
in the BVI's and have come across websites with couples who are doing charters on 50 to 70 ft cats taking on as many as ten people for a week as passengers. As far as I am concerned, passengers are dead weight as far as getting work done and in fact ADD to the workload. How do two people take care of a 60 something foot catamaran
AND take care of passengers that are creating messes, making themselves dangerous to themselves, eating more food
than a dog sled team and drinking like fish
My other question is, how are my friends who have a 70 foot monohull
, cruising as far south as New Zealand
doing so well? They say they are doing fine and the size is not a problem. I believe them. I believe you guys as well...but I am hearing two different things.
I do plan on chartering a number of times over the next few years to see how big is too big for my wife and I.