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Retire or Hiatus on Cruising boat changes everything !
Old 09-03-2016, 05:19 AM   #1
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Retire or Hiatus on Cruising boat changes everything !

My company went out of business in 2003 so at the age of 50 I bought sailboat outfitted it for Living aboard fulltime and left for passages south.

Now realize I had 6 children and worked for 1 company for 28 yrs. Very stable guy

Left Detroit in August 2003 and voyaged until 2005. My first mate Ann and I have comfortably enjoyed cruising Canada, eastern US coast and voyaged the Caribbean Islands. During that time we anchored every day except about 6 times. We found our boat "Fairwinds" capable and easy to handle. "Fairwinds" never failed us and our trust was well founded.

Luckily we were fast learners. It helped that both of us were typed A
people and failure was not going to happen. Also we were Lucky in that we had a 10 year Springer Spaniel aboard. Because of Hershal we went to shore twice a day. Also because of Hershal we met so many nice people. Also aboard was a 15 year cranky Siamse cat Stosh never left the boat.......
we never docked anchored out every night somewhere...........

We found ourselves part of a cruising community that enjoyed adventure. Cruising also kept you in great physical and mental condition. Most cruisers we met were in their 60's and 70's. Even a few in their 80's! We lived on $500 a month in the islands. That including sightseeing and travel!

After Lots of adventures we made our way back to the USA and now live in North Carolina. We like the temperate climate and people here. What a stark contrast our previous life! Our home cost us $ 62 K vs the 240+ home we had in Michigan. Also we can enjoy the outdoors during the winter months. Cruising really changed our lives and needs. Much simpler. Better!!
This was a great transition into living differently retired. We just quit spending money. Still travelling we've vacationed in Italy,Greece,England as well as taking cruises. We've began RV travel on our Rialta a 19 year old vehicle. Just returning from Quebec City and northeast USA.

However 10 years later after returning from our Carribean trip I'm retiring again hopefully permanently after starting a boat repair business.

Chuck
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Old 09-03-2016, 07:28 AM   #2
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The Rialta is very much in demand, I think because of its gas mileage. I was interested, but was never able to find one to look at. People snatched them up, and the price was always high for this used RV. I ended up with a class C, pulling a toad for excursions.

Recently, I saw a manufacturer offering something of the size of the Rialta, perhaps a bit larger. There are more RVs like the Rialta in Canada and in Europe. They make everything big here in the US.
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Old 09-03-2016, 09:00 AM   #3
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Just read this:

One of the most recognizable names in Class B motorhome history is returning. Chinook brand camper-vans, which ended production after 60 years in 2005 due to the bankruptcy of parent company Trail Wagons, Inc., will return to dealer lots in 2016. Chinook will debut its Countryside coach at the Sept. 14-18, Hershey, Pa. RV Show.
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Old 09-12-2016, 05:47 AM   #4
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What a great uplifting post. Been 10 years since I had a tiller in my hand, really miss it. You took the plunge and had a great experience. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-12-2016, 06:13 AM   #5
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"This was a great transition into living differently retired. We just quit spending money."

Beautifully said! If only all of the "retirement experts" blogging about Americans not being able to retire without 3 million invested would read this post!
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Old 09-12-2016, 07:26 AM   #6
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So many early retirees continue living in the same place, having the same friends and doing the same thing week by week by week.

Congratulations on your courage to get out there and living on your own terms. So many of us are downright envious of your experiences.
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Old 09-12-2016, 08:06 AM   #7
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We are currently in the traveling around the country in a RV (homebuilt) phase but our plan is to do what you did (live on a world cruising sailboat).

Any particular reason why you quit the sailing life? What size boat did you have?
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Old 09-12-2016, 10:37 AM   #8
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I also love the minimalist lifestyle. My first love is sailing but after a cost benefit analysis I bought a small RV. I plan on crewing on other peoples boats for several months a year. I'm sure I will bite the bullet one day and get my own boat. Great post by the OP.
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Old 09-12-2016, 11:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck711 View Post
We found ourselves part of a cruising community that enjoyed adventure. Cruising also kept you in great physical and mental condition. Most cruisers we met were in their 60's and 70's. Even a few in their 80's! We lived on $500 a month in the islands. That including sightseeing and travel!
Chuck
Thanks for sharing that. I listen to the Pacific Seafarer's Net most evenings and really admire those folks who cruise the Pacific for pleasure. That frugal lifestyle sounds interesting, I bet us landlubbers can learn a thing or two.

_B
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Old 09-14-2016, 08:07 PM   #10
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Timely post...just bought a 27ft trawler, perfect for the Great Loop....looking forward to taking a diesel maintenance course this year, taking her to short overnight trips, then hopefully south next year, hopefully do the crossing to the Bahamas as well.

We are in our late 40s but definitely finding that we can relate more to folks in the cruising community than folks our age...really excited about it!


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Inspiring story
Old 09-15-2016, 09:25 AM   #11
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Inspiring story

I really enjoy (real) stories like these, they are insightful, they can help us look thru the retirement glass from a much different perspective and understand we don't have to keep living just like we were in our working years once we retire, we should be free to look at all of the possibilities and make them happen.

Thank you for sharing!
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Old 09-18-2016, 10:44 AM   #12
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Thanks, I enjoy good stories about long term cruising. One of the more popular West Coast cruising sailboats, the Cal Cruising 46, was co-designed by Hale Field. He and his wife did multi year cruises and circumnavigated North America (across the top on a rail car). He designed and had designed to his specs other significant boats. Also did well in racing. Long interview at https://sites.google.com/site/katshe...lefieldandfram

I had the privilege of sailing with Hale regularly for two years in the early 70s as part of a regular crew selected by a racing skipper. Hale passed away not long after the interview.
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Old 09-18-2016, 12:12 PM   #13
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So many early retirees continue living in the same place, having the same friends and doing the same thing week by week by week.

Congratulations on your courage to get out there and living on your own terms. So many of us are downright envious of your experiences.
Before the judging starts, let it be said that not all are created equal in terms of desire for experience or types of experience. My generation (boomers) spent their lifetimes in the "mine is big, how big is yours" mode, in a mad race for the bigger, longer, better, comparing cars, houses, jobs, salaries, etc. Now in retirement, it's all about who has the bigger bucket list and adventure.

Sorry, sometimes size just doesn't matter. Some of us exited stage left from the comparison rat race decades ago, seeing it as fruitless. I certainly made enough money and was successful enough (by society's standards) over the years to run the race, but lost interest in comparison and ran a different race instead (i.e., creativity, satisfaction, fulfillment).

As to retirement, if you're the adventurous type and you're acting on that, good for you, but some of us are not at all interested in trading places with you. Some of us have a travel budget that fits our own desires and preferences, both nationally and internationally. Some of us also prefer adventures of the mind rather than physical adventures. Reading non-fiction books is something I do every single day regardless of what else is on the agenda and it is (for now) one of the best luxuries of being retired (and daily naps, of course).
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Old 09-27-2016, 05:58 PM   #14
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It was a Cal 33. I think we were typically always the smallest boat in the group.
Other boats had much more amenities. We had no refrigeration, used block ice.
I did all the cooking for the entire trip. Ann refused to cook on " That easy baked oven " However I really enjoyed it. Lots of fish and chicken. I eventually began baking bread. Loved it.

Due to our age at the time.
I was 49 and Ann was 42 we knew this was going to be a 2 to 3 year trip.
If we were fully retired we would have left the boat in the islands and traveled
back and forth between the boat and the USA. Living in both worlds.......

Full time aboard and we were burn't out. Also we were looking forward to relocating in the southeastern part of North Carolina. Our trip was a great success in every aspect.
It changed our life for the better. We had many adventures..........lots of good friends.
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crewing on other peoples boats
Old 09-27-2016, 06:00 PM   #15
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crewing on other peoples boats

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I also love the minimalist lifestyle. My first love is sailing but after a cost benefit analysis I bought a small RV. I plan on crewing on other peoples boats for several months a year. I'm sure I will bite the bullet one day and get my own boat. Great post by the OP.
Crewing on others peoples boat is a very good way to getting into cruising.
Very smart. I see a lot of people buying the wrong boat.
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Old 09-27-2016, 06:15 PM   #16
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sounds like a great adventure you really enjoyed. Early retirement is the time to explore and enjoy the things you want to do. Sometimes you don't know until you try it. I thought I would love RV traveling and I don't. Good thing we bought used so not an expensive mistake. I would not want to travel on a boat but for many that would be heaven. I love to hear about people living their dream.
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Old 09-27-2016, 06:48 PM   #17
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Crewing on others peoples boat is a very good way to getting into cruising.
Very smart. I see a lot of people buying the wrong boat.
Just got a crew position to cross the Atlantic on a Bavaria 46. I fly to Spain in mid October. We are spending a couple weeks in the Canaries, a couple in the Cape Verdes then on to the Caribbean. It will probably cost me $2000 for two months of sailing, flights included. Much less than most people spend on land.
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Old 09-27-2016, 07:01 PM   #18
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What a great adventure you have to look forward to!
You'll see those great places from a different perspective than most people who vacation there. Its priceless. Have fun and be safe.
Post your trip when you get back!!
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