This is my first post and I hope this is the correct place for this thread. After reading "Cruising in Seraffyn" and many other sailing adventure books my wife and I have decided to share the life and we are looking for advice. Even though my wife and I have never sailed before but we both enjoy boating, the sea and adventure. I'm currently enlisted in the military and will this May (2012) with a modest pension. We've been developing our plan and have been reading everything we can get our hands on for the last year and a half. I welcome feedback and opinions on the following plan:
Step 1: We plan to find an affordable sailing school in late May or early June and take an ASA course (likely ASA 101, 103 & 104) to obtain basic sailing skills.
Step 2: We will search for a small (27-37ft) capable live aboard pocket cruiser in the ($20k) price range. So far I have seen a few sailboats such as the 1991 Hunter Vision 32, 1993 Atlantic 32, 1990 Catalina Tall Rig 28 and a 1994 Precision 28 that fall in our current price range. We'd like a boat that two can live aboard full time and sail single handed if necessary. My wife's only real requirement is for a standup shower and decent head.
Step 3: We'll sail this boat along the US east coast fulltime for four months (Jul-Oct) building our skills and learning to become more confident each day as we travel.
Step 4: In November we'll head to south Florida and depending on comfort level with our skills, on to the Caribbean and beyond.
Granted, with out budget we will have to live modestly on our monthly disposable budget of $2000. We will mostly anchor out or pick up inexpensive moorings. We will also prepare nearly all of our meals on board and live a simple life.
Again, I welcome your thoughts, feedback and opinions on our plan.