Sérénité has both AC and DC power systems. The AC system is powered when we're in port connected to shore power, the DC system is connected to the battery bank that is charged by the engine, wind generator and shore power. Currently, the primary means of charging the battery bank is the shore power connection via the battery charger. Someday soon I'll be installing a solar array that will take over this job, but for now I'm reliant on the power grid. Many of Sérénités's primary systems such as navigation, refrigeration, lights, heat, water, etc.
I mentioned in a previous post that buying sailboat - at least one large enough to use as a home - is a similar process to that of buying a house on land. Before I launch into that discussion in part 2, a little background is in order.
Today was the haul-out, survey and sea trial of my soon-to-be home. During this process the boat is hauled-out of the water (see the slide sequence at the bottom of the page) by means of a Travel Lift, then she's power washed to remove "critters" from the hull and the surveyor begins his work.
Continued from Part I: What I needed to be comfortable onboard was - mostly - an open question right up until I found my boat. Among the variables I had to consider were budget, living space, sailing performance, intended use (both short term and long term) and the initial condition of the boat.
After much deliberation, training, planning and over 2 years of looking at boats, thinking about requirements, looking at more boats, adjusting requirements, etc. my moving-aboard project is nearing completion. I am happy to announce that - if there are no hiccups with the inspection and closing - Serenity will be a French-built, Jeanneau Sun Fizz sloop, built in Les Herbiers, France in 1984 and designed by world renowned Naval Architect, Philippe Briand.
Last week I took a deep breath, gave the email a final look and pressed "send." Thus notifying my broker†, Dave, that I was ready to begin the search for my boat. I took this step with a mixture of excitement (over the anticipated joys of living aboard), trepidation (over the anticipated rigors of living aboard), and a dash of "Susanne are you nuts!?!"
It's appalling how much stuff I've accumulated over the years! When I moved from Kentucky to Maryland in 2004 I got rid of a lot of electronic junk I thought I might use someday - but never did. When I moved from Maryland to DC I downsized again, but still I had a storage unit stuffed to the ceiling. Finally, when I moved from my small studio apartment (lovingly nicknamed Space Station Susanne because it had about the same internal volume as SkyLab) to the one-bedroom that I currently occupy, I had enough room to bring boxes out of storage and begin going through all of it item-by-item.
Ok, so this blog post is a coming-out of sorts - I'm one of those "crazy" people who has, until now, secretly aspired to live aboard a sailboat. Growing up in Southern Virginia, summer activities often centered around the water. My dad, a jack-of-all-trades, built the first boat the family owned out of plywood and fiberglass. It was a small powerboat, but I remember it seeming huge to me - I was 5 or 6 at the time. Later, my family owned other powerboats and enjoyed spending time picnicking and water skiing on various lakes in the area.
Our film Towpath Joe Premiered today at Washington DC's Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital at the National Museum of Women and the Arts as part of World Water Day. There will be 5 additional screenings at locations around DC - details coming soon on the film's official Facebook page. Please tell your friends and help us have a great turnout for the film! It's been a real pleasure working with Joe, Mary, and the band over the past year as we completed the film.