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Old 04-08-2016, 17:43   #46
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

Thought you were going to end that story with she went sailing with a 25 year old skipper whilst her other half ended up in an old age home.



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You remind me of a couple we met some years ago in Mexico, sailing on a nice Moody 40-something...

They had been in a situation similar to yours... her panting to get away, him dragging his feet. He went off to a meeting out of town. A couple of days later, he's paged, and a courier presents him with a big fat envelope, and says he is to wait for a reply. Inside was a note from the wife " I've sold the house and bought a boat. please sign the enclosed documents and return by the courier."

And a couple of years later there they were cruising. Lost track of them in Fiji or thereabouts some years after that.

Perhaps a role model?

Jim
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Old 04-08-2016, 17:46   #47
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

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Thought you were going to end that story with she went sailing with a 25 year old skipper whilst her other half ended up in an old age home.
Well, we don't know what the ultimate outcome was...

Jim
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Old 04-08-2016, 17:53   #48
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

The woman in question, also bought the spinnaker for that boat, as well, 'cause she wanted one.

Ann
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Old 04-08-2016, 18:13   #49
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Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

I started sailing when I was 50. I had sold my last airplane, a Beech King Air that we had a small fire in and that was it for my wife. That was 5 airplanes from my first one and I was an Air Force pilot in the early 70's, an Architect, and used flying to relive the stresses of my professional life. I decided to take up sailing as a way to replace flying. I signed up for sailing lessons at Kentucky Lake, went up and bought a new Hunter 260 and learned to sail on Kentucky Lake and kept that boat for 5 years.

I had a good fiend, ex navy seal with a condo and sailboat in Punta Gorda, Fl and have done a lot of ocean sailing with him around southwest Flordia. In 2003 we traded the 260 for a new Hunter 356 and equipped it as a very comfortable cruising sailboat with lots of amenities. The 260 was spartan and we learned from it what we wanted and bought the 356 and fully equipped it with all the electronics, autopilot, satellite TV with KVH antenna, a generator we run full time when away from the dock, a full enclosure and made a luxury cruiser out of it. When we bought it, a lot of people thought sailboats were supposed to be basic, you got wet in weather gear">foul weather gear, and ate beanie weenies and sardines. I've done some of that, and it doesn't hold a candle to cruising across the ocean in an air conditioned (or heated) saloon, comfortable dry enclosure and when off watch you can watch a Tennessee football game on satellite tv. We also eat great meals and take showers regularly. Some like it crude and raw and I'm all for you if that is what you want, but that is not our lifestyle.

We have spent 988 days on the 356 since 2003 and have sailed around 8500 miles. We had one 6 month cruise to Florida and that was when we were 67. We did a 50 hour crossing across the NW Gulf. We are not old in spirit, but we don't move as fast as we did when 50 and we don't like getting cold and wet, so we have the boat set up to avoid that. We expect to be sailing for many more years and plan to go back to Flordia again for the winter when we get around to it. We are 69 and wouldn't think twice about repeating our Florida trip. We don't have any desire to sail outside the US except we might make it to Cuba next time we are in Key West.

Also, I had a major heart attack at 52, have a defibrillator and heart failure, but it doesn't stop me one bit. My cardiologist says I am an 8 cylinder operating on 4 and can do anything I want, except I just do it slower. We had meant to make the Florida cruise right after we bought and commissioned our boat, but just never found the time. One of my friends retired, moved to a golfing community in Texas and died two weeks later. That fall, we went. Don't put off you life, get on with it. It is the only life you have!

Go get yourself something to start sailing. Keep a list of what you want for your ideal boat is and work to get it. You can have a great time cruising and sailing the Great Lakes and get some great experience.


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Old 04-08-2016, 18:40   #50
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

Just get going, find something small enough to learn on and go.You might not be here or able tomorrow.
In 16 years anything can happen, I have seen people wait and never do anything they planned or dreamed of because of health, injuries, or other causes.
In 16 years you may go through several boats as your plans and situation changes.

Oh I am 18 forever.
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Old 04-08-2016, 19:17   #51
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

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Just get going, find something small enough to learn on and go.You might not be here or able tomorrow.
In 16 years anything can happen, I have seen people wait and never do anything they planned or dreamed of because of health, injuries, or other causes.
In 16 years you may go through several boats as your plans and situation changes.

Oh I am 18 forever.
Good advice. Flip through the obituaries. Look for people in them younger than you, then ask, what were they planning on doing next year.
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Old 04-08-2016, 20:50   #52
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

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Good advice. Flip through the obituaries. Look for people in them younger than you, then ask, what were they planning on doing next year.
Ouch! But, as I near 50 I find that I have a far different outlook on the future than I did at 40.
Its hard to explain but, in a way, Ive become much more aware of my mortality. I don't mean thaI feel the clock is winding down on time. More that the finiteness of life is more real than when I was younger. I suspect that this is a biological realization. The antithesis of puberty.
But, it comes with the knowledge that ine can waste a lot of time "dreaming" without really doing. Dreaming is wandering with the mind and can lead to abanonment of the dream if things get a little dicey. Doing is living out your desires, still living them even through the tough stuff. Its a subtle shift in thought thats hard to describe. This thread has made me philosophical.

But the theme from many of us is the same, go as soon as you can reasonably do so.
It is so often quoted but so apropos:

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
Mark Twain.
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:09   #53
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Balena Bev.
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:36   #54
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

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Ouch! But, as I near 50 I find that I have a far different outlook on the future than I did at 40.

Wait until your staring 60 in the face.
When I turned 30 I was in the best shape of my life, I have always been a distance athlete and at 30 I could bike Century and run two miles in just over 12 Min.

40, slowed me down some, I could still do it, but I had to "gut" it out, it was a lot harder and took more determination and the recovery was longer, but I could still do it

50, I couldn't do it anymore, I had to realize that it wasn't achievable, no matter how hard I tried, Had my third knee surgery a little later, no cartridge left pretty much, eventual knee replacements on the horizon, matter of when, not if. I can usually still do things, just they take longer and recovery takes days now, not hours like it used to, and the back that has always been an aggravation, is now a real limiter.
Growing older for me has to some extend been learning how to live with pain, my knees always hurt and now the left leg, the calf anyway always hurts, just sometimes more than others.
I don't know what 70 is going to be like, but I sure hope that this degradation slows down some, at late 40's or maybe early 50's I fooled myself into thinking I could get it back with training, but a serious talk with my Orthopedic Surgeon sort of squashed that delusion

I've learned that growing old isn't for Sissies
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:36   #55
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

There's two ways to start your own business. You can quit your job and open up a restaurant, praying to God you don't fail. This is how a lot of people go broke.

Or you can start catering on nights and weekends. Build up a client base. Determine how much you love working with food and slowly start cutting back hours over a period of time until it makes more sense to have your own restaurant then working at the office.


Your life dreams are no different. If you love sailing so much that you would quit your job and do it for 100% of your life, then you should love it equally as much (probably more) to take a few weeks off a year to go on smaller trips.

You don't have to quit your job and buy a $300K boat to live your dream. Work it into your life as reasonable. Also, your motivation to save up for 16 years from $0 to $300K without any break in between is going to get old very quickly. Wouldn't you feel you wasted less time in your life if you spent some of that money chartering a boat for a month every few years with your family?
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:47   #56
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

A64pilot, my father, who is nearing 70, was a lineman with the telephone company for 30 years. This was back in the day where jacking up poles was routine. He has had both knees replaced and took up bike riding at 50. IHe routinely takes 1st in his age division bike racing. Knee replacement might be worth considering.
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Old 05-08-2016, 08:28   #57
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

What do you want?

We started our five-year plan at 50 with sailing school in the BVIs. At 51 we bought a share of a Beneteau 40 with home port St. Thomas USVI and we sail her 8+ weeks per year. At 53, we just sold our big house in Northern Virginia and sold Mom's house in Maryland. Downsizing to a 2BR apartment was the hardest thing so far, after getting my youngest to university. We are in the market for liveaboard this year and plan on living aboard full time starting spring 2017 and doing the snowbird thing while working for a while. We did our first offshore passage from St. Thomas to St. Martin in June this year, then flew home to settle on the sale of our house.

My regrets? I wish I had started sooner. We could have had an awful lot of fun on a basic smaller older boat with my kids - they bloody love sailing.

My motivation is lifestyle. Newt Gingrich lived around the corner from us and we were surrounded by a lot of self-entitled wankers who never understood our desire to get away from "inside the beltway." Sitting in a quiet anchorage in the morning and drinking my coffee in the cockpit is a good thing. Technology has made my cockpit my office.

I'm a hard core list maker and planner. My lover wants to relax and "don't talk to me in the morning before I've had my coffee." Yeah, I'm pretty focused. I had a real plan to buy a home on St. John USVI that I worked for about fifteen years while visiting multiple times per year. But, the financial side never made sense. Cruising? We can do that affordably for an order of magnitude less investment.

We are getting older. I have multiple work related repetitive strain injuries as a thirty+ year software guy. But, two weeks on our boat and I don't have a single symptom of the pain that dogs me every day at work. Coincidence? I do get a few boat bites and my right elbow gets a bit sore from winching our big mainsail up multiple times per day. But, after being out of the office I feel great, younger and with more stamina. It takes about two days in the office to relapse. I do forty minutes of PT every morning and it just helps a bit. Time to change.

What do we want? For years it was family, business success and stuff. The business and stuff owned us. We got rid of the stuff. We're working succession on the business. The kids are either at university or have graduated and have a good job. Mom move to a great progressive living community. What's left? Need to buy our liveaboard cruiser and introduce our senior 58-pound dog Gus to living on a sailboat. Yep, our dog is our biggest constraint in life now.

Cheers, RickG
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:49   #58
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

I was 53 when I retired and my wife 50. We had zero experience sailing a cruising boat. We did 5 ASA courses in 2 weeks, separated by a one week bare-boat charter in the Grenadines before buying our first vessel. We knew that we didn’t know and assumed that we would sell and buy something different when we had learned what to look for. As it was, it is better to be lucky than smart and we chose an Amel Super Maramu, a vessel that is not particularly inspiring to land-lubbers but is the cat’s meow for blue water sailors. We ignored all the advice we received that we should spend a decade or so in the Caribbean to gain “experience”, since we reasoned that it would be physically easier to circumnavigate in our 50’s than our 60’s. We sailed out of Fort Lauderdale in March 2003 and “crossed our wake” six years later in 2009. We have had a blast! This was so much fun! As others have wisely mentioned, our cruising was interrupted by the long awaited arrival of grand-children and we sold S/V DoodleBug in Florida in 2009, from where she immediately set off on a second circumnavigation, now rechristened “S/V Northfork”.

We did the RV thing next and enjoyed traveling throughout the USA by motor-home and then decided to continue this adventure by selling our American RV and buying another used bus in Australia. This too became a never to be forgotten experience of “circumnavigating” the Australian continent by Outback road and track.

Well now, the sequence is supposed to be floating home, motor-home and then rest-home. We have sailing friends who have given up the sailing life and have returned to “normal living”. And they can’t handle it! Once you have been to the big city and seen the elephant, there is no going back. The Nielsen ratings folks report that the average retiree watches 50 hours per week of television. Our “retired from sailing” (rfs) friends complained bitterly that although they were physically too old for the sailing, what with knee problems and cardiac problems, they missed the “cruising life”. And by this they meant not just the typical challenge of arriving at a new port and having to work out how to fill a propane tank but also the interactions with their fellow cruisers. These people are vibrant, smart and adventurous. You might meet them playing Mexican Train dominoes, taking a dance or cooking class, or perhaps tutoring local children in reading and mathematics. They will be from all over the world and except for the Americans and French, will be multi-lingual. OK, not ALL of the French cruisers. (just pulling the ancienne jambe there). By comparison, my “rfs” buddy Frank notes that he is unable to communicate with the land-bound people he mixes with in Oregon who have hardly been across the county line and have “moss growing out of their heads”.

We decided we had to go back to the water one more time and last year we bought a used, ex-charter power-catamaran. We have “driven” our second DoodleBug about 3,000 miles in the past year and although I do miss trimming the sails (or playing with all the “sailor string” as my wife terms it), the power cat has been fun and great for hosting visitors. My wife and I are soon to be 66 / 69 years old respectively and would like to play, swim, fish, drink, chat and lie about it all, as long as we can.

BTW, a close approximation to the actuarial tables is to take your current age and subtract it from 100. Then divide this by two. For me that is 100 – 69 = 31 and divided by two is 15.5 years. This number does not indicate how many years you might have left with good health and mobility, just how many years you can statistically expect to file income taxes. When my wife’s step mother lay immobile in a chair, she said, “I had so many plans for my life and I never did any of them. Now it is over”. What a terrible epitaph.
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Old 05-08-2016, 10:01   #59
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

Dear Edmundsteele:
Unfortunately I do not know you, but you seem like someone I would really enjoy meeting and having a few beers with! Thank you so much for sharing your story. This is very inspiring!

I see you have a webpage on your adventures and I will enjoy taking a look over it.

Neil
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Old 05-08-2016, 10:01   #60
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Re: Cruising in your mid-50's stories - did it happen/didn't it happen?

Most folks misinterpret the longevity tables. They really do not tell you how much time you have left, They tell you your probability of dying. So at the average age of death for a male, 79, half are already dead. So your chance of dying before 79 is 50%. Would you get on a plane that had a 50% chance of crashing?

Countless times folks have asked how long will they live. Usually tell them just long enough to do what they most want to do, but they got to do it soon. Most of the time that works out just right.
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