Thank you for the replies, I really appreciate your input and recommendation of the Catalina 250. At this point, I am open to several options. The real advantage to the 22 that I am currently considering is that it comes with a slip in Newport Harbor (Southern California) at a terrific monthly rate. I would almost be buying the right to the slip, and getting nice boat to learn on as a bonus.
nolatom, don't you wish you had that 48' fixer-upper now?