Re: Apparently I'm not meant to have a boat...
chef2sail: You would even go for an inboard on a 22' sailboat?
TakeFive's point is that a smaller boat generally has simpler systems and can be cheaper and easier to keep running. If you prioritize sailing over fixing boats that can be a major advantage.
One of those simpler to service and replace system is having an outboard vs an inboard.
The inboard has all sorts of other advantages and is pretty much a requirement as sailboats get longer than 27 or 28 feet. It has advantages on a boat under 25' and with a properly spec'd outboard the engine doesn't come out of the water.
I like my Yanmar too, but it's hard to argue with the point that JimGo would be out sailing right now if his new boat had come with an outboard. For a new sailor (first boat) JimGo's experience could be a major setback and get them away from sailing forever.
I tend to agree with TakeFive. I'm happy that I moved up to a more complicated boat with many more systems (beyond the inboard it also has heat, hot water, pressurized water, shore power, and networked electronics) than my Catalina 25, but I'm also happy that my introduction to sailing was a simpler boat with less systems to worry about.
1986 Pearson 28-2 "Elena"