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Do you feel the need for a new challenge? Let's go boating!

Boats in the harbour are safe, but that is not what they are meant for. — Zig Ziglar

This last spring, my wife and I bought a 46-foot yacht — our first-ever boat. Ok, I agree, it is a bit big for a first boat, but…

We just fell in love with the vessel the minute we visited it. Imagine, it was wrapped for winterizing. We were at the end of February.

If you do not know it, we live in Canada. Our boat is on Lake Ontario, so it is cold out here, and when they winterize your boat, they wrap it with a kind of white pellicule all over the top. That way, it is protected from the wind, snow and ice rains.

Anyway, my wife wanted us to have something new to do this year, so, without telling me, she booked a visit with the seller.

She thought it was a small boat to go fishing on weekends, like a bass boat, which is usually about 25 feet long and comes with outboard engines.

Imagine my surprise when we arrived there and saw that gigantic boat. And, by the way, when wrapped, it doubles the size of it.

It is an old boat, 1986, in good condition. We were almost sold as soon as we got on board — full bedrooms with toilets and showers. A full kitchen, salon and a lot of wood finishes inside. But the fact that with my size, 6’-4’’, I do not have to bend anywhere, hook us.

Then, since last April, we have never stopped learning about boating. There are so many things to know.

First, everything about your boat maintenance: mechanical, electrical, paint and gel coating, etc.

Then, all the navigation technicalities and laws, etc.

And to finish, how to manoeuvre this big boy. I would say that the biggest challenge is to dock in the marina. Not always an easy task. Ask those who know about boating!

That experience pushed me to learn a lot more than I knew about electricity and engines.

I discovered the differences between house and boat electricity.

I took courses online and read a lot about almost everything I could find about boating, and it has been nearly every day since.

I’ve also learned that choosing to go out of your comfort zone pushes you to become better by learning new skills. That kind of knowledge doesn’t come if you stay on your couch.

Is it scary sometimes? Of course, it is, but it also gives us a rush of adrenaline at the same time, and after we come back from a trip and dock our baby in our slot, there is that feeling of accomplishment we could never have had if we did not go out of our safety zone.

We also discovered a great community and fraternity being part of a marina. Everybody helps each other. You can ask any questions you have to much more experienced skippers, and they are always happy to help.

We already planned what to do during the winter to update our vessel. There are a lot of new challenges which will lead us to new pieces of knowledge. I can’t wait!

Ah, by the way, if you are planning to have a boat one day and you are not a DIY person, except if you have a lot of money to spend, forget about it. There is always something to do and repair on a boat.

You must be prepared for any possibilities if you go out. Anything can happen. That is the challenge, and I like it. It put me in a sentiment of urgency all the time. You have to think about everything and even then learn that you forgot something.

I can’t wait for our next boating trip.

The fact that we can work from our boat is also a great advantage. Most marinas have Wi-Fi connections. It is like a floating cottage; we can move anywhere it pleases us.

We can now decide where we want to go during the weekends, get on the boat and get there, stay there as long as it pleases us and work from there.

Changing our environment constantly helps us feel that we are in a different routine day after day, even if we do the same work every day!

Of course, we can travel by plane, but the costs are quite different.

When you move to another country, you need a hotel room, a car or a public transport pass, restaurants, etc.

With the boat, the most significant cost is the gasoline. Most of the time, we can walk to the areas by staying at the marinas.

It is another way of doing things. It is, for many, a way of living. We are not there yet, though. We are in the experiment mode.

The more we are boating, the more we get used to it and comfortable.

That is also something we had to adjust ourselves to as the bed is less comfortable than the one at home.

You can enjoy boating as long as everything is in order and well-maintained.

On the other hand, the repair costs can skyrocket if something goes wrong. That is why you must learn the basics and be DIY-friendly to keep the costs as low as possible.

This past summer was and still is great. New challenges, new pieces of knowledge, new friends, new adventures, and it is not finished yet!

If you are thinking about it, don’t hesitate anymore, do it!

I will tell you more about our boating experiences in the next few months…

Till next time!

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