Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Love at First Sight

A captain's chair is extremely rare on a sailboat. It's more common on motor boats. Sailors seem to prefer hard wooden seats, some curved to accommodate the tilt of the boat during sailing. Our boat is turned way over on it's side while exiting the Rio Dulce and this chair works fine!

 "Love at first sight" has only happened to me a couple of times. One of them was seeing our Nauticat 43 at the used boat section of the Newport Boat Show 20 years ago. We had been looking at new boats for several years at the Newport and Annapolis Boat Shows. The past year we'd started to look at used boats being sold by their owners at various locations. But when we stepped aboard the Nauticat, it was magic. I sat in the captain's chair first and couldn't believe it. "You can be comfortable while steering the boat?" I exclaimed. And then we walked into the deck salon and I sat down and looked out of the big windows all around and said (Scott's been quoting this for years to people), "I could live on this boat." 

I sat over on the left on that fateful day we first saw our Nauticat.

Now we had found the boat we wanted, but rather too early. The boat had been for sale for awhile and we couldn't make a commitment until we sold our home in Brookline. That wasn't scheduled to happen until the following spring. We were pretty nervous over the next six months and kept in touch with the owners. When our house was put up for sale, we agreed on a purchase and sale on the Nauticat with a contingency that our house sold. The owners were pretty comfortable as our home in Brookline, MA was a sure bet to sell quickly. And it did! And we were the proud owners of Scott Free. 

Our must have list for our boat included a queen size mid ship bed, accessible from both sides.

Naming a boat can cause some contention between a couple. I told Scott I had the name for the boat and he huffed and puffed in indignation. Until he asked, what I had in mind. "Scott Free" "Oh, that's the name all right!". Our first year we kept the boat in East Boston and did short trips to Gloucester, Cape Cod and Portsmouth, NH. But the following spring we headed up to Maine for the summer and then in the fall to the Annapolis Boat Show and south to St. Augustine. After we returned for the ski season, we sailed down to the Bahamas, and then in the spring, back up to Maine. 

I love to cook and entertain so this fantastic galley got a lot of use. People would ask me, "Can you cook on the boat?" and I would respond. My kitchen has everything in it I have at home, except a standing mixer. Yes, we had a blender, food processor, bread machine, toaster etc. 

Over the following years we made another Maine to Bahamas trip and then on down the Eastern Caribbean to Trinidad. Another trip up the Eastern Caribbean and then across the Venezuelan out islands to the ABCs (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) followed by a cruise along Columbia and Panama. After a few years there we returned to the Chesapeake (slowly) and then down to the Western Caribbean where we spent the last 10 years cruising Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico.

But during those 20 years, Scott and I have gone from our mid 50's to our mid 70's and this year we realized that it was time to move on. During COVID we bought an RV and drove from Vermont to the Keys and then over to San Diego and back. And we loved it. So land cruising is our new adventure. Scott Free is ready to move on to new owners. She is at the Bert Jabin Boat Yard in Annapolis, MD and  Bob Beaumont (Able Yacht Brokerage. he sold us Scott Free 20 years ago!) is our broker.

Our guest room, the "V Berth". We kept this 
ready for our many guests over the years! But
the tons of storage space in the cupboards 
served as my pantry!

This is our third stateroom, the "Bunk Room",
which for most of our cruising years functioned
as a garage for spare parts!

Scott Free under sail. She's a cutter rig,
which means two jibs, one mast. There
is in mast furling on the main.
Looking up to the bow. We had all new non stick
fiberglass installed on the decks. 
Looking back from the bow.
The view from the galley up to the salon
Our "dinette" opposite the galley.
The inside steering station. There is duplicate 
inside and out. But we basically almost always 
used the outside location. Many Nauticat 
owners like the inside though.