Saturday, July 16, 2011

A New Path

When I started this blog, my intention was to write about my journey in becoming a "live aboard".  It has evolved into whatever it is and I haven't gotten very far in regards to my dream of living on a boat.  I guess that there are short journeys and long ones - this is a long one.  I thought I'd summarize my journey thus far:

February 2010 - My husband & I attend a boat show in San Diego and get the urge.  We fell in love with a 36 foot catamaran.

April 2010 - We need a change but we can't quite figure out what needs to happen.  So, we start looking into buying a boat and moving to a marina. 

May 2010 - Living aboard a boat at a marina in San Diego isn't as easy as I thought it would be.  The wait list for a live aboard permit is very long (almost 2 years at some marinas).  Things aren't working out as expected.  In discussing our future, my husband & I realize that we don't want to live in California.  It isn't home.  We know where home is and, after a very easy conversation, we decide to move back to Florida.  I give my notice at work and we start packing.

June 2010 - I leave my job, we move out of our beach bungalow, sell our beautifully renovated 1957 camper (which was very sad) and we head back to Florida.  We drove both of our vehicles so I had to drive across country myself and couldn't sleep in the passenger seat like I would have preferred.  We get back home, it takes me a week or so to settle in, I start a new job and we learn to become Floridians again.

January 2011 - We buy another camper and start camping again.  I had forgotten how much I love being in nature.  My husband & I camped in Salt Springs and swam in the springs - the water is 72 degrees all year long and very therapeutic.  Spending time in nature reminds us that we want to live a simple life, we want to be in nature and on the water.

May 2011 - My husband bought a Jon boat.  It was the ugliest boat I ever saw (it actually was painted with camouflage paint).  We fixed it up and painted it a bright water blue.  One weekend, we motored over to a private beach, beached our boat, set up our colorful chairs, swam in the beautiful teal water and fished from the shore.  It was wonderful and that day the urge to live on a boat started creeping its way back into our lives again. 

June 2011- We realize that we need to start minimalizing our lives.  Even if we never live on a boat, we still want to live a simple life.  I don't want my life to be cluttered with stuff that I don't need or things that don't matter.  Though my husband & I have sold our households twice - we still have a hard time getting rid of little things.  I am very cognizant about simplifying and minimalizing - I start thinking about the direction I want my life to be headed.

Today, July 16, 2011 - We actually view a boat.  It isn't the catamaran that I have been dreaming of but, to be honest, we just cannot afford one right now.  We look at a houseboat.  It is a 1970 Nautaline and it is 43 feet in length.  It needs a lot, a lot, a lot of work.  However, being on the boat has really sparked our interest and I feel like we are headed down a path toward becoming a live aboard couple.  I'm not sure if this is the boat for us - we are still thinking about it.  Can we take on a project like this?  It will take a few months and thousands of dollars just to make it livable.  It'll take even more time and more money to completely renovate it.  It would be nice to live on a 2-bedroom and 4-patio boat, though.  Not only would boat living force us to simplify our lives but we would also be on the water (which feels very natural to both my husband & I) and we would significantly reduce our monthly expenses (I've been calculating & we could actually reduce our expenses by almost half).  Who knows what will happen?  The possibilities are endless.

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