My old man once said (and he wasn’t the first, by any means) that the two happiest times in your life are the day you buy the boat, and the day you sell it. The dream of a life afloat is replaced by the scourge of boat ownership, and that dreaded sense of indebtedness which accompanies it.
Like most kids, I obviously didn’t listen to my father and I now own (or co-own) three boats (for simplicity sake, I’m ruling out anything with a waterline length less than 3 metres).
I bought the Achilles 24 in 1999, and sailed her for the first few years out of Galway Bay Sailing Club. After that, life got in the way and the last time she saw sea water under her keel was in 2007. That same year, after spending a winter doing the usual sanding, varnishing, anti-fouling and generally looking after the boat, she sat on her mooring for most of the summer while I faffed about in OPB (“Other People’s Boats”), including a charter of a 47 foot Jeanneau in Croatia.
When I recovered the boat and returned her to the side of the house, I started thinking in earnest about the second happy day which I felt was finally due. However, buying a boat is a lot easier than selling one, as we all know. Half-hearted attempts to sell, were equally met with half-hearted attempts by others, to buy the boat.
After sitting idle for far too long, I decided in late 2014 that she needed to see the sea once again, and as a good friend said to me;
Sail the boat you have, not the boat you want
I took to Trello and began the arduous task of making lists of things which needed to be fixed. I started the process in earnest last year (2015), but for one reason or another, she didn’t make it into the water. I am continuing to breathe life into this beautiful little boat and I will document the various steps involved in bringing her back to the water, as well as some of my other exploits on board sailboats. My own, and others.