Don’t Leave It Too Late

It’s a time of year when all of us, hopefully, are focused on the things that really matter, family, friends and life direction, and Colin has the perfect post to fit into that. Don’t miss it. I promise it will make you think and it might just change your life.

A House That Makes Me Think About Cruising and Life

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Funny the triggers that get me thinking about larger issues. A few weeks ago, while we were visiting Bermuda and out with friends on the water, we passed the house in the picture above.

It’s a pretty nice house. It shares an island in Hamilton Harbour with several other private residences. It has a small private beach, a nice wharf, palm trees, great views, two moorings, and a berth at the yacht club to use when going ashore. It was built about 25 years ago to traditional Bermuda design by a guy who was born and brought up in Bermuda and loves the water and sailing.  It even has a nice workshop.

Forward Into The Past

Most of our regular readers will know well that I am a dedicated fan of metal boats, so the following post may come as something of a surprise. For although Lou and I chose aluminium for our own voyaging boat, I still retain a love of wooden boats—aesthetically at least—particularly the honest, robust gaff-rigged wooden working boats. And for many years Lou and I have lived in one of the best places in the world to enjoy seeing them, Falmouth in Cornwall.

Engineers Are Cool

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My father was an engineer and I like to think that if I was not dyslexic, with the resulting poor academic record at school, I would be one too. In any event, I ended up being a technician  (mainframe computer), which meant that I got to hang out with a lot of engineers, thereby developing an abiding respect for that profession.

Superstitious…Me?

JHH5II-13998I’m an electronics technician by trade and a believer in logic and scientific method. When I ran my businesses I was an analytical manager delving into the numbers as a foundation for my decisions.

And when voyaging, I’m a compulsive list keeper, boat preparer and weather analyzer. Yes, I’m the hard cold facts guy. Well…except for two things:

You Have To Be Happy To Spread Happiness

Over the years we’ve been voyaging, we’ve occasionally heard from people who accuse cruisers of being parasites—wandering the globe without giving back. And, yes, we’ve run across some cruisers like that. We call them “user cruisers”. They come into town, take from the generous locals (sometimes from people who have less than them), and then leave, all the time complaining about how economically poor they (the cruisers) are.

Margin Accounts Dangerous For Voyagers

MP900387264In reading the headline of this post, you could be forgiven for thinking that I have completely lost my mind and decided to leave the nautical arena to become an investment blogger. Not so. Almost everyone out there voyaging is relying on their savings, to at least some extent, and most of you who are planning to go cruising are saving to do so. Here at AAC we warn you about poor anchors and other nautical dangers, this post is just an extension of that.

Treasures From The Sea

JHHGH1-1050587Ever since John took up photography, our hikes have turned into strolls interspersed with numerous long hiatuses while he records our surroundings for posterity. This initially caused a certain amount of friction, until I developed my own obsession—sea glass.

Closed For The Season

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Due to John’s and my penchant for sailing in the high latitudes, “Closed For The Season” signs have become somewhat of a theme for our cruises. In early spring we are on our way north and nothing is open yet, and by the time we turn south in the fall, it’s all over.

Cutting The Ties That Bind

JHHGH1-1020465 For various reasons we spent most of the summer at our cabin in Nova Scotia, working way too much and sailing way too little. While preparing to get back out cruising, we were once again reminded of the difficulties and sheer work of leaving a land base: Get car ready for storage, store same, move all the stuff that had migrated from boat to cottage back to boat, winterise cottage, set up mail pick up, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Is It An Expedition Or A Cruise?

Last week a friend gave us a catalogue of “expedition” cruises offered by National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions. The glossy photograph-filled magazine touts cruises that you can take to some of the world’s most remote places. The sales pitch runs along the lines of: Buy a ticket, fly to Chile, board a luxury small cruise ship and suddenly you are part of an expedition in the footsteps of Shackleton.