My apologies for the lack of glamour.
It has been a couple of pretty rough years for the Captain here.
I make no bones about being a shadow of my former self and having made past decisions that probably have not been the best long term choices as the body has pretty much quit for 2011.
First I had to give up ocean sailboats, then big motorsailors, then mid sized trawlers and am now getting sea fever again at 65 and official retirement.
Cruising Canada began as my sailing logs in 1984 when I turned [Prism One here] South see [Erie Canal here]. After over 10 years of live aboard cruising covering some 10,000 + miles I hung up my delivery skipper hat to begin Internet development in NYC. www.cruising.ca began in New York City as a result of these voyages and experiences in www.cruising.ca established 1995.
The photograph is Prism One outbound from Catskill NY 1985. One of two vessel that carried me for many of those 10 cruising years.
Over the past 30 years I have changed my boating concepts and dreams having done the warm south thing to my fill. There is nowhere for a Canadian quite as good as Canada. We may have a bit of ice, but this is the Great White North! Limited pirates, friendly natives and health care. I encourage you to explore the waterway resources in our own back yard.
However as of 2011 the Ontario Marina Association and changes to live aboard regulations it is highly impractical and no longer cost effective to live aboard in Ontario. Robin recently lost a bit on a 49' Hunter [see spec website here] in Central America, but the pull of the sea and adventure are becoming too strong to ignore as retirement is now a reality. Whatever the government gives me a pensions, whatever they take as tax, even if that is the 25% non resident it does not matter. There is absolutely no merit in Robin continuing regular employment on a day to day basis.
My favorite net grumble is: There continues to a person claiming to be the oldest, or one of the oldest sites. I would love for them to PROVE what they were doing on the internet in 1995, or who OWN'S and maintains the vessels they claim to have sailed on. In 1995 I had hung up my delivery skipper hat, and went ashore after over 10 years of live aboard cruising covering some 10,000 miles. My and Cruising Canada's internet creation began while working for a 5th Avenue New York City Internet Company, as well as freelance web design. www.cruising.ca began in New York City in 1995 as imgdesign, Cruising Canada and my sailing logs began in 1984 when I turned Prism One south.
Robin's career has been largely corporate communications. In the 70's and 80's Robin was responsible for production of hundreds of programs a year, using traditional animation cameras, live shoot film, slide, and video. Creating a variety of commercial presentations ranging from point of purchase to national sales meetings and entertainment extravaganza's. Prior to retiring and sailing south in 1985 Robin was awarded the " Lifetime Achievement Award " by AMI for significant contributions to the industry to add to a Master of Photography in 1971.
During the early 1970's Europe and ex-fishing fleet vessels were the magnet of Robin's attention, entering joint ventures with several others to rebuild and sail these craft. Balancing the time between free lance film making in Los Angeles and Esberg in Denmark resulted in many experiences with real boats.
Returning to Canada in 1977 Robin worked in multi-image as a photographer then succeeded in the development and partnership of a post-production lab. This financed a small wooden cutter, then in 1979 Belle Argo a 32' plywood hulled Dickerson which was pretty much rebuilt from the frame's out using epoxy's and current technology.
As the post production lab became famous and money flowed in, the desire to a get away and own outright a cruising boat returned. Prism One 1983 to 1987 was the dream boat during the film lab years though my driving passion was to sail south forever. Prism was a Sampson C-Quence ketch built of Ferro cement with stainless steel frames. Her dimensions were LOA 41', LOD, 37', Beam of 13', draft 6'2", displacement 15 Tons.
The long voyage from Canada began with the first move to NY while establishing another lab location. Rather than rent expensive shore side digs, living aboard was the obvious choice. This was the first baptism of life aboard wintering at City Island in the worst winter of the decade seeing many weaker boats sink in the ice. In this marina you had to be entirely self sufficient with a vessel capable of retaining livable facilities in the dead of winter.
Spring finally came and cruising the surrounding waters of Long Island Sound and north to Boston forever endeared me to the eastern seaboard.
The NYC job completed, it was time to move on. Many of the stories of the voyage south and in the Caribbean are extracted from Robin's logs. The entire voyage is still the subject of the future book and PPV which will one day, when time permits, be completed.
The voyages carried me south to the windwards and throughout the Caribbean. Unlike some cruisers the well beaten track and beautiful beaches soon became too tame.
Now cruising is NOT totally safe. Above the weather and normal requirements of voyaging there is always the risk of pirates, or sneaky boat boys trying to rip you off, or outright kill you for your boat. I met many interesting people who were part of different cultures living in the ghetto's and mountains.
1929 John Hanna designed motor sailor or as described in her papers a motor vessel built in Feraninda Beach Florida. Her Dimensions were 65' LOD, 16'Beam, draft 6' Displacement 65 Tons. Primary propulsion GMC 871 Diesel.
During the early 90's while living on Centaur I was active in the general NYC and east coast commercial charter and deliver trade.
Naughty-Lass is an older 33' LOA traditional wooden motor yacht with a Trawler hull & and twin diesel's, custom designed in 1976 for use on the Trent Severn Waterway. Because of her draft and our advancing age it was time to consider an easy to handle vessel with shoal draft to fully explore Ontario's waterways.
Naughty Lass was sold after Ed's death and I finally had the opportunity to purchase the current vessel.For now and the next year, it is major refit time.
Defiance was an economical and practical for Canadian live aboard conditions, as is, where is, for 2007 operation in the Great Lakes or to the Caribbean #. Seen to the left Defiance is a legendary live aboard in ever port where we have wintered with pretty much everything one could ask for already there. Such as a superior reusable winter covers, ice eater and listed support equipment #. [Visit Defiance's web site here]
Don't forget to visit the Blogs of day to day aboard Defiance. [Cruising Canada Blog's here.] for all sorts of maintenance, repair or just plain using the vessel for fun pictures of Defiance in context of a live-aboard lifestyle