[Written in June of 2019 for some friends online wondering what I was up to]
When I was 16 years old (1988) I read a book called "Cruising in Seraffyn" by Lin and Larry Pardey, which was originally Published in 1976. In the next 6 months I read another 4 or 5 books about people who lived and sail aboard boats traveling around the world.
The seed was planted.
In my 47 years I have had several opportunities to set a life course in pursuit of this dream.
Marriage, children, and jobs have all weighed heavy in the balance leaving the dream unsought.
The dream was not necessarily unfed all those years, although it was the last 15 years. I joined a Charity Organization, at 22 years of age, that used Ships as Hospitals and travelled to many countries. I even met my lovely wife, a Kiwi, on-board.
During the early years of my dream, I read everything I could get my hands on, and regularly could be found walking around different Pacific Northwest Docks, climbing aboard various ships that were for sale.
But then the famine years of the dream commenced, I cast the dream aside in response to higher responsibilities.
Now at 47 years old, I find the dream resurfacing. For many years I just set it aside and did not pursue it. In some ways the unfulfillment of it was too painful to continue to think about, until now.
Something changed in the Winter [NZ] of 2019.
Maybe it was the knowledge that my children are just a few years from adulthood and creating their own homes and lives. Maybe it was the drudgery of a 20-year-old career in IT. Maybe it was the fear of unfulfilled dreams, the regret, and that I would get to old to even pursue it.
In all my years I have "started" over as it were, many times, so I am not afraid of change or hardship.
Both my wife and I have always relished the times in our lives where we started something new. She is much like me in this regard.
So, what does all the preamble mean?
It means I am setting forward on a journey to small boat ownership and live aboard cruising.
So, what does a Small Sailboat look like?
20 to 24 foot Length Overall (6-7.5 m). Full Keel, Heavy Displacement, Aft Hung Rudder, Cutter/Sloop Rig, Motor optional - outboard preferred.
Now this is not something I just figured out, I have read and studied the subject for decades. Weighed the ins and out of various vessels, and the required accouterments.
What vessel do I think is perfect for my endeavor?
The Flicka 20 designed by Bruce Bingham as a cruiser and first built in 1974.
18 ft (5.5 m) at the waterline
20 ft (6.1 m) length overall (LOA)
24 ft (7.3 m) LOA including the Bow Sprit
She displaces 6,000 lbs with her 1,800 lbs ballast.
She sports nearly 6 ft (1.8 m) of headroom inside, with a wide 8 ft (2.4 m) beam, drawing only 3 ft 3 inches (1 m) of water.
Cutter rigged she has 243 square ft. (74 square m) of Sail Area.
Mostly built by Pacific Seacraft, and Nor'Star Fiberglass Yachts, 400 were built since 1974.
They currently sell between 10 and 50 thousand US dollars depending on condition and location.
Now, The hunt begins... How long will this take? Years probably. but the journey is much more exciting than the destination.
Please feel free to comment or query.
Think I'm crazy? - Yes, mostly likely so.