“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

End of an Era


The last weeks has been a downward rollercoaster of emotions.  Work for both my Bride and I has been stressful and a good reminder of why we want to leave this behind and go cruising.  On Friday, I had a nice change of pace and went to my company’s summer outing.  This year we went deep sea fishing.  We departed from New Bedford Harbor and spent most of the day fishing around the Elizabeth Islands, Gay Head on the Vinyard and Nomans Island.  This is one of my favorite areas to be on the water.

I got sea sick!  I live on a boat 6 days a week, in the process of moving aboard full time and I got sea sick.  Power boats just have a different motion.  And only fisherman would anchor themselves broad side to the 4 foot ocean swell. At least it confirmed that I am a sailor.

On the way back into the harbor, I got my backpack and checked my phone.  I had numerous missed calls, texts and voicemails.  My best friend, Frank, had a heart attack!  At 37!  He was very lucky and got to a hospital very quickly that was able to install a stent.  Scary, but it looks like he will be ok.  We spent a large part of the weekend at the hospital with Frank and his family.  I should mention, he is also my Bride’s cousin.  We met through Frank.

On Sunday, we were finally able to return to our boat.  The first thing I did on getting to the boat was check my port side.  On Tuesday we got a dock neighbor.  He had previously been further down the dock and we had helped him in on a number of occasions over the last 7 years.  Often he would come in out of control and drunk.  We were not happy that he was moved next to us and had been worried about our boat since he was moved.

Sure enough, he hit our boat.

IMG_0705The damage includes scratches to the gelcoat and he ruined the blue and grey stripe.  It’s cosmetic but totally because this guy can’t handle his boat.

I talked to 2 different people who were there when it happened.  They both are experienced boaters, one with over 40 years of boating experience.  They both said, separately, that he came in way too fast, “like he was being chased” with no fenders or dock lines out.  They went over and tried to help him in but without dock lines it is kind of difficult.  The boat drifted over and the metal vent cover on his boat scrapped against my boat.  He never even tried to contact me.

When he showed up at his boat later in the day on Sunday, I had to ask him about it.  He tried to blame the people that helped him in!  What a douche bag.  I asked for his insurance information and he didn’t have a copy on his boat and didn’t even know his insurance provider.  He did show up yesterday with a copy of his insurance information and the boat is actually in his sister’s name.  Hmmm, suspicious since we have never seen anyone but him use the boat.

I spoke to the marina and of coarse this soulless evil entity cares more about revenue  than protecting my boat.  There is no place to move him and they are not going to kick him out just because he can’t handle his boat and is a menace to their other customers.  I really hate this marina.

I am waiting on a call from the fiberglass guy on how much it will be to fix it.  I can’t tell if the scratches will buff out or if there is gelcoat repair needed.

The last event in my downward rollercoaster of emotions has to do with my Jeep Wrangler.

P1010038It’s a 2000 Jeep Wrangler that we purchased new in April of 2000.  I had always wanted a Jeep and this was the first major purchase I made once I had been working a “real” job for a couple of years.  I loved this jeep and we took it all over the east coast.  We even drove it to Key West, in June, with no A/C.  Anything over 50 degrees was top down weather.  Doors would be off most of the spring and summer.  I used to wash it weekly and wax it monthly.  It had just over 100,000 miles on it.

Sadly, when it started having some problems and I had a company vehicle, it sat.  For almost 3 years.  That resulted in a lot of rusting.  There are a couple of holes in the frame, the engine is rusted and working on it is very difficult due to the rust and doing routine maintenance like brakes results in an expensive project.

For a while we had 3 vehicles: the Jeep; my Bride’s Lexus RX350 and my work truck a Honda Ridgeline.  When my Bride switched jobs we ditched the expensive Lexus to help make way to purchase Smitty.  We put about $2,000 into the jeep to get it back on the road.  We knew there was another $2-3,000 in other repairs but it was drivable.  Now we find it is being used very infrequently and as a result it is starting to have more problems.

Also, it doesn’t fit on Smitty.  If it doesn’t fit on Smitty it has to go!

Yesterday I put it up for sale on Craigslist.org.  I expected to have a week or more to get used to the idea of selling my beloved Jeep.  Wouldn’t you know it that someone called right away and made me a good offer last night.  My Jeep is gone.  The couple that bought it seemed like nice people and intend to fix up the Jeep.  So at least she has a nice new home.  But it’s still sad.

We are down to one car.  This is part of the plan to go cruising but it still meant parting with something I will miss.

10 thoughts on “End of an Era

  1. Sorry bout the jeep, but it seems you really enjoyed it.
    Marinas I avoid like the plague!
    Sea sickness is what I exel at… Thankfully not on this trip.
    Heart attacks is something I rather not hear or think of.
    I really loved and miss Mathas Vinyard!!! Stayed at James Taylors brothers inn with a synth in the living room and dinner at the Black Cat. Good memories

  2. Sorry to hear about your friend! Glad he’s going to be okay. A good reminder that life can be too short to spend time not living it in a way that makes you happy.

  3. Minimizing your life is an emotional roller coaster for everyone. We are hard-wired to accumulate. It’s scary to downsize. Most people who do it though, end up being thankful that they did. Read ‘Choosing Simplicity’ for some great inspiration.

    It’s good that you’re taking these problems in your life and using them as fuel to encourage you to get out and away. Best of luck!

    • Thanks for the recommendation on Choosing Simplicity. I will have to check that out.

      I think downsizing would be a lot easier if we didn’t care about getting as much money as possible from it. I could probably get the house done in two weekends if it was just pack it up and drive it to Good Will or something. I think that would be easier emotionally too, but I’m a “rip the bandaid off” type of guy.

      Thanks again,


  4. I bet you have a ton of fenders hanging on that side of your boat from now on! What a shame that people can damage your boat and not feel bad about it. I actually pay for the dock beside me so this doesn’t happen. What a weekend.

    A few years ago I was the committee boat for a race. One of the inexperienced racer caught our anchor line and damaged our bow. Big scratch, ruined new registration numbers, damaged the stripe just because they wouldn’t listen when I warned them off. Then afterward they told everyone it was my fault because I anchored in the wrong spot. Really you hit the anchored committee boat!

    I’ve seen boats hit other boats in our marina and they just walk away like nothing happened. Their parents may be to be blame!


    • Thankfully the marina moved the jerk after we complained a couple of times. We have a new neighbor that has never owned a boat before but I think its actually better. He’s a family guy that goes out with his wife and kids and doesn’t drink. He also cares about his boat so he has dock lines, fenders, etc. and is always asking me for advice. I’ll take a rookie making honest mistakes over a guy who should know better and just doesn’t care.

      So what’s the origins of the “PainKiller” name?

      Thanks for reading,


      • Most people guess I’m a dentist but it is named after the rum drink from the BVIs. We bought our 30 Catalina after our first charter there and the name discribed what the boat did for us every weekend. You describe that pain yourself and the reason you want to go cruising.

        We kept the name for our 310. Ours is numer 104 so I’m PK104 on the list.

      • I thought it might have been that. We decided we needed to go cruising after our first charter to the BVIs. Love that place and can’t wait to be able to spend months there instead of a couple of days on a charter.



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