A Grand New Home


Dropped off the Airstream at a storage space in Texas for the new owners to pick up in a few weeks. She was a good home for us the past year. Such a simple home—we didn’t have any issues. Replaced the tires, and that was it. There is a lot to be said for keeping things this simple—it sure allowed me to focus on other things for a change. That’s a luxury I expect to come to an end very soon. There is nothing simple about boats—systems, systems, systems. And no matter how many boats you’ve owned, each one is different, and each problem requires tracking down from one end of the boat to get to the other. Uggh, why did we buy a boat again?

Back on the road with only the Travelall. Man, it was weird driving around without a tin can attached to the back.

I have a cheapo inverter under the seat in here. We started to smell something funny, and when we slowed down we could hear the alarm going off on it. No fire, fortunately. I disconnected it at the battery (will toss it out) and we carried on. Beverly Hillbillies?

Twelve hundred miles in three days is definitely a record for us, and not one we hope to ever try and beat. But we were all excited—our new home was waiting.

I will never understand what compels people to deface a beautiful old boat with a television—much less, three of them!

After the giddy excitement, it was time to get to work. If the kids were going to sleep in their room the first night we needed to work together to get it ready.

This closet has already been designated a secret hide-out play area. We may build a row of shelves near the top, but we’re happy to let them disappear into the closet if they want. They’ll get no complaints from us.

We emptied the truck and piled it all in the living room.

The help from the kids was short-lived.

But I knew Ali would pull it off. Biggest bedroom, and beds, the kids have ever had. They are pretty sure this is what people mean when they call something a mansion.

Somehow this did not disappear before bedtime.

This is a different closet—not even in their room.

Unfortunately, three days later we are scrambling to secure the boat for Hurricane Irma. We are almost certain to get whacked. All that remains to be seen is how badly. Camachee Cove Marina survived Hurricane Matthew last year without any damage, and we’re hopeful that we can be so lucky this time. We have got a lot of friends that have already been badly hurt by Irma, and we’re hoping not to join their ranks. Ali and the kids are flying out ahead of the storm. I’ll be staying with friends for a few days and hoping to return to our home on Tuesday.


34 Comments on “A Grand New Home”

  1. Better safe than sorry, in this case. Untested, new boats are no place to spend a hurricane.

  2. Good Luck! I hope you don’t end up like so many boats I’ve seen in the news — piled up like trash on the beach.

  3. Looks like some happy kids. How did you get all that stuff in the truck and still have room for yourselves? 🙂

  4. There is an unused marina up the San Sebastian River across from Hidden Harbor Marina. It’s behind the winery. Concrete docks, well protected. Run your boat in there! Yes, Camachee Cove Marina had minimal damage from Matthew (we were there in St. Augustine at Hidden Harbor Marina for Matthew), but Irma is way bigger, and so close to the inlet where the surge will be the worst. Get upriver!

  5. Beautiful boat! 🙂

    BTW, I’m sure your inverter beeping is the least of your worries… But mine would beep when the battery went below a certain voltage. I would walk out to the driveway and hear the van beeping.

    Stay safe!

  6. We are looking for a boat also. Was wondering how much you paid for the boat. It looks like just the size we are looking for. If you could send me info on the boat as we have a pontoon but that is all. We want to sail down the Mississippi river. Thanks. Bill

    1. You probably don’t want to sail down the Mississippi for multiple reasons. At least not all of it. Search for the great loop to see why. Has something to do with lousy services and bad water.

  7. Dearest Bums:

    Sure hope all works out and that the boat will be spared or have only minimal damage. We, too, are worried about our FL home. Some of the full-time residents have left and headed north. It’s great that you could send Ali and the kids away ahead of the storm…no place for kids, but remember–they need you, and you should take no risks. This is a huge storm, so …….. We’ll be thinking of you. Mike and Lorraine. (note new email address)

  8. After the storm, consider visiting the west coast,of Florida. We LOVE St. Petersburg and would love to meet you.

  9. I lived on a sailboat for a few years and was always jealous of the Grand Banks roomy and homey space. Good move!
    Hope you bought insurance.

  10. Well, (insert string of four letter words here.) Such beautiful smiles upon discovery of your new home, only to google your current location. Sending all the positive vibes I can muster. (And Ouest has an even more beautiful smile now after her “railroad tracks.” I’m 62, and still have gratitude to my parents for their investment of money and time toward my orthodontics, neither of which they had to spare.) Safe harbor.

  11. The kids look really excited to be moving into every closet and cabin!

    Is there time enough to run it up and into the st John’s river somewhere?

  12. You, with your new boat, and Matt and Jessica getting ready to set sail after over two years of rebuild……I will be thinking of you and hoping Irma leaves all of you and your boats safe.

  13. Never a dull moment for the Bum’s! So cool you got a Grand Banks, I saw one not too long ago and gave it a thought. A close friends Dad makes them. Great boats, good luck with Irma, she looks Bitchy.

  14. You may be far enough north to get tropical force only. Our sailboat survived four hurricanes in 2004 with minor rub rail damage in NSB. You are only as secure as the boat next to you so a lot depends on everyone else. Good luck. We’re sitting 6′ above sea level in NSB but in a house this time.

  15. Brutal, but effective way to establish where the new “Bumfuzzle” has any leaks. Stay safe our thoughts are with you!

  16. Glad that the family is out of harms way. I have friends who will be directly affected by this, with their boat on the hard while they are travelling in South America. They are resigned to, at best, major damage. Be safe.

  17. Have had 3 sailboats and every time its all about the learning curve with the “systems”. Have been jonesing about van life as the past 30 years have been about being on the water in the PNW.Your Grand banks looks amazing. I wish you well in the coming days, and glad to hear the family is out of the impending danger.

  18. Hopefully, the more westerly track that is now projected spares you and your new boat. Not such good news for those on the west coast. All the best.

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