Laurent, Rafael, Neil the Electronics Guru, Luke & James, Merle Stewart, Jean the Welder, JT Halden the Waterman
When I tell people that I have been living full time on the boat since Halloween it tends to garner little sympathy. When you discuss construction projects with folks, they all love to share their war stories about contractors making them wait for hours, if they even show up at all. But when you tell people that you have been living on a boat, while it’s under constructions, as you are homeschooling three boys, and planning a 30 month circumnavigation…. well, let’s just my mom has offered to share her meds and there have been more than a few comments including words like “crazy” and “here, try on this nice white jacket and relax in this rubber room”.
WIDAGO arrived from Tortola to Dania Beach, Florida (just underneath the Fort Lauderdale airport flight path) right around Halloween. Guyon and I had tried really hard to make our broker Bob happy by checking off every box we could think when we ordered the baby from the factory. However, as with all homes/live aboard boats, we still needed additional important things. Guyon insisted that every square inch on the nav station have some sort of touch screen, repeater, or communication device (Neil was a machine: so thorough, kind, and quiet). Fresh water is also kinda important, so after some wrestling with water heaters, JT literally hooked us up. I had him install so many filtration systems that I think the boys could probably pee right into the water maker and no one would be the wiser. All the gents at Just Catamarans (Laurent, Raf, Neil, Luke, & James – just to name a few of our superstars) were spectacular. Even after 8 weeks of the coming the boat every morning at 8 m, pulling down all the panels, and what seemed to me every freakin wire/conduit, we were relieved, I mean sad, to see it all packed up and put back together. Merle Stewart was meticulous on the isinglass, exterior cushions, and all the beds/bedding. My mom always taught me the most important thing in your house is having comfy bed – Merle nailed it. Guyon still thinks we have too many cushions. To that, all I have to say is: Nav Station.
I think probably our favorite thing we did to “customize” our boat, besides her logo (PS Guyon might gotta a tad teary the reveal), was our four foot stainless steel flagpole Jean built off the transom. Obviously Guyon spent a ridiculous amount of time positioning the pole (thank you Luke). Our daily rituals now include daily hoisting and lowering – I think it makes Guyon nostalgic for his old navy days. Arrggghhhh.