Re: Retired and need to know the ropes (or lines??) :)
Diane, don't give up and discount the cats for their high price. Yes, if you are looking at a Fountaine Pajot, a Leopard yes, they are double the price of a mono hull. I just bought a used Gemini. They are made in America by and designed by British, Tony Smith. They are affordable and have everything you need for a pleasure sail or an extended cruise. It sleeps 8 comfortably, has a nice, wide and lighted saloon that sits 8 around a folding table, a galley with propane stove, a front loader fridge (try that in a mono hull), a 27 hp diesel, three sails including a spinnaker, shallow draft (depth) of only 18 inches, which means you can take it just about anywhere including your closest beach and try that in a mono hull that draws from 4 to 6 feet of water!
So take your time, compare, be safe and have fun. By the way, I am in the Fort Lauderdale, Miami, keys, Bahamas area.