About three years ago, while sitting at our favorite conversation spot, the dinner table, John and I started thinking how great it would be to retire. We thought about where we would want to live, what we would want to do, and when it all could happen. Then one of us (I really don’t remember who) said that, at retirement, we should buy a trawler and travel for a few years. We both thought it was a fantastic idea. Now, we really love our kids and grandkids, and we love to spend time with them, so, as exciting as this sounded, I needed to think of a way that I could slowly adjust to being a little farther away from them than I am used to. After giving it some thought, I suggested a year doing the Great Loop before heading south to the Caribbean, Central and South America. That way we could fly or drive to them more often and see them as we passed by their homes. This idea began to grow more and more over the next few months and we started to think of it as a reality. We passed the idea by our kids, who all love boating themselves, and we received full support. In fact, they each started to pick the spots where they would like to meet us during our travels!
Well, here we are three years later after lots of planning, thinking and dreaming. We’ve looked at several boats, decided what we liked, and today we closed on a 48 foot Hatteras Long Range Cruiser. Her name was Outback, but she will be re-christened “AfterMath” in honor of my math teaching career and John’s engineering background. We are so excited to have her! Right now she is in Mystic, Connecticut, which is ironic, as Connecticut is where all of our boating took place before we moved to Florida. AfterMath will stay on the hard there until the spring at which point we will start our journey by heading north via the Hudson River to the Canadian canals and Georgian Bay. We will then head south down the east coast so we can see our kids and grandkids on the way to the Caribbean next year. We plan to spend approximately two years traveling the Caribbean, eastern South America, Central America, Mexico and then back to the US. If all goes well, we will continue once again to Canada visiting Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and then southbound deciding along the way what to do next.
We will both retire this winter and become live aboards, so now we have so much to do. We need to simplify our lives: put some things in storage, sell some, give some away, and pick the items we just can not live without to bring along. (I know my cameras are first in the “can’t live without it” pile.) I think life will be a lot less simple over the next couple of months, but will pay off once we are settled on AfterMath.
One of my favorite quotes is from Henry David Thoreau. He said, “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” Here we go!!!