Hello all...I've been a reader of this forum for about a year now and just realized I had never actually signed up.....
I'm a Kiwi living in Atlanta GA USA..been here for about 15yrs now. I learnt to sail in Auckland
when I was 19 by going down to Westhaven Marina and asking anyone I saw if they were looking for crew. I hade never sailed before and thought this would be a good way to learn. I ended up on a 32ft boat (I have no clue what make it was) as sheet hand. My skipper
was a real nice guy on land and a complete ******* on the water
but he taught me a LOT about sailing...I was sheethand for 6 months of Wednesday and Saturday racing
until he would let me touch another thing but I learnt SO much and SO many good safe practices and routines that I still have with me today 30 years later! I continued my sailing education in Sydney
for a couple of years after I moved there when I was 21. I am mightily priviledged to have learnt to sail on two of the most beautiful harbors in the world!!
Anyway so I eventually moved to the US and didn't sail for a long time. I have had this quiet yearning to eventually move back home from the US and it occurred to me about 5 yrs ago that the best way to achieve this would be to SAIL home! I spent countless hours on the internet
looking at boats of different sizes and capabilities and prices and eventually after 3 years of looking and educating myself finally bought a Nautical Development 62ft Ketch
. It's a big boat I know but there are solid potential income
reasons why I bought that big as a first boat.
I had never really done any offshore
sailing or cruising at all but last summer we sailed my big ketch
from West Palm to Charleston then Charlston to NYC
as a shakedown cruise
and I have to tell you after doing these two solid week-long sails
cruising is in the very core
of my soul. It is like I have been waiting my whole life to do this!! We had a fantastic time out as far as 200 miles offshore and I got to fulfill one of the many things on my to do/see list which was to SAIL into New York
harbor which we did on a fantastic clear night with a steady 5kt breeze.....sailed right in under the Verezano Bridge and up near the Statue of Liberty before dropping sail and motoring up the East River....absolute magic!!!
The goal now is to leave the US next year late...sail a good 3mth shakedown around the Carribean before heading south through the Canal and eventually back to NZ/Aus for a while...then embark on an open-ended trip around the world...for as long as it takes.......
So Hello to all of you...Thanks for the many tips and posts of advice and knowledge...you don't know sometimes just how invaluable SHARING your experience or asking a question on here can be for others.....