Crash course in learning to live on a boat
Sunrise and the rest of our weekend brought with it more surprises… and not ones we were thrilled with.
Turns out the email I got a few weeks ago about someone noticing that our “shorepower connection had melted” was exactly that. The connection was so badly burnt Im actually amazed the boat didn’t catch on fire. We’ll call that a win i guess, but the downside is that we’re now living/sleeping on a boat that has no A/C or fans at the exact same time that we’re trying to acclimate to temperatures in the 90s and a humidity to match. Also didn’t take us long to realize that we had no water onboard. Awesome.
Fair to say we didn’t sleep well. Understatement actually. We grabbed the cushions from one of the berths (apparently that’s what you call a bedroom on a boat- look how much we’ve learned already), crammed it under the table with the doors wide open and praying for any breeze to make its way down to the end of the marina. It didn’t, but we each managed a couple hours of sleep in between planes flying directly overhead, industrial alarms going off from other parts of the marina and the guard doing his rounds just a couple feet away on the dock… pure privacy.
Morning brought with it more surprises. Well before the sun even rose the oppressive heat returned, and with it an onslaught of biting no-see-ums that was completely maddening. Apparently the little beasts love sweat, and two pale skinned oregonians drip sweating throughout the day were the perfect delicacy. We tried fighting them off and ignoring them while we went about trying to explore the boat, organize anything we could and feign some sort of order amid the chaos… but we were exhausted well before noon and realized that a shopping trip meant a few moments of A/C both in the car and in the store. Suddenly, after years of buying almost nothing other than consumables, shopping is our favorite hobby! =/
Our biggest struggle early on (other than everything) was getting our geriatric dog on and off the boat. It’s the little things i guess. We quickly learned that twice a day the tide would hit exactly the right spot where the back of the boat (which on catamarans is called the “sugar scoops”…i’ve yet to research why) would align somewhat closely with the dock and we could grab a plank of wood from inside and hold it as a makeshift ramp for Karma to go ashore and return to the boat after a walk.
Sadly, those “perfect tides” never seem to come when she needs then and the only other options are precariously lifting her over the gap between boat and dock or untying the boat, swinging it across the slip to a floating dock and using our ramp system again. This process takes 15-20 minutes (not counting the walk itself) and is anything but fun as we stress about the boat floating away or ramming into the dock and breaking… but as always, everything we do- we do for the dog. ;)
A couple of times every day, as we carry things from the mini to the boat, or step up from one of the hulls into the salon we pass by each other; one of us stops the other and asks out loud the very thing we’ve both been asking ourselves quietly for the past few hours “can you believe we’re doing this?” “um… can you believe we own this boat?”.
It’s slowly sinking in. Despite the fact we keep pinching ourselves it seems like this is all actually happening. This entire surreal, completely strange event might actually be happening and this might actually be our new life. I think, despite expecting to wake up and realize this was all a dream- that we actually just bought a gigantic sailboat and are currently moving in. Weird.
I won’t say its the funnest of times and our first few days have been riddled with frustrations and miseries… but even as i sit here drip-sweating and typing and failing as i try to not scratch the hundreds of bug bites… i cant stop thinking about how even a few months ago we would have said this was all completely impossible.
We would have still said owning a boat was a lifelong dream that may likely never happen. That it’s something we would probably never be able to make happen or afford - but if you’ve read this blog for long you know us well enough to know that we believe in living for today. And while this decision may well prove to be the worst financial move of our life and could be the thing that forces us to go back to work… it’s worth it. I would far rather risk everything and fail rather than look back later in life and regret not chasing or trying to achieve the biggest dream we’ve ever had (or at least the biggest one left unturned). No question.