Re: Newbe with no experience buys big boat
I just finished your book as well. Thoroughly enjoyed it. I can totally relate to your character. I have never sailed in my life, other than a weekend scuba charter in Santa Barbara many years ago. I too, have been mildly obsessed with sailing since a youngster. I also am no big hit with the ladies. Kind of a loner. So, your book struck an immense chord with me.
Learned a lot from it, actually.
My conclusion is like sailguy's, I think you took too big a bite, right off the bat. Your vessel was a moneypit, and you put yourself on a schedule that was nearly unreachable. You probably should have bought the boat (or a boat), found your closeby liveaboard marina, and stayed aboard for at least a year. No apartment. Sailed every chance you could, and gradually made your passage. At least you're back wanting another boat, and to have another go at it. Perseverance!
I also think that you were somewhat undermined by some of the crew you chose.
"Joyce", seemed quite capable, but she often set you up for failure. For example, her refusal to properly utilize the head just added more fuel to the failure fire. As first mate (self-proclaimed!), and experienced as she was, she should have supported you a bit more. Granted, you were the Captain, but a good leader relies on his crew and draws from their knowledge as well. She seemed to undermine you every chance she got. Indeed, seemed to enjoy your calamity.
I danced when you boobytrapped her computer.
You have some giant guardian angels. I thought mine were big, but yours are huge!