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Old 14-03-2014, 23:07   #16
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

Bigjer40,

What does your wife think? Particularly, what would she think of your getting the bluewater cruising boat now? Your costs picture would change if you lived aboard. You could convert many of your assets and use them for a 10 yr. plan for the cruising kitty. You would lose all your maintenance costs of life ashore, which savings could be considerable. You'd want to show her the numbers. You might also start to learn what you can live without.

I'd suggest considering some kind of heating for your liveaboard/cruising boat. [You might want to cruise to Alaska before heading for warmer climes.]

Good luck with it.

Ann
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Old 15-03-2014, 01:26   #17
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

We bought our current 26 footer 4 years ago and have fixed it up modified and improved it greatly. We sail every summer do a two week cruise and weekends. We spent time making friends and sailing with them in their boats and lots of buddy boating. Now I am looking to upgrade and we both agree to get out retirement boat now. This way we will have spent the next 6-10 years fixing and improving our home which makes a better spent dollar. Plus we will know the boat inside and out and have it just the way we want with minimal outfitting when we pull the plug and untie the dock lines. We are looking in the 33-36 range and have certain requirements that are must haves in the new boat.
Getting your retiremt boat now will just make it that much easier when you are ready and will have it just right for you both. No worries or lengthy refitting or big expense yuo will have amortized over the next ten years and that means your 90 k was not lost but invested in the future that you are making sure happens or having fun along the way while getting there.
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Old 15-03-2014, 01:58   #18
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

If you bought a boat now, how many days a year would you use it? That is a huge question to me. If the use is minimal then I'd share or club. But if you can truly use and enjoy it, then I'd buy. You have to decide your cut off. Mine would probably be something like 50 days a year. If I couldn't find enough time to use the boat that much, then I wouldn't buy yet.

I'd also look at your entire finances. If you have debt other than a mortgage then my top retirement preparation advice is to get rid of the debt. Retirement is a time to live on cash, not borrowing. The sooner you start living that way the sooner you will be able to retire as you wish.

If you want a great retirement then it will require a lot of simplification of your life, probably changing some of the way you do things. When better to start in that direction than now. But change now with a goal in mind, a reward ahead. Things like, "I will not buy a new car because that may get me six months closer to retirement. I will reduce entertainment and eating out by 50% because that will get me retirement a year earlier. I will sell everything I own that isn't being used today and isn't needed. I will invest that in my early retirement/boat fund.

Someone pointed out living aboard which would change the entire situation dramatically if you traded house for boat or house for apartment and boat even.
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Old 15-03-2014, 02:13   #19
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

When Jim and I left the US the first time, I stilled owned *my* house, and my daughter and her significant other were living in it. When we discovered that we liked cruising, I sold my house (a significant input to the cruising kitty), and we got married (for shared retirement benefits). We lived aboard and worked when we discovered we had to come back to the States to get our financial ducks in line.

Given this background, i can only second what B & B wrote. If it is something that both you and your good lady want to do. You will get a leg up, so to speak, if you start now, and you plan on your new investment meaning something.....But only if you can do it and live well within your income. We don't know what awaits us; but as we age, it gets increasingly expensive.

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Old 15-03-2014, 02:41   #20
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

It's also got to be a very personal decision the two of you make. How do you want to lead your life today? What sacrifices will you make today for the future or are you willing to sacrifice future for today? What is your risk tolerance? What kind of life can you be happy with? One of the big keys is knowing yourself. I know people who need very little in material things. Then we have a friend whose mother is in her mid 50's and never cooked a meal in her life, never cleaned a house. Only the best hotels. And for boating, she goes as a guest with wealthy friends or acquaintances who have 200' and greater yachts. There are some things we could sacrifice easily if we needed to but others that we'd work very hard to not have to sacrifice.
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Old 15-03-2014, 04:32   #21
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

The various plans suggested all have merit. I think it comes down to life style decisions. Yes, owning a boat is expensive, but what is the (personal) cost to not engaging in an activity you enjoy.
If it was I that was making this decision (wait, I've already made it!) I would work out how much I can really spend to have some kind of sailboat now, but be able to buy and proper long term cruising boat when the time comes.
Some thoughts on how you can make progress toward retirement and your sailing goals:
-Consider a trailerable boat that can free you from the tyranee of marinas. Marinas suck up a lot of $$
-Look at your spending patterns now. See where you can cut back on expenses without making too big of an impact on your life style (this is how cruisers live)
-Work to build your cruising/sailing skills. It doesn't happen overnight
-Health insurance is a BIG issue and hopefully the ACA will still be going. Presently there are very affordable options, especially if your income is reduced (as in retirement.)
-Revisit your financial calculations. I bring this up because you haven't considered the time value of money in the figures you give. Your figures will change a lot when you do! Find out what happens if you invest the slip fees, etc.
Finally, I'd tell the local sailing club to go.... (you know) regarding no dogs. What kind of hell are they running?
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Old 15-03-2014, 04:58   #22
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

Cruising is expensive. Very expensive.
The money difficulty far outweighs the sailing difficulties.

If you have steady jobs I would set out to save every cent, to invest every cent so that in a decade you can go enjoy yourselves with the best cruising kitty, or more preferably, an income for life from investments.

Your friend who diminished the value of $90,000 sounds crazy. And thats just the disposable part, the cream on your kitty. What a cruiser could do with an extra $90,000!

I suggest to save, save, save and have a wonderful retirement where you dont have to read those $500 threads.


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Old 15-03-2014, 06:23   #23
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

And yet, all too often, there are people who laboured hard and saved for their dream retirement, only to be hit with serious health issues of their own or their partners when they get older. I have seen this scenario more than once.

If you are sure you will actually use the boat often, I would suggest to buy a smaller boat now and think of it not as a waste of money but as an investment in learning. Learning sailing, but also what it takes to own a boat.
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Old 15-03-2014, 08:58   #24
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

The option for living aboard now does not make sense for us at our location. We live in SW Washington on the Columbia River (which is the border between Oregon and Washington). The only places to live aboard are in Oregon. We were real close to doing it before we bought our house but after more research realized it would cost (month to month fees) as much as owning a house. As Washington resident s we do not pay income tax and moving to Oregon we would have to. The slip fee’s plus the additional live aboard fee’s, the numbers just didn’t make sense. Not to mention we will have a good amount of equity in our house when we retire that we wouldn’t see living on the boat.
I do like the trailerable idea and considered it as well. Very few of them will give me the comfort I would like for a couple days trip. I don’t have storage for it at my house and so I would have to factor in storage fees.
I am leaning towards agreeing with what seems to be the majority in that I am not guaranteed tomorrow. I also like the idea that I have plenty of time to figure out the boat design that works best for us and wait for the right one to come along. Maybe I will get my bareboat cert and we can do some chartering in the meantime.
I really appreciate all the time it took to write these responses. It really made me think about what my priorities are. Here I am sweating 30K in slip fees and I started thinking about my budget. It never dawned on me what I spend on stupid things (Comcast $236 month AT&T $210 month). At ten years that is a stomach turning $53,520.
By reading my responses, it probably sounds like money is a huge issue because I don’t have any. This is not the case. We are doing very well I am proud to say. I am just one of those people that will read every review for months before I buy a TV and will pay more for a better product so I don’t have to spend the money twice. I am sure that will make sense to some of you and those of you that live life by the seat of your pants will have no idea what I am talking about. How I envy those with the “it will all work out attitude”. The misers seem to give themselves heart attacks and strokes while the free spirits don’t have security but seems to have a smile on their faces and get by just fine. God help me find the middle ground!
Thanks again sailors,
JB
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Old 15-03-2014, 09:06   #25
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

I should add that those of you that keep pounding in the notion that tomorrow is not a guarantee is ringing in my ears. On Monday, we have a funeral for one of my co-workers. I have watched many of co-workers pass and the cold hard fact is that if you do make it to retirement in my line of work, the average life expectancy after retirement is SIX years. But, my genes are strong! Still, dangerous job that takes it’s toll on your longevity, it should be a no brainer
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Old 15-03-2014, 12:55   #26
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Re: Should I buy another boat or save for cruising???

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltyMonkey View Post
I'm sort of in the same position you are. For myself, saving money was the best choice. For you, my vote is either the club or buying a lesser boat. Why 36 feet? Why not get something smaller and cheaper, something you might trailer or pay less in maintenance and storage? Then 1) put your money to work. 2) When you get closer to your jump point you will have more money in the bank to buy a BETTER and NEWER boat.

PS: Unless you are willing to LIVE on a larger boat, it makes no sense to buy. Thats just my opinion.
This might be the first time I've agreed with the Monkey.

I'd buy a trailerable which does away with the slip or mooring fees. You won't need to sail the coast of Washington if you can trailer from the Columbia to the Sound. There are good quality trailerables that will fetch a reasonable resale price when you're ready for the "big boat." Compac is one Seaward is another. I haven't tried the bunks in a Catalina 25 but that might be an option.
The club is the next option but that doesn't help with the dog issue. Dog-sitters aren't cheap either unless you have a good neighbor.
Don't buy the big boat for the purpose of cruising in 10 years. You'll have the maintenance issues and your taste may change a great deal in 10 years.
Just my opinion and apparently the Monkey's too.
kind regards,
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Old 15-03-2014, 13:05   #27
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

I just read one of your latest posts and you mentioned you can't put a trailerable in your yard. Got any friends with property? I've seen ads for pretty cheap storage near Portland.
Good luck in whatever decision you make.
kind regards,
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Old 15-03-2014, 14:08   #28
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

You're in SW Washington. What part? You might be able to find somewhere cheap to store a boat near The Dalles or Cascade Locks. Dont know if they're close enough to you, but might be worth looking into.

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Old 15-03-2014, 16:37   #29
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

BigJer40,

Life is full of decisions we make and then adjust to. Your mention of your workmate's funeral reminds me of one of the factors that decided Jim to take early retirement. We stopped in Santa Cruz, CA, on our way north from the Channel Is. to San Francisco, to see someone who'd shared an office with Jim.

Jim phoned his house and asked the woman who answered the phone, "Can I talk to Kermit?"

"No," came the response.

"Why not?"

"He's dying." She was the nurse.

The experience left Jim feeling quite shaken. We'd gone out to dinner with him and his wife the year before, on our way south.

Jim could have waited to retire, and his retirement income would have been greater, but when he's asked, he has always said he was glad he retired when he did.

*

However, times are different now, and I think it is harder now to get your financial ducks lined up.

If you decide to go for the trailer sailer, take a tape measure with you, and see if you can't find a berth you can fit into. Jim once trailered a Catalina 22 to Port Townsend, put it in the water, and sailed the Canadian Gulf with his at-the-time family, and they had a super time. [He's 5'10", so the berths in that type of boat might not fit you.]


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Old 15-03-2014, 16:47   #30
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Re: Should I buy another Boat or save for Cruising?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrm View Post
And yet, all too often, there are people who laboured hard and saved for their dream retirement, only to be hit with serious health issues of their own or their partners when they get older. I have seen this scenario more than once.

If you are sure you will actually use the boat often, I would suggest to buy a smaller boat now and think of it not as a waste of money but as an investment in learning. Learning sailing, but also what it takes to own a boat.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjer40 View Post
I should add that those of you that keep pounding in the notion that tomorrow is not a guarantee is ringing in my ears. On Monday, we have a funeral for one of my co-workers. I have watched many of co-workers pass and the cold hard fact is that if you do make it to retirement in my line of work, the average life expectancy after retirement is SIX years. But, my genes are strong! Still, dangerous job that takes it’s toll on your longevity, it should be a no brainer
These points about health and such are real life issues that I am seeing here while cruising. Two couples in San Diego, when I was passing through, had major cancer stuff going on. One made it to Mexico...the other did not. There are a number of ex-pats I'm meeting down here who never intended to stop cruising but had to due to health issues. Some sold the farm and here they are.
That said...If someone tells you the way...it's not it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjer40 View Post


Should I buy another boat???


Hello fellow sailors. I respect and appreciate all of your opinions and have been helped so much by all of your advice. That is why I am asking for help with planning my cruising future. My wife and I will retire in 13 years with public/govt retirements and def comp for each of us. I will be 53 and my wife will retire early at 57. Retirement looks ok, with the exception of medical insurance. I have no idea what that will look like. I am currently without a boat and am questioning if I should buy another boat to further develop my sailing skills here in the Pacific Northwest or pocket as much money for cruising. I honestly can’t imagine not having a boat, but I do have some options.
1) Don’t buy another boat and put as much money away for cruising as possible.
2) We have a local sailing club here that has boats in three different areas. Dogs not allowed and our dog goes everywhere with us. Plus, not taking the dog leaves us limited to day sails. Restricted on how long can have the boat, but the cost is $184 month. No worries about fuel, maintenance, or insurance.
3) Buy a boat and enjoy it. This doesn’t make the most financial sense, but there is no guarantee I will live to see retirement. Would be a shame to bank everything on a life I never live. If this is my choice, I have to decide what type of boat to buy. The most I would sail would be offshore between Columbia River and Puget Sound.

I guess I am asking for different opinions on being a penny pincher for the biggest cruising fund, the middle ground of a sailing club but not as convenient, or the expense of having another boat. I want a boat, but when I look at the numbers, it is staggering and makes me feel irresponsible. This is my estimate and estimates from prior ownership.

No boat = 0

Sailing Club = 184 month for 10 years $22,080

30-36 ft. boat $30,000
30-36 ft. boat slip fee $250 mo. for 10 years $30,000
Insurance at $30 mo. for 10 years $3600
Maintenance estimated $3,000 per year X 10 $30,000
$93,600
The boat will still be worth something at the end of the 10 years, or maybe I buy my blue water boat now and I will know the boat inside and out before I cruise. If I do buy, this seems to make the most sense. Especially after having my last boat, we decided I will not buy another boat that I can’t sleep comfortably on. At 6’02” and someone who sleeps very restless, I need a big birth. I have been told I can’t look at a boat as an investment and to expect to blow money and have experienced this. I am however attempting to be a wise sailor that gets the most bang for my buck. I would appreciate any advice, especially from current or past cruisers with experience. Was there anything you wish you would have differently with your money???
I wrote in my blog some weeks back about this vary thing...

What you really need to go cruising Or Is this love or boat envy




Sterling Hayden once wrote:


“To be truly challenging, a voyage, like a life, must rest on a firm foundation of financial unrest. Otherwise, you are doomed to a routine traverse, the kind known to yachtsmen who play with their boats at sea... "cruising" it is called. Voyaging belongs to seamen, and to the wanderers of the world who cannot, or will not, fit in. If you are contemplating a voyage and you have the means, abandon the venture until your fortunes change. Only then will you know what the sea is all about.

"I've always wanted to sail to the south seas, but I can't afford it." What these men can't afford is not to go. They are enmeshed in the cancerous discipline of "security." And in the worship of security we fling our lives beneath the wheels of routine - and before we know it our lives are gone.

What does a man need - really need? A few pounds of food each day, heat and shelter, six feet to lie down in - and some form of working activity that will yield a sense of accomplishment. That's all - in the material sense, and we know it. But we are brainwashed by our economic system until we end up in a tomb beneath a pyramid of time payments, mortgages, preposterous gadgetry, playthings that divert our attention for the sheer idiocy of the charade.

The years thunder by, The dreams of youth grow dim where they lie caked in dust on the shelves of patience. Before we know it, the tomb is sealed.

Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life? ”
Sterling Hayden, Wanderer





So what do you really need to go cruising? I have given this a lot of thought the last few days. Yes, I was struck with the dreaded boat envy. It’s a lot like drug addiction, really, you start chipping at Yachts.com and the next thing you know, your staying up till 2am. searching ad after ad. Then you find her…oh yes…Her, with a capital “H”. In my case a Fuji 45. What a beast! 30,000 lbs. 50 feet over-all, 12’ 6” beam. Enough room for me a horse or two. The thing was in Mexico and had the typical hard luck story which always sucks me in…Boat has been on the hard for 4 years, owners health is not good, engine is gone and although these boats can sell for $160,000+, this one is asking $35,000. Which means to me, a bit under $30K. In the end, a rebuilt engine and the usual suspects replaced and I’m looking at around a $50,000 boat and a year of disrupting my life traveling to Mexico to work on it. My problem is that I forget easily. I forget the pain my body is in, at my age, after doing what I like to describe as “boat yoga”. That is scrunching up in small spaces, in contorted, pretzel like poses, while holding a 9/16” wrench, hyper-extended over my head, in an upside-down position. Or trying to solder now that I wear bi-focals.
Oh lord…how did I get here? What possessed me to even think such terrible thoughts? Was it Karma? The pizza I had last night, or was it that nasty 5 year itch I get every so often to just screw things up? Joli` Elle, my Hallberg Rassy, Rasmus 35 has been a great little boat for me. Sweet lines, a good strong engine, wonderful hard dodger and lets not forget she has brought me 2000 miles so far since I re-fitted her. How could I? …I’m so ashamed.
If you see my little sloop in the anchorage in La Paz or in the marina here, the first thing one might notice is her size. She's a tiny dancer among the 45ft. to 65ft. yachts here. Not 25 years ago, she would have been considered a medium sized cruiser. 40 years ago, when conceived, she was very well considered a standard sized large cruiser. Today, not so. Most of the slips in any marina in Mexico start at 40 feet. Cruisers now a days consider a 42 foot boat as a standard. Sad really. But what does a cruiser really need? The ocean has not become larger. People haven’t grown larger (well, not most). But somehow smaller vessels are overlooked. My little ship started Hallberg Rassy. They built 760 of them. Basically launching the company into what they are today. One of the worlds finest and most trusted manufacturer.
In the 70’s all the harbors I visited had Pearson 35’s and 36’s. Cal 34’s, Rawson 30’s, Dreadnought and Westsail 32’s. These were the boat which launched 1000’s of cruising dreams. There was no GPS, AIS or WAAS. You may have had a RDF (radio detection finder), a sextant, a range finder or simply follow jet trails in the sky and relied on dead reckoning. Somehow most survived. Many sailing from California to Hawaii. In the 70’s came Sat Nav. The first GPS type navigation aid. It would spit out a fix every few hours if you were lucky and they cost a few thousand bucks. But now ocean voyagers could sail with much more confidence and yes, more folks took to the water. By the late 80’s the first true GPS was offered by Garmin, at a whopping $2500. Again, more people cruising and a higher dollar crowd. Thanks to the millions of GPS’s sold, they have dropped considerably but it has created a frenzy by cruisers to buy more electronics, interphased with one another.
Often times, it’s heard from people who have tricked out their boat with piles of electronics, that you need most of it. Paper charts?...please! No radar?...suicide. The unsuspecting new-comer’s are easily over-whelmed by such statements as gospel. Are they true? Think about it. I contend that I could throw a bottle with a note in it 20 miles offshore off California and if untouched, would make it somewhere in Mexico. I know this is a silly statement and I am trying to inject humor to make my point. The point is what do you really need? I would say, get your house in order first. With the Real Estate market as low as it is, buy now and eat Macaroni and cheese for a few years. Buy the worst house in the best neighborhood and when you think you can get enough rent to cover the mortgage, do that and move aboard a modest sailboat.
Great, now we get to talk about sailboats.Older sailboats are cheap. By cheap, I mean you can buy a bonafide 30' to 36' cruising sailboat for well under $12,000. Sure, it's bare bones but some of these designs and manufacturers have proven themselves over time. Saying boats are difficult to sell is an understatement. Take that Fuji 45. $35,000 and it still sits. Generally speaking what ever someone is asking for their boat, you can pretty much expect to get is for 10% less by offering 15% less. In other words if a skipper is asking $13,000 and you offer $11,000, you'll probably sail away for $12,000. The pictures below are a few craigslist ads I threw together. Good names, good designs and good prices.







So you see, one does not necessarily need a Benehuntalina 52.2-X for $350,000 to watch sunsets. Here is a La Paz sunset that you could be watching rather than waiting for your 401K to mature when you're too old to enjoy it.






No, that's not a screen saver. I took that picture with my little, old, funky Canon camera. You can too.
A young couple pulled into here a few weeks ago on a bare bones Cal 34 from Alaska...ALASKA! Do you know the seas and weather they went through to get to Southern California where it finally became warm for them? I can tell you that while they may fly back for work in Alaska, their boat is staying here in Mexico.
I'm not trying to be an advocate for zero electronics. I consider myself a progressive conservative. A little is enough and K.I.S.S. Keep it simple.
On Joli` Elle, I have a used Furuno GP30...$100. A handheld GPS from 1998 as a back up. A used radar...$300. A ham radio that is more of a hobby than necessity....$400, used of course. New, I bought a GPS/EPIRB. If something catastrophic happens, I have a chance of rescue. So I would say the more important items on your boat would be the sails and engine. Those will be your show stoppers on the journey...not your electronics. That said, it is a good time to stress a decent Surveyor. By good, I mean, not a paper pusher to write up that the fire extinguishers are out of date. You want one that will examine rigging, start the engine and prod around the chainplates. I would even recommend someone who has the same boat you're interested in and pick their brain for what to look for and what to expect.
My advice to you is go as soon as you possibly can but don't throw away your security. Continue to build a future to come back to. Work hard and play hard while you're young. Sail, make mistakes and make friends. And when you have the house rented out and the boat projects 50% done?...go cruising. Go then because I can tell you from personal experience that your boat will always have 50% left to finish. But at least you'll be cooking local fish on that funky BBQ, drinking cheap Mexican beer and watching the most beautiful sunsets you'll ever see. The world is your oyster and the distant shores await you.
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