Just 4 More Weeks Before We Take Off

By this time, 4 weeks from now, we’ll be on the road, boat in tow and driving east across southern Idaho. Up until now it has seemed like the planning and preparation was in anticipation of a trip which might take place. The size of the “to do” list – daunting. The number of situations which could derail the trip – extensive. Now however, the checklist has way more things crossed off than yet to do. And barring a major surprise, little seems to stand in the way of actually going. It’s starting to feel real, which generates feelings of both anxiety and eager anticipation. From experience I know that the unease will abate once we make the lifestyle transition from traditional life at home to the transitory mode of life on the water.

Boat preparations are complete, and Chinook is as ready as I can make her. All key systems are close to new and in good operating order. I’ve finally gotten the AIS radio to talk to the Garmin GPS, and have also established communication between the autopilot and the GPS. I’m looking forward to using both of those capabilities while on the Loop. The truck is serviced, and just needs a good cleaning, inside and out, before we ask her to do her work.

We’ve begun organizing our clothing for a year of life on the boat. This is a major challenge as we examine closets and drawers full of clothing, trying to select wardrobes for a full year and fit them into three duffels. One will contain dress up and less frequently worn clothes, and will be stowed toward the back of the king berth. Two other duffels will be packed with day to day clothing as well as foul weather gear, and they will be placed at the front of the king berth just behind the companionway ladder. Socks, tee shirts and underwear will be stuffed into the pockets of the new organizers which hang on the sides of the vee berth area.

In the remaining 4 weeks we will be visiting family members who, in some cases, we won’t see again for more than a year. We will also be pulling together contact information, passwords and other critical records which we’ll be bringing along with us. I’ve set up monthly bills on autopay, but I still need to prepare a list of semi annual and annual bills which will need to be paid. We have found a house sitter, but need to go over the details of how this place works before turning the keys over to her. And of course, there will be a lengthy list of last minute minor home repairs and house cleaning. August 15 will soon be at hand, but we’re confident that be ready when the big day comes.

2 thoughts on “Just 4 More Weeks Before We Take Off

  1. Hello Mike and Sandy,
    We have been your secret admirers and followers over years. Your generous sharing of information about journeys motivated us to purchase our own MacGregor 26X, and started materializing some of the dreams.
    When the waters take you closer to Toronto (probably when you get to Simcoe Lake), we would be happy to host you.
    Your advice, check-lists, and provisions ideas are very useful.
    Good luck on a Great Loop!

  2. Saw you today at the Jamestown church and asked if I was too old to sail. You gave me your card and I looked you up. You write well and your writing is interesting. I heard about sailing around the Great Loop a few years ago. Some people cruise it with power all the way. I like the sail boat idea. I envy you and your wife as you travel on this adventure. Mark Twain traveled and kept a log of his travels. He published his articles with some of them as books like Roughing It, Innocents Abroad, A Tramp Abroad, and some writings about the Sandwich Islands. Anyway, I appreciate your sharing this very interesting time you and your wife are having. Godspeed to you both, Amos Sykes

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