I have just realised that living on a boat
might be the perfect lifestyle for me. I have enough cash to make the purchase
today but I know nothing about boats, so first I have to test whether I would truly enjoy that and if so, what boat
I should get. My first and most important question below is how to do that test. After that I write about my current
lifestyle and my expectations of living aboard
. Please roast that part as much as you can - whatever I'm missing, I would rather find out ASAP.
1. How to test that idea?
I was thinking the first step would be for me and my girlfriend to do some training
to the point where we can sail (or drive a powerboat) alone, without hiring a skipper
. Where should I do that training
? What kind of training should that be? I was thinking of taking a couple weeks off to go to Croatia
for a week with an instructor and liveaboard
, then charter
with an instructor.
Once we have enough training, we would charter boats for two weeks at a time, and try living on and working from them for that time. That would let us try different kinds of boats (sail or no sail? mono or cat?) and give us some idea what we want. Perhaps we should move somewhere (maybe Split, Croatia
? I prefer to stay within the EU) for that entire period, so that we don't have to deal with air travel - I hate airplanes and all the other means of public transportation, since I hate being surrounded by people.
If that goes well, I would buy the boat at this stage and we would start gradually spending more and more time on it, while also equipping it with stuff that we think we need. Soon after that we would move in full-time.
2. Current lifestyle and expectations
I'm quite a misanthrope and often find other humans very annoying. I also grow tired of living in any place quite fast - every location I've tried living in appears to me to be an absolute sh..hole soon after I move in, and I've tried a lot of different kinds of places. Hence the appeal of living on a boat: If I want to go away from other humans, I could just find a spot to anchor
where I'm alone and stay there a few days. If I want to resupply or socialise (I avoid humans most of the time but not all the time), I could pull into a marina. And when I inevitably start hating the country I'm in, I could just move to the next one along the coast.
So far I've been dealing with those idiosyncrasies of mine by frequently going abroad and living for a month or so in an AirBnB. That helps somewhat but is far from ideal: it still involves being around those pesky humans and it forces me to leave behind the comforts of my home that I have adjusted to my needs (my favourite coffee machine, my workspace). If I could instead move my home around, that would be much better. The additional appeal is that I would finally own my home and I could invest more into adjusting it. Until now, I've been only renting
and never owned real estate - I cannot commit myself to any particular country or neighbourhood.
I definitely want to stay in or near Europe
. We would probably cruise
although I have plenty of friends in London and on the Baltic
Sea, so we might go up there in the summer. (Also, going to the North Sea and living in a Norwegian fjord sounds like a fairytale.)
My girlfriend and I are around 30 y.o. We both work
remotely and need a reliable Internet
connection and plenty of time to focus on work
. The money
I make is insanely good, even by the standards of the most expensive cities. Even if I lose my current job, there is a lot of demand for my skills. The income
might drop to less than half of what it's now, but it would be still incredibly high.
When we start this adventure, I would pay people for all the necessary maintenance
and servicing. Over time hopefully I could learn and pick up some of those responsibilities.
I ran this idea by my father who is an officer on cargo ships but without experience with small boats. He thinks I will hate it as soon as I try it. Some reasons he mentioned:
* Not enough space - he has a point since I tend to rent big places to live in. And until very recently I had been living alone, so sharing the small space with my girlfriend will be a challenge.
* Humidity, messiness
* Electricity - according to him, either I would have to stay in a marina, or run a generator
which would be prohibitively expensive, or give up on some essential appliances
* I will have to pull into a marina too often to get fresh water
, throw away garbage and get rid of the wastewater. (But I think I can buy a watermaker
for the fresh water
and dump wastewater out in the sea?)
* Difficulty finding spots to anchor
* Rapidly changing weather
in the Mediterranean
My own worry is that the boat will require so much work and maintenance
that I won't have the time for my dayjob or to enjoy life. Although if that happens and the lifestyle appeals to me, I could probably get a part-time remote
job (20 or so hours a week) and still make the ends meet. My hope is also that since I plan to sail/cruise only a bit, the workload will be lower than normal.
If living aboard
gets somewhat tiring, I could take a month-long break and rent an AirBnB somewhere.
So, to reiterate, the most important question right now is: how do I test ASAP whether I want to pursue this lifestyle? Does the plan I outlined in the first section make sense? What training should I get and where to kick it off? The less important part is my expectations - please ruthlessly dispel anything that seems too naive. Big thanks in advance for any wisdom that you can share.