One other thought here, I don''t know if you are familiar with Anne Hill''s Book called something like "Voyaging on a Small Income". She and her husband built ''Badger'', a Jay Benford designed double-ended sharpie and did quite a bit of distance sailing. I have always thought that Badger was about as nice a sharpie cruiser as I had seen.
I never crossed the Gulf Stream in a Meadowlark, but I sailed one up from Matheson Hammock to Dinner Key. It was a beat into gusty winds and a pretty steep (but not terribly high) chop and I was not very impressed with how she behaved. She really pounded a lot, made gobs of leeway and was very slow in stays (we had to motor through the tacks). At this point in time, 30 years later, I have no idea what shape the fellow''s sails were in or much else about his sailing abilities. He had owned the boat for many years and had kept her in the Keys and on the West Coast of Florida.