I started sailing my own boat in 1991 after taking basic1,2, and coastal ASA on S.F. Bay. 18 months later I left alone with my ex-wife standing on the dock. I sailed as far as Cabo, and back alone. I also did a sail over to P.V. Mexico with one crew. My wife to P.V., and a friend back to Cabo. Frolic is a 30ft. Columbia shoal draft.
I was of the mindset of go now, and go with the minimum. I stayed a total of 5 months in Mexico. While Frolic stayed 2 years. I flew in, and out as I earned money. I was 41, fit, poor, enthusiastic, and life was grand.
After returning to S.F. I stumbled around from job to job, and eventually opened my own business. The business was a huge success, and after 5 years I sold out. I bought Imagine in St. Maarten in 02. In 03 I, and my new wife with only 2 afternoons of sailing flew to St. Maarten to board Imagine.
A friend joined us, and we three sailed for Florida. Over the next 4 years my wife, and I have managed Imagine alone. Sailing the east coast of Florida, and months at a time in the Bahamas using South Beach as a hub.
For nearly 3 years now I have been back to work. Last June we took the month off, and raced to Miami, Acklin Island, and back to Jax Florida. Hopefully SOON I will quit work, and we will sail for the Philippines.
I put 4k miles on Frolic alone going to, and from Mexcio. I weathered 50+ mph winds around Point Conception with 20ft. + seas. I hand steered for 48 hours trying to beat up the coast of Mexico when the autopilot failed. I was thrown across Frolic's salon, and my head split open in a storm. I was thrown from her deck in yet another storm only to be drug back up onto the house by my harness. It was a strong learning curve, but all it did was deepen my desire to sail.
We have sailed Imagine nearly 10k miles in the areas described. We have seen 40 mph winds from every direction a boat can sail in. Imagine is a cold molded 46ft. cat built in Berlin by the Schmidt boatyard in conjuction with the original owner.
She has so much storage we can't fill it. She is approximently 15k pounds according to the designer Roger Simpson. The surveyor told me she was strong enough to break icebergs. I don't plan on testing his opinions although sometime in my life she may see icebergs. One never knows where life will take them.
Imagine is a speed demon compared to Frolic. We have managed 450 miles in in 48 hours. The last part of the trip from West Palm to Miami we crawled with one hull on the beach fighting the Stream. Imagine is palacial compared to Frolic. My first 4 years on Imagine I didn't work.
So here I have had 2 boats. One slow, and with the minimum of comfort as compared to the other. 2 different scenarios, one being broke, and the other with money. I can say this about Frolic, and being broke. The sunsets were as pretty. The chilled beer was just as tasty. I was younger, and could tolerate more discomfort.
My body aches, and my nimbleness is not so nimble anymore. I want more comfort, and I was able to afford it. Imagine sails flat all the time, and things stay in place. As you can see I have experienced both. All I can suggest is to just go. Go when you can, and with what you have. You can always make more money, but you can't make more time. This hits me hard especially right now. A friend of 40 years died yesterday at the age of 55. I have lived my life with no what ifs. I have not regretted living in this way.
We all get through life differently. We all have different needs, and wants. I worry that if I had waited until I could have afforded Imagine. It may not have happened. You see it was Frolic that made me focused. It was the being thrown overboard, my head split open, and all the discomforts in sailing that made me focused, and to become successful. Many of my friends call the trip on Frolic a failure. I call it a success, and an adventure that deepened the desire to sail. Go with what you have, and while you have your health.......BEST WISHES in sailing into adventure......i2f