As usual, it feels like a lot has happened since I last wrote anything. And I think this will be the last time I write anything here, at least for a good while. Fall came & went in a blur. We did get to Overland Expo East in Arrington, VA where we spent a few days showing off our custom built RV and enjoying the show. It was a great opportunity to meet new people and get a break from constant projects if only for a few days. They had interesting evening films in the evening about overland travel that got us excited to get moving. And it felt good to finally use and also stand back and look at all we've accomplished, and we liked what we saw. Jon has done a first rate job of planning out and constructing the interior cabinetry and it made me feel so good for him to have people admiring it so. The weather & venue were great and on the way back, we got together with his brother Brad for a night and it was good to see him. We don't do that enough.
Right before the show, we listed Evergreen for sale even though we had a few projects we wanted to do to it before actually selling it. Within a few days we had a showing scheduled for right after the expo. That was when we met Jeff & Libbi, and was the first of many visits thereafter because they were interested in purchasing our boat! And so began a few weeks of utter mayhem as we imposed upon ourselves hauling out, pulling the mast, removing all the fittings and painting it, painting the whale stripe, dodger, wind generator and bottom, among other things. It was what we had intended to do whether or not we sold it and we wanted to turn it over a certain way. It made it a bit heart wrenching even though we both knew that we couldn't embark on our new plan if we had our boat to take care of too. Its just too much. But it didn't make it any easier to part with it after 19 years of calling Evergreen home and many, many, miles of wonderful sailing.
With the temps dropping a few more degrees each week we were once again fighting against the weather to get things done in time. It felt all too familiar! We decided that being in the tent at the boatyard was the only way to assure we could keep moving on prepping & painting whatever the weather. We officially moved into the RV even though we had to put the heater installation & cushion and table making on hold to get the boat projects rolling and get the transition of all of our stuff done. Jeff & Libbi came down from Yorktown several times to see the boat, help us with the re-launch and keep the sale process rolling as we were absorbed with doing the projects. They brought us BBQ, Indian curry & fried chicken, always something whenever they visited. We found out that for insurance purposes, we would need to deliver Evergreen to the Chesapeake with Jeff & Libbi in order for them to get insurance. With all we had going on in our rather screwy lives, there was no time to waste so as soon as the mast was back in and the survey complete, we set off in rather crappola weather for the Chesapeake. We had of course emptied the boat of all of our belongings and so now we were trying to put back on things we would need to live on it for several days. All the first day it was so cold that all we could think of was soup (no one had thought of that) and that became the joke for the trip up- we needed soup!! The funny thing is, we are downsizing from 40 feet to our camper of 17 feet and Jeff & Libbi live in a 5th wheel and are downsizing to the boat for full time living aboard. So we're both trying to figure out what we can & cannot fit into our new homes. We had plenty of time to get to know each other and share ideas. After 2 long days we got stuck in Norfolk for 2 more waiting as a strong low pressure passed through. We used one of the days to move cars so that Jon & I could leave once we got the boat set and we also met up one evening for dinner on Evergreen with some friends Jon & Shannon as they were heading south. The timing just worked out that they were docked right across from us that night. Then we made the rest of the trip around Hampton Roads and up the York river and got the boat tucked in at its new marina in Yorktown. We each went back to our previous lives while we waited for the final paperwork to come. Thirty-seven signatures and numerous notary stamps later (that is ridiculous), Jeff & Libbi became the new owners this week and we were for once in 25 years, boatless. We feel fortunate about the quick transfer and we couldn't have found a better couple to pick up where we left off.
So, this chapter has come to a close. We plan to set off in our overland RV on a new but in many ways similar way of exploring. We're reassured by all we know about living aboard and world cruising and we're excited for this new adventure. We won't be giving up living in small spaces, nor being frequently on the move. We'll miss our watermaker and marine head but not the constant worry over the weather or whether the anchor will hold. Although I'm sure there will be other things to worry about just the same. We want to keep experiencing new cultures, wildlife and scenery and it will be nice to be able to take any opportunity we wish to get out and exercise. Hoping to meet lots of like minded travelers as well.
Once we get rolling, we'll have more time to develop out our website VermonsterRV.com with build details, pictures and a travel blog for anyone who's interested in following along. Hope to stay in touch with you there! Cheers!