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Old 31-07-2009, 13:37   #1
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Hello everyone,

A co-worker of mine told me a story about 5-years ago about how he and his wife went sailing around the world for 4-years.

I haven't thought about this story until a few weeks ago, when my wife and I were sitting on the beach in the Greek islands admiring the sunset. We went for a walk around the dock and my wife asked how much I think one of 'those boats' cost. I told her it's expensive, but relatively affordable, if one really wanted. That's when the memories of my co-workers' story from many years prior came to mind. I told her the story and asked her jokingly if she would want to ever do something like this. To be honest, I don't recall her answer, but by this point something was already brewing in my mind.

We have always been the planning types and one of the few things we haven't figured out yet is how and where to retire. After days of brewing, the thought hit me. We love to travel and to explore other cultures; what better way to retire than to go on a trip of a lifetime? The initial investment is much cheaper than waterfront property and the costs are relatively low as well.

All of this led me on a crusade to figure out how much this style of living would cost, how hard it is to do, what's required, whether this is for us, etc.

Well, that's the story of how I got to this forum and have been reading and learning since. Unfortunately retirement date isn't that close, however if this is something we really decide to invest our future in, I wouldn't mind getting a smaller boat in the mean time to learn and to even see if this is something we would enjoy. Basically, I need to understand the reality of the dream.

Let's hope this brew is tasteful, refreshing and something that sticks.

Thank you for reading.
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Old 31-07-2009, 13:46   #2
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Welcome to Cruisers Forum, Paradise Dreams. It's nice to have you aboard. I saw your other very thoughtful post with its cautionary take on trading. You are clearly an individual who can both think deeply and express yourself well - just the sort of member we like to have here!

Again, welcome.

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Old 31-07-2009, 13:59   #3
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I don't think waiting for retirement age in the 6th decade is gonna work. You can learn a lot about sailing in a few years even new to sailing if you give your full devotion to learning and that means on the water too. I started from 0 and sailed off to the Caribbean from NE and lived aboard, after 6 years. I don't know that this could be condensed and still hold down a job, but I suppose it can.

What concerns me is that the older you get the weaker you are. I still attempt things which I could easily do a few decades back, but know I feel the pains the next day. Partly from being out of shape and a different lifestyle, but a lot is simply that the body wears. I didn't use eyeglass when I started and only for reading when I sailed away. Now I am dependent on them and hearing aids as well, though hearing is not an issue as much for sailing and without the H/A I can do fine in most situations. Going up the mast, grinding winches, hauling up a heavy main, docking lines and so forth are mostly for young stronger men. The good news is you can get power assist for many of the above, but if you have a failure you're on your own. Frankly I don't even want to think about hauling in my anchor and chain without a windlass or some mechanical assist.

The other thing is that we can suffer with less when we are younger and require more creature comforts when older. That also means a larger and more commodious boat, expensive to buy and maintain and more complex too.

For me sailing is about independence and freedom so I need to be self reliant and that means I can handle a smaller boat as I age. I can'rt depend on my wife for most of the boat related tasks so it means I am singlehanding.

I used to want a larger boat and often still do, but that larger is shrinking in size as I get older and hopefully wiser. Once I thought 50'+ was the cat's meow and now I am think 10' shorter.

The good news about the effort you will embark upon is that is is continually rewarding from day one. Never a dull nor unchallenging moment and when you finally untie the dock lines you will feel more than ready for the adventure.

You can't begin too soon and you never stop learning and becoming a better sailor.
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Old 31-07-2009, 14:14   #4
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Welcome...

The Greek Islands is a nice place to have the dream flash back. Lived in Greece and on Crete some years ago and loved the place. For me the winters are still too cool, actually 75F is cool to me!

I'm sure you could have a great time in Greece and Turkey maybe work your way counter clockwise from Greece to some of the other sailing locations now so popular. Planning is great, doing is better even if just on a smaller scale. Take your opportunities as they present themselves. Look at doing a charter or two in the region while your working and you will gain a better insight to what the whole thing is about.

It can be addictive!

again welcome.
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Old 31-07-2009, 14:32   #5
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Quote:
We have always been the planning types
You now have the skills to stop the dreaming and make the plans. I tend to think people don't need much help dreaming. You can make it up as you go along. No one gets hurt, no one goes any place, or does anything concrete. You just enjoy thinking about it.

Actually doing something is a lot of details and a lot of planning too. You already have a track record with references. Retirement is a plan and this falls on top of that too. You don't have to know all the answers before you start planning as so many things come up as you plan and suddenly the light goes on and you figure something out that triggers more questions that you need to figure out. It's about learning new things as you go. It's what a lifestyle change is. It's a lot of new ways of doing and thinking. How to make it fit and work and live within the limits of time and money.

I think there is a lot here to help you so long as you can focus on making it your plan for you. Not unlike buying a custom suit. You don't walk into the shop and just say "give me a custom suit just like that last guy that walked out of here". It needs to be about you and it needs to fit well too.

Waiting for retirement isn't the best way. I think it helps to get into it on terms that can work before retirement. What can you do NOW! Some sailing classes, a charter vacation, or doing some travel to the water to see more about what you think you'll be getting into. If only to perfect what you thought you wanted into what you really need and really do want. There are lot of "you'll know it when you see it" decisions but you'll also have "you hate it once you got too much of it". Once you get a taste you can maintain the excitement about doing all the preparation and keep your focus toward really doing it. If you can start with some basics you can stay connected to the goal and have a nice pre retirement too. You waste a lot of time waiting for the calendar.
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Old 31-07-2009, 15:00   #6
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Aloha Paradise,
Welcome aboard!
Glad to have another dreamer and a planner here on the forum. I'm more dreamer than planner. Good luck in fulfilling your dreams.
Kind regards,
JohnL
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Old 31-07-2009, 15:35   #7
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Not Too Early for a Taste of Salt

I think the advice to:
  1. Take sailing lessons together now, and afterwards,
  2. Take a sailing-charter vacation, where you arrange to do most of the tasks yourself (instead of having captain and crew run around doing everything)
is a great way, with minimal investment, to see if you want to proceed in this direction.

If you get excited from it, you can begin to dream & plan: that may involve owning a small boat to gain experience and enjoy while still in your career(s); if it's not for you, you can scratch that idea off the list and continue penciling in your future with another idea.

One caution: if you're the type, it's instantly addicting, and there's really no cure.

Fair Winds,
Jeff
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Old 31-07-2009, 16:49   #8
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Everyone,

Thanks a lot for such kind words. I'm sorry, but I'm heading out the door for the weekend so I will be sure and reply to everyone as soon as I'm back.

Just didn't want to leave you hanging

Thanks again
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Old 31-07-2009, 16:57   #9
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Originally Posted by ParadiseDreams View Post
Hello everyone,


Welcome and happy dreaming.

Quote:
What concerns me is that the older you get the weaker you are. I still attempt things which I could easily do a few decades back, but know I feel the pains the next day. Partly from being out of shape and a different lifestyle, but a lot is simply that the body wears. I didn't use eyeglass when I started and only for reading when I sailed away. Now I am dependent on them and hearing aids as well, though hearing is not an issue as much for sailing and without the H/A I can do fine in most situations. Going up the mast, grinding winches, hauling up a heavy main, docking lines and so forth are mostly for young stronger men. The good news is you can get power assist for many of the above, but if you have a failure you're on your own. Frankly I don't even want to think about hauling in my anchor and chain without a windlass or some mechanical assist.
Quote:
Waiting for retirement isn't the best way
Ditto those.

I am finding out what I can't do. Just thought I could.
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Old 31-07-2009, 23:39   #10
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Old 03-08-2009, 21:09   #11
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I don't think waiting for retirement age in the 6th decade is gonna work.
defjef, nice name

I'm definitely not waiting until the 6th decade to retire, sorry if I didn't make that clear, however having a family and kids means waiting. I have different priorities at this point.

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Originally Posted by Reality Check View Post
Look at doing a charter or two in the region while your working and you will gain a better insight to what the whole thing is about.
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Originally Posted by Pblais View Post
What can you do NOW! Some sailing classes, a charter vacation, or doing some travel to the water to see more about what you think you'll be getting into. If only to perfect what you thought you wanted into what you really need and really do want. There are lot of "you'll know it when you see it" decisions but you'll also have "you hate it once you got too much of it".
That's a great idea. My co-worker suggested getting a small sailboat which can be had for free or close to it, just to learn to sail .

I plan on taking my wife to a boat show to show her various boats so she can tell me whether a boat is something she can see herself living in/on. One of her concerns was having internet access and being able to stay connected to friends/family. I'm curious if anyone has any experience with the various satellite internet providers? It would seem that a moving satellite dish wouldn't work so well in staying connected. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks again to everyone for their input and words of encouragement and understanding.
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Old 03-08-2009, 22:02   #12
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I'm curious if anyone has any experience with the various satellite Internet providers?
Staying connected has a lot of options but they increase in cost depending on a lot of things. There are many threads here on Internet connectivity. You can't cut off grandchildren - period.

It's about finding a way that works for you and your family. All your ideas are good so try a few and see where things go. You don't get this far not reading the tea leaves. In case you have not heard "The admiral knows a dumb idea when she hears it."
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