In 2002, we were invited to spend the day with friends on the Chesapeake Bay
. After a leaiserly trip to St. Michaels for lunch and cocktails back at their marina, the wife and I started the drive back to DC. We had covered less than three miles when she said, "We could do that."
"Do what", I asked?
"We could buy a boat." she replied.
I pointed out that we had been searching for a summer home on Lake Seneca and that it would streach things a bit to do both. She immediately dismissed the summer home concept
by saying she would love to have a summer home where the scenery could be changed.
Three years later, we had the attended a number of schools, passed the test for CG OUPV license
(no, we did not apply for the license
, only wanted to get the basic knowledge), and chartered several boats of the models we were considering buying
Then we decided to look at the North Pacific
. When I called the builder
to see if there was one on the East coast
we could look at, he said there were none. As an alternative, he invited us to the Seattle boat show
. My schedule wouldn't allow us to make it prior to the night of the show closing. No problem, we could meet him the morning following the boat show
and take his demo boat from Seattle
to Vancouver with him. Since I had a free companion ticket on Jet Blue and they had a sale
from DC to Seattle for $129, it was a no brainer.
We met Trevor on Monday morning after the show, just after sun up. As we walked down the dock toward the boat, my wife began to smile. The closer we got to the boat, the more she smiled. By the time we stepped on the boat, she was beaming. Three minutes late, she declared, "This is it. This is my boat."
As Trevor showed us around, she started asking questions about modifications. For each question, whe made a written note of the answer. (All I could think of was the $ each of the mods would cost, but Trevor explained that he did not charge for modifications as long as they weren't too extreme.)
We took a leasurly trip up the Strait of Georgia
to White Horse where Trevor left us alone to spend the night on the boat after treating us to a great dinner in a restaurant overlooking the harbor. After dinner we walked back to the boat and must have been awake until well after midnight (0300 our time) as we talked about what we wanted to do.
We continued North the next morning with my wife at the wheel
. She didn't even want to hand it over when were were getting four foot beam seas. It was very obvious to both Trevor and I who was in charge. It became even more obvious when, after reaching the dock in Vancouver, when she asked how much of a deposit he required as she pulled a check book from her bag.
Almost two years later we splashed Cloud IX in Newport
News. The smile she had on her face in Seattle paled by comparison to the smile she had on her face when she stepped aboard her own boat.
About six months later while were heading down the Chesapeake, she ask what I thought about selling the house (we had just signed a contract
on a new one in Vero Beach) and living aboard
full time. I told her I could go for that, but only if I could retire (again) and we could become full time cruisers. Not a problem she said. Let's get the house built and then put it on the market. This was just prior to the housing crash. We still own the house, but will put it on the market at some future point. (In the meantime, she is again looking at boats.)
I spend most of my time as a live aboard while she splits time between Vero and DC. We are both getting excited about heading South until we can buy some of the cheap
Thank you for bearing with me through this short cronicle. It's something I have wanted to put on paper for a while. In answer to the original post, that is how the love of my life, who grew up spending summers in Maine
and got her first boat when she was seven, convinced me to buy a boat and become a live aboard.