Sunday, July 19, 2009


One year ago today, I launched this blog, all wide-eyed and excited about our impending adventure. That first post had a very short to-do list that went like this:

1. Sell the wine shop
2. Sell the house
3. Sell the current boat
4. Buy our cruising boat.

If close doesn't count, we've only accomplished item number 2 -- and that one still has a few days until completion. Of course, on July 19th, we couldn't know there was a looming economic "downturn" that was more like a free fall. And so we sat, many, many months waiting for items 1, 2 and 3 to sell.

On the other hand, we weren't really sitting around. No. No sitting.

CLOTHING: We've pared down our clothing and shoes to a bare minimum (or would that be un-bare?). I made it through the winter with only two pairs of closed-toe shoes; both pairs were brown. All my winter clothes were black. Ah, well. Brown and black are fine together. Just ask a Doberman. This week, we've been at it again. That picture on the left is my measuring cup. I have to keep ditching things until it all fits in there -- including shoes.

HOUSE: All along, we've hoped the house would sell first. It's the only thing that has been costing us money. After the house closes next week, our living expenses will be cut by more than half, which will help us boost the cruising kitty. We can hardly wait to walk away from mortgage insurance, property tax, all the bureaucracy associated with home ownership. This house has served us well, but we're so ready to move on.

FURNITURE: A couple of garage sales last fall divested us of all the furniture that we were not still sitting or sleeping on. This week we're using craigslist to disappear all but the love seat, the purple chair and our bed. Just last night, a woman picked up our coffee tables, bedside tables, two lamps, some small shelves and a folding chair. She left us a nice slim $100 bill that's already been packed.

JUNK: This might have been the hardest category, getting rid of old files, keepsakes, silly things like a blowup wine bottle, a basketball goal and green Doc Martens. Almost everything has been redistributed around the planet via eBay, garage sales or charity. A set of my jewelry went to Austria! The last treasures are still being claimed one-by-one on Facebook. After a year of pondering, I've decided to send my grandmother's nest to my little sister in New Mexico.

OLD BOAT: We are firm believers in boat karma, and boy have we been investing. When this blog started, Isabella was in rough shape. She needed eletrical work, engine work, exterior teak refinishing, interior bulkhead refinishing, screen frames finished, ...... Now, a year later, we're on the final project: painting the decks. She looks fabulous and is ready to sail away with a new owner. We've had two people look at her in the last week. We'll be moving her to her new temporary home around the corner soon.

NEW BOAT: After months of reading, shopping and pondering, we've narrowed down our choice to one of three Island Packets: 35', 37' or 380. Once we sell the business, we'll sell one car and take off on a road trip to find our new boat.

One year ago, we thought we were close to cruising. Now we know we are!

--Prepped and painted the front half of the cabin deck. The back half is prepped and taped.
--We continue to move stuff out the door.

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