Monday, June 17, 2013

Why we love living aboard a boat, part 2

I'll never forget the time we cruised the Bahamas with our buddy boat One Love. After checking in with customs at West End, we set off for Doublebreasted Cay. Two days later, we arrived at our gorgeous destination. We were miles away from civilization; except for us and our two boats, there was not another soul around. Until early evening, when three boats appeared and anchored near us. Next thing we knew, all these cruisers had congregated on One Love. We talked, drank, and swapped sea stories into the wee hours of the night.

The Abacos - West End to Doublebreasted Cay (blue line)
This kind of story happens in the marina too. Dockside, life is a little more tame, but there are some excitement from time to time. I won't dwell on the tornadoes (two of them in Hales Bar Marina the last several years). On the plus side, we have a good view of the mountains and the Tennessee River, and there is an abundance of wildlife around us. A friend of mine who visited from New Jersey said she has to travel to some faraway places just to see some birds. Here, a local heron patrols our docks and finger piers, and keeps us company in the dead of winter. This time of year, the river is teeming with turtles and fish (some dead, from too much catch and release I suspect). Soon, wild blackberries that thrive along the river banks will be ripe for picking. And potlucks are a ritual just about every weekend. Last Friday, on a day's notice, we got word that there is gonna be a boat renaming ceremony. Naturally, we all showed up for the party. We've seen a few boat renaming parties, and this one, I have to say, is the most fun.

Cellar Door owners TJ and Julie are world travelers. They spent quite a few years cruising the west coast, from Seattle to Mexico, on their sailboat Itchen. When they are not cruising, they are traveling to far flung places like New Zealand and hiking the Appalachian Trails.

Next weekend, we'll be having a going away party for another boater whose adventurous spirit got him a job as a crew on Fiona, a Westsail 42. Her captain is doing another circumnavigation, and Wade's leg of the trip will be from New York to Europe and Uruguay (between Brazil and Argentina). We'll be looking forward to reading his adventures on Fiona.

Do you love where you live?

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