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Old 04-10-2012, 12:20   #1
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Sailing/living aboard once more

Hi;

After 15 years without a boat, I recently bought a steel Van de Stadt 34' offshore masthead sloop, now located at Grenada. It is my hope to live aboard and explore the Caribbean in her this winter; if my hopes are realised - at age 86 ones hopes can be somewhat truncated by mental and physical shortcomings = I intend upon sailing my "home" back here to Nova Scotia, Canada, in the Spring of 2013.

This was something my wife, Thelma and I had hoped to do. Now I must do it without her help; I shall miss her and her abilities as organiser, inspirer and indefatigable helmsman. My permanent crew will be Dena, our 8 year-old Jack Russell; I expect she will be supplemented at various times by my sons, daughters and grandchildren, all of whom are encouraging though I think they suspect me of senility at best or lunacy at worst.

Will this be my last kick at the can? God knows; but if it is I intend on giving it a good, firm boot and have some fun into the bargain!
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Old 05-10-2012, 20:30   #2
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Go for it and fair winds.

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Old 05-10-2012, 20:40   #3
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

This 74 yr old youngster say's Kick it's butt till the things done !! it's the only way To LIVE !! Good luck to ya and great sailing !!
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Old 05-10-2012, 20:47   #4
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric hamblin View Post
Hi;

After 15 years without a boat, I recently bought a steel Van de Stadt 34' offshore masthead sloop, now located at Grenada. It is my hope to live aboard and explore the Caribbean in her this winter; if my hopes are realised - at age 86 ones hopes can be somewhat truncated by mental and physical shortcomings = I intend upon sailing my "home" back here to Nova Scotia, Canada, in the Spring of 2013.

This was something my wife, Thelma and I had hoped to do. Now I must do it without her help; I shall miss her and her abilities as organiser, inspirer and indefatigable helmsman. My permanent crew will be Dena, our 8 year-old Jack Russell; I expect she will be supplemented at various times by my sons, daughters and grandchildren, all of whom are encouraging though I think they suspect me of senility at best or lunacy at worst.

Will this be my last kick at the can? God knows; but if it is I intend on giving it a good, firm boot and have some fun into the bargain!

Is there likely to be a time when you are *more* able to do this? Probably not. You may catch grief from children or grandchildren. One of my daughters tried to tell me not to do this at the tender age of 64. You are the only one who can realistically judge whether you're up to it or not. You could look into labor-saving devices; I have a friend who pushes a button to raise the mainsail, for instance. Someone was describing how to use a power drill to manage headsheets.

Do get an EPIRB.
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Old 05-10-2012, 22:23   #5
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

@ 86? WOW that is admirable! Good on ya!
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:05   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eric hamblin
Hi;

After 15 years without a boat, I recently bought a steel Van de Stadt 34' offshore masthead sloop, now located at Grenada. It is my hope to live aboard and explore the Caribbean in her this winter; if my hopes are realised - at age 86 ones hopes can be somewhat truncated by mental and physical shortcomings = I intend upon sailing my "home" back here to Nova Scotia, Canada, in the Spring of 2013.

This was something my wife, Thelma and I had hoped to do. Now I must do it without her help; I shall miss her and her abilities as organiser, inspirer and indefatigable helmsman. My permanent crew will be Dena, our 8 year-old Jack Russell; I expect she will be supplemented at various times by my sons, daughters and grandchildren, all of whom are encouraging though I think they suspect me of senility at best or lunacy at worst.

Will this be my last kick at the can? God knows; but if it is I intend on giving it a good, firm boot and have some fun into the bargain!
Fantastic attitude Eric!

Wishing you every success !

Carlisle Spirit
(Singapore)
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Old 06-10-2012, 02:56   #7
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

Dear Eric,
what a great inspiration you are!!
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Old 06-10-2012, 05:02   #8
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

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@ 86? WOW that is admirable! Good on ya!
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Old 06-10-2012, 05:11   #9
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

+2!!

I am not as old as you are, Eric, but I sincerely hope that my sailing life will last that long.

The steel VdS is a good seacapable design, sturdy and reasonable fast. Where has she been built?
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:12   #10
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

Thanks and thanks again to all who have been kind enough to take the time to offer me encouragement, especially as most of them were sent on my birthday!
I must confess that though the prospects are exciting, they are also giving me a few sleepless nights. Right now I'm in the process of moving from my apartment; packing belongings, furniture, memories and putting them in storage until or in case I should decide to return.
I read somewhere that changing jobs or moving to a new home are among the more common causes of strokes. I suppose I'm doing both at the same time!

To answer MacG's question; "Ana" was built in Croatia for the former owner who made three Atlantic crossings in her. And yes, I agree, Van de Stadt designs have a good reputation for seaworthiness; I've admired them since I first sailed on one of his Trintella's. "Ana" is also fast - at least fast for me as I've usually owned "character" boats, e.g. a Herreshoff yawl, a Wm.Atkin double-ender and a junk-rig Kingfisher. Lovely vessels but not the swiftest except off the wind.

She's also equipped with GPS, Autohelm, SSB, computer nav system* and other bells and whistles with which which I am a comparative stranger. Hope I can still manage a steep learning curve!

*p.s. I'm taking my sextant and tables ... just in case!
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:24   #11
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

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Originally Posted by eric hamblin View Post
She's also equipped with GPS, Autohelm, SSB, computer nav system* and other bells and whistles with which which I am a comparative stranger. Hope I can still manage a steep learning curve!

*p.s. I'm taking my sextant and tables ... just in case!
I wouldn't sweat the new fangled technology end of things, as whilst damned useful - once you learned the old way (pencil and finger in the air ) you never lose the ability to........be happy lost* .



*lost in 21st Century terms means not knowing the location a Chartplotter / GPS thinks you are - to within a half an inch, 24/7.
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:33   #12
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

You are an inspiration. This past year at 56 I took a year to go sailing because I saw too many people wait until life took that option away from them. You are proof that with the right spirit (and good luck) that its never too late! Hope I don't have to wait that long to get back out there, but its great to see it being done. Prove em all wrong!
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Old 08-11-2012, 14:48   #13
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Re: Sailing/living aboard once more

Aloha and welcome aboard!
Good to have another senior plus here.
kind regards,
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