Tachikaze Maru & Archer, Too

After years of threatening to do this, we have finally started our sailing voyage aboard the s/v Tachikaze Maru. We officially left port from Seabrook, TX on Mother's Day May 9th, 2010. Our first official non-US stop was Progresso, Mexico on May 14th

01 April 2010 | Public Storage, West Seattle
01 February 2010 | All over USA


01 April 2010 | Public Storage, West Seattle
2 Storage Units: 5 x 10 and 10 x 15

Both had to go as we were paying about $300 a month. It was the last remnants of furniture and crap that hadn't been garage saled or given away yet and both were packed to the rim. A veritable wall of things.

We purchased an econoline 350 and whatever I could get in there I could bring with me to Texas. Well, I am the queen of packing and squirreling away, so Floyd did wind up making me throw more things out once we got to Texas. He should be glad there is no storage on the boat, we probably wouldn't be floating anymore.

Everything we had left, we managed to cram into his mom's storage unit at her condo with Floyd's bike and a few other things going to his friend's garage in Fall City.

I can't believe we actually pulled that off!

Leaving Seattle was bittersweet. It was especially rough to take Archer out of school as Gatewood has been such a fabulous experience. Her teacher's were first rate, so creative and dedicated, and I doubt we will ever find anything like that again. Archer hates homeschooling and so do I. She says I am boring. hahaha! And it is so true. How could I possibly compete with Mr. Skeffington & Ms. Schwendeman!?!? They are awesome!

We got to stop in Santa Rosa and visit my aunt & uncle there. Fabulous food and hospitality as always! From there we opted not to go to Disneyland. Being seven years odl, Archer is definitely at the most magical age to go, but with our entire lives and lots of spendy stuff in our econoline, we just couldn't risk it. Then, it was on to another visit with my family in Phoenix. We also got to see Florentino & Rhoda in Apache Junction and check out all the cool work they have been doing on their pad there.

Finally, it was the big push to Houston. Texas takes a little longer than forever to get across. We spent the night at a rest stop and got jolted out of a deep sleep by being side swiped by a semi. It destroyed the large mirror on the driver's side, but luckily hadn't done any other damage and there was enough shards of glass left to still see out of the thing.

We made it to the boat, I think on March 16th. Bought a couple pillows at Marshall's and crashed.

Our goal was to get her ready quick and head east though the GIWW to Key West and jump across to Mexico.

But Seabrook was a nice place to hang out and this was a boat we were about to deal with.

The Tachikaze Maru had other plans for us.

The Search

01 February 2010 | All over USA
Find a boat 2010:
The house sold. We were staying at Floyd's mom's condo. Christmas was coming. What was the plan? Continue to live like this or get moving?
So in January of 2010 we embarked on a cross country road trip: Seattle- California - Phoenix - Texas - Key West - Annapolis. We had a list of boats to look at and we were not coming home until we bought something, anything.

It wasn't all business as we did get to visit my family in Phoenix, the Payne family in Charlottesville, Tess in Appalachicola, FL and Archer's fairy godparents in Asheville, NC. We also had a great visit to the Alamo where Archer decided the Americans and the Canadians had fought. I must say that the Mexican Army did have red & white uniforms, so I can see how she might have been envisioning the Canadian flag colors.........
Washington DC was also amazing: smithsonian, capitol building, white house, washington monument. We did it all with hardly any other tourists around. It was a beautiful, but chilly day as that crazy cold snap that came through the US had just moved on. We had actually postponed our trip to Maryland and instead went south to Key West to avoid all the crazy snow & ice going on. This resulted in us getting to experience the coldest days on record for the Keys- 41 degrees. They even had shelters open all over the islands since no one is prepared for that kind of weather. of course, our hotel rooms had no heat and we couldn't even go for a swim! I feel bad for all the tourists who paid lots of money to fly there for vacation.

When we stopped in Asheville to visit Brad, Jeremy and Nora it was time to make a decision. There were only 2 boats under serious consideration: a ketch rigged, fiberglass, Bruce Robert's designed boat in Ft Lauderdale or a Tayana 45, fiberglass cutter with a sugar scoop stern. I would have loved either of them (the Robert's did have a nice salon layout and workshop), but we knew we'd be spending lots of time in the water and that sugar scoop stern on the Tayana sealed the deal.

On our way to Appalachicola, amazingly and thankfully, our offer was accepted. We would probably be sailing the Robert's instead if it hadn't been.... We raced to Seabrook, TX for the survey and test drive before anyone could change their minds! The teak decks were our biggest hang up, but there was plenty of wood to sand down and recaulk (more on that labor intensive PITA later) and the subfloor had no wet and rotten spots- something that had killed a previous boat deal we had in WA.

Now, it was back to Seattle to pack.
Vessel Name: Tachikaze Maru
Vessel Make/Model: Tayana Surprise 45
Hailing Port: Cordova, AK
Crew: Floyd, Lauren & Archer