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10 February 2017

Is It 2020 Yet? Our Cruising Plan


Tickety Boo happy at anchor in the Bahamas


My friends, Matt and Lucy from The Larks of Independence, and I had been joking that, given our respective boat issues and projects, we'd see each other in the Bahamas in 2020. Scott and I certainly haven't been feeling like we'll ever make it out of Indiantown Marina this year before hurricane season starts up again. 2020 was starting to seem like a sadly realistic target.

But at least we were in good company. Matt and Lucy were stuck here in Florida too.

Then I saw on their Facebook page that they had broken free from the Sunshine State and made it to Bimini.

My first thought was:

"Yay! Way to go Matt and Lucy!"

My second thought was:

"I hate you guys. Why are we stuck in Florida and you're in the Bahamas?"

My third thought was:

"Ellen, you're a terrible person for thinking such things. You should be happy for them." 

Then I punished myself by not eating any chocolate for a full 20 minutes. Yes, I went without chocolate for 20 whole minutes. I know, hard to believe. But I deserved it.

After I had some chocolate, I felt much better about things. After all, we've only been working on boat projects for less than seven weeks. We've got friends that have been stuck here at Indiantown Marina for way longer than that working on their boats.

And we've actually ticked a number of things off of the list. Like new hatches.

We've also dealt with a number of things that weren't on the list. Like hydrolocking our engine.

All in all, we're not doing too bad. {She says frantically stuffing chocolate in her mouth in an effort to feel better about the rate of progress.}

The whole situation got me thinking about cruising plans. There's a saying among cruisers that plans are written in sand at low tide. When the tide comes in, your plans just wash away as though they never existed.

It was all a good reminder not to have too firm of plans and to just go with the flow. Easy to say, sometimes it's hard to do.

So while we do have a cruising plan of a sort, we're trying to keep it kind of vague because life has a way of keeping you on your toes. Sometimes, it seems like life is just getting in your way. Usually though, it's just presenting you with new opportunities that are cleverly disguised as boat projects.

If you are curious what our vague cruising plan is, it's to go to the Bahamas for the rest of this season, then bring the boat back to Indiantown where we'll haul out and work on some major boat projects. We'll probably head off to the Western Caribbean next season (November 2017) and putter around over there for a couple of years. After that who knows - although we are toying with the idea of crossing the Atlantic in a few years. But we'll see what life brings us.

What about you? What are your plans for the next few years?

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35 comments:

  1. I feel so bad for making you jealous that I'm stuffing my face with coconut Bimini bread, and I'm not letting Matt have any because I think he'll run off with the baker if he gets a taste! If we can get through all our problems and get here, there is hope for you!

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    1. Mmm...coconut bread. Now I'm super jealous!

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  2. Ah! The joys of cruising, eh? I absolutely feel your pain. It seems like all of our boat issues decided to reveal themselves in the final days leading up to a departure and it drives me (and my anal personality) crazy. I do have to admit, though, that the hard work pays off in the end because we rarely have major issues once we leave the dock for the season (rarely being a relative term). But I hate Matt and Lucy too! Lol.


    Stephanie @ SV CAMBRIA

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    1. Why is it that every time we think we're ahead of the game and we might actually be ready to leave, new things break?

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  3. You have heard it before. There are always boat projects. Well I am here to tell you there aren't. That's right. There will be a time when there are no projects at all and you will sail in total joy...wondering when the fuck something is going to break.

    We are enjoying quite the project session ourselves. Just found the cutlass bearing is bad. One day before launch. Joy. Guys here said a 2 hr fix. No problem. We.Shall.See.

    PB

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    1. Thanks so much for your comment - it gave us a good laugh which is exactly what's needed right now :-)

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  4. We are literally holding our breath that nothing disrupts our plans. We have a big project on the aft deck coming up duting the haulout. We are just focused on getting the dock lines cut. After that we plan to sleep for a month. Then, we will see. You will get there.

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    1. Hopefully, we'll be out of here in a week or two.

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  5. I think its really important to keep in mind rule #1 of cruising boats: You are never 100% done!
    Go for 90%. 90% was an excellent score on that big test in high school, and it's still an excellent score now!
    Do the big important stuff that matters to safety and comfort, yes, but don't let your need for completion override the necessity of LEAVING!

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    1. I think you're preaching to the choir here. We're not working on "nice to do" stuff. We're not driven by a need for completion. The things that are still on our list are "have to do" items like the water pump, altenator etc.

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    2. :-) I'm sorry if I sounded preachy, you guys are doing AWESOMELY! Guess I was effected by the DOZENS of project boats around us here that you just know are never going anywhere... Its a bit depressing sometimes.
      You guys are going - no doubt about that - and soon!

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    3. No worries - I know you only meant well :-)

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  6. For 20 minutes you punished yourself!?! You are much too hard on yourself. Have some more chocolate!

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    1. After reading Lucy's comment, now I want coconut bread. Did she give you any? Have you run off with the baker yet?

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  7. It will happen!
    Does it normally take months to get a boat ready to go on the water?

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    1. Great question and the answer is "it depends." Everyone has a different project list and everyone's boat is in a different state of readiness, repair etc. Some folks do some major projects before the start of the season, some just do a few routine things and then they're off. We're doing a few projects (all of which take longer than you would think), plus we've had things break which have added new projects to the list.

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  8. We feel your pain. Our haul-out is planned for very early spring, and the list of items to be accomplished seems to have a life of it's own. I don't even want to think about what may show after the boat is in the yard. We lost last summer to the house remodel/sale, and I am looking forward to fun this summer. Fingers crossed.

    It's snowing today, so just need my hot chocolate, and book.

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    1. I can't even imagine what it would be like to be watching snow fall today. I'm already hot :-)

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  9. You're always behind some folks but still way ahead of some others - at present we have a foot of snow on top of our boat. We won't be able to even START our numerous projects for at least a month or two... But lucky for us - if plans indeed are written in sand - is that there are no tides in our sea! None whatsoever, so they won't be swept away!

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    1. I love this - "there are no tides in our sea!" Great philosophy!

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  10. Boy, do I know the feeling. We've been getting really uptight lately, as our boat work has taken a lot longer than we anticipated. We're trying to "go with the flow" .. but we get impatient sometimes. We hang on to the plan of actually leaving this Summer. We plan on getting our feet wet by heading to Florida & the Bahamas, but eventually the thought of the West Caribbean appeals to us too! Since all of this is new to us, the plans seem even more overwhelming .. so much to research & learn when doing it all ourselves!

    Hang in there! I need to go find some chocolate .. LOL!

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    1. Hope we see you in the Western Caribbean :-)

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  11. To tell you the truth, when I saw the picture on this post of you moored in the Bahamas, all I could think was, 'Lucky bastards!'. Then I thought...'Wow..I REALLY must be behind in my blogging!'. Being on cold medicine for a week will muddle things a bit, lol.
    Anyway, be that as it may, I am sure your readers from the great white north are thinking how ANYONE could be complaining about being stuck in Sunny South Florida, I mean, we are having the best weather of the year right now!
    However...that being said, as a year round resident of south Florida, I would prefer to be in the islands any day. What is their motto? "Its Better In The Bahamas"?

    - Lisa

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    1. You're right, I probably shouldn't be complaining about being in Florida, wearing shorts and looking at palm trees :-)

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  12. Plans for the next few years?!? Heck...I'm not even sure what our plans are for the next few days, weeks or months, let alone years! Although I do hope we run into you in the Bahamas sometime soon!

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    1. Hope we run into you in the Bahamas soon too :-)

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  13. I can totally relate to your way of thinking, Ellen. Actually, when I saw their Facebook post, I had similar feelings rushing through me, except that I am not even in the sunshine state and have no prospects of making it to the Bahamas this year! As a matter of fact tomorrow is our last day in Southern California, where it has finally warmed up a bit this weekend. :-) Still happy for them and you both soon as well!

    What I am meaning to say is what Stephanie wrote: you will get there and the better you prepare, the happier you will be when you get to the Bahamas, especially when other cruisers have to return prematurely or if they are waiting for parts in a harbor, while you can keep exploring and cruising. Keep tight and good luck with the remaining projects.

    As far as plans go, we don't have many, but we are booked with house sits until the end of April. We seem to have even less plans than when we were on our boat, where hurricane season was the main drive.

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    1. That's really interesting that your life is less planned now than when you were on the boat.

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  14. Love that top pic!

    Plans for the next few years? Um.... How about plans for today? Um.... :o

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    1. I'm not sure what my plans are for today either :-)

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  15. We don't have a ship, but a visit to Savannah, GA will likely happen at least once in the next few years. Hopefully a visit to the Oregon coast, which is home. And in 2019 we're meeting up with a friend at LegoLand, because her family is coming out from Australia to go there. It's been planned for years. I hope your plans work out!

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    1. I love the Oregon coast! It's so stunning. Hope you get out there. Legoland would be awesome too.

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  16. 2020? No. I'm just getting used to it be 2017! The only plans I have for the next few years is to blog less. lol

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    1. Blogging certainly can take a bunch of time. I like how you're evolving your blog this year. Good balance between quality content and less time impact for you.

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  17. I think your sails are a matter of life and death, so fix them quick. I hate the idea of you being suck in the middle of nowhere not being able to catch a breeze. Eventually the Mia Tias will run out. hehehe

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