Two weeks ago, I took possession of a Morgan 33 Out Island. This is a big step up from the 27 Catalina I currently own. The 33 is very comfortable, built for ocean cruising, has every imaginable commodity onboard and quite spacious. Yes, I know it's a slow boat, but if I wanted to go fast I would have stuck with power boats.
My plan is to partially retire in 2012. I'll be 72 years old and hopefully, still in relatively good health. If my health doesn't deteriorate, I figure on setting up a light work schedule in Maryland from May through early October, which is essentially most of the summer months. I'm a musician/entertainer by trade, and when I'm not performing, I write magazine articles for local boating and outdoor magazines.
In early October of 2012, the music gear and provisions will be loaded aboard the boat, the sails raised, the a leisurely trip will be made down the ICW, or the Atlantic Coast if the weather allows, to Marathon Key, Florida, where I hope to be playing the dockside Tiki bars during the height of their tourist season, which is November through April.
Naturally, I have planned several side trips to the Dry Tortugas, Bahama Islands, BVI and a few other locations. Might even sail Cozumel for a couple days of fun in the sun and the world's best snorkeling, but I'm hearing rumors that safety is somewhat of an issue there at this time.
Of course, my loving spouse of nearly a half-century thinks I'm completely out of my mind. Who knows, she may be right. Of course, she may also opt to go with me and bask in the tropics for the winter instead of clearing snow from the sidewalk and driveway, which is a killer task most years.
My sailing experience is limited to Chesapeake Bay, and the longest time I've spend as a live aboard was just 10 days while sailing from Perryville, MD to Virginia Beach, VA aboard my Catalina 27. Total sailing experience is just 4 years, all of which has been in the bay. However, I've boated the coastal and offshore waters from Maine to the Marquesses Keys for nearly a half-century.
I'm really not sure if a guy my age should do this. Essentially, I'll be on my own. My wife may, or may not opt to make the ICW trip, and if she does she has a number of health issues which would preclude her from doing much more than steering the boat for a few hours while I catnapped. She has some pretty good navigational skills and guided us winding guts and sloughs behind the Delmarva Peninsula's Barrier Islands--an incredible trip to say the least.
I'm really looking forward to this excursion, but I am a bit apprehensive about such as arduous undertaking at this stage of life. Any and all comments will be greatly appreciated.