Alexi and Bob Sail Away

10 April 2022
24 February 2022
12 January 2022
20 October 2021 | Moving South
23 September 2021
02 August 2021
02 June 2021
08 April 2021
08 April 2021
15 February 2021
19 January 2021 | Marathon
02 January 2021
19 November 2020
17 November 2020
31 August 2020 | Deltaville
13 July 2020
20 June 2020 | Portsmouth, VA

Sunset in the Yard

31 August 2020 | Deltaville
Robert Malkin
I like walking through the boat yard at sunset. There are hundreds of boats. To me, they are like a field of dreams. Their masts sprout from the decks like silver telephone poles awkwardly planted in boat-shaped flowerpots. The boats are propped upright in jack stands, waiting patiently for their future. For many of the boats —sometimes I think for most—- it’s a future that will never come.

Each boat represents someone’s dream. Sometimes the names read like chapters in the owner’s dream. Boats like “Something Else” or “Plan B” or “Retirement” seem to invoke scenes of an argument with the boss, a financial crash montage, or a zoom-out of a person stamping papers and passing them to the next desk for another stamp. Some of the jack stands are covered in a layer of dirt and clover. I fear that these owners’ lives are stuck on scene-repeat.

Some of the boats are covered in tarps. With long-empty paint cans and broken stepladders, the owners seem to be struggling to make the future a reality. They care. They have not abandoned their dreams. They want their dreams to become a reality. But wanting it isn’t enough. The dark cloud of the inevitable, slow decay of the boat and its systems–ever present, even in the yard—fogs their dreams bit by bit --- the fog obscures faster than their will, or perhaps their means, clarifies. Each visit they make to their boats results in a few repairs or upgrades, but more problems are discovered than resolved. And, their dreams fade.

I imagine a bright and colorful dream when boats first arrive in the yard. In most cases, it is easy to imagine that dream. There are boats with sleek, long hulls and slender, finned keels poking out between others. They seem to be poking their heads out as though they want to race into the water on their own, white gurgling water sprinting past their polished blue bows and golden trim. Other boats are wide-bodied and full-keeled with enormous barn doors hanging off their sterns (or missing from their sterns). These boats, or owners, dream of long, slow passages in deep blue water with a huge spread of tan canvas under puffy white clouds.

There are always a few cars in the yard. Very few. Some of them drive into the yard and park quickly, positioning their wheels precisely in ruts left from their previous visit. Their owners empty their trunks and climb the ladder. It is clearly a ritual. They have parked, emptied and climbed hundreds of times before. Their smiles seem to grow with each rung of ascension. I like to think that these owners don’t dream of racing or cruising. They dream of working. Working on their boat is their dream. When they reach the top of the ladder, they cross the transom of bliss.

For me, the happiest moments in the yard are the often the strangest. Yesterday, at sunset, I looked up when I heard four people high in the air speaking and laughing loudly in a language I didn’t understand. They were all seated in the cockpit of a deep-draft, fiberglass cruising boat. They spoke with the ease and pleasure of old friends enjoying a light breeze and a full spinnaker on calm waters. But actually the boat was suspended in the travel lift, hovering with the keel just a few inches off the ground and a fresh coat of black bottom paint mellowing by the late evening’s orange and red hues. I don’t know what the couples were saying but their boat was screaming: “The future is now. The dream begins tomorrow.”
Vessel Name: Lamantin
Vessel Make/Model: Silverton 372
Hailing Port: Wilmington, NC
Crew: Alexi and Bob
About: We are taking a few years to live aboard our boat and visit some amazing places.
Extra: Let us know if you want to come visit!
Lamantin's Photos - Main
Our time in Florida in the winter of 2021-22
13 Photos
Created 12 January 2022
Sights of us moving from the upper Chesapeake to FL in the fall of 2021
4 Photos
Created 20 October 2021
Summer 2021 spent in the Chesapeake
8 Photos
Created 23 September 2021
It is a huge job to replace the fuel tanks on a boat. Fortunately, they last about 20-25 years. So, we are not likely to ever do this again.
6 Photos
Created 2 August 2021
Photos from our trip from Florida to Rhode Island in the spring of 2021
2 Photos
Created 19 May 2021
We spent Dec/Jan 20/21 in the Florida Keys
23 Photos
Created 21 December 2020
Sights of the east coast of the US in the fall of 2020
4 Photos
Created 19 November 2020
Photos from our week in Utah
5 Photos
Created 16 October 2020
We spent a few summer months sailing around the southern Chesapeake
12 Photos
Created 20 June 2020
We sailed from West Palm Beach to Portsmouth VA in early 2020
20 Photos
Created 6 June 2020
We had two great weeks of friends and family visiting us on the boat on Great Exuma Island
18 Photos
Created 8 March 2020
The Exumas is a long chain of islands with many remote and beautiful spots to drop an anchor
39 Photos
Created 19 January 2020
We had a great New Year's vacation with our children and friends in the Bahamas
27 Photos
Created 10 January 2020
Photos of the trip from Georgia to The Bahamas
13 Photos
Created 15 December 2019
It was a lot of work and a lot of good byes ...
6 Photos
Created 6 December 2019
Trip down the ICW from Georgetown, SC to Brunswick, GA
10 Photos
Created 19 June 2019
Photos to get you oriented to the boat
11 Photos
Created 10 June 2019