Moving day!

We have finally moved aboard! Six more carts of “essential stuff” and two bicycles (destined to rust in 6 months). The temporary apartment we have lived in since we sold our home is now empty, the rental furniture will be picked up next week. Tivoli absorbed the gear with room to spare! We are on to provisioning and last-minute tasks.

The lists are endless. The time spent on “last minute” details seems to occupy an inordinate amount of time and effort. Even though we’ve been preparing for the trip South to the coast for a long time there is still much to be done. There is the boat stuff: service all three engines, haul the boat to replace zincs, apply antifouling paint to the props and drive shafts, replace a speed and depth transducer, finish up essential projects, etc. Then there is the personal stuff: estate planning, finances, insurance, move stuff to storage, stuff to safe deposit box, sell cars, rent cars. Finally, there is the government “cha cha” one goes through at this stage of life: transition health care to Medicare, supplemental plans, drug coverage, etc. And, by the way, none of these entities understand the concept of living aboard a boat; which also created some unplanned rework. Countless hours on the phone and filling out endless forms. But, we are nearly there.

The weather is beautiful, warm days and cool nights. Departure is now planned for November 6th or 7th. We had planned on November 1rst but have decided another week would be nice and we aren’t on any particular schedule other than to leave after hurricane season ends on November 1 (of course hurricanes don’t know that but the insurance companies have to draw a line in the sand somewhere). The delay also allows time for the annual snowbird migration to preceed us down the Tennessee-Tombigbee waterway to Mobile; we won’t have to compete for anchorages and slips at marina’s along the way.

Our itinerary is highly flexible and weather-dependent. We plan to hit the Gulf, turn left on the ICW to Panama City then cross the Gulf to Tampa/St. Pete. We do have an appointment to replace our aging tender crane in Stuart FL and will have to bypass the Key’s this trip. We will take the Okeechobee waterway across Florida to Stuart. Then, if all goes well, it’s over to the Bahamas for the winter months.


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