It happens with me quite a bit. I settle in to something and after a while I get bored, disinterested, or fed up with what ever situation I am in, and I take steps to move onto something else more better. That is where I find myself at the moment and I am not quite sure what to do.
As you well know, as I have been chronicling my journey to a lonely, pitiful death in some forgotten corner of the universe, things have not been going too well for me lately. Finances have been a constant battle and I am starting to get fed up with things. When that happens I start looking at alternatives, some good, some, maybe not so good. It’s been a constant struggle to make rent, feed my fat ass, take proper care of the cats, and keep the Free Spirit afloat.
The boat is doing ok for now, as long as I don’t plan on sailing anywhere. It’s comfortable enough, except for the cabin leaks in the rain, but it needs stuff. The forward hatch is in real bad shape and will need major repair or replacement. The bottom is clean enough, at least according to a neighbor who was diving under it the other day, but it really needs to be hauled out, scraped, sanded, and painted. If it did come out the center board needs some repairs, along with replacing a winch, repairing some mast stays, replacing some minor wood trim, getting the electrics working, a tiller, fix up the rudder, and so on, and so on. All this takes money, of which I have none to spare.
Don’t get me wrong. What is needed on this boat is minor compared to some boats. And all boats need something. I’m just not sure if I want to get the funds together and mess with it all. Of course, if I was able to scrape up the couple of thousand I estimate I would need to fix the boat up that easily, I wouldn’t be so worried about what to do. It’s all starting to take it’s toll and I am thinking about what to do next. I have some options to consider:
1. Just stay on the boat as is. Do what little repairs I can as time goes on. Stay here at the marina for as long as I can and hope things improve. The advantages of this are no increase in expenses. I still have my own boat to live on. I’m under no deadline to get the repairs done. Things can stay as they are. Downside is the boat is just going to need more work as time goes on. If I do hit another major snag with finances, it’s not ready for being out on the hook.
B. Go ahead and do what I can for now to get the boat ready and head out to the mooring field for awhile. This is not really a viable option as I will need a motor, electrics, and a dinghy. Way out of my price range right now.
3. Haul out. Fix it up. Go cruising. Other than not having the cash for the fix up part, this option has some attraction. After following Journey To Minimalism’s adventures this summer the idea of sailing around the Keys, with the occasional run up the west and east coasts of Florida, stopping here and there, gunk holing, and generally living on the water, untied to land, has some appeal. The initial cash outlay would be high and there is no guarantee it would be any cheaper out there, but at first glance it sounds like a nice way to spend some time. But, my adventuresome spirit is kinda down right now. The boat is a bit small for that sort of thing, and it would be roughing it a little more rougher than I prefer to rough, at my advanced age. Perhaps later, but not now.
d. Sell the boat and be done with it. This option has been rolling through my little brain thingy quite a bit lately. I could clean up the boat, do some minor bits, and probably get enough cash to last me a couple of months. The big question of course, where would I live. Well, as it happens, a neighbor is looking to rent out their sport fisherman by the month. No lease, all inclusive, cats allowed. It’s a nice, big, roomy boat with high speed wifi! and right on the same dock. Downside, my monthly expenses would essentially increase by $150 a month. Not horrible, but I’m struggling as it is.
This scenario is looking more attractive right now but several things come into play. I have to sell the sailboat and get what I want out of it. I cannot afford to let it go at too low a price. What ever I sell it for has to cover rent for at least two months. The other worry is that at the end of two months, what if things have not improved? Then I am homeless, with no asset to fall back on. Namely the sailboat. The upside, I would be rid of the bother of taking care of the sailboat and have a more better place for me and the cats to live for awhile.
The bottom line right now is, I guess I am tired of owning a boat. It sounds silly, but since I got rid of the jeep, and all the other big things in my life, the idea of living with what I can carry, and nothing more, has so much more appeal to me. I know I have to live someplace, and I do have two dependents, but not having the boat to worry about would really take a load off. And don’t get me wrong. I still love boat living and despite all the setbacks this year, it is a decent way to live.
But the year is taking it’s toll. I’m tired. I have no energy to go out and do anything because of the constant stresses of finances. All the shit from last year at the other marina really left a bad taste in mouth and getting away from owning anything that requires a license, registration, title, or uses fossil fuels really sounds appealing at the moment. If I do sell the boat, it’s not like there are not more out there. I’m confident that eventually finances will improve where if I decided to do so, I could get another boat.
Just the idea of really downsizing even more, to be able to go somewhere and not worry about what will happen to what you left behind, no worries about maintenance, liability, and stuff like that sounds very much like how I want to live right now. I love it here in Key West but I want to do more. Maui beckons in the future but family obligations and a couple of fussy furballs keep that on the back burner for now. I need to constipate more on building a regular income that doesn’t require actual work. At least not working for anyone other than myself. Getting rid of the boat would alleviate a lot of worries I have at the moment.
Whatever I decide, it will have to be soon. Otherwise I may be backed into a corner without the options I currently have. That is why I need to be careful. When I get restless, I don’t always make the good decision, and I could be worse off than before. So, we will see what happens. I may just throw an ad out there and see what kind of ridiculous offers I get for the boat. Or I may just sit tight and stay with things as is.
But as I said, I’m getting restless.