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post #9 of Old 10-07-2007
Wandering Aimlessly
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Join Date: Nov 2002
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Though I have gone over budget so far, as I try to develop a routine and habits that let me stay within my budget, I feel that that first year can only be looked on as a learning curve. As a liveaboard (of the cruising variety, as opposed to tied to a dock and a job) I learn new ways most every day to minimize expenses and be more self-dependent. Even though I started paring down my lifestyle 3 years before buying the boat, the habits of many years, don't just vanish.

So far, my budget busters have been mostly boat costs, as I chose to replace, rather than repair marginal items that would need replacement anyway. Once those intial expenses are behind you though, then I find it fairly simple, to keep things simple. For instance, I have a computer because it serves multiple functions. Chart software, movies, communication and research. That eliminates a chartplotter and a TV w/DVD. I also have certain other amenities which I would not have bought, but came with the boat, like a reefer, A/C, hot water heater (not working and not a priority to fix). I don't eat out but maybe once every couple of months, nor do I go to entertainment that requires a ticket. I search out used book stores and look for marinas (when I use one) that have courtesy cars, bus service, or other means of transportation for stocking up, which I usually do at a Wal-Mart Super Center so as to do all my shopping in one place.

While my life is spartan, or barren, neither is it overly complex. And after 6 months out, I find it is in some ways more than I expected, and in other ways, less. I wouldn't though, give it up without a very good reason.

Anything is as simple or complex as you choose to make it. The choice is yours.

Ontario 32 - Aria

Free, is the heart, that lives not, in fear.
Full, is the spirit, that thinks not, of falling.
True, is the soul, that hesitates not, to give.
Alive, is the one, that believes, in love.

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