Friday, October 20, 2017

Dispatch from Land: A Few Changes

Our new boat!  A 42' Leopard Catamaran. 
(Photo at sea by previous owners.)

We have a few changes to report. Let’s start with the most recent and, perhaps, the most exciting news.


About a week ago we became the owners of a beautiful 42 foot Leopard Catamaran. As you may recall, after our travel to the Bahamas and back last year, we decided that catamarans had a number of features that we felt we would want for our next sailing expeditions. We did our research. We made lists of prospective models with all the key features and specifications. Our online search spanned the globe with promising boats in New Zealand, Guatemala, Martinique, British and US Virgin Islands, Wisconsin (fresh water boat), California, and beyond. The list of the most interesting boats eventually totaled over 75 including Leopard, Manta, Catana, Lagoon, and Privilege. More locally, we inspected boats in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. We had a pretty good idea of what we wanted, unfortunately, “the boat” at the right place and the right time remained elusive. However, a call from a good friend changed all that and lead us to a recent listing of the boat in Brunswick, Georgia. In a future posting, we will give you a guided tour of Leilani and a summary of what led us to choosing her.

The day of the survey at Thunderbolt Marina near Savannah, GA.

Bud and Tracy excited and nervous about the survey.

Leilani is now our boat.  She is patiently waiting for us at Brunswick Landing Marina in Brunswick, GA.

What are our plans?

As most sailors will tell you, “sailing is less about plans and more about intentions”. We had a wonderful week at the Brunswick Landing Marina getting acquainted to the new member of our family, and re-immersing ourselves in the warmth of the boating community. We intend to do a few boat projects over the next few weeks, including installing new lettering on the bow and stern for our new girl -“LEILANI”.

We chose “Leilani” as the name for several reasons: 1) We simply like to say “Leilani”, 2) “Leilani” is easy to say over the VHF radio (always important on a boat), 3) Leilani is Hawaiian for “Heavenly Flower” or “Royal Child”, and “Beautiful Girl” – ("Beautiful just like the Hawaiian flower, nobody forgets a Leilani”) , 4) We have had a special affection for Hawaii -we were married on Maui, and 5) We love our dear “Layla” but we wanted to have a different name for the new boat. For us, “Leilani” closely embodies many of the same sentiments as Layla.

Following these next few weeks we expect to describe a bit more detail of some of our intentions for a shake-down cruise and more extensive sailing.

In other news- Captains are in the house

You may recall that we needed diversion from sitting around while Bud recuperated from his rotator cuff surgery, so we went back to school to prepare for the Captain’s License examinations. We passed the exams in April, but we had several more hurdles to jump over before the Coast Guard would grant us the “Operator of Uninspected Vessel” Certificates. Among those requirements included, medical exams, drug tests, transportation workers identification cards, sea time documentation, and fees and more fees. Finally, the certificates were awarded this month. We are officially Captains. Was it all worth it? Hey, well, it did reduce the rates on the boat insurance, but aside from the pride of completing a grueling process and the reinforcing of important information along with, let’s just say, trivial information, um, we have to wait on the answer to that.

It's official.  After a six month process, we have our Captains licenses in hand!

What about Layla? We have had a few inquiries and showings. Spread the news, she is a great boat and ready to go anywhere.

Layla is ready to go.  Tracy not included!

Check back soon. We expect to have some more updates.


  1. Congratulations on gaining a new member to the family! I think Leilani is a beautiful name for a beautiful new adventuress. I'll be waiting patiently to read about those adventures at sea.

  2. We hope to share some adventures with you in person. Come join us!

  3. Hey great to hear your finally got the second hull, so much better in Bahamas, I will be over in late Dec so hope to catch up.

    Miss you guys
    Talk soon
    Howe's Adventures


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