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