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Old 27-10-2009, 14:00   #121
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I think XCal has it right. All things are relative, and counter cultural asks the question, "Counter from what?"

I've cruised my whole life on various vacations, and now I can't wait to cruise as a permanent life style. The kids are pretty much on their own, I've done many of the usual "good scout" things in life, and now I'm ready to go cruising. I don't think that's counter cultural at all.

Some people want a house on a golf course and all that goes along with that, so living on a boat and going from place to place, and staying at some of them for a while, might be counter cultural to those moored alongside the 12th hole.

Some nights, we will anchor by ourselves, and maybe not wear any clothes (in my dreams...) Other times, we will take a slip, have a nice dinner, and hit the bars. Sounds pretty good to me!
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Old 27-10-2009, 14:19   #122
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it's a drug....

Well......... I think the yuppies have taken to the sea. 45 foot boats, chartplotters, watermakers, computers, multiple linked systems........... everyone trying to escape that same complication they setup in their lives around their complicated house. ..."you cant run from yourself" was never more in evidence! Having said that, many of these people have a great spirit in their hearts........ some were protesting in the streets in '69, or living on a mountaintop with a ponytail after all... But there are still a few out there in every harbor with minimal boats, anchored over there near shore in their Westsail 32, mending that batten pocket, having the time of their life, keeping it simple.... But oh that water maker and flat screen tv is nice over here on the four stateroom Catamaran with three staterooms full of stuff from the house...................it's a drug actually....
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Old 27-10-2009, 14:24   #123
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Different strokes for different folks. Who is to say which is better? Whether hippie or yuppie, both are sailors. There really is not all that much difference when both have that common tie to the sea.
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Old 27-10-2009, 17:56   #124
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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 .....

Now in reading these boards and others I find the yuppies have taken to the sea... ...


LOL The original poster answered his own question!
Where did all the Counter Culture go? The transient ones lost their portfolio in the share market crash, or decided to go home anyway to work or have kids.

Those that were left either invested better, or got poorer.

Then the OP just makes his opinions by reading about it on the net, not experiencing it!

There is no counter culture! There NEVER was. The counter culture / hippies, 1960's drop outs, dope smoking Peaceniks are all one in the same: you and me. Just normal people. What they did for a few years was unsustainable.

Those with the psychological inability to get on with other people, that have boats that really only give an illusion of floating and are really just garbage tips on water, those people will still be there close to the shore line where they started - as are vagrants on land - but come out to where its more than a months sailing from 'civilisation' and there are none. Its just too difficult for them.

In this marina in Malaysia its 4,000 nms from the closest real cruising country - Australian and its populated east coast. It's 10,000 miles from California and 15,000 mns from Gibraltar going the cruisers way. Its taken us 17,000 nms to get here from the Caribbean.

There are 65 boats in this marina - all are boats that can and have been anywhere. All are in good condition, all are maintained, all are skippered by people who are adept at sailing.

There is no counter culture here. Just people like you and me.

The closest we get is some guy who wears his baggy faded undies on deck whilst doing his yoga.

He is not the Counter Culture, just some old guy with baggy undies.


Mark

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Old 27-10-2009, 18:33   #125
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Right on Mark!...at least we agree on this..

There is a select few willing to risk all at a minimalist level crossing the ocean blue for freedom and adventure that the OP might have deluded himself into believing was "the way it use to be"

More power to those so drawn...but like you say it aint necessarily called counter culture...this guy could own half mill in Microsoft stock for all we know.










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Old 28-10-2009, 06:07   #126
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Where Has the Cruising Counter-Culture Gone - Is It Too Late?

As a Northern European this subject is very interesting as we have had NO such 'society ' of people on the our waters as far as I can judge.

We might have had a few in Southern Europe but in the North we do not have weather to allow for such lifestyle

When we end up in your Caribbean or other places far from 'our ' waters; we end up in bigger that 40' as a result of our experiences. We mostly come well (over) prepared. I read your site many times with asthonishment how some people get on the water cruising at late age without real experience looking at their boat as a kind of motorhome ie large and a floating object to suit the purpose as they see it.

We have a culture of sailing people on lakes and the ones who took up the challenge of sailing on the sea. The last love(d) to be in cold weather with high steep brown waves in chilling winds evading the sand banks and trying to enter small harbour entrances so I personally LOVE the new navigation aids
My boat (nr 8 starting with dinghy at age 3 ) might be too big for many of the real cruisers but I am most carefully approaching this cruising adventure in far away seas.

We sailors from my generation have an uncompromising respect for the sea and love for our boats. We race them as sport and for many of us this is part of our education as yachty so we respect the racers despite how they are painted by many of your cruisers folks. They are not all rich yuppies but from my experience, just enjoying part of a culture.(OUR sailing culture)

I personally love to look at the line of some sailing yachts; expensive or not both new or old. Being on any kind of boat I feel as a priviledge.
Adressing other yachties is normal and part of being in this (my) sailing society; share experience and lifestyle whatever boat he or she comes from.

Point is to respect people bearing in mind also where they come from and with open arms and then judgewhen you understood their motivations and sailing culture better.

Look forward meeting you all ; even the ones from the 60's having done drugs and moving around since many years in what we call 'pieremegogels'.

Eric / ex racer /ex builder / future cruiser to be
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Old 28-10-2009, 06:58   #127
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I tend to avoid threads like this, cos I can rant a bit, so you may want to just click on the next thread.

When people deprecate the folks in boats of 40ft, 50ft, 60ft and so on, where do you think they learned? They didn't just buy a big boat and sail off into the wide blue yonder. When you see a sail boat or motor cruiser in some far flung place, those folks have earned their place there Unless you're up for more than a 2,000nm voyage you don't get to see these places.

NO one is stopping someone with limited means fitting out a boat so that it's safe, but where does the idea come from that the only true sailors are living like a hermit in some water borne cave.

The other thing that gets me is the notion that we are somehow guilty if we've made the best of our opportunities and find ourselves in a place with a decent amount of money. I've got a large boat now but when I was young, I had an old, home built boat that had more years than me. I worked hard, as I'm sure did the majority of cruisers, to be in the place I'm in now.

If you want a counter culture, go out and make your life as you want it but don't call us 'yuppies', we've grafted just as hard as anyone else.

I could care less what boat you're on, If you're a decent person, that's all that's needed.

Paige
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Old 28-10-2009, 09:29   #128
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- - Romance is always more fun than the morning after. Jimmy Buffet, Hollywood, et. al., make millions satisfying our need for romantic versions of adventures offshore. There is nothing in real life that is romantic about real pirates - they kill and maim and steal - but Pirates of the Caribbean movies make hundreds of millions of dollars pushing fantasy romanticism. As others have said - there never really is a "counter-culture" in real life. There are brief interludes when silly romantic activities catch on - but again, as said - they are unsustainable.
- - The main problem these days can be summed up by Jimmy Buffet's song lyrics - "We are the people our parents warned us about . . ." Now, we are grown up, have jobs, kids, grandkids, and investments and social security payments.
- - However, the romance is not dead or gone. It is in our heads and hearts and I, for one, find it easier to express and experience while cruising. You see it everyday in the totally abnormal behavior of cruisers helping fellow cruisers without expectations. We see cruisers sharing and exploring together, marveling at funny looking birds in Tropical Jungles knee deep in mud. You get a chance to recapture the romance and youth that is still hidden back in the corners of your brain while cruising. No condo committees, zoning boards, prying neighbors, and governmental watchdogs peeking into your private life. You cannot totally escape the modern world reality, but cruising goes a long way towards helping you rediscover your own youthful mind and romance. And that is were today's counter culture exists - live and thriving - in us because we are able to do things that are unheard of or downright politically dangerous back home on land.
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Old 28-10-2009, 10:02   #129
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I suspect you’re just discovering that nostalgia ain’t what it used to be.

As Jimmy Buffet sang (Pirate looks at 40):
“... Yes, I am a pirate, two hundred years too late
The cannons don't thunder, there's nothin' to plunder
I'm an over-forty victim of fate
Arriving too late, arriving too late ...”

Anyone out cruising on a very expensive yacht ($10M?) had enough wealth to create choices for themselves - and chose the cruising life.

Even jerks get nicer when they’re out on a boat. We get nicer the farther from home we sail.
I have to disagree with you, Gord. Jerks are jerks afloat or ashore. And distance from home doesn't help. I can't count how many times, exasperated by the jerks from here I've encountered in other countries who want to know "how much is that in REAL money?" or truly believe that if one yells loudly enough in English at someone who only speaks their native tongue they will eventually understand, and I've gone up to them and told them "it's people like YOU that make it tough for the rest of us out here. You're being a jerk and I'll be you're a jerk at home, too."
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Old 28-10-2009, 11:01   #130
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OldSalt, I am confident that Gord wasn't saying that there are no jerks out cruising; only that many people out cruising actually 'stop to smell the roses' and grow with that experience. Yes, there will always be those who cruise with blinders on, full speed ahead and with no desire to experience other cultures; indeed, they will often show a disdain for the differences that make our world a special, or at least interesting place.

I think the difficulty in assessing the situation comes from the fact that we did not know the people we meet out cruising in their previous lives. Some who now seem (and may in fact be) considerate, open to new experiences and genuinely appreciative of their stay as guests in foreign cultures, may not have started out that way.

When I was younger I had the typical western impatience with the slow pace, apparent lack of work ethic, quality control and cleanliness that I experienced in the third world countries that I visited. Time and experience have changed me: while I will never be a 'patient' person by nature, I have come to recognize that when in Rome, you must do as the Roman's do. I have also come to appreciate the manners and the pride in family and basic values that permeate so many of these societies. If deadlines are not met, I typically shrug it off, knowing not only that they are not married to a clock in the same way that we are, but that they are also more prepared to stop in the middle of their daily lives to provide assistance to someone in need of the same. If the quality of workmanship on a project is not up to western standards, I also recognize that the labour costs are also nowhere near as high. Most importantly, I recognize that I am nothing but a guest in the places they call home. I am receiving the benefit of their beautiful waters, beaches, interiors, vistas and naturally-grown foods; I am receiving the benefit of the slower and more relaxed pace of life that they (and now I), have chosen; and I am thankful, whenever I experience it, for being welcomed to their countires, rather than being viewed as an interloper.

In short, oldsalt, sometimes you can teach an old dog new tricks.

Brad
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Old 28-10-2009, 18:10   #131
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if one yells loudly enough in English at someone who only speaks their native tongue they will eventually understand,
Sure as hell worked for me in Indonesia when they were filling my Diesel gerry cans with "Indonesian liters"! The other cruisers all tried to smile and point out they were being ripped off. I just screamed at the top of my voice: "POLICE! POLICE! POLICE!"


The price dropped.



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Old 28-10-2009, 22:54   #132
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If deadlines are not met, I typically shrug it off, knowing not only that they are not married to a clock in the same way that we are, but that they are also more prepared to stop in the middle of their daily lives to provide assistance to someone in need of the same. If the quality of workmanship on a project is not up to western standards, I also recognize that the labour costs are also nowhere near as high. Most importantly, I recognize that I am nothing but a guest in the places they call home.
Brad
I finely understand completely now...LaConner Maritime boat yard must be a third world entity..
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Old 29-10-2009, 07:05   #133
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Two kinds of sailors

We all know there are ONLY TWO KINDS of sailors. Those who think there are two kinds of sailors and those that don't. I will be departing the Chesapeake Bay on Nov. 1 for the first leg of my world adventure. At first, I will be traveling the road mostly traveled but has I gain experience and confidence, I will travel the "road less traveled". Eventually, I will catch up with Mark and Nicolle. When I do (and after a few sundowners with them), I will get back on the forum and let everyone know which kind of sailors I find.
DP...keep stirring it up..I love it.
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Old 29-10-2009, 07:49   #134
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. . . . At first, I will be traveling the road mostly traveled but has I gain experience and confidence, I will travel the "road less traveled". . . . . . . .
jim
Jim - from another Jim who has been out here for awhile - If you have not cruised outside USA/Bahamas waters before I want to suggest that you will find a world that is radically different from what you have lived with and know. Keep an open mind, leave behind your ideas of how things should be done and meld in with how things are really done - everywhere else.
- - In the "Latin/Spanish countries expect that "things" will not happen or happen very painfully slow unless you are willing to show a "happy faced/positive attitude" and "grease the way" a little. Which is another way of saying the people and officials cannot afford to feed their families on what their government pays them so something "extra" goes a long way towards getting things promptly and properly accomplished.
- - In other ethnic/different countries this is not the case at all and you can get in trouble for attempting to apply "grease". In these places your attitude and smiles and words of appreciation for being able to visit their country are the "magic" formula. For the Caribbean the Chris Doyle guide books are excellent for guidance.
- - The current discussion of "Island Time" comes from the fact that it is just too darn hot down here to move fast. And there isn't that much work available so they like to "spread it out" rather than get it done in one quick burst. In Grenada we have a "cute suffix" we put on time related topics such as "the Parade will start at 2 o'clock GMT" - That means "Grenada Maybe Time" which is anytime 2 to 3 hours from the announced time. Same thing applies to all areas where "time schedules" are involved.
- - I retired from a 600kt job and it took me 2 years of cruising to slow down to the reality out here without getting upset. When things "need to be done" you use friendship, guile, and lots of compliments to get them moving. Another current saying is that when you are told it will be finished "immediately" that means sometime this week; "almost finished" or "very soon" means sometime this month; and "as soon as we can" or "as soon as possible" means you will die of old age before you see it.
- - Rules, regulations, etc. - yeah they exist - but nobody pays any attention to them unless you piss somebody off. In the Dominican Republic they have a neat system where a particular law or regulation is only enforced on one particular day of the week. The other six days it is totally ignored. The locals get to know which day is that law/regulation's day and pay attention only on that day.
- - Structure and governments seem to be about a century or so behind the times and most commercial activities are slanted to maximum numbers of employees possible for the minimum amount of work. Document are hand-written with scroll-like flourish with lots of hand stamps smacked on multiple places. The excess people on these islands need a job or they will start getting in trouble. A typical shop/store will have 4 employees where in the USA you would have one. And they work or do not work at their own whim.
- - So there is a lot of psychic shifting of gears we need to do or you will have a horrible or unhappy journey. Last night we went to a local bar to listen to a Swiss Band play Brazilian music. Fabulous, free and getting a drink which you will pay money for, is next to impossible. One time a waiter passed within inches and my friend waved and spoke a request for a drink the waiter never turned his head and continued straight on to another table. He was not being rude, he just didn't feel like taking our order at this point in time. 5 minutes later he came back and took the order. We all snickered and smiled as this is "normal" out here. We get to do a lot of laughing and giggling at the totally different perception of time and industriousness these different island people have. Friendly, wonderful people but definitely living to a different drummer. It's fun.
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Old 29-10-2009, 08:31   #135
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... and getting a drink which you will pay money for, is next to impossible. One time a waiter passed within inches and my friend waved and spoke a request for a drink the waiter never turned his head and continued straight on to another table. He was not being rude, he just didn't feel like taking our order at this point in time. 5 minutes later he came back and took the order...
... Friendly, wonderful people but definitely living to a different drummer. It's fun.
We could never train our Bahamian waitstaff in North American style “attentiveness”.
They felt that it was rude and intrusive to push drinks, by asking if you wanted another, etc. The typical Bahamian (man) will rap his drink on the bar or table, indicating he wants another.
Neither one is being rude. It’s just the way they do things.
Until they know you (fairly well) they will also present a very formal demeanour, appearing “unfriendly”. This too, is just another cultural difference.
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