That question and the following one …”what do you do all day on your boat” are frequently asked by non-boaters when they learn we are spending the summer on our 42 ft motor yacht, Beach House. Honestly, I am rarely ever bored as there is always something to see or do when we are on the boat.
A typical day starts with coffee on the aft deck which is screened in with canvas and isenglass creating a cozy sitting area even in cool weather. Catch up on some news, email or maybe read a bit. I love watching the wildlife, especially the birds and often can take a great photo this time of day.
We have to feed the pets and take Bentley out on the back swim platform so he can do his morning tinkle. Eventually, Wally will take him to shore in the dinghy (if we are anchored out) for a full business walk.
Depending on where we are, perhaps a hike, some kayaking, beach combing or a bike ride will be on the agenda. By then it is lunch time and at least once a week we hit a pub or small café for lunch. Then it may be nap time for some of us, others may read, make a few phone calls or do some boat clean up or projects. Boats are like houses in that there is always a small repair or maintenance to do such as cleaning and oiling the teak wood or cleaning the salt water off the windows.
If we are at a marina, we occasionally rent a car or scooters and explore the area. We don’t have a washer/dryer on board so there is laundry to do and like everyone else we have to grocery shop. We do major provisioning before we leave Anacortes, filling the freezer and all the storage areas with pet food, household essentials, snacks and beverages. Grocery shopping after that may be finding a local farmers market on one of the islands or a regular sized store on some of the larger islands. Usually, I am on the hunt for fresh produce, fruit or farm fresh eggs.
Again, depending where we are, fishing and crabbing could be the major activity of the day and if successful, the catch of the day will be featured on the dinner menu. We really love exploring in our dingy, which is a 13 ft Boston Whaler. The whaler has a 50 hp engine so we can easily go 25 MPH and get most anywhere we want to go to explore.
By now we have meandered into cocktail hour. If we are boating with friends, which is often, this is usually an animated time where we catch up on the days events, tell boating stories perhaps play cards or just enjoy each other’s company.
Cocktail hour is followed by dinner and again if we are with friends, the menu is usually discussed earlier in the day and plans are made about who is hosting, who is preparing what and when dinner will be served. I love to cook…so no, we don’t eat always eat burgers, hotdogs or ever eat prepared food from the store deli.
There are after dinner chores to do, dog walking and hopefully an awesome sunset to close out the day. Again, we might play a board game or cards, read or do some future trip planning. Wally is our official weather man and boating is dictated by the weather so that is an important discussion that happens daily. The weather and especially the wind will dictate where we will go. We have to evaluate if there is adequate protection from the wind to anchor or if a real storm is a brewin, we might head to a marina and enjoy some shore time in a small town for a few days.
There are so many variations on what we do each day because we move around with the weather. Some days involve cruising to get to the next destination and other days it is just as I described above. The variation and the freedom to pull anchor and head somewhere new is what makes everyday special on the water.
Is it always idyllic? Nope, some days the water conditions are not what you expected, the wind and current decide not to play nicely together which makes traveling by boat less than fun. Some nights the wind howls, yes even in the summer and the boat rock and rolls with the wind waves. If this is happening, one has to be concerned about the anchor pulling or someone else’s anchor pulling. These infrequent occasions mean a restless night onboard. Most nights, we are lulled to sleep by the lapping of water or it will be so calm and peaceful that I forget I am on a boat. One thing is for sure, no two days are alike.
So there you have it, the short sweet version of how we spend our days and why we are rarely bored.