Gone to Sea, again.

Many of the passengers of the Jolly Swag know that I was in the yacht business for 40 years in 3 time zones.  During that time, I owned 31 offshore-capable boats and one Malibu Outrigger Sailing Canoe. 

Three years ago, a freakish alignment of stars and planets found me forsaking the high seas for the highways and the brave new world of land yachting.  Since then, nostalgia for the world of boats has visited me ever so rarely and stayed ever so briefly. The only marina I recall walking through lately was in Maine a couple of months ago, where shrink-wrapped yachts hibernated between the snowdrifts.

As my lifetime of ever-more-interesting boating adventures progressed, I grew a little jaded.  In the fourth decade an epiphany became a principle.  There are three elements to a great boating adventure:  a great boat, a great cruise, and a great set of companions.  I would sign on if any two features were present.

Until this week, there was only one such outing in the last several years, a 4th of July night cruise on San Francisco Bay with a dozen or more buddies aboard a sweet little 34-foot trawler that the Universe sent me.

Then, earlier this month, I got a call from my pals, Greg and Linda, asking me to come on down to Jacksonville, FL, to join them and their pals, Bob and Leigh, to help move their new-to-them 48-year-old, 53-foot motor yacht to its new home on the Chesapeake Bay.  My duties would include dock line heaver, naviguesser, and cork master.

 Today we shoving off northward up the Intracoastal Waterway, for a great cruise.  On a great boat, with great companions, three for three ain’t half bad. 

As a bonus, there ought to be a few photo ops.   For instance:

Look what pulled in a hundred feet from us at our Jacksonville boatyard.  POSH is a 52-foot, John Hacker design, built in Michigan in 1937.

Fwd quarter

From astern


fwd cockpit

Forward cockpit

And with any luck, there ought to be a few photo ops in the next 900 miles.   


About allevenson

Writer (of stories, journals, email dialogues), Reader (of books written by friends, recommended by friends, and works-in-progress of friends), Hiker (never met a trailhead I didn't like), Biker (more scenery for the buck than hiking) and lately, Blogger (about my Year on the Road at www.allevenson.wordpress.com).
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13 Responses to Gone to Sea, again.

  1. Karen says:

    Nice to know you got there safely.

  2. Lance and Ginny Packer says:

    The siren call is hard to resist, even after so many years…… Besides, adventure is where you find it, four wheels or none. Have a great trip!

  3. David L says:

    Life unfolds and unfolds, and then more.

  4. Colleen Rae says:

    Bon Voyage, Al. I have no doubt you will have a fantastic time and many adventures that await you. I’m looking forward to reading about your trip.
    I’ve kayaked on the intercoastal waterway at Palm Beach a few years ago with my friend Paula. We just paddled a ways up the waterway. We stopped at a wildlife refuge and saw some awesome wildlife. Had a picnic on a small island.

  5. Pat Bean says:

    Looking forward to your water adventure. Maybe it will get you back to blogging more regularly. I once owned a sweet little 22-foot MacGregor that I sailed in the Great Salt Lake out of Black Rock Marina.

  6. dhbauer says:

    What a wonderful old classic woody. POSH would fit in well on Lake Tahoe. Enjoy your trip up the coast to the Chesapeake. Are you navigating up the Intracoastal Waterway at any time? Doing that has been one of my dreams, though a friend who did it with his power boat had a challenging experiences at a few anchorages dealing with tidal shifts etc..

  7. Michael says:

    Florida navigation advice from an old friend:

    He was born in Kansas, and educated through college in Kansas. Graduated from college in 1943, and went to Navy officer candidate school. When he was commissioned, he was 21, and had never seen an ocean. His orders were to some New England port to serve on an LST. He was to be the navigator. His commanding officer, a 22 year old LTJG, had severed about 3 months on another LST before being given his command, and also put in charge of the 8 LST flotilla to be delivered to a Florida location.

    Our guy was OK with basic piloting, but once at sea his celestial short comings left him very doubtful about their location. He solved that by having each of LST communicate their widely divergent positions to him, and he then put a dot in the middle as their location. Being an honest fellow, he had come clean with his CO from the start, and found an equally frankly honest CO who suggested their “averaging” solution.

    Proceeding south and out of sight of land, time at sea lengthened, and their anxiety continued to rise as to their real position. After a conference with his navigator, a command decision was made. The 7 subordinate LSTs were ordered to follow the flagship at a 2 mile distance. The flagship LST headed west until they sighted land. The 7 following LST were ordered to halt.

    The flagship continued west, and ran gently up onto the beach. The doors were opened, and the navigator walked ashore across the beach and up to a road were their position was determined by a gas station attendant.

    Al, I bet you can do better than this!

  8. Betty St. John says:

    I think I must have missed a chapter or two. How did you get to Florida? What did you do with the Jolly Swag?

  9. Patricia Grace says:

    Like it? As in Thumb Up!? Al, what’s not to like! Must admit to envy for your being in the right place at the right time, by making very good decisions! Smart man.
    Good on you!!!!!!!

  10. Karen Goucher says:

    Bon Voyage – know you will make the best of each and every opportunity. Hope
    to see some photos or hear some stories. Stay safe and adventuresome!

  11. Jane Anderson says:

    Glad to see you have your water wings back. Enjoy every moment. Love, Janey

  12. karen wittgraf says:

    You are fearless! How many people in this world sit, day by day, blankly staring at the TV? How many dream of adventures they will never experience? You, however, actualize your “living”. I so admire you for that and feel that you deserve a challenging, wonderful time of it all. Cheers!!!
    Serendipity again!

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