I like to think I have weighed the risks and think i have found a viable compromise between being prudent and living scared. If the weather's clear and i am not going to be gone over night, I leave her open. Here's my thinking:
1. My slip location works in my favour- we are a LONG way out on a LONG dock (roughly 1/8th mile from shore) so the average thief is not making a quick getaway.
2. Relations among my dock neighbours are good- we watch out for each other and watch out for strangers on the dock.
3a. All of the easily removable, mildly valuable items on our boat are marked with my DL number, the boat name and the boat number. Some one can take 'em, I'll just get 'em back.
3b. All of the easily removable, mildly valuable items on our boat are documented at home with serial numbers, photos and warranty cards kept in the firebox. I can prove it's mine, so I get it back, or the insurance company gets me a replacement.
4. My valuable stuff really isn't all that valuable, and locking my boat will simply cause a thief to do more damage getting in than the stolen goods are worth. It's the same reason i don't lock a convertible. Why risk getting a $900 top slashed to protect a $200 GPS and a $150 stereo?
5. Reverse psychology. Make the would-be criminal genius ponder the possibilities. "If it ain't locked, the dude must have nothing to steal... or all the stuff in the boat is already stolen.... or the dude is in there, ready to blast me with a shotgun... or maybe he's a serial killer looking for another victim..."
6. An admittedly optimistic view of the world. I believe that people are fundamentally and generally good. I don't believe that crime is on the rise, and that I am about to be victimized at any moment. Yeah, i understand the world is not perfect, and bad things happen, but I temper my situational awareness with a dose of faith, because I don't want to start to descend down that slope of suspicion and paranoia and fear that leads one to live scared.