It was Valentine’s Day 2015. Tereasa and I were enjoying a nice dinner out at one of our favorite steakhouses when the conversation came around to the topic of traveling, as it so often does with us. I’m not sure how it began this time but I am quite sure Tereasa was throwing out vacation destinations of proposed trips we should take, meanwhile I’m running the numbers in my head with each suggestion (flight, hotel, dinning out, etc.) when I blurted out, “Why don’t we buy a sailboat and live on it as we travel the world?” This was not received as warmly as I had pictured in my head judging from the look on her face, I might as well had suggested moving to Mars. I continued trying to explain to her the rest of the night, this dream of mine that had become lost in the depths of my mind but suddenly resurfaced, The benefits of traveling the world and seeing exotic places all from the comfort of our floating home. No airports, no luggage, and no hotels. We fell asleep that night with her still not convinced, and thinking I was crazy. Over the next couple of days Tereasa spent every free minute she had researching anything related to living on a boat and realized there is a whole community of cruising sailors all over the world doing exactly what we were talking about. Then she stumbled upon vlogs and SVDelos was one of the first to catch her eye and peak her interest. That is when she was hooked and she turned my crazy idea into her obsession. Our nights were now consumed with watching sailing vlogs and Yacht World searches for that perfect boat.
We found out that Houston was having its boat show and planed a trip down so Tereasa could get a better feel for the room below decks based on the length and style of a boat, which would help her in the Yacht World searches. Although this was an in the water boat show there were not a lot of boats to tour. A broker with Little Yacht Sales told us that they were having an open house at their marina and we could tour all the boats they had at our leisure. It was nearby so we headed over and checked out most of the boats that they had available. This turned out to be more informative due to the wide verity, age, and price range of the boats. We left there with Tereasa feeling more informed on the size and type of boat that she would like to live on. It was a good trip and left us more excited about our crazy adventure.
While we continued to look at boats on Yacht World we still needed sailing lessons. Tereasa started searching for places to take lessons and found a couple of places north of us on Lake Travis, just a short 30-minute drive. We drove up one Saturday to take a look at the place and check out the lake. Much to our surprise the lake was in a severe drought and the area around the sailing school looked more like a big mud puddle. We agreed that the lake was not our idea of a place we wanted to learn to sail and headed back south. Tereasa continued the search and found a sailing school in Kemah, where the boat show was held. We agreed that this suited us much better. It was more like what we envisioned our sailing adventure to be, a place with lots of boats and a strong boating community.
We had our wedding date set and being the romantics we are we planned our sailing lessons as part of our honeymoon. The boat selected for our lessons was a Catalina 22 and on our first day out the wind kicked up and she heeled over. This caught me a little of guard. While I was dealing with my uneasiness I noticed Tereasa hunkered down on the cockpit floor with a oh shit look on her face and her eyes telling me to get her off the boat. I was able to regain my composure rather quickly and realized Tereasa was going to just be along for the ride. The instructor had us push the boat hard while I was on the tiller so I could feel how the boat would turn into the wind as it became over powered. We eventually eased the sails and let the boat ride a little more comfortable which allowed Tereasa to rise off the cockpit floor and start getting into the sailing a little. That evening after the lessons we cleaned up and found a bar to celebrate and to ease Tereasa’s nerves. She was starting to think that she was not going to be able to do this. We talked for a while and I convinced her that day two would be a better day and all she need to do was grab the tiller and feel how the boat handled. Luckily on day two we had light winds. Tereasa manned the tiller all day and came away with a renewed feeling and love for sailing.