It’s a boat: Review of Sailing for two Years, Back to Morehead City, North Carolina, USA

About 33 inches Mahi Mahi Fish Caught Sailing to Morehead City

About 33 inches Mahi Mahi Fish Caught Sailing to Morehead City

I count ‘Right Now’ more than ‘Best Memories’. However, writing this, I am flashing about beautiful memories of blue water, island people, jungles, fresh fish, and culture from the Caribbean… For last two years, we sailed down from Morehead City (North Carolina) to Stuart, Florida, then continuously sailing to Saint Martin, British Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands, Spanish Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Bonaire, Curacao, Colombia, San Blas/Panama, Guatemala, and back to the USA (Key West to Morehead City).
S/V Bad Bunny (Green on the Mast Top) at Morehead City Yacht Basin Marina, North Carolina, USA

S/V Bad Bunny (Green on the Mast Top) at Morehead City Yacht Basin Marina, North Carolina, USA


After arriving in Morehead City, one of our friends jokingly told me that “You must be tough still living on the boat with John.” During this journey, there were times that I questioned myself why I am taking this many risks and inconveniences: limited water use, limited fresh food supply, too much sun exposure, and lots of bug bites. Honestly speaking, there were times that I was terrified at sea or upset by John as well. No matter what, I never stopped pursuing two things during the last two years: (1) safety and (2) happiness. Sometimes, in the middle of a chaotic situation, I had to compromise either safety or happiness to fix the problem. Or, simply take a deep breath and enjoy the fresh air. Living on a boat, we are together in a confined space most of the times. I think both of us are as stubborn as rocks. At the same time, we are not afraid of expressing our opinions. Sometimes voices were raised while trying to explain things to each other; (I call it yelling but John calls it excitement) however, we end talking to each other and overcoming the issues. In addition, I often brain washed myself “improving my communication with John is to enhance my interpersonal skills”.
Mating Crabs at Morehead City Yacht Basin Marina, North Carolina, USA

Mating Crabs at Morehead City Yacht Basin Marina, North Carolina, USA


The most difficult part of living on the boat for me, is to understand the required amount of boat maintenance/repair process. I would enjoy a certain degree of repair work but not as much as John does. Knowing John, he has no patience for waiting nor for leaving broken things around. When things don’t work, he immediately has to find the cause of the problem, buys the necessary parts, and fixes the problem. Regardless how exotic places we were at, his attitude is that “The only way to keep the boat healthy is to fix the problem immediately. Take care of the boat now and the boat will take care of you.” I somewhat understand about “NOW attitude of repairing the boat problem” but other times, I became insane when we had to sacrifice pursuing happiness instead of working nonstop boat maintenance.
Saturday Summer Concert, Jaycee Park, Morehead City, North Carolina, USA

Saturday Summer Concert, Jaycee Park, Morehead City, North Carolina, USA


One day, when I questioned John why we spend so much time fixing the boat, his frustrated answer was that famous three words: “It’s a boat”. I told him I don’t want to hear those three words anymore. Sometimes, maintenance might disguise us. Is fixing the boat this way really the necessary thing to do? I keep mentioning him that the improvement needs to be done considering happiness and less future maintenance. He would say “It is easier said than done!”

Summer will end in a couple of months. We are waiting for a special part order to fix a critical boat problem (jib furler not working correctly). We are somewhat delayed going up to the US East Coast. Fortunately, Morehead City Yacht Basin, where we are currently at, is a nice place to be stuck. I am enjoying the marina life: easy land access, interaction with friends and boaters, and daily bike ride to Yoga class (Momentum Yoga Studio in Morehead City, http://www.MomentumFitnessNC.com). Soon, if there are no major things to fix on the boat, we will be back to the ocean heading up north, dancing with the sound of waves, blue water, and the power of wind taking us to our new destination, Manhattan, New York City, The Big Apple!

Installing New Radar Dome (Garmin)

Installing New Radar Dome (Garmin)


—Lessons I Learned from Sailing/Living on a Sailboat for Last two years—

  • Maintain ourselves, boat, and cats healthy and happy
  • Practice making happiness from boat projects because living is for happiness
  • Three pairs of shoes are enough living on a boat: flip-flop, sandal, and all weather hiking
  • Give/Throw away unused items rather than occupying them in a valuable space on a boat
  • Utilize what I have rather than buying new items. If I buy new items, consider the space and weight requirement
  • Time is a good teacher as long as I don’t stop learning; time has improved my sailing skills such as tacking, furling the jib, foreseeing the weather, trimming the sails, piloting and navigation, reading the charts/waves/tide/current, and etc.
  • Make new friends while keeping old friends as close as possible
  • Wherever I am, be full with real people not with virtual people
  • Keep in mind “Love people not things and use things not people”

—Boat Projects recently accomplished in and on the way to Morehead City—

  • Replaced 350 feet length of chain (US Made Peerless Chain) on main and second anchor (Main: 300 feet and Second: 50 feet + 125’ Rope length) after adding new chain markers
  • Installed magnet sensor and run wires for new chain counter (the counter will be integrated with a new engine gauge panel in winter)
  • Added attachments for Danforth anchor on pulpit
  • New snubber, 60’ of line with thimble whipped halfway into a V bridle
  • New Amsteel Soft Shackle to connect snubber to anchor line
  • Removed old broken radar dome (Raytheon) on the mast and installed new radar dome (Garmin) with new wires (The included 65 feet of cable was not long enough, so we ordered an additional 30 feet of cable. Wiring was the hardest task of this project.)
  • Installed new radar plotter
  • Interfaced plotter to NMEA 2000 and AIS
  • Replaced forestay pin under jib sail furler (old one broken sailing on the way to Morehead City, NC)
  • Had a tang for the furler modified by a local machinist (Fred Lindow in Beaufort NC, Tel: 252-241-3552)
  • Hydraulic backstay top seal replaced
  • Inspected all standing rigging wires from top of the mast
  • Re-bed stainless chain plates
  • Helicoil in mast insert at jib pole control
  • Disassembled, greased, and re-assembled windlass
  • Replaced windlass emergency crank collar
  • New windlass emergency handle
  • Repaired Windlass “Up” Button
  • Changed water maker pressure switch
  • Fixed light bulb on generator water temperature
  • Cleaned up wiring on electrical panel for temperature gauge
  • Cleaned up wiring routing at navigation station
  • Repaired auto pilot light fixture
  • VHF antenna replaced on arch
  • Replaced companion way lock latch
  • Cut one inch off dinghy lift lines for chafe
  • Replaced dinghy lines
  • Ordered night/evening dinghy lights (will install for night use then remove)
  • Changed dinghy outboard motor shackle lift
  • Changed rusty dinghy metal lines for a lock with lifeline
  • Have Jib Sail inspected and repaired by a local sail maker
  • Have Dodge Cover re-enforced by a local sail maker
  • Have new mirror installed on the door in a cabin (Wetherington Glass & Boat in Morehead City NC, Tel: 252-515-0315)
  • Sewed on sail cover and add new zippers
  • Sewed new propane gas cover
  • Sewed new dinghy motor cover
  • Sewed new cover for backstay adjuster
  • Re-enforced second anchor chain bag
  • Waxed hull and top deck
  • Cleaned and rust off from all stainless steel rails with Flitz Polish
  • Cleaned all portlights with Flitz Polish
  • Varnish teak wood surfaces
  • Cleaned freezer
  • Cleaned A/C filters

New Main Anchor Chain (US Made Peerless Chain, 300 Feet) with New Chain Markers

New Main Anchor Chain (US Made Peerless Chain, 300 Feet) with New Chain Markers


Repaired under the  Jib Sail Furler System with New Forestay Pin and New Tang

Repaired under the Jib Sail Furler System with New Forestay Pin and New Tang


New Improved Snubber: 60’ of line with thimble whipped halfway into a V bridle and New Amsteel Soft Shackle to connect snubber to anchor line

New Improved Snubber: 60’ of line with thimble whipped halfway into a V bridle and New Amsteel Soft Shackle to connect snubber to anchor line

Removing Old Broken Radar Dome

Removing Old Broken Radar Dome

Broken Forestay Pin (Jib Sail Furler)

Broken Forestay Pin (Jib Sail Furler)

Broken Stainless Steel Pin (Forestay Jib Sail Furler)

Broken Stainless Steel Pin (Forestay Jib Sail Furler)

Slightly Bended Stainless Still Tang/Plate (Left) under Jib Sail Furler (Picture Taken Upside Down); We replaced it with new one in order to furl the jib sail without having a difficulty.

Slightly Bended Stainless Still Tang/Plate (Left) under Jib Sail Furler (Picture Taken Upside Down); We replaced it with new one in order to furl the jib sail without having a difficulty.


Where are we now?

Click here to see our journey and maps

Recent Posts

Posts By Month

Top