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Old 25-07-2009, 17:18   #1
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Alcoholics Anonymous & Cruisers

I was wondering if anyone would have info regarding AA meetings amongst cruisers during their travels? Are their impromptu meetings in these far off places I that I hear about where cruisers congregate? Are most cruiser gatherings alcohol centered affairs? will I be alone in my desire to stay alcohol free?
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Old 25-07-2009, 19:31   #2
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If ya come to Baltimore...I'll make sure ya get to a meeting

When you get to the dock, anywhere, just call the AA # in the book....I am sure somebody will show up.
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Old 25-07-2009, 19:47   #3
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Most cruiser get togethers include some kind of alcohol. You don't have to drink and many cruisers have kids who don't drink. Generally some non alcoholic beverage would be available.

I had a friend however who was a recovering alcoholic, and he could never get comfortable at the cruiser get togethers and would shun them. There are AA members who cruise however who do go to the functions and abstain from any alcohol.

I know it is extremely hard to be exposed without a safety valve so I am not in any position to make a recommendation. I just have to wish you the best.

Joe S
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Old 25-07-2009, 19:51   #4
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Not only in Baltimore, but I'm fairly confident that AA meetings can be found near almost every U.S. port. Many years ago, when I was in Al Anon, my AA family member had no trouble at all finding an AA meeting in rural Maine. And yes, someone came to the dock to pick him up and bring him back to the boat after the meeting.
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Old 25-07-2009, 20:22   #5
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Most boaters that I know are not alcoholics. I don't know a one that goes to meetings, but they all drink. I admit I'm not an alcoholic, I'm a drunk. So, if you go to meetings your an alcoholic..if you don't, your a drunk. The boaters I know are also drunks. Simple
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Old 25-07-2009, 20:34   #6
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I know that on the river, in Mulege, Baja California Sur (small town, minimal anchorage) there was an AA meeting for years, and there are many advertised at small gringo enclaves all up and down Baja. I have also seen cruisers fly the unity burgee, as well as put out a call on the VHF for "Friends of Bill W, meet on the beach for a BBQ". I have some friends who have sailed with us in the past who enjoyed those gatherings -- so I think they are around more than folks who don't normally pay attention know! One of them always made it a point to take along her "beverage of choice" to the cruiser gatherings, and she said it worked well for her.

Last thought -- I worked two 6-month stints in Antarctica, and there were AA meetings there at McMurdo that I am told were well attended. So -- I'm pretty sure you could find one!
When is the last time you tried something for the first time?
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Old 25-07-2009, 20:44   #7
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Here in the Caribbean there are various ad hoc AA meetings organised,
Trinidad for example had a well attended cruisers AA meeting each week right in a Marina in Chaguaramas which is the main harbour for cruisers

I am sure if you get on the VHF and announce a meeting
you will get a response in most places,

a very good friend of mine is an AA member and
he recently celebrated his 23rd drink free year and he is a very social cruiser,
so I feel you will not have any more problems in this community than any other

Good luck
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Old 25-07-2009, 20:54   #8
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There are also great meetings in the Keys....If you ever get the chance go to the Anchors Aweigh Group on Virginia Street in Key West
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Old 25-07-2009, 21:02   #9
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I have to say... this thread makes me feel good!
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Old 25-07-2009, 21:13   #10
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Originally Posted by speedoo View Post
I have to say... this thread makes me feel good!
Me too, speedoo, though I've never been drawn to alcohol. I think it speaks well of cruisers - at least, of the ones at Cruisers Forum.

Welcome to the Forum, Virginia Boy. We're glad you've come aboard. And thanks for putting up such an interesting thread. This place is filled with lots of friendly, caring folks, so make yourself comfortable, look the site over and if there's anything you want to know, just ask.

We may not have all of the answers, but we never run out of opinions.

"Your vision becomes clear only when you look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks within, awakens."
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Old 25-07-2009, 22:51   #11
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I've heard VHF calls for Friends of Bill W in both the Abacos (Hopetown, if I recall correctly), as well as Georgetown in the Exumas.

While it is has been my experience that most cruiser functions include alcohol, none of the folks I know would have a problem with someone abstaining, at all.

And, you won't be alone.

Welcome to CF, too!

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Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.--Ben Franklin

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Old 25-07-2009, 23:34   #12
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These days when people in general are a little more enlightened about alcohol, I think most people understand and respect those who choose to abstain.

Life begins where land ends.
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Old 26-07-2009, 07:34   #13
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Excessive alcohol consumption seems to be one of the rarely discussed hazards of cruising. We know two couples that ended their cruises, and later their relationships, when one or the other partner became too dependant on alcohol. Some while ago Fatty Goodlander and his wife wrote a piece for one of the sailing magazines on the subject and Fatty, himself, has foresworn drink for too much affection for the grape.

We do not permit alcohol consumption while underway save for a glass of wine or a single beer with dinner (as the food seems to ameliorate the adverse effects). But too much drink while anchored can be no less dangerous. We know of one incident where a yacht was pounded nearly to pieces while on a mooring at Avalon (Catalina) when a Santana arose while the owner lay in an alcoholic stupor below deck--as discovered later by the harbor patrol.

I admire those that can recognize an issue and take steps to deal with the matter.

"It is not so much for its beauty that the Sea makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air, that emanation from the waves, that so wonderfully renews a weary spirit."
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Old 26-07-2009, 11:44   #14
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Our newly formed Yacht Club in 2000 never has had a piece of real estate on which to establish a bar. We meet at a local state park. It really has been quite strange that most all the members don't bring alcohol to the potluck but even those that do are all welcomed and we have a good time whether having a drink or not.
Most cruisers I know are accepting of whatever your inclination to spirit is. I don't drink while underway but don't mind having a beer or wine when at a mooring. Its taken me a few years to learn that it is best to not have alcohol or other drugs available for any underway activities but it is now an onboard rule.
Welcome aboard!
Kind regards,
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Old 26-07-2009, 17:27   #15
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There AA meetings in most islands of the Bahamas. But there are a lot of cruisers that do not drink. And I have never found any cruisers to be non accepting of non drinkers. The cruiser community is an accepting lot. If you don't care if they drink, they won't care if you don't. We are have never had any issues and we attend a lot of functions where folks are drinking!! One of us are recovering 14 years, and one of us still drinks a touch. We actually make frozen beverages on board and then let the friends decide on whether to alcoholize or not, but you are provided with a small umbrella alcohol or not
Denny and Diane
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