First of all, it is a big difference between just cruising and living aboard full time. Living aboard presumes that your house is your ship (sailing boat, super yacht, trawler or catamaran). Doesn’t matter if you have other properties elsewhere, more the better, because maybe you need some place of your own (or even rented) inland, to store things from time to time. This post is about these tough people who decided to leave their office or factory jobs and become more than merely yacht owners, but all their life is enjoyed on that yacht. I met some myself, they were living in marinas and cruising when they felt like cruising. Most of them were really retired and they were spending their pensions on their boats, and I also met guys with property on land (how lucky, they were living less than 50 meters from the shore, where their boat was moored, and they intended to sell everything and live totally aboard.
I have recently re-read “The Complete Live Aboard Book”, by Katy Burke, and it was inspiring. They are an ecological aware community, disturbed and angry at the sloppy new adventurers they call “hippies”. It’s a term which offend the real hippies. These uneducated and highly uncivilized bunch who just destroy and spread rottenness and trash wherever they decide to throw the line or anchor.
I am impressed by the courage some people have, to start a new life, completely different of what they did before. I don’t want to exhaust the subject in this post, but I want to present it in a philosophical way. I have said in the past posts, that having a yacht is way more complicated than having a car. The expenses with a yacht are a little bit different. I found a list compiled by a former living aboard, and I’m going to resume it here. Just enumerate the expenses, not explaining them, because they are already explained on Living-Aboard.com (although I’m not impressed with other opinions on that site, I don’t know, maybe they were too low budget for my tastes):
These expenses come on top of the natural: food, entertainment. You have to produce something, or you need a very good calculated reserve, meaning that you don’t have to be rich, but it helps. You can charter your boat by cruising, but that of course, depends on the kind of the boat you possess.
Anyway, the main advantage of such a life is real freedom. You are your own boss, and your house is where you throw anchor. If you are too lazy, that’s not your type. I’ve met sleazy, I’ve met rich, I’ve met moderate and really fine people. Even the sleazy were better than the white trash. The rich were generous and the moderate were rich in advice. Most of them were single, so, as a merchant seaman, it seems that this life isn’t for everybody in a larger sense.
In the picture above this paragraph, there are Eric and Susan Hiscock, a pair of travelers with their small boats. The guy wrote “Around the World in Wanderer III”, a book I want to re-read sometimes. He has been made MBE in 1984, along with his wife, for his services he brought to yachting.
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