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  #191  
Old 11-30-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Livinondreams View Post
hey all, Sorry its been so long since an update. I have moved to fredericksburg va and I am still going to college. I still have the contessa and have finally put enough money in the bank to really get her fixed up. Had to sell my truck and get an old beater but sacrifices must be made! I am taking off of school again after december to really get to work, I have actually considered buying a different boat that is closer to being seaworthy but we will see what happens either way hopefully by spring I will be living aboard and really begginning preperations. It has taken much longer then expected to get everything on track but I am still working towards it and hopefully getting closer. Luckily I live by my uncle who has a sailboat so I still get a fair amount of time out on the water. I'll try not to disapear for so long without an update next time, might try making a website/blog
LOD,

On occasion, we have had inquiries from other young sailors in similar situations with similar aspirations, and quite a few of us have pointed them to this thread as an example of what can be accomplished. It's helpful that you've come back with an update -- thanks for being frank about the status of your project/endeavor.

If you have time, I'm sure a lot of folks would be curious to hear more details about your progress, in particular the unanticipated challenges you've encountered. In other words, what would you do differently today knowing what you know? Different boat, stay in school, quit school, etc?

Very good to hear from you and thanks for the update! Keep us posted.
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  #192  
Old 11-30-2009
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So great to hear the update Living......

Also great to to hear that you still have the dream, and are still pursuing it dispute the challenges of making it happen. If these things just came about easily then it wouldn't be nearly as satisfying when we do get out there perhaps....

Alot of people on here are behind you man, I second JRP in saying that it would be great if you can fill us in every now and again...sometimes also talking about it makes it easier to work through the frustrations and keep this dream alive.
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  #193  
Old 11-30-2009
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Over the last year I have been pursuing this endeavor it has been a big learning experience . At first I figured that the best route to go would be to buy a project boat, which is when I found the contessa 26 and just loved the boat. When I left college and started working full time to fund the repairs it became difficult to put money into the boat when I had rent,bills and food to buy(all those little expenses really add up) Over time I was able to put away some money but not enough.At the end of the summer I moved to fredericksburg to renovate a house. Which is only 30 minutes from the place where I plan to keep my boat. It is also right by the local college so I figured I would take a few classes to get a little closer to a degree. I sold my fairly nice truck and downgraded to a beater which put my bank account back up, my classes are done soon so its time to get back on track. Knowing what I know now, It probably would of been better to have waited to buy a boat till I had funds and the time to work on it. I would also have been able to save more if I didn't have to pay slip fee's every month,they may not be much but they sure add up. As time has gone on, I have found many deals on capable boats that are much closer to being seaworthy then mine. Yes, they are more pricey then what I spent on the contessa but refitting like many have said is expensive and time consuming. So if I go the route of continuing to fix the contessa I will probably have the same if not more into her as I would if I had waited and bought a little less of a project. I am very excited now though because I finally have funds to really get going. The whole college thing is a tough gig. After taking a year off and then coming back,I should have either just went year round and finished in 2 years or not gone at all. College is a great experience and can benifet anyones future depending on the lifestyle someone wants to live. I have become used to being thrifty and don't need fancy things so I feel that college isn't a necessity for me at this time. On the bright side, I am near half way done so If I decide to go back again....for the 3rd time I would have less of a class load to complete. To really follow through with something like this at a younger age many sacrifices must be made...no fancy ride,can't buy the girlfriend nice things ,always working etc.It all sounds easy when its in your head but many difficulties do arise. Everything is definitly taking much longer then planned, but as each day passes I know I am getting closer. Like I have always been told...Patience is a virtue
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  #194  
Old 11-30-2009
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Was going to post a week or so ago asking if anyone had heard from you.

Life is pretty much the same for all of us Livin...but we all think we have a different angle on it when were young...thanks for being honest and upfront.

I still say finish Collage..know one can take that piece of paper away from you...I know its hard and a drag...that's what employers are looking at more then the degree itself...the sticktoitiveness to see something through.

Glad your still forging forward and haven't giving up on anything yet..you will look back years from now and be able to pinpoint the lessons learned and advice given that was ignored or taken and pass that on to the next dreamer..its all good!.....we all learn the way we need to... for some of us its the school of hard knocks...but the lesson is seldom forgotten.

OH ya!...Keep your zipper shut...
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The purchase price of a boat is just the admittance fee to the dance...you still have to spend money on the girl...so court one with something going for her with pleasing and desirable character traits others desire as well... or you could find yourself in a disillusioned relationship contemplating an expensive divorce.

Last edited by Stillraining; 11-30-2009 at 11:00 PM.
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  #195  
Old 12-28-2009
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Hey LOD,

I was in the same place as you in my early twenties - In fact, I asked for advice, like you, and got similar responses.

I ended up purchasing a fat, slow, but "large" Bayfield 25 - I could stand under the companionway hatch, and the toilet wasn't under the "nookie board" of the v-berth - WOW!!! No world cruiser... That was my dream, but in the end I decided to do the ICW, and Bahamas - Abacos and Exumas. I'll tell ya, as another poster mentioned, there are years worth of cruising waiting for you in the Caribbean! If you like it, and want to keep going, either get some work down there (hard), or since the boat is so small, put her on blocks for a few months, go home and make some dough, then return!

The boat was less than perfect, I didn't have enough money, equipment, or security for my inevitable return. I don't regret it at all - was one of the best times of my life - spent a great year on-board island hopping.

Here are some things I would do if in your shoes:

-Get a part-time job at WM or another marine store - take the money and use it to outfit the vessel and only pay approx. cost +20% for gear.

-Get some tickets - STCW95, Navigation courses... You may end up being able to find some work as a skipper for a charter company down there.

-Live-aboard at the dock when most of the work is done - You'll save rent and learn whether or not you can live one the boat full-time.

-Go minimal on gear - get the safety and nav gear you need - but ask yourself each time "would I rather have an extra month(e.g.) in the islands or be able to have a digital readout of where the wind is coming from, etc..."

-Get good ground tackle - heavy anchors and all chain so that you are confident about anchoring and as such will not use marinas.

I'm sure there are dozens of things that I'm forgetting - email me and I'll be happy to help ya.

I hope you make it happen. It can be done - I was amazed by the number of guys in their 20's in small boats in the Bahamas - I always looked at it like taking a year off to go "backpacking" like many high school grads do before uni- except my backpack floated and was way nicer than a flea-ridden hostel!
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  #196  
Old 12-28-2009
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I Hear Ya!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Livinondreams View Post
It has taken much longer then expected to get everything on track but I am still working towards it and hopefully getting closer.
Well I'm on the 6th year of my 5 year plan! If you had asked me 6 years ago I would have bet the farm that I would have been cruising for at least a year by my 30th B-day which is next Aug. I decided to go back to school first for a more portable career. What's taking so long now is digging out of the debt I've acumulated from being in school for three years. The longer I stay shoreshide the harder it is to not acumulate bills, cable, internet, computer. All I have is about $15,000 more on my student loan, hopefully paid off by July if I have to work 7 days a week,I WILL be debbt free by 30 years old. Me and my GF are doing pretty good. We only have one 12 year old truck we share and keep our bills to the minimum. She also has about the same in student loans and nothing else. I' owned 6 boats in the last so many years and while I wouldn't take that back because the education has been valuable albeit expensive, if I had managed that better I could have a pretty sweet cruiser right now. As it stands I have the perfect boat for what we do, local cruising and racing. I also bought a boat that needed a huge refit cheap thinking it was the way to go. It turned out to be a money pit that I would have a lot more money into than it was worth.

The thing I've learned about boats that need work is you need to find something with some working systems that don't need upgrading. For instance a friend just got a great deal on an older boat someone had just replaced the rig and sails, it needed a lot of other work but the most expensive thing was new. Or a boat that was recently raced or cruised that suffered dome damage or engine failure. At least some thing work and doen't need attention. My dream would be to find a cruiser that has recently been used and updated that has a blown engine. I'd toss the engine and related equipment and go. When you have to replace, rig, sails, engine, head, fiberglass and so on it becomes a financial nightmare. Best to find something in the middle.

I'm going! Hope I see you out there.

End the end I'm glad I have a career, I can work as an RN anywhere. I'd rather use my captains liscense but it's a great backup. Screw school if it won't directly help you.
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  #197  
Old 12-28-2009
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I'm just pumped that you guys are hungry for it. THAT'S what it's all about. I agree with Sea. Do what you gotta do - but get out there.

BTW - does WM have the "nookie board"? I gotta get me one of those!
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  #198  
Old 12-29-2009
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I wanted to do pretty much the same thing.
At seven-teen I decided......
My family had no money for vacations and I loved the water, so right out of high school...I joined the USN.

Became involved in OPS, been just about everywhere and.....
after enlistment, finished my education (the military gave me a respect for self disipline and achieving goals)
Currently I'm the financial auditor of a multi-milllion dollar company.
(unfortunately, I'm not paid like you think.. or I would wish...)
I choose a small boat because I don't have alot of time avail and it's good for me.
I will tell you this...I've seen some VERY nasty storms.....
and that was on a 250ft boat....kicked our butt!!!!
Literally tying yourself to your bunk so you dont fall out.
The pleasure of it all.....I have stories that are so funny and odd, I can't repeat them!!!!!
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  #199  
Old 12-29-2009
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The pleasure of it all.....I have stories that are so funny and odd, I can't repeat them!!!!!
Oh c'mon, man! Just one or two.
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Old 12-29-2009
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Put it this way.....to keep it nice....

You cannot imagine what people do, and sometimes expect in private.

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