Another year and the Fritter is still going strong. Amazing. When I started this little voyage I had no idea where it would lead and if it would even last, yet here we are, still sailing along, at least digitally if not on the water.
It has been fun though, and never seeming to lack for adventure. I look back on where it all started, on a ratty old boat in Key Largo. From
there, through the Keys to Key West, and now out here, on Maui. Just wow.
Granted, it ain’t all been beer and skittles along the way. Voyages of this length seldom are. The constant battle with finances, which has been something I have dealt with all my life so nothing new there. Living on a boat, a long time dream come true. It wasn’t quite what I was hoping for, but I still wouldn’t trade the experience for anything. And who knows, there may someday be another boat out there, perhaps even the catamaran with a rather motley crew.
I got to spend most of these past 6 years in Key West, a place I have dreamed about living in for most of my life. It lived up to what I was expecting, both good and bad. If you ever do get a chance to go and spend some time there, I highly recommend it, despite the costs and efforts to turn it into an enclave for the rich, Key West still has some magic left in it. Go and find it…if you dare.
My time on the island was full of interesting experiences. Exploring the surrounding waters by kayak. Meeting up with a mermaid hunter and a mermaid. Going to all the crazy events the island offers throughout the year. And of course, all the fantastic sunsets at Mallory Square. Never got tired of them.
I got to hone my skills with the computer, learning to code apps, hosting and building websites, and of course, writing three ebooks in the process. While none of this has made me wealthy, it’s has paid the bills, or at least most of them, and proved to be a valuable learning experience.
But all in all, I really just enjoyed walking around the island. A stroll down Duval was never boring. Following the docks around the harbor, or just about anywhere on the island always seemed to turn up something new. It was home while I was there and always will be, even if I never go back.
Then there was the whole saga with the marinas and HWSNBN. Quite the soap opera and it’s still going on. The episode just proves how evil the wealthy really are, and how their greed knows no bounds. Yet, the cats and I managed to survive, at least until 2 years ago.
When I lost KC, it seemed to set off a chain of events from which I wondered if I would ever recover from. Soon after, Charley was gone, and my financial ills caught up to me, forcing me to sell the boat. From there I made the mistake of moving into the trailer trash, and said ills prevented me from leaving sooner than I had wanted. Last winter was the bottom. Dealing with a drunken, violent landlord, a room full of bed bugs, and a bout with the flu which took months to recover from.
Then, when I did finally escape, I had to leave my beloved island and went into self exile in Pa. to rest and recover. It was a mistake but it did finally lead to my current situation, namely, making a successful move to Hawaii.
Out here on Maui, it’s been 6 months of peace and quiet. My financial situation has stabilized, and I’m looking ahead with some confidence at what I will do come May, be it find another spot out here, or go back to Key West. Either way will work just fine. Now I know my way around out here, my cunning plans to spend time in either island could work out.
Through it all, the good, the bad, the ex girlfriends, I persevered because of the basic tenets I preach about every chance I get on here:
Minimalism of course. No way would I have been able to make it in the Keys nor out here in Hawaii had I not learned the art of simple living. I may have taken it a bit further than most people would feel comfortable with, but it has worked for me and I thoroughly enjoy life way more better because of it.
And the other is staying out of debt. Of all the things I have managed to leave behind in my old life, debt was the most difficult to get rid of, and the most satisfying once it was gone. When I paid off the last of the credit card, got rid of any and all loans, and learned to pay cash or do without, it completely changed my life in ways I cannot even begin to describe. You would be amazed how soundly you sleep at night, how much you enjoy a good meal, and how much more sunny and warm the days are when you don’t have the crushing weight of debt holding you back. It has been absolutely amazing and I will never incur another loan again, no matter what.
And finally, I want to thank all of you out there who follow this blog and my adventures. Those of you who like or follow on the social media pages, all the commenters, all the ones who donated to the cause when things were a bit rocky, to all the ones who came for a visit and bought me dinner, (really do appreciate it), to all who bought the books, to Linda at the Sandcastle for her insights, to Julia who shared her journey with us, and especially to the peanut, whom I owe much of the success for this endeavor to. She was my first commenter and still stalks the Fritter to this day. Thank you all for your kind and generous support.
So now, with all the memories, this makes this more difficult. I’m going to retire the Fritter, and move on to other things. It’s time and I’ve written myself dry. There are other voyages to be sailed, other adventures which just don’t allow time for a bunch of silly rantings of an old has been/never will be pirate. So long everyone. It’s been a great voyage.
Just kidding. You can look forward to another year of snark, sailing, pirating, travel, preaching, and whatever other evil shit I can come up with. The Fritter has to have a captain. And I will be most happy to keep it going, no matter what exotic port it winds up in. So, by all means, grab a cutlass, swash a few buckles, and join the crew. Plenty of room for any wannabe pirates out there. You ain’t gonna get rid of me so easy.