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Old 19-05-2011, 04:18   #1
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Hello from Afghanistan

Hello all,
Currently a 20+ year veteran of the Army and on deployment in beautiful Afghanistan (this time). With retirement rapidly approaching, the idea of grabbing my children (who I have yet to spend any real time with) ages 6, 3, and 1, and embracing the cruising lifestyle. What better way to make up for lost time, no? I have 1 more long deployment after this one, then I will pull the trigger and jump ship from this circus

My wife thinks it's a wonderful idea as well. I'll probably bombard y'all with multiple questions in each of the topics in the forum, so bear with me.

I have a little sailing experience as I was stationed in Puerto Rico for about a year. We rented Catalina 22s from the MWR marina on the base.

I'm glad to have found this place and am looking forward to learning all I can.
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Old 19-05-2011, 04:30   #2
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome aboard Ranger. Lots of useful info and fun here. Take care in your work and enjoy your dream when you retire! Cruise to Tasmania sometime :-)
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Old 19-05-2011, 04:50   #3
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome aboard, and thanks for your service. I have two college-age kids and started taking vacation cruises with them about 10 years ago. I can't think of a better family activity. It has kept us close. Some of our best times and best talks, were/are on the boat. In this age of smart cell phones and texting/Internet/TV it's an opportunity to limit the electronics and really spend time together.

Your kids are too young to really be crew, except perhaps to help with steering and lookouts, but do give them responsibilities they can handle and that will help them get involved. Don't be a captain who yells -- give them training (at a level they can understand) and make them understand what is going to happen and why, so they can anticipate and contribute to decisions and learn to cooperate. Working as a team will draw them closer to you, whereas barking orders will create an unpleasant experience.

Kids of all ages also love fishing and exploring the beaches. My kids would spend hours hunting and collecting crabs and other critters in tidal pools and under tidal-zone rocks. That's ideal activity for small kids.
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Old 19-05-2011, 04:54   #4
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Thank you for your service. Good luck with your plans.
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Old 19-05-2011, 05:00   #5
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Thanks SailFast...
I'm pretty laid back and would like to think of myself as more of a teacher/coach/mentor, than someone who yells to get a point across. Hard to believe...but there are quite a few of "those guys" in this line of work.

The whole idea seems fascinating to me, being that close to the kids, sharing every adventure, the different cultures, the sense of responsibility they'll learn, etc, etc...

I can't wait to get started. Looking into sailing vacations right now just so the kids and wife can get a taste. Torn between a sailing vacation or a learning vacation that ends with certifications.

We have a camper and have camped from Georgia to Alaska and back, even talked about being full-time RV'ers. I try to tell them that the boat will be similar...but much better.
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Old 19-05-2011, 05:15   #6
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome to CF

If you find yourself with some free time but restricted to camp whilst serving in Afgan, you could consider one of the many sailing theory courses that are available. Good way of learning navigation, pilotage and rules of the road etc. Also keep you mind busy.

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Old 19-05-2011, 06:14   #7
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome to CF Ranger06, we appreciate you and hope you a safe journey home. CF will bring you many hours of enjoyment while away from your family.
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Old 19-05-2011, 06:16   #8
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome Aboard Cruisers Forum and enjoy...

THANK YOU for your service and stay safe
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Old 19-05-2011, 06:43   #9
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

From a fellow service member, Welcome!
I was recently deployed too. Good luck with your plans and into retirement.
Quote:
...and jump ship from this circus
I'm ready to jump ship now, and it is definately a circus... too many clowns around where I work too.

Take Care
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Old 19-05-2011, 06:46   #10
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
Welcome to CF

If you find yourself with some free time but restricted to camp whilst serving in Afgan, you could consider one of the many sailing theory courses that are available. Good way of learning navigation, pilotage and rules of the road etc. Also keep you mind busy.

Pete
Ranger06, I'm somewhat in the same boat. lol. But first - Thank YOU for your service and sacrifices you have to make on a daily basis! Those deployments are taxing.

I have been wanting to embrace the cruising lifestyle as well. We are land locked in Minnesota for now but hope to move to one of the coasts within the next five to ten years. I miss the feeling of cruising the seas (Navy - not quite the same as a sailboat but was great out there and visiting all the ports of call).

I have received my charter certification from Superior Charters in the appostle islands, chartered a few times on lake superior and am now taking STARPATH's Coastal Navigation course because of this strong desire for sailing and the intense interest I have. I am highly impressed with the training. It is laid out very well, is 100% online at your own pace and it is far more in depth than I thought which is great. I highly recommend it. I am learning alot of pitfalls newbies could run into and how to avoid common mistakes. It also has an online class forum so you can chat with other students on the problems and challenges/tests. My class forum name is GoneCoastal, which I hope to be someday!
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Old 19-05-2011, 06:48   #11
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome to the forum Ranger 06. Thank you for your service. There are many good people here that will be delighted to help you in your quest for the cruising life style. As a former cruising kid myself, I can think of no better way to grow up.
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Old 19-05-2011, 12:22   #12
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Thanks, everyone. All the words of support mean the world to us, especially while away from home; your support is deeply appreciated.

Will definately look into the on-line courses. I too, would like to avoid any new-bee mistakes before I'm actually on a boat.

And, Captain58, would love to hear about your experiences growing up on a boat...the places you must have seen! Do you have a blog or would you mind if I PM'd you some questions later?
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Old 19-05-2011, 15:53   #13
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Welcome Ranger, and let me add my thanks to the many others who value your contribution.
A proud Canadian, I’m even more proud of my service in the USN way back when, probably before you were born (I had one of those no nonsense invitations they used to send out when draft dodgers were burning their cards).
In terms of boating, SAILING is the way to go (Apologies to the stinkpot owners out there) and on this website, you will find a tremendous amount of knowledge and freely offered advice.
You came to the right place, keep your head down, count the days, and get a SAILBOAT!!!
Stay safe, James
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Old 19-05-2011, 16:41   #14
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

You can PM me all you like, I will answer all your questions to the best of my ability. I do not have a blog, I am an old fart and don't much go in for all that stuff. I am happy to share what I know with you and or pull your leg with a sea story or 2. All the best.
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Old 28-05-2011, 21:28   #15
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Re: Hello from Afghanistan

Aloha and welcome aboard!
Good to have you here. Thanks for your service. When I started sailing with my daughter she was about 9. She was almost "deck ape" age but still a bit of a "deck monkey."
kind regards,
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