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Bruce and I are asked this question all the time. Friends and acquaintances think we are on a permanent vacation. The truth is living on a boat in paradise for the winter is not a vacation, it is our lifestyle. We have the same challenges, chores and responsibilities that we have when living on dirt. The main difference is that chores on the boat take an average of five times longer to get done.
Our day starts the same way as it does back home. We tune in to get the latest news, weather, events and advertisements. Instead of watching Good Morning America, we listen on our VHF radio at 8:15 AM to the Cruisers’ Net. The VHF radio also serves as our telephone. The only problem is the radio is a party line. Listening in on other conversations is another pastime of cruisers.
Once the Cruisers’ Net is over, it is time for Bruce to take Lily for her morning walk. Lily is not wearing her life vest because she has to swim to shore. We use the handle on the vest to get her on and off the boat.
Garbage is collected 3 times a week. Boaters take turns collecting. Today Dan off the S/V Cutting Class out of Mystic CT is our garbage man. I hope he is almost done. It doesn’t look like there is room for any more garbage in his dinghy.
Grocery shopping and banking are limited on the island we call home. There are 2 grocery stores and a bank within walking distance of the Hope Town Harbour. The bank is open one day a week. Power and phone service go out frequently. If this happens on a Tuesday, you have to wait another week to get some cash.
The grocery stores have limited supplies. You will never go hungry, but you will not necessarily find the items you want
Once a month we take an all day excursion to the big city of Marsh Harbour for provisioning. Marsh Harbour has many banks that are open every day and larger grocery stores where we can find almost everything we need. Many times we take friends with us.
Bruce’s job is to walk the beach every day in search of sea glass. Lily is not much help. She would rather find coconuts.
Life on the boat is not all work without any play. We have plenty of time to have fun. Happy hours around the pool, music festivals, sailboat racing are just a few of the many activities going on.