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Introduction

Ever since I was a young teen growing up on Long Island Sound I have wanted to live on a sailboat and sail the world. In my teens my parents purchased a used Sunfish, not much more than a sculpted plank with a lanteen sail. I became a part of a group of high schoolers that would take our sailboats to Tappen Beach each nice day and go sailing. The Sunfish was really a one person boat (if you were 6'6" tall and weighed 200 lbs.) but somehow I managed to convince a pretty girl or two to come sailing with me.

Many years later, on August 1, 2009 I moved full time onto a 42 foot Catalina sailboat named Reboot. This was the fulfillment of my dream. As I sailed down the Kinckinc River to the Milwaukee Yacht Club I marveled that this was the first time in the over 40 years that I had been on a sailboat alone! I had owned several sailboats, cruised with my family, raced with my friends. But there had always been other people on board.

It was a short trip across the Milwaukee Outer Harbor. The Yacht Club knew I was coming for the wedding of a friend and had reserved a spot for me on the dock next to the club house. Fortunately there were friends waiting on the dock. I did not have to learn how to dock an 11 ton sailboat by myself. That would come later under less benign conditions.

After the wedding some friends came down to the boat for my bon voyage party. Realizing that I was soon off sailing I kept my alcohol consumption to a minimum (right!) The party lasted well into the evening. After a night sleeping on Reboot I set out the next morning. I still have vivid memories of my first solo sunset and sunrise on Lake Michigan. My course took me from Milwaukee up Lake Michigan across the Straits of Mackinac and down Lake Huron. Eventually it would take me via the Erie Canal and the Atlantic Ocean to Hampton Roads and the Naval Operating Base at Norfolk, VA. There I met Maury (name redacted to save his reputation) aboard his sailboat Gypsysails. He was my first world cruising friend. It was the beginning of an adventure that turned out to be nothing like I had expected. This web site is my opportunity to share what I learned. I hope you find it useful.

I was trained as an engineer and a businessman and thus am addicted to research. I spend a good part of my life reading sailing magazines and books. As the Internet evolved I subscribed to many web sites about sailing and cruising. I joined the Seven Seas Cruising Association. Founded in San Diego in 1964 this is an organization of live aboard sailors. Little did I know that there is a world of difference between "live aboard" and "world cruisers." I did not realize that the glossy and exciting life portrayed in the books and magazines was intended to sell product, not inform. My life aboard has been quite different than the one I had expected from my research. To someg degree that is because I am me. But to a significant degree that is because the world portrayed in the books and magazines leaves a lot out - mostly the bad stuff. In this web site I share my experiences, warts and all.

XO

This is not a cruising story. You will not find the normal litany of my travels, countries visited, people met, parties experienced. My hope is to, however inadequately, prepare you for a world cruising life. I have been told on some authority that 60% of those who purchase a boat to go world cruising sell the boat in the first year. A large percentage of those who remain on board end up in some marina or anchorage where they might take their boat sailing a few times a year. Others cruise for a few months and then fly home and spend the rest of the year on shore. Every sailing life style is valid if it fulfills ones needs. I do not disparage any of the people above. I have no house, no car, no storage locker ashore. Everything I own is on Reboot. (I do have a companion in XO "The Wonder Cat!") It was not my intention to sail alone but that is how it worked out. In my travels I have met many sailing couples and I believe that I have some insights to help you if this is your situation. I hope you enjoy my work. This is my personal view. It may help, it may make you angry, you made decide I am full of horsefeathers. If, however, you gain one insight that makes your life better I will have fulfilled my goal.

Fair winds and following seas ...


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