When do you hang it up? - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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Back to your question, I say die behind the wheel of your sailboat. Go down at sea. Set your sails and have your heart attack on the way to the horizon. Why not? If you are not a danger to others, it is your life. And what better way to live it, or die by it??
Wow. Just wow.

Rick Donaldson, NØNJY

moˈloːn laˈbe!

It's better to be hated for who you are, than to be loved for who you're not.

Let those winds of change blow over my head,
I'd rather die while I'm living than live while I'm dead - Jimmy Buffet
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post #12 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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Buying my first cruising boat "north of 50" and hope to be still out there "north of 70" Maybe I should name the boat that. Kinda catchy.
North of 50
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post #13 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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I generally think that you should sail until you no longer enjoy it or your family tires of pulling your carcass out of the freezer and propping it up on the boat every weekend.

However, there does come a point where you have to think about possibly becoming a burden on those that would have to rescue you. I know this topic has been debated quite a bit on this site, so I won't start it up again. But if you're half the man you used to be, then bring someone along that can get your half ass back to the beach.
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post #14 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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Let's put the shoe on the other foot. Please forgive me if I offend you. What the **** do you know about sailing? We old timers have been doing it for 40 or more years. We've taken all the courses, attended all the seminars, read all the books, discussed every aspect of sailing and seamanship with all the best sailors we've ever known, and, believe me, it'll take you 40 years to learn what we know. While you're working your tail off grinding winches in a blow, we'll be tailing our winches mostly with our bare hands, because we've learned how to do it quickly and efficiently without working ourselves to death. When you young guys are sprinting around the foredeck with nary a concern for the possibility that you might fall off the boat, we're smart enough to tether ourselves securely to a jackline or a piece of hardware that is throughbolted to the deck. Which one of us is at greater risk of falling off the boat?

Sailing isn't particularly dangerous or physically demanding. If it was dangerous, you wouldn't see so many people sailing with their families, risking the lives of their spouses and children. Sailing is not a physical sport. It's a cerebral sport. It requires knowledge rather than physical strength or agility. The more you know, the better you are at it, and the safer you are.

I attended a seminar last year. The principal speaker was an older man who has raced and cruised across the Atlantic and elsewhere many times. He mentioned that he has a heart condition. He told us he was preparing for another Atlantic crossing. During a break, I asked him how he deals with the possibility that he might have a heart attack at sea. He said he has a checkup before he leaves, takes medications with him, and just doesn't worry about it. At our age, we have a choice. We can either stop sailing and retire to our family room and sit in front of a tv and wait for death to take us, or we can forget about it and do what we love doing for as long as the good Lord permits us to do it. Which choice would you make?
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post #15 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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The issue becomes for some of these "lost at sea", is they may have gotten out in weather conditions, that they or boat could not handle, and down they went.

A few yrs back, locally a fellow had a heart attack at the top of a ski hill, dead by the time he hit the bottom of the sloop 500' down. Some say ugly way to go, myself, dig a hole, bury me, and ski off enjoying the run for me......oh yeah, take my gear to rental dept, turn it in,, take the deposit and enjoy toasting in the bar doing wrist exercises with brewski's!

Marty

She drives me boat,
I drives me dinghy!
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post #16 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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So having spent the last 40 years rescuing others at peril to myself you think I should "hang it up" 'cause I might be a hazard to others or need to be rescued in a SAILBOAT? How hazardous can you get at 5 knots? Personally when the time comes I hope to have just enough left to point the boat west, and I'm not making a "float plan" so don't send anyone after me.
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post #17 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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When my wife and I first moved aboard in 1972 we were in our early twenties and most others that we knew who were living aboard sailboats at that time were near our age. Now, there has been a huge increase in liveaboards/fulltime cruisers and they are still almost all near our age. During our 37 years of cruising most of the tragic events we've heard about have been due to poor judgment that is not age related. Any statistic that implies
that older sailors are at higher risk must be adjusted to reflex the median age of those out sailing. We're still cruising the Maine to Bahamas seasonal circuit and keeping a watch for a future assisted living marina. 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
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post #18 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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post #19 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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Originally Posted by CaptainForce View Post
..... We're still cruising the Maine to Bahamas seasonal circuit and keeping a watch for a future assisted living marina....
I liked that last bit!

Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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post #20 of 95 Old 01-16-2009
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Hmmm... I see a good business in my future.... /chuckles

Rick Donaldson, NØNJY

moˈloːn laˈbe!

It's better to be hated for who you are, than to be loved for who you're not.

Let those winds of change blow over my head,
I'd rather die while I'm living than live while I'm dead - Jimmy Buffet
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