Frequently Asked Questions
What do you miss the most now that you have transitioned to living aboard?
The ease of having a car. Leaving the boat or dock takes much more planning because it may contain multiple types of transportation: Uber, scooter, wagon, train, bus, etc to get to our destination.
How do you do laundry?
We do laundry about every 7-10 days in a laundromat. Some marinas and all towns have a place to do laundry. It is actually a pleasure to do laundry now as we love the big folding tables and bring our laundry home and put it away immediately. It is efficient.
What do your kids think of you moving aboard?
Our kids have been listening to us dream and plan about living aboard for many years so they are well used to the concept. They also have gone on many trips with us and know what it is like. We hear them say that its cool . . . and their friends are keenly interested in the updates they share. Honey visits them about every 4-6 weeks and we all get together for holidays and milestones. Talking on the phone, face-timing and texting is something we do everyday. Overall, it is pretty natural since they are all in college. They moved and we moved.
Can you cook regular food like you used to?
Yes! We have a 3 burner gas stove, petite oven, small freezer and a dorm size fridge. Our pots have removable handles so they stack into each other and take up less space. We really don't miss all the many things we had in our house kitchen. We use the grill outside hanging off the cockpit much more and strategize on fridge space, but it is pretty much like cooking at home. Read More at Blog
Has anything scary happened on your voyages?
A few summers ago Chip & I almost sank our previous boat, the Catalina 400. It was a very scary 4 hours of praying and sweating it out, but we solved our problem and got back to normal. We did feel like we earned a "MacGuyver Badge" after that experience! Read More at Blog
Do you have any pets?
We have a Schnauzer dog named Mr. Bishop, but he lives on land with our girls at their rental house in Raleigh. The house is perfect for him as he has a fenced in backyard with squirrels, chipmunks, and neighbor dogs to play with. He does not like the water and climbing on and off the boat is harder for him now that he is older. We all get super excited when we reunite every so often to visit. He does not understand face-timing or our retirement. We keep trying to explain it to him, though.
Do you have a lot of clothes?
Yes, but we are selective. We have lots of summer clothes and a few key pieces of fall clothing. Our goal is to not spend more than 4 or so weeks a year in cooler weather. Honey did start out with 5 pairs of shoes and now has about 15 pairs :) Read More at Blog
How do you get mail and shipping?
Our mail is held then shipped to us at an arranged destination. We do order things online (Chip loves Amazon!) and we select a destination that we will be approaching soon. Most dock masters are used to getting packages for cruisers. We also ship things to our kid's house in Raleigh and pick them up when we visit.
Do you have electricity?
Sometimes. We have solar panels on top of our bimini canvas that do a great job of charging up the boat's battery packs during sunny days. They keep the fridge, freezer, navigation electronics, radio and an USB port active. We have 12 volt electric receptacles around the boat, just like on a house, but these are only active when we are at a dock and can plug into an power pedestal with our heavy cords. At this point we can run hair driers, charge computers, and use the microwave. Our Generator is a big help in between marina visits. We usually turn it on every day for an hour to top off the batteries. When we do we can charge computers/devices with the electrical outlets.
What is your favorite place you have visited so far?
Port Washington, NY. It is a lovely harbor town only 45 minutes train ride away from Manhattan. The town is quiet and the city is lively. It is a wonderful combo!
Do you get tired of each other?
Not really. We do live and travel together, so that should put a lot of pressure on our relationship, but we manage pretty well. Chip wakes up 2 hours before me each day and has his quiet time. I often stay up after he goes to bed at night. We are careful to pay attention to how each other is wired and we speak to each other with respect. When we do need space we can go to opposite ends of the boat and read a book or watch a movie. Plus, we end up enjoying the people we meet along the way, so that mixes it up a lot.
What is the best part of coastal cruising?
The relaxed travel. In our old lifestyle we would typically take a week's vacation. There was always this dread the last 2 days of the week because we knew the end was coming soon. Back to work. Now, we just mosey along from one destination to another. If seems like a constant vacation. That is a great feeling!
Do you still go to church?
Yes! There are lots of options for cruisers. Some Sundays we watch church live online with our computer on the boat. Sometimes we find a local church in the town that we are visiting. If we are back in NC we attend C3 Church in Clayton or Latitude Church in New Bern. It is a powerful thing to participate in worship with other believers.