We took a drive to Cleveland last weekend. If you're as geographically challenged as I am you probably haven't got a clue where it is or why you'd go there. Cleveland, Ohio is about a 5.5 hour drive from our home in Paris and the route takes you through steely Hamilton, past splashy Niagara Falls, across the border at wingy Buffalo, then west across the spooky south shores of Lake Erie until you hit Cleveland, home of the Rock & Roll Museum and I'm not sure what else. Our friends Andrew and Jess put a bid in on a repossessed 34' Sea Ray powerboat and we went down there with them to check it out in person before sealing the deal. Of course, spending a couple hours poking around beautiful, bargain priced boats certainly puts you in a "retirement fantasy mode" and we of course started scheming for our own boat purchase.
We've been thinking that we'd like to spend our 40th birthdays on a sailboat someplace warm. And since our 40th birthdays are six months apart, it really gives us no other choice besides spending a full year away. My original calculations produce an estimated departure date three years hence but when I checked with Ana to see how old we were, I found out that I slipped a year somewhere and was a bit older than I thought. So we may have to do our 41st or 42nd birthdays on a boat. Regardless, we still need to get a boat beforehand to actually learn how to sail. The last time I owned a boat I nearly destroyed it on several occassions, which is a tremendous way to learn, but this time around I think it may be a better idea to take things somewhat slower and try not to sink it.
If anybody hears of a person with a 37' to 40' mint condition sailboat manufactured in the late eighties who is desperate to sell for a ridiculously low price due to job loss, divorce, mental instability, boredom, grief, fun, or whatever, give them my email.