I used to love traveling. I liked getting to stay in new places every night. I liked not being at home, not having to worry about dishes — and what to make for dinner.
Then we got a boat.
I learned the joys of traveling WITH your home. Now, it’s the only way I want to travel.
On the boat, there’s almost no packing or unpacking. Your “stuff” is always with you. You have your comfy chair, your high def TV. You can bring your dogs – and that’s a biggie for us. We like having our dogs with us when we explore new places. Besides, it gets expensive leaving them home with the dog sitter.
It gets complicated with the dogs when we drop anchor outside of a marina, which always has easy access to dog walking areas. When we’re “on the hook”, we have to load the dogs into our dinghy (think big inflated canvas rowboat) and drive them to a place on land where they can do their business.
It’s an adventure. The dogs love it, but it can get old at 11:00 at night or 6:00 in the morning.
Another thing I like about traveling with my house is that it comes with a fully stocked kitchen. We don’t have to stop what we’re doing three times a day to figure out where to eat. We can grab something simple for breakfast and lunch and just go out for a nice dinner when we feel like it. We can also cook on board, which is fun, or even grill on the dock since most marinas provide grills. It’s easier on the pocketbook and the waistline, too, especially if you’re away for more than a few days.
Traveling by boat suits our lifestyle. Even on vacation, we’re homebodies. We like to sit and read. Tom likes to play his video games or watch old movies. It’s so much nicer doing that on the water than in a hotel room, even a nice one. We’ve stayed in some wonderful condos. At best, a hotel or condo may feel like home. When we’re on our boat, we always feel like we’re on vacation.
That’s the best thing about our boat. We can go sit on it, in our marina, going nowhere, and still feel like we’re light years away from everyday life. It’s magical. I love the sounds of the water and the seagulls, the gentle rocking of the boat, the lapping of the waves. I love watching the water. It looks different at various times of day when the sun hits it at different angles.
I love watching the birds and the other boats too. And there’s the smell of the sea. You’re in a whole other world when you’re on the water.
Our marina has a swimming pool, picnic tables, grills, and a restaurant. It’s ideal for entertaining, so we do most of our entertaining at the dock. We take friends out for a ride up the Housatonic River or out to Long Island Sound. Then we come back to the dock for appetizers, drinks, and dinner. It’s a perfect set-up for a perfect day.
The 2017 boating season is just starting. It’s Tom’s favorite time of year – he has six whole months of boating ahead of him. When the boat comes out of the water in November, Tom goes into a form of emotional hibernation until the next season begins.
So we’re at the start of Tom’s life cycle. Here’s to 2017 — on the water!