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Old 28-07-2009, 11:08   #31
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Isn't Counter Culture the guy in a bar with his elbows and often his chin on the bar counter by his empty beer bottles?
No. that was me .......... and I called it "AlcoTourism" (yea, really ).
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Old 28-07-2009, 11:16   #32
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DPMatty, while I may take issue with your disdain for the 'nouveau riche' versus old money (and your ability to speak of living in the counter-culture when you were raised with and have no problem with the latter), I admire the fact that you have good naturedly hung in despite a mulititude of attacks. Good on ya and good luck in finding your own notion of paradise.

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Ha! No worries! I've lead a pretty eclectic life. I was educated as a musician. I've served the government and then dropped out. I've fought on three continents (lived on three) and while I don't mind it so much, would prefer to not have to anymore. I've run a business, made lots of money, lost/wasted lots of money and made a little more. I've been with too many women, most of the the wrong kind and still love a few even though I shouldn't... I've been beaten, stabbed and almost shot. A few gentle barbs over the internet doesn't bother me. I don't worry too much about stuff, but I also call it how I see it.

Look, if you travel to the third world you'll find Americans there. Often two kinds. The first kind is like they're on some kind of Eddie Bauer adventure tour who view their surroundings as a spoiled and insolent child would view a zoo. The second group, adopts (to some extent at least) the culture and customs of their surrounds and becomes a part of the local community to learn, help and grow.

I respect the latter and would only offer a bullet to the former (ok, that's a bit over the top, but you get my point). It has nothing to do with wealth. It has everything to do with how one chooses to experience life. The idea of going on an extended "booze cruise" is not what I'm looking for and tucking into a pristine anchorage to have some prick on a vacation run a genset all night behind me is enough to send me over the side with a k-bar... LOL!

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a good party, and I certinaly have been known to have a drink or twenty, but there is a difference between choosing a life and taking long vacation.

As far as counter-culture old money goes, how do you think all those kids were able to take a year or two and follow the Dead or live as "starving" artists. Not all of us, I was not from that set, but enough of them around me were. The old money had a sense of responsibility, almost nobility, at least here in New England. They were not the "ugly Americans" you would see abroad...
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Old 28-07-2009, 11:34   #33
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I'd rather be trite than vapid...
You've presented yourself with a real Hobb's choice - I hope it's merely an illogical false dilemma.
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Old 28-07-2009, 11:39   #34
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You've presented yourself with a real Hobb's choice - I hope it's merely an illogical false dilemma.
I'm not familiar with a Hobb's choice, I'm sorry.

I am familiar with a Hobson's choice, but this doesn't apply here...
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Old 28-07-2009, 13:12   #35
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Little to disagree with concerning gensets and all-night parties (although you must admit, the hippy 'counter-culture' of years gone by did their fair share of the latter as well). And for what it is worth, I also tend to agree with your assessment of the behavior of people from the west while in the third world.

It is also trite to say that the world is becoming ever more crowded and that the inevitable result, to date, has been the dimunition of opportunities for solitude. Having said that, this is not a new phenomenon - its been close to 40 years since Joni Mitchell wrote of how they took paradise and put up a parking lot. Indeed, even Thoreau was required to find his Walden pond in order to live in peace.

Despite all of that, I refuse to bemoan the rise of the middle class as the source of all evil. Yes, the old money had a sense of noblesse oblige, but they also had a sense of entitlement. And while my parents struggled to put food on the table and could only dream of flying off for a week's vacation in some exotic spot, their son is able to experience first-hand what remains of paradise. So yes, I am one of the nouveau-not-so-riche who has muscled in on what you seem to perceive as your domaine. For that I do not apologize.

In a sense, I feel sorry for you. While you are discovering that you can never go home, I am embarking on the most exciting part of my life. For the first time I am able to explore new vistas, not merely as a short-term tourist, but without a timetable. And while in many of the places I now visit I sense the loss of simplicity and solitude from even 20 years ago, I can still appreciate what there is left to discover. No, its not perfect, but its still a pretty wonderful world.

Once again, here's to hoping that you find the paradise you are looking for. I only know that you cannot find it in the past.

Brad
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Old 28-07-2009, 13:19   #36
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Little to disagree with concerning gensets and all-night parties (although you must admit, the hippy 'counter-culture' of years gone by did their fair share of the latter as well). And for what it is worth, I also tend to agree with your assessment of the behavior of people from the west while in the third world.

It is also trite to say that the world is becoming ever more crowded and that the inevitable result, to date, has been the dimunition of opportunities for solitude. Having said that, this is not a new phenomenon - its been close to 40 years since Joni Mitchell wrote of how they took paradise and put up a parking lot. Indeed, even Thoreau was required to find his Walden pond in order to live in peace.

Despite all of that, I refuse to bemoan the rise of the middle class as the source of all evil. Yes, the old money had a sense of noblesse oblige, but they also had a sense of entitlement. And while my parents struggled to put food on the table and could only dream of flying off for a week's vacation in some exotic spot, their son is able to experience first-hand what remains of paradise. So yes, I am one of the nouveau-not-so-riche who has muscled in on what you seem to perceive as your domaine. For that I do not apologize.

In a sense, I feel sorry for you. While you are discovering that you can never go home, I am embarking on the most exciting part of my life. For the first time I am able to explore new vistas, not merely as a short-term tourist, but without a timetable. And while in many of the places I now visit I sense the loss of simplicity and solitude from even 20 years ago, I can still appreciate what there is left to discover. No, its not perfect, but its still a pretty wonderful world.

Once again, here's to hoping that you find the paradise you are looking for. I only know that you cannot find it in the past.

Brad
Thank you but, as a point of record, I am solidly middle class, it just so happened that due to my father's occupation, I was raised in close proximity to the more affluent. I would never ask you to apologize for your success. I'm happy for it. I admire it. The opportunity for that transition to occur is what has always made America great, at least in my opinion. Some take that opportunity and make the best of it, some squander it.

Again, I'm apparently being misunderstood and after repeated attempts to try and clarify my meaning, I'm still not being successful, so I'm not sure how else to say what I mean...
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Old 28-07-2009, 13:53   #37
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Sorry I have misunderstood you. Lets just say that we agree on much - it just that I prefer to, or perhaps need to see the positive in what is ahead.

Brad
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:03   #38
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Look, if you travel to the third world you'll find Americans there. Often two kinds. The first kind is like they're on some kind of Eddie Bauer adventure tour who view their surroundings as a spoiled and insolent child would view a zoo. The second group, adopts (to some extent at least) the culture and customs of their surrounds and becomes a part of the local community to learn, help and grow.
Maybe you got everyone thinking in the wrong direction by talking about a cruising "counter culture". The term "counter culture" brings up an image of drug-culture, anti-establishment, hippie drop-outs to some. I don't think that's what you meant at all.

If it's really just the second group in your description above that you're looking for, take heart, because they exist. We ran into them all the time in the anchorages of the Lesser Antilles. A lot of the enjoyment of cruising in the lesser developed areas is getting to know some of the locals, enjoying their foods and culture, and experiencing the local scene. Some cruisers we met took it further and seemed to really integrate in with the local society, through charitable activities and so forth. Heck, my wife and I liked it so much down here, we sold our home in the States and moved to a little 6 x 8 mile island three years ago.

We came across a few of the first group you described in our cruising, but not that many of them. Of course we didn't hang out in the mega-yacht marinas or the charter sailing vacation meccas, either, preferring to swing on the hook in the less "touristy" spots.
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:20   #39
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Every aspect of life is suffering the same type of problem, and sailing/cruising is just one.

Where is the fun in back packing to discover the places Indiana Jones found these days?
The backpack trail can be a dirty unsafe anti climax in most places and very expensive in the rest.

Here in the UK, wealthy Londoners have travelled west in search of the weekend/holiday cottage by the sea, and have out priced the locals out of their own villages. They buy groceries in London to take with them, so dont support the village stores. The villages are like ghost towns through the week, not enough kids living there to justify a local school. Other local businesses cant make enough to justify staying open and the nett result is the death of a community.

Maybe electronic nav aids have made it easier for weekend warriors to go cruising and pretend they are die hard sailors. Loads of money can buy a big flashy boat, but you cant buy a dream.
A real dream is something youve wanted because it wasnt easy to have.
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:26   #40
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Many things have changed for the worse since I started cruising in the 70's. Here's the beginning of a list.
1) When you decided to go cruising you quit your job, there was no other choice, thus cruisers were more committed.
2) You had to know how to navigate, generally in learning this you picked up a few other skills along the way, thus the standards of boathandling and seamanship were higher
3) Insurance was unheard of, thus the standards of boathandling and seamanship were higher
4) Rescue was largely impossible, hence the standards of boathandling and seamanship were higher
5) Cruising evangelists tried to convince people to go cruising, many bought into it, there are maybe 4-5 times as many fulltime cruisers now as then, and untold many more short term warriors, it's harder to avoid them.
6) the surge in numbers also as a result of technological changes (comms, nav, watermakers).

I could probably think of more, like the increase in numbers has led to a giant increase in bureaucratic intervention, costs of same, bullshit safety rules, and ins requirements.
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:40   #41
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I'm not familiar with a Hobb's choice, I'm sorry.
I am familiar with a Hobson's choice, but this doesn't apply here...
That would make you more literate than I.
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:41   #42
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....I've lead a pretty eclectic life. I was educated as a musician. I've served the government and then dropped out. I've fought on three continents (lived on three) and while I don't mind it so much, would prefer to not have to anymore. I've run a business, made lots of money, lost/wasted lots of money and made a little more. I've been with too many women, most of the the wrong kind and still love a few even though I shouldn't... I've been beaten, stabbed and almost shot. ...
OK..OK...we all admit you are one stud dude mutha! BFD
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Look, if you travel to the third world you'll find Americans there. Often two kinds. The first kind is like they're on some kind of Eddie Bauer adventure tour who view their surroundings as a spoiled and insolent child would view a zoo. The second group, adopts (to some extent at least) the culture and customs of their surrounds and becomes a part of the local community to learn, help and grow.
Actually, there are all variations in between, plus more. You are only highlighting points on a continuous spectrum.

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Again, I'm apparently being misunderstood and after repeated attempts to try and clarify my meaning, I'm still not being successful, so I'm not sure how else to say what I mean...
Perhaps you are misunderstood because you don't really understand yourself?

The "good old days" were never really as good as we remember them, and the present and future is never really as bad or good as it may appear to us. Change happens, deal with it. I don't know about anyone else, but getting out on the water usually helps immensly to clear the crap out of my head!
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Old 28-07-2009, 14:52   #43
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DPMatty asks "where has the cruising counter culture gone?"


Perhaps they came ashore, applied themselves, made a load of money, and are out there cruising in Oysters. And maybe complaining that it's too crowded.
Sometimes your insight just amazes me. I hitchhiked across the USA. Lived like a vagabond for a while. Got serious in life, and bought me Frolic. Got a little more serious, and bought me Imagine.

I think when it is said you can't ever go home. That of course we realize we can go home, but it will never be what we left behind. Just as we grow, and change, so does our enviroment.

Try getting over the mountain pass on this trike for a day, or on top this jeepney with luggage, animals, and people all on the top, because the bottom is full. There's all kinds of places to explore that's not commercial, and CHEAP!.......i2f

Did you notice the crushed truck? No Osha here
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Old 28-07-2009, 15:00   #44
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I first took to boats bumming around the caribean almost twenty years ago and have been looking to head back and may over the next year or so. While I'm not a complete misanthrope, one of the things that appealed to me was the counter culture that existed in the cruising community. These were folks who, like me, perhaps more so, left to drop out of the standard keep up with the jonses society.

I loved that. I came back started a business which I've been running almost by accident and dealing with people who I have loathed for twenty years. But I had some family obligations that I had to attend to.

Now in reading these boards and others I find the yuppies have taken to the sea... I know they've always been there a bit, but not like it appears today.

Am I wrong? Can one still get away and find adventure or must a new cruising ground be pursued? Are there really any left? The questions are sort of rhetorical, but not entirely...

I wish I had been born to a time of wooden ships and no electronic navigation...

This question gives an impression of a person who is highly dependent on the opinion of others, and the need to belong to some "culture", "counter" or otherwise.

Why do you care what is the socio-economic situation of your neighbor in the anchorage? His motivation for being there? What kind of boat he has? Being out on the water is really better an escape from all that nonsense. Such intimacy with primal forces, like the sea, is the best possible cure for all these cultures and countercultures, which distract from the real things in life.
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Old 28-07-2009, 15:01   #45
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I think when it is said you can't ever go home. That of course we realize we can go home, but it will never be what we left behind. Just as we grow, and change, so does our enviroment.
"You cannot step twice into the same river." Heraclitus (c.535 BC - c.475 BC)

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