We sincerely want to welcome you to Wahoo. If you come here's the down and dirty about living aboard. Its a conundrum - space is ample for a 42 ft sailboat - space is limited on any boat.
Silly Boat Terms to make you sound Salty
Bow - the pointy bit
Stern or Aft - the big back part
Port Side - left side of the boat as you face forward. Think we just "left port"
Starboard - right side of the boat as you face forward
Topside - the part of the boat that is outside
Deck - the outside part that you walk on
Cabin Sole - the inside part that you walk on
Bulkheads - the parts that separate one part of the boat from the other. think interior walls
Head - the bathrooms
Galley - the kitchen
Sailing on a port tack - all your shit flies to the starboard side of the boat
Sailing on a starboard tack - see above but it's the opposite
Coming about - turning the boat when the jib makes a god awful lot of racket and your shit flies everywhere.
Sailing downwind - All sails are fluttering, the captain is cursing because the sails won't stay in place and its god awful hot as there's no wind.
The Iron Jib - the engine which goes on when there's not enough wind to sail
Augie the auto pilot - the invisible guy that steers the boat while you do other stuff.
You'll be staying in either the V-Berth or the Salon. Couples and young ladies get first dibs on the V-Berth.
The forward berth has your bed( a queen at least at one end), 2 small seats and storage. It has a nice locker that's about 3 ft x 2 ft with 2 shelves, there's a drawer under the berth and the best hanging locker on the boat. It also has a vanity that works as a desk with great storage when you lift the lid (which has a mirror on the underside).
A door from the berth opens into the forward head which has a shower, lavatory and toilet. We keep towels, washcloths, soap, hair dryer, shampoo and cream rinse here for visitors. I also try and keep a supply of things you might have forgotten.
Wahoo is a center cockpit boat so there is a spacious aft cabin which we have claimed. There is an ensuite head and while you'd have to be real sick to get our cabin we do regularly share our head.
The Wahoo can sleep 6 by converting the salon dining area to a berth at night. The table slips down and cushions fit on top and nest to the settee cushions making a double bed. There is a hanging locker and one small locker we free up for guests using the salon. We try to use this only for a single guy and an early riser but it has been known to work for 2.
There is a door from the salon to the forward head so the folks in the V Berth get some privacy.
What Clothes to Bring
Mostly we hang out in swimsuits or shorts and t-shirts either barefoot or with sandals. Don't forget sunglasses and a hat. Ladies, you might like a sundress or 2, I know I do. The most dressed up we get is an Hawaiian shirt for the guys and a sundress for us girls. Ladies bring your fun jewelry only, lets not rattle the locals with all of our gold and diamond tiaras. Everyone bring shoes with soft soles that won't mark the deck. Pack in soft sided suitcases, backpacks or totes - the easier they fold the less clutter which is always a good thing. Please only bring reef -safe sunblock!!!
Water and Electricity
We are a village and must create all the power that is used aboard. Well, except for the few times we're at a Marina. (see the Tab "Systems Aboard") Be careful and turn computers, lights and fans off when they aren't needed.
HOW DO IT WORK? Four systems on the boat create our power; the engine when it's running, solar panels when its sunny, wind generator when its windy and the diesel generator when all else fails. Power created is stored in two huge house batteries. We then use the batteries to power what we need. In general lights, navigation instruments, fans, refrigeration run on our 12 volt system and is readily available. Things that need 110v can only run when the inverter has been turned on. This is a bigger power draw than the 12v system so its kept at a minimum. We can even charge tablets, kindles and mobile phones on the 12vsystem. Computers need 110v, charge them when we're motor sailing. Also getting wifi takes a combination of 12v and 110v. The TV for watching movies needs 110v and the computer it;s connected to which feeds the movies require 110v also. So the inverter goes on often enough, definitely every day for a few hours. BTW both the engine and the generator need diesel which we purchase at fuel docks but the wind and the sun are free, we love our solar panels and wind generator.
The stove, oven and BBQ grill all work on tanks of propane.
Wahoo has 2 fresh WATER tanks; one holds 85 gals the other 65 gals. All faucets onboard use this water. The toilets use seawater. Be frugal with your fresh water usage - don't let the shower or faucet run. The rule is: water on to wet down, then water off to lather up, water on to rinse then water off.
In the states and the mainland of Florida water is free when you get fuel or stay at a marina. In the Keys, the Caribbean and the Bahamas we must purchase water just as we purchase fuel.
Food and Spirits
We cook about 2 meals a day plus hors d'oeuvres with cocktails, which means prep and clean up too. There's also chips, cookies and chocolate around. Roy & I aren't huge drinkers(haha) but we like a cocktail or 2 in the evening (what's a sunset without that sundowner) and the occasional bottle of wine with dinner. If you like something special bring it or buy it ashore, we're always happy to have the bar augmented.
What do we do all day?
When we are underway we mostly motor sail - if we're real lucky we get to turn off the iron jib and just sail. That's always a huge treat. Roy's happy with whatever help you want to give on the wheel and I'm happy to get help with the lines and in the galley but we're pretty capable by ourselves. So if all you want to offer is your ability as a bartender that's good too.
We might swim off the aft swim platform or go snorkeling from the dingy. We have a selection of fins, snorkels and masks aboard but if you have your own by all means bring them. We go ashore to do to hit the veggie markets and find supplies. We head inland with a tour guide or a rental car to do some sightseeing. There's always plenty of places to find dinner or lunch whenever we're in a nice port or anchorage. (anchorage means we'll use the dingy to get ashore). We get somewhere to take on water every 10 days -2 weeks. Laundry, groceries and marketing can be done in just about any town or village.
Of course the evening's are meant for sundowners and sunset. But we have a selection of novels as well as many movies and TV shows saved on hard drives.
Electronic Toys and Staying in Touch
We've lots of electronic devises aboard including our 2 iPhones, 2 kindles, an iPad, a laptop and now an HD TV(for prerecorded movies and TV shows). The Bullet, a long distance wifi antennae and amplifier provides wifi if there's an open, or subscription based, access point ashore. The more remote we are the iffier that becomes. As the Bullet is fully integrated into the Time Capsule (Apple router) this allows WiFi throughout the boat. Other than that communication is through a phone based data plan or onshore internet cafe's, restaurants and bars. The SSB onboard gets weather and the longer distance cruisers nets. The VHF is used to hail other boats and brings in local cruiser nets.
In addition to regular internet based weather sites like Passage Weather we have a subscription to Chris Parker, the cruisers' weather guru. He does reports and gives personalized advice to subscribing vessels on the SSB each morning plus sends area specific weather emails. He also offers routing advise for passages.
On Wahoo getting a tan, reading a book and watching the water are considered work. If you can catch fish we'll want you to live with us.