She made me angry.
That simple question made me mad.
Within her question I saw the questioning of my liveaboard lifestyle.
We had just kayaked to shore, filled up two Jerry cans of water
at the dock
, paid our 20 cents and kayaked back.
So what did she ask?
"Do you like to live this?"
What the f... I thought. That was easy. It was exercise. I didn't even have to take the Jerry cans off the kayak
and haul them 200 meters up the hill to the local village watering well. (I loved those trips since it was even more exercise, and I got to practice the local language. )
But she didn't see what I was doing this same way. All she saw was how inconvenient it was compared to her pampered lifestyle of just turning on the tap and getting unlimited water. Cold and hot mind you! And, this.. this question was coming to me from a Couchsurfer who supposedly is used to living on the cheap
Someone already mentioned the cheap
airfairs these days and how convenient it is to just jet around the world instead of slowly sail it.
It is more than that. It is also the proliferation of cheap accommodations through places like Couchsurfering and AirBnB. Further the wealth of the internet
keeps you upto date on reviews
of every place to ensure you never experience a cold shower
, a room without perfect air-conditioning, and don't have a fantastic cheap local restaurant right out your door. Always, always these come with the temptation that the next near perfect experience is just a quick flight and Grab Car away.
Factors like these have helped ensure another possible aspect of the cruising lifestyle has died a quick death. That aspect was trying to make the cruising kitty go farther by excepting the illusive paying guest.
Unless you have a perfect vessel in top notch condition providing every shore convenience and can swiftly transport your fussy, busy paying guests to the perfect remote
beach at the crack of dawn your marketing
efforts will forever be tainted with bad reviews
. Bad reviews which will forever come up when someone Googles your boat's name.
"OMG The captain
couldn't anchor at the beach we wanted to go to because the water was so deep, and then he took us to another beach where there were wild monkeys. What a waste of our vacation
time. He should have known this in advance!"
If you asked what is the single
greatest contributing factor that caused the death of the liveaboard cruising lifestyle I would give you a two letter answer.
Live aboard cruising sailors tend to select warm areas to live. Nearly everyone with any means who lives on shore has been pampered with AC so long that the great majority of people have never spent a night without it. They likely have never stepped into a car without it. Further, as the girth of the average person has grown, the average person needs it even more to prevent the insides of a vessel from smelling like a cheap...
As a consequence of the demand for AC the absolute minimum size and expense to operate a liveaboard vessel has grown. Further few vessels have the space for enough solar panels
to run power hungry AC units. That means a vessel must either tie to the dock
or run a generator
. The expenses of either or both of these quickly depletes any remain funds after the initial now very expensive vessel has been purchased.