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Old 30-04-2020, 17:46   #31
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

I am reminded of the year we over-wintered in Kemer, Turkey. Late in the fall, after most all of the over-winter crowd were already in situ, we learned of a couple in a relatively small (28') sailboat needing help coming into the marina. They needed assistance getting in as their engine had failed. Over time we learned that this couple, both in their mid-eighties, had sailed from Cyprus, were delayed by the engine failure and adverse winds and were very happy to be towed into the marina. As we got to know them over the winter, we understood that the gentleman was starting to suffer from dementia and they (really she) was having to think about Plan B. That experience, although more than a decade ago, has stuck with me. 1. I am totally impressed and daunted by their dedication and commitment to their life choice at that age and on a not too comfortable boat. 2. What lay next for them?

I never found out and perhaps that is why it stuck with me. I don't know whether to wish I had emulated them or whether to be terrified by the decisions they then needed to make. Bottom line, we all make our own choices and almost always we say in retrospect "I wouldn't have done it any other way".
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Old 30-04-2020, 18:04   #32
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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You're only 55 I believe you said. You are still quite young to want to do nothing....

At this time, I'm having to re-qualify as a Computer Technician to keep my job even though I have been a manager since 1995.

The last computers I maintained were using DOS 3.2! They were 386 computers

I have to pass the 2 A+ exams just to keep my job and at the same time handle the transition of incoming company and out going company and do the interviews for new hires

These exams deal with all the newer stuff . mobile phones, servers , networks, command line knowledge (that I know) and all the rest of the computer world that has changed so much since 1995 and the thing is ......

it's been quite fun and I still have one test to go. (I'm mid 60's)

I think doing just sailing is too slow for some unless you have a real plan of how to spend your time

Plus it's hard to get in your long runs and cycling rides to stay in good shape....
I respect what you are doing, and, having gone back to work once before after retirement I understand some of the challenges! I only address your penultimate comment "I think doing just sailing is too slow for some". I am sure that it is true - for some - but I wouldn't want to leave out there the impression that 'just sailing' is in fact 'just sailing"! In our case it was: Maintenance out the kazoo; a new country to get to know every time we felt the need to move on; languages to learn; foods to enjoy; maintenance again!; friends to meet, cultivate and later reconnect with in different ports; ancient civilization sites to explore; family to visit in exotic locales...you get the idea. I could go on. In other words the sailing is (or can be) a magic carpet that can take you anywhere and expose you to an unending wealth of experiences. Just my opinion, and right now I have way too much time on my hands ~Alan
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Old 30-04-2020, 19:36   #33
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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I would like to be a place in my life where I could have that kind of attitude, sounds refreshing. I like to see a light at the end of the tunnel no matter how long the tunnel is, I need to see some sort of objective in my life or I would feel lost. Maybe I can get to this point of not worry so much about the future. I seel all these middle aged people on Youtube and how happy they are or at least pretend to be but I always think about the exit strategy.
As the motorcyclist saying goes, you gotta ride your own ride. I've come to see that one of the traps in life is a quest for certainty.

Cruising, to me, is a lifestyle. It's the way I choose to live right now. I really don't know if I'll end my days on deck, or simply move on to other things. My goal, whether I'm on my boat or wandering the continent, is to live and explore and learn. I can do this most anywhere, in pretty much any living circumstances.

Last sailing season we travelled around the northern tip of Newfoundland, and explored incredible lands and met amazing people. This past winter (before the Covid-apocalypse) I learned how to care for parrots, donkeys and horses. I don't know what this summer will bring, or what I'll be doing next winter. But I know will be interesting.

BTW, I'm currently 52. I moved into this cruising lifestyle when I was 48.
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Old 30-04-2020, 20:30   #34
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

Hang on a minute Mikentosh, you're looking for escape. There is none. I sort of agree with doug weibel that how you wrote about your situation makes it seem like a mid-life crisis, because the strong feeling you give is wanting to escape from the corporate lifestyle which you have been living, compared to being ready to take on all the challenges of skippering responsibly. There are many skills to learn for that. Also, you may simply be a bit burned out at this time, and only need a small change of pace, not total escape.

I'm a long term cruiser, full time since March of 1989, please remember this while I start telling you a few of the things you don't know yet.

Do you like to sail? Do you get seasick? What would your goals for cruising be? Because most countries don't want elders to camp there forever. You have to deal with visas and fees everywhere.

Do you have good conflict resolution skills? they help when you live in a room the size of your bathroom for months on end.

If you think you want to sail for fun, relocate to an area where there is ocean for sailing. Get some sailing lessons. Better to spend that, than invest in boat, insurance, marina berths, and then find out you don't like it.

If you are committed to your wife, her introduction to sailing should be what you would do for your best male friend's wife: you want her to be comfortable, and to have fun. Now, if you want to cruise together, you let her take her lessons with all women. She will soon be a competent sailor, and able to stand her watches intelligently. Having different teachers, with different emphases brings more total knowledge.

With a boat, you will never be free of something to do. Buying new doesn't make it happen (commissioning a new boat is very $$ heavy, and if you don't do the work yourself, you are at the mercy of "minions" whom you pay, and wait for). Buying used can make it happen, but you do not yet have the knowledge base to make it happen for you.

Somebody suggested getting a small boat and trying out sailing for a bit first, and I would recommend that, as well, because it is (a) easier to learn to sail well on small boats and (b) it is an easier strategy to recover from if it doesn't work out.

Imho, you're not really in a place to make a for sure exit strategy for when you want to quit, because "man proposes; the Lord disposes". Life always hands you something unexpected. However, I respect that you would like somehow to make it easier to retreat from, and that your personality wants the pseudo security of that fantasy. I don't know if you are basically risk accepting to like cruising. My first husband was not, he didn't like to travel.

So, yes, the small condo as a place to rent out now, then live in later, that could work.

Mostly You tubes show you the easy times, when you won't kill the drone, or the video. What you see is not how it will be when you are doing it--if you choose to. A lot of newbies seem to look at buying a boat and sailing offshore to be like buying an SUV and driving to Alaska. It isn't. When on the ocean, you are living in an environment that is not forgiving to humans. On passages, you can become tired and still have to take care of the boat. You may have "beam me up, Scotty!" moments, and Scotty isn't there.

Okay, I've done my job: I've tried to warn you as best I can. I hope you can take a deep breath and settle down and approach a cruising goal in a reasonable way. But really, the exit strategy is the least of what you have ahead of you.

Should you want to read up on the kinds of problems skippers have to solve, CF's Custom Google Search will take you to threads on subjects you will be interested in. Good luck with it.

Ann
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Old 30-04-2020, 22:47   #35
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

you have gotten some excellent responses here! i'm just a noob, but i've been doing this long enough to hopefully help out.

the question you pose was huge for me a few years ago, so i've been observing. i'm in europe, and so this reflects what i've seen here:

-most rent the home out so to return to it, if needed
-more and more live on a marina berth. most rent but some buy a berth with a long concession. 20-year concessions exist. they rent it while cruising to cover the fees, and then, later on, live aboard
-some take the mast down and poke about on the rivers and canals. this is not that easy physically, as it essentially requires two people for the locks, and one of the two needs to be fit
-i met one couple that organised it with family: they invested in a home with the daughter, so to have a private, one-room apartment in the bottom floor of the daughter's home. this solution has its pluses and minuses both ways, but makes sense in a lot of ways


another observation: there are a lot of really old guys living on boats. they are in boat yards (tinkering) or in marinas or even anchored out... some have a wife who doesn't like to sail living in the house. some no longer have a partner. how many times have i heard, "she hates/hated the boat"...

this is something to think about and take seriously, as you have stated that your wife is not so keen. before you take that huge leap, make sure your wife is hooked on sailing and the cruising lifestyle. she needs to feel confident in her own skills and to love the water (yes, women-only courses).

and she needs to love you to the moon and back. your couple's dynamic needs to be good at keeping things good.

and of course, keep in mind, some female partners have been known to bag the whole thing once grandchildren come along...




another topic on the table: the unexpected, the unknown... these concepts are not ideas but constantly unfolding realities. and these realities are very, very difficult to truly embrace, especially as Mike and other full-time cruisers have done. for me, releasing control over the future, especially the long-term future, is one of those ultimate human questions...

we all walk a very taunt rope in life, one in which we constantly gage the risk involved and the reward (or cost). to each his limit, as it goes, but, what we have in common is how, at the end of the day (as in, on one's last dying day), the worst apparently is to regret the opportunities we missed, the things we didn't do... that, and the loving relationships we didn't manage to keep

and i think this is the crux of the cruising question for many couples and the reason for which they are so rare.


but all is not lost. my feeling on this is that the further away you get from your landlubber life, the easier it will be to see yourself, know yourself and evaluate how risk-averse you really are, where your limits lie. gaining freedom from the-need-to-control-everything and getting to know oneself in a real way can get addictive... just keep in mind, your plan also depends on whether your wife loves sailing/cruising and you (lots) and is willing to embrace those same risks as well.



good luck to you!




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Old 01-05-2020, 00:42   #36
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

Nice post, Wolfie... many salient points for the OP to consider, and many rather difficult questions posed. Lots of homework for the OP if he is serious!

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Old 01-05-2020, 01:52   #37
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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I've been moving at rocket speed too long. I'm looking forward to doing NOTHING!! At least a year of doing absolutely nothing. I'd be happy to just staring out into the abyss for a while.
Hey Tosh,

It'll be interesting (and mean that earnestly) to see how that will go. I, too, work flat out most days and after a day off doing nothing, I find I start twitching for something to do. Of course, onboard you can channel that energy into boat projects. I like Hudson Force's list (I'm a cyclist as well) so a good storable bike is key for landfalls. And something to make music with. Guess I'll go back to playing the guitar.

Happy planning and here's to la dolce far niente!
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Old 01-05-2020, 02:11   #38
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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And Thomm, there is more to life and ambition than endless exercise and beach cats.

Jim
Good one, Jim!

Thomm does deserve a bit of teasing, after all he *is* an IT guy...

Heehee LittleWing77
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Old 01-05-2020, 09:34   #39
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

Mike OReilly mentioned the advantages of not owning property or other major items other than his boat and Wolfgal mentioned the importance of a strong loving relationship of a couple sharing goals. I believe these two factors; the freedom of non-ownership and my great fortune in finding a young lady 50 years ago, who was willing to commit to the dream, were essential to our long term cruising.
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Old 01-05-2020, 09:39   #40
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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Sail model boats in a pond or the tub...whatever it takes!
There's a retirement community, not far from me, at the edge of a city park.

And in the lake in that park...

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Old 01-05-2020, 09:49   #41
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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what do you do when you can't sail anymore?
Stare fixedly up at the inside of your coffin lid...
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Old 01-05-2020, 10:04   #42
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

I took up flying. It is not more expensive than yachting
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Old 01-05-2020, 10:14   #43
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

If a nice but much more flat and stable boating environment is desired. I would suggest going online and looking at YouTube videos regarding UK Canal boats.

My fist interaction with this little corner of the boating world was in Leeds, a town full of canals. I quickly became aware that there was quite a lovely lifestyle to be had, quite economically. No decks to speak of. Just flat interior space that is simply beautiful.

There are canals all over the country and people cruise in safety, without the risks of going to sea or even to a lake.

Many places have municipal docks at which you may tie up for a set period of time for free, then you just move on down the canal to the next place.

I was surprised how inexpensively a fully completed vessel could be bought for.
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Old 01-05-2020, 10:16   #44
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

I am 65 and going strong. Still sailing surfing and skateboarding.
Onone of my boats the CAL 35 I cut the mast off half off. added running lights on top and a 6' tiki use it like a yatch.

When I want to sail i just hop in my little san juan 21 and play.
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Old 01-05-2020, 10:42   #45
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Re: what do you do when you can't sail anymore?

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I've been moving at rocket speed too long. I'm looking forward to doing NOTHING!! At least a year of doing absolutely nothing.
Then absolutely don't buy a boat. You'll be way too busy working on it, fixing stuff, and making a 1,000 trips to every local chandler.
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