Many people that meet Jean and I ask if we're retired. We're a young (well 40 something) couple with a pretty nice boat so it's not an unexpected question. We wish we could say we are retired but that is a long way from the truth. In some respects we are like the proverbial ducks, our feet paddling madly under the surface, with the illusion of tranquility above. Many of our fellow cruisers are surprised to find out we work quite a bit. So I thought I should explain what we do and how we are able to cruise and run our businesses remotely.
In late 2004 I started Island Planet Sails, which has since grown considerably. We build high quality sails and ship them to customers worldwide. Our production is handled by three lofts in Asia (where almost all sails including brand name ones are made.) Design work is handled by a couple of highly competent designers with decades of experience. Our shipping and other logistical support is handled by a capable woman in Oakland who has been working with us for the past few years. So all I need is a steady internet connection and the business runs smoothly. We have built some sails for people we met while cruising. In those cases, rather than the customer taking their own rig measurements, I have jumped in the dinghy and motored over to their boat. I have to admit a great deal of satisfaction has been derived from being able to show up for work in my shorts and bare feet. Jean and I joke about my "commute" after I have returned.
Island Planet Sail is what allows us to be out here cruising. Otherwise I'd still be flying planes for a living. So feel free to visit the website
and please tell your friends about the company.
Jean owns a web development company which is somewhat dormant. Her focus right now is on launching a web based livestock management application that has been in development a little over a year. Known as Easykeeper.net
, the app has been in beta for several months. The subscription based service is going live soon which will finally start rewarding Jean for thousand of hours of her time and tens of thousands in programming costs. The service is saving the beta testers many hours of time every month and doing wonders for improving their record keeping. Those who do not know Jean well may be surprised to find that she spent her formative years raising championship dairy goats. She is combining her animal husbandry experience with her product and project management background to produce a first rate web based application.
And now we can return the blog to our regularly scheduled programming, chronicling the cruising adventures and lifestyle of Dave and Jean aboard S/V Exit Strategy.
(this post edited 8/5/11 for corrections)