Re: First Boat/pocket cruiser
Yorktownsailor, I'll second that opinion of the Catalina 22. We sailed on one in So Cal for several years, albeit ours was the keel model. But we loved that boat and always felt secure in it. It wasn't a dog either, although I have heard people say they are, that wasn't our experience. We had a friend with a Yamaha 25 that used to get madder than all get out when we would go blowing past him.
The other advantage of a Catalina 22 is that pretty much any parts you could ever need to do a complete rebuild are available for a reasonable price from Catalina Direct, sails are inexpensive from Sail Warehouse, a small outboard (we used a 3 hp) is all you need to push her into and out of the dock. We spent a lot of weekends aboard and it was comfortable and fun. Didn't break the bank to own it. We sailed ours with 4 adults and 2 babies aboard on many occassions. (Daysails only of course)
Fair winds and following seas....