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While neither of us were born in Kingston, Ontario (Rebecca hails from a town in Ontario called Deep River, and I’m from a small city east of Kingston called Brockville), that’s where our journey together started out. It was in Kingston that we first met and fell in love, and also there that we made a living running a martial arts gym, a business that I operated since 1987.

Rebecca and me with of our coaches, Wagnney Fabiano, at our gym in Kingston. Photo 2007.

Don’t drink and hot tub!

Our standard description for how we ended up on a boat is that we came up with the idea one night while sitting in our hot tub, after consuming 1 too many glasses of wine. While it’s true that we may have joked about the idea of cruising on a few occasions prior to that fateful evening, that really was when the actual decision to sell all of our stuff and go sailing was made. In fact, it was that same night that we came up with the idea of documenting our journey from non-sailors to cruisers, and if I recall correctly, we may have even registered the domain name for our website, Zero To Cruising, on that night too. That was October 2008.

Man, I miss this hot tub!

A couple of days after that turning point, we booked ourselves in for a 7-day learn-to-cruise crash course, mostly to solidify in our own minds that we’d actually enjoy the sailing thing. It’s important to note that neither of us had any experience to speak of at that time. We completed the lessons that we paid for over the Christmas holidays in 2008, and upon returning home to Kingston, immediately listed our house for sale.


As luck would have it, our house sold much more quickly than we had anticipated. We had an offer shortly after listing it for sale, and the deal closed not long after that. The months between the time that we returned home from our sailing course, and when we moved out of our house, were a whirlwind of activity. We spent almost every free minute boat shopping online, while simultaneously continuing to sell near everything that we owned. When the real estate deal ultimately closed, still with no boat, we found ourselves homeless. So, for the next four months, until we purchased our first vessel at the beginning of July 2009, we lived out of a closet in our gym. Yes, a 8’x8′ storage room, and we did so without letting anyone become the wiser!

Near everything we owned was stored in this closet. 

Selling our business, an entity that’s value was based largely upon the good will that Rebecca and I generated, was the toughest part of our transition to seafarers. It took a full year to find people suitable to take over, and to iron out the details of the transaction. So, while continuing to run the business, and later, helping with the transition of the gym to the new owners, we lived on board our newly purchased boat, a PDQ 32 catamaran.

From July 2009 until July 2010, minus the coldest winter months where we stored the boat on shore, we worked hard to polish our newly-acquired, but still very crude, sailing skills. At the end of July 2010, with only two friends to see us off, we left our home base, Collin’s Bay Marina, and set off across Lake Ontario to begin our journey south to the Caribbean. Since that pivotal morning, we’ve never looked back.

Casting off the lines to leave Canada, ready to head south. 

Note: The above text and images was originally posted on January 12, 2017.


  1. Hi My name is Brian I live in Winnipeg . My wife and I are two years from retirement. WE seem to have a lot in common,that is to sell the house, buy a catamaran learn to sail. I have thought about doing this my whole life and with sites like guide to sailing stories I have spent a couple of thousand hours reading sites like slapdash bumfuzzel blowmeaway and many more. I like your first choice a 38 lagoon I have never been on one but they sound great ,Indigo moon is a great site they have a38 lagoon but I guess it:s all about money I think we might find one for around $200000. It is good to hear about how a person gets started learning to sail, buying a boat insuring it taxes changing the flag. Please keep writing we have a lot to learn P S Are you sure every thing is alright with slapdash haven’t read a thing since Feb 11

    • Hi Brian

      Thanks for the post on our blog.

      Considering we know next to nothing we find it a tiny bit scary that you say you are learning from us:) We do plan to keep the blog updated for our friends, family and people like you who hope to sail away like us. Hopefully we will be able to add good information as we acquire it.

      We received an email from Jamie and Seth on slapdash on March 22nd. They told me they had a friend coming to spend some time with them so I bet they are doing some inland traveling. I do check their site every day and curse at them that it is not updated!

      Good luck with YOUR plans. Please feel free to add comments to our blog or email us directly with any questions that you have.

      Mike and Rebecca

    • To Brian,
      Hello! My wife and are closing in on retirement as well, and have really enjoyed prepping ourselves for long term sailing. To share some ideas with you as to how to not wait, but proactively get started early, (along with following these awesome folks who are doing it right now like Mike and Rebecca), so far we have been getting ourselves trained through the american sailing association currently to be coastal cruising certified. Training groups like that offer many types of wonderful classes, to the beginner level right on up. Even week long bareboat charter vacation classes where you go with them and learn to really do it before committing to it completely. We now have a 22′ motorsailer with a swing keel ( goes from 18″ to 4.5′- nearly seaworthy if it had a stronger motor). Sloop design, dc power, sink, head, and a pop top for even more room, it really is a great boat for transitioning to liveaboard. Good enough for a few days of camping and sailing on the big lakes to prep us for the ocean voyages, (we sticking with single hulls, and the next one will be a 35-38 footer once we trade up. We live in Northern New England, and will be using the great lakes, and Lake Champlain especially, to moor and travel down the Hudson to get prepared so that once we trade up, it will be just to continue down the hudson river all the way, and out to the seacoast to head south. I cannot recommend enough to take some of these courses offered by sailing schools. They really do a fine job, and the rates are reasonable, as you learn the progression in so little time with them. Just a few days and some practice and you will know how to sail, read charts, know the rules of the road, learn live aboard tips, etc. We look forward with great eagerness to meeting all of you out there someday soon, and harass a few dolphins, toast the past life with way too much rum, and chase the sun~ Namaste!~ -R-

      • Hi Robin

        Thanks for the comment! Great advice for the most part. The only caveat I would add, and this comes from someone with decades of teaching experience, is that there are good instructors and bad instructors in every field. I doubt that just saying that someone is teaching an ASA course is enough. So, with this warning in mind, people should definitely seek out a GOOD instructor if they desire. We did, albeit short term, and it worked for us. Recognize though that, no matter how much instruction one receives before heading out cruising, the lion’s share of training will be of the “on the job” type, there is no way around that fact.

      • By the way, that comment is from 2009 and he said that he was 2 years from retirement. Perhaps he’s already out here?

  2. Hi Mike and Rebecca,

    We don’t know each other but we have a lot in common.

    My husband, Matt, and I are in full preparations for throwing off the bowlines in pursuit of our own dream of cruising about the world within the next year.

    While we are certainly a few steps behind you guys, it’s encouraging to see other young, successful cruisers out there who are getting prepared to live a similar dream! We admire your drive, tenacity, and resourcefulness along this journey and are learning from your experiences. Thank you for sharing them here.

    Would you mind if we listed your site as “other cruisers we follow” on our site?

    Fair winds,
    Christie and Matt Butcher of s/v Kaleo

    • Hi guys

      Thanks for the comment and the kind words. You are most definitely welcome to link to our Blog, and I’d be happy to do the same for you. I really enjoy reading how others are taking similar steps so look forward to following along on your site. We are fortunate to have quite a few people with much greater experience than ourselves who are commenting here on this Blog. Please feel free to add your 2 cents whenever the mood strikes you.


  3. Just stumbled upon your blog, so this may be a bit late. You might also be interested in looking at the blog that follows Just A Minute, a Lagoon 38 cruising the Sea of Cortez and the west coast of Mexico. They’ve been out for going on two years, Patrick, Laura, their son, Jack and their crazy golden lab, Rudy. Good luck to the two of you and enjoy every minute of your adventure, as we’re sure you will!

    • Hi Pete and Kathie

      Thanks for the post. I did some searches but couldn’t find that blog. Do you have a link for it?

        • From that link:

          Welcome to our mid-life crisis! These are the chronicles of Laura and Patrick, their 14 year old son Jack, and their goofball Labrador Retriever named Evinrude (Rudy), as they travelled the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific coast of mainland Mexico in their catamaran. We went cruising in search of a change of pace, a closer knit family, and peace of mind. We found all three and more. The fun all started in October, 2008 and nearly four years later the Mexican adventure came to an end August 3rd, 2012. With our mid-life crisis cured in Mexico, we are excited to start a new adventure – life back in America.

  4. Just wanted to comment that you both are the most amazing people in the world! so much ambition and drive to do what you dream of! You are an inspiration to me and to everyone out there who doesn’t believe in their wildest dreams. Many more fun times to come on the boat and in the sun. Love you Mom and Dad! xoxoxox

  5. Love your blog! Hope to convince my husband we can follow in your footsteps some day! We live in St. Croix so hope you two end up this way eventually so that we can meet you!

    • Hi Bry

      Thank you!

      We’d definitely like to visit St. Croix. Please keep in touch.

    • I just found this web site and have started reading it. I saw that you are in St Croix. There is a strong possibilty my husband and I will be offerred a job in St Croix. We finished our first 6 mth trial run to the Bahamas in July, came back, sold the “big house” and are probably going to leave again in early December. I would love to communicate with you about St Croix. It could weigh heavily in our decision.

      • Hi Linda

        What led you to think that we are in St. Croix?

        We are not. You can see our location in the right hand side bar of the blog, “Where is zero to cruising now.” Just copy and paste those coordinates into google maps.

        Will we get to St. Croix? I sure hope so!

  6. You folks may enjoy our website “The Frugal” We’ve been living aboard and cruising since 1997 and our website is sort of a “how-to” with lots of information. We are currently out of ‘cruise’ mode for the moment and are preparing a major update to our site.

    We are not selling ads on our site, but see that you do. We’d love to tap your brain regarding that – we need a little ‘how-to’ ourselves.

    We also sell funny nautical t-shirts at cafepress –

    Check us out. and enjoy.

    • Thanks Larry. I’ll check it out! As for the ads thing, we’re not likely ones to be giving too much advice as we barely make enough for a Starbucks coffee once a month (click those ads people!). 🙂 I’m happy to share what we know though. Just shoot us an email.

  7. Looks like absolutely fantawesomest adventure!!

    Just happened across this site cause researching pole fitness market in midwest US.
    Really the unserved demand and potential for development as a serious form of exercise and quasi-meditative self-aware mind-body expression; err sumthin like that:) Out of the strip club and into average everyday homes without the old stigma, etc. anyway.

    Haven’t explored too extensively, primarily just Mpls/St.Paul area and a bit online. Though I am damn good at business and before going too much farther realize a name can be vital to protecting copyrights, images, productions, etc. not to mention hires, promotions, events, purchases..etc…etc..

    Probably the last thing y’all care about right now…clearly having way more fun not thinking about the soon to be arctic tundra that is MN/CAN but wanted to run it by you as I was thinking of doing business as North Pole Enterprises, a Minnesota corporation providing not only lessons but in home installation of equipment and similar related products and services with the goal/objective of being a premier provider in the industry within the midwest regioun. (Hadn’t thought much about Canada, and wouldn’t be a Canadian company so probally no legal issues if no int’l business ventures. Just rather work together if you’re interested.

    No hurry get back to me in a month or whenever convienent…I got a gazillion other things I’m doing too…Peace and fair winds -J.

  8. Hi Guys!
    You guys are so awesome. I always enjoyed sailing (and kitesurfing), and used to live on a Tri in Santa Barbara many moons ago. It is an unusual and exciting lifestyle. It’s exciting to see you two follow your dreams, as we all should. I’ve been doing TRX and totally get how you do that on your Cat, but how do you do Jiu Jits? 😉

    Anyway, long time since we’ve seen each other, living in Syracuse with my wonderful love, Donna. Livin’ the Life.

    • Hi Kevin

      Great to hear from you and I’m happy to read that things are going well for you. We are having a blast on the boat and yes, the TRX does work perfectly for us and our lifestyle. The Jiu-jitsu thing is a little harder to manage. We’re still trying to figure that one out. 🙂

  9. Hi Mike
    We have nearly completed our Wharram Tiki38 and will be jumping in the deep-end in the next year.your site is really nice and gives me a lot of hope that we may be able to do this.
    I have a facebook page .Chris Bretter with a few pictures of the building of the Tiki.
    Regards and have a wonderful new year.

  10. Hi My name is Brian I live in Winnipeg . My wife and I are two years from retirement. WE seem to have a lot in common,that is to sell the house, buy a catamaran learn to sail. I have thought about doing this my whole life and with sites like guide to sailing stories I have spent a couple of thousand hours reading sites like slapdash bumfuzzel blowmeaway and many more. I like your first choice a 38 lagoon I have never been on one but they sound great ,Indigo moon is a great site they have a38 lagoon but I guess it:s all about money I think we might find one for around $200000. It is good to hear about how a person gets started learning to sail, buying a boat insuring it taxes changing the flag. Please keep writing we have a lot to learn P S Are you sure every thing is alright with slapdash haven’t read a thing since Feb 11

  11. Love your site!!! My husband and I are starting to live the dream….house is getting ready to be put on the market…taking sailing classes all summer…was on a sailboat for the first time yesterday taking ASA 101 class…..LOVE IT!! Already passed 105…boy that was tough but fun! I really enjoy the info you put on here…found you through slapdash site..been following them for a few months since we like gemini’s but it’s good to get other info on different cats. Just found your site tonight so I can’t wait to dig in and read & follow & possibly meet up one day…Eric and I met at the nice to get excercise updates!!! Love it!!! Have fun!!!

    • Hi Amy

      Thanks for the kind comments. I’m glad you’re enjoying reading.

      Congrats on the sailing instruction. That will definitely help you down the road.

      Good luck in your search for a cat!


  12. Just found your site. Amazing I have one question how did you or did you get insurance on your boat without any experience sailing.



    • Hi Jim. Good question. When we applied for the insurance we listed the certifications we received from our Offshore Sailing School course. Apparently they thought that was sufficient.

  13. Hi guys

    We have been following you ever since we got home from the Bahamas in June. Great Pics with the Love Boat crew.

    PS- we always enjoy our film of the variety show – you both have great legs!!

  14. When do we get a profile on the new passenger (the cat)?

  15. I have been following your travels with great interest for some time now. Up until now I have not made any comments, but I do have a question. Will you be staying in the Caribean indefinitely or do you have any plans to move on to say….South America or the through the Panama Canal to the Pacific? Maybe travel the canals of Europe? I understand that a sailors life runs day to day and it may be hard to leave a place that can be considered paradise. Again I enjoy living vicariously through your posts. I hope to follow in your wake some day in the near future. Thanks, Keith

    • Hi Keith

      Our plan is no plan (that’s very zen-like, isn’t it). Seriously, we have several irons in the fire which may direct where we go. For the coming season we will remain in the windward and leeward islands (I think).

  16. Hello,

    I love your site! I own The site is dedicated to Beach Bars in the Caribbean. I wanted to see if you have any experiences with Beach Bars that I could help promote through my site. If so, I link back and give credit to the original owners.

    I’d love to hear if you know of any good Beach Bars I’ve missed!

    Thanks for the consideration.

    Bruce Inskeep (You can find me on Facebook under my name)

  17. We are thinking of sailing the Eastern Caribbean this year and summering in Grenada. I have heard some people say that is too hot and unpleasant and all you do is find ways to escape the heat, others say it is a great place to summer. Looking for your opinions. Our friends Matt and
    Renee on Outlandish suggested you would be a good source for actual facts about the summer in Grenada. We have a Manta 38, no A/C – see website for details. Thanks

    • A Manta is a nice cat! As long as you are at anchor and not in a marina or (gasp!) a boat yard, AC is not needed. There is almost always a nice breeze blowing and on the off times when it’s raining and you need to keep the hatches closed, a couple of fans will cool you off. Grenada rocks, I’m sure you’ll love it.

  18. Hello from a fellow Canadian attempting the to sail south also. ( from Toronto )

    Mike, how are you dealing with health care as I believe the Canadian Health Care benefit will stop if you are out of Canada for mote than 7 months?

    Any advise would be great.

    Thanks Steve

  19. What about the third member of the crew. As I recall, she recently spent an entire week on solo watch of the ZTC.

  20. Hi- my name is Philip.
    I was wondring if you could give me some advice, id like to spend some time sailing. Im currently in honduras working for a NGO and I’m finishing at the start of June.
    I have no experience but I used to be a chef at a large hotel in England. Could you tell me if you think there will be many people with boats in the carribean who might have a use for. Id also be willing to pay up to a certain amount but Id like to cruise around for a while and learn the ropes 🙂

  21. Mike and Rebecca!

    Wow, really cool what you are doing! Going from BJJ to Sailing! I remember meeting you guys at a seminar way back…I think it was Eddie Bravo!

    Will keep following you for sure!

  22. Hi Mike,

    Your story is not unlike that of my wife and I. In looking at several different life changing scenarios, buying a catamaran and running a live-aboard scuba dive business was near the top of the list. Unfortunately, we couldn’t make it work financially. That and the fact that we’d need to spend a year learning to sail, becoming instructor qualified for diving and learning a whole series of locations and their dive sites gave us a few additional logistical and financial burdens!

    So, what did we do? We compromised a little. We bought an existing scuba business in Cozumel, Mexico. We had, like you and Rebecca, enough of the ordinary. We were at the point in our lives that we could dare greatly for something better and unique. Our story is a short one so far. It began around the first of the year. We have been up to our eye brows ever since. It’s not always so nice being the gringo.

    Our ownership transition has not been an easy one. The previous owner is not honoring her non-compete agreement and is in open competition with us over the client list that we paid for. As a result, we are rebuilding things from the ground up. That included the company FB page since she would not relinquish that to us.

    In any case, I came across you guys through one of our friends on Facebook. Do you ever make your way to Cozumel? Park your boat, come ashore and sample some Mayan delights. I’d love to trade a night or two’s worth of stories with the two of you.

    I’ve given you my personal email address. If any of this interests you, let me know. You can find us on FB at Liquid-Blue-Cozumel or at the web address listed above. I’m just about to pull the trigger on the BLOG…but I can’t get past the “who gives a shit about what I say anyway” feeling.

    Whatever, get in touch if you’re interested.

    Steve Michels
    Liquid Blue Divers
    Cozumel, Mexico

    • Hi Steve

      Thanks for the nice note. Since it’ll likely be a while before we sail to Mexico, I’ll look you up on FB and on the web.

      Sorry to hear about your troubles with the new business. I suspect litigation in Mexico has its own set of problems. Sad that people just can’t be honest. I hope it turns out for the best for you.

  23. Hi Mike and Rebecca!
    My name is Becca Oken, and I’m a staff writer at SAIL Magazine. In September, we’re putting out the premier issue of an annual supplement to SAIL called Multihull Sailor, which will feature stories relevant to multihull owners. One story is about people who live on their cats and tris and what their lives are like. I posted on a discussion thread on, and someone replied suggesting I get in touch with you. I hope you’ll be able to help out!

    Here are the questions that you can briefly answer:
    Who are you and with whom do you live on your boat?
    Where do you sail?
    What kind of boat do you have?
    How long have you been sailing on your boat?
    Tell me a little bit about your experience living on your boat. Any fun stories and interesting tidbits?
    Could you send along some high-resolution pictures that show what life aboard is like for you?

    Also, if you know of other people who live on their cats with their families, pets, both, part-time, full-time, etc., please let me know. We’re hoping to get a wide range of people with interesting stories.
    Hope to hear back soon!

  24. Hello,

    We are live aboards who are thinking of spending hurricane season in Grenada. We have a few questions if you have time and wouldn’t mind. We haven’t found anyone who has spent a lot of time in that area and found your blog through the Cruiser’s Forum.

    1. Is the water clear? Can you compare it to another area: Bahamas, Puerto Rico, BVI’s?
    2. Did you do any free diving for fish and lobster?
    3. Are there daily activities to get involved in: volleyball, yoga, poker, etc?
    4. How is the heat/humidity? Is there a daily breeze? We will be on anchor.
    5. Where is the best place to anchor and be a part of the community?
    6. We have a 13 year old son. Are there other kids and a community for him?
    7. Anything else we should know that would help in making the decision of turning north to the US or south to Grenada?

    Thanks for your time and hope you continue to have a blast doing what you’re doing. Safe sailing….

    s/v Good Trade

    • 1. Is the water clear? Can you compare it to another area: Bahamas, Puerto Rico, BVI’s?

      The water is clear enough on the leeward shore but some of the most protected bays along the southern coast are lined with mangroves which often makes the water silty.

      2. Did you do any free diving for fish and lobster?

      Some people do, we don’t. Officially visitors are not permitted to spearfish.

      3. Are there daily activities to get involved in: volleyball, yoga, poker, etc?

      As much or more than you can stand. 🙂

      4. How is the heat/humidity? Is there a daily breeze? We will be on anchor.

      Very comfortable. We do not have AC and are seldom uncomfortable at night.

      5. Where is the best place to anchor and be a part of the community?

      We prefer the Hog Island anchorage but there are many options along the south coast. You can try them all out and decide for yourselves quite easily.

      6. We have a 13 year old son. Are there other kids and a community for him?

      Each season we have been there there have been a few teens. They all tend to find one another and hang out, often becoming great buddies.

      7. Anything else we should know that would help in making the decision of turning north to the US or south to Grenada?

      US vs. Grenada? Seriously? No contest. 🙂

  25. Hey Guys

    Are you using your Gopro camera for most pics you are taking or only for the action stuff?

  26. Mike & Rebecca,
    I have been fallowing and reading your posts and blogs for a short time now and I’m sure I’ll be fallowing now permanently. Tim & I have always talked about retiring to a much warmer place then the very cold Colorado where we live. We have both fallen in love with the thought of a sailing life upon retirement. I know not a thing about it, Tim knows a small amount. WE WILL LEARN. We will also ask tons and I do mean TONS of questions. ( I have already asked you some and you have graciously answered) We also plan on taking classes, courses, and do lots of reading and research. We, like yourselves are choosing a Cat over a single hull. Please recommend what you found to be the most informative of reading and courses to benefit us on OUR journey. Thank you so much for your posts and blogs, keep them coming.
    P.S. here’s the bad (sad) news….. We have 5-7 years to count down 🙁

    • Well, the best course we took is also the most expensive. The Fast Track to Cruising course offered by Offshore Sailing School really lived up to their hype. We learned a LOT during the 8 days we were with them. Aside from that, we both read everything we could get our hands on. Most of the books we read and websites that we frequented are listed on our Research page.

      Where do you live in Colorado? We may be heading there to visit our friend near the end of this month.

      • We live in Denver near Lakeside Amusement park. (A landmark most people know of). And now that you’ve said you have friends here. I do recall someone I know mentioning that you and her share a mutual friend. This gives new insight to friend of a friend of a friend. Lol. We’d love to get together if you have time while here. Feel free to find us in Facebook and/or message me if at all possible. We look forward to it.
        Rosiena Gallardo Torrez
        Tim Dapper

  27. Hi Mike & Rebecca, I’m reaching out to share the project the startup company I work for has recently developed. It’s an aquatic drone called Ziphius that is controlled by mobile devices (tablets or smartphones). It is really fast, can surf and is a great tool for filming aquatic sports such as fishing, swimming and sailing from an entirely different perspective.

    We launched a Kickstarter campaign on June 24th, 2013 which runs through till the 24th of July. We’d really appreciate it if you had a look and shared and/or supported our campaign. I think the your readers might find the project of interest.

    If you have more questions do not hesitate to contact me! Best regards, Maria

  28. My wife and I are inspired by your story/blog. I have never sailed before though I have a love of the water that was discovered during my 4 year stint in the U.S Coast Guard. We spend many summers in the Cancun area but have been wanting to hit the islands. What better way to do it than on our own boat at our own pace.
    Needless to say, I have purchased my first book today: The Complete Sailor, learning to sail.

    I hope one day we are able to share an anchorage.

  29. Hey y’all!

    I found your blog a couple of weeks ago! It’s been a blast reading about your adventures! Thank you so much for sharing!

    Though my husband & I have been planning for years to break away from the rat race and start our cruising life, it is just starting to take shape! We are selling our house and have already moved to the Mississippi Gulf Coast. We took over operation of a Marina here in January, while we look for the perfect cruising-liveaboard vessel!

    I haven’t dug too deeply into your blog, yet, so I know the answer is somewhere….BUT, who is your friend, Michael? I’ve seen his name mentioned often and in your latest post, he is heading home to “make some more money for boat stuff”.

    Looking forward to reading more of your adventures!

    Thanks, again!

  30. Hello there!
    I’m the most recent editorial intern for SAIL Magazine, I know you were in contact with our previous intern Becca Oken for her write-up in the 2013 Multihull issue. I’m working on a similar article for the 2014 issue and I’m wondering if you’ve met any fellow cruisers along the way that you would suggest I contact? Please send me an email at and we can chat more!

    Christine Hayes

  31. Hi,

    I just wanted to thank you guys for the blog, I just read all of it, from start to finish, and I enjoyed every bit, it filled up all my free time lately 🙂 I’m curious to see what is going to happen now with One Love, I wish you all the luck, and I hope to meet you guys cruising some day, but that might take some years to happen.


  32. I’m starting off on the planning stages of my adventure. I started considering cruising this past spring (on somewhat of a whim). Over the summer I have managed to acquire a small 15′ sailing dingy and learned the basics of sailing. I now feel comfortable out sailing on Lake Huron in weather just above whitecaps. The largest chop I’ve sailed in so far is about 2 1/2′ waves out of the north. I have also acquired a 26′ Thunderbird (sv Allegro) in need of some work. My plan is to rebuild her and then venture further and longer out on Lake Huron to learn sailing ‘large boat style’. I’m enjoying the restoration process so far as I am learning lots about how the workings of Allegro. I read your blog daily and have learned lots from your adventures. Keep up the great work and I hope to meet you when I finally get out on the water.

  33. LOVE what you’re doing. Can’t wait to dig through your blog and read about your experiences. We plan to sail away in the next 5-10 years. We are waiting for my husband to retire from the Coast Guard and then we will switch gears and want to run a charter sailboat business, traveling when we want, doing trips for people when we want. Our family thinks we are crazy but we can’t wait! He’s already intimately familiar with vessels, we’ve taken classes together on small boats so I can get some experience, and he plans to get his captain’s license before retirement. We want a catamaran style boat, in the 40-50 foot range. I know. BIG dreams. We have a lot of learning and preparation ahead of us but we look forward to it as all part of the journey. Warm wishes on yours. 🙂

  34. Stumbled across this music video called “One Love” and couldn’t help but think of you. I’m familiar with the Bob Marley version, but this one is different, and has people from Nepal, Italy, Israel, Congo, USA, and all over the world contributing – pretty cool. If you just listen and not watch the video, it has a Caribbean sound to it at times, at least to me. Envious and jealous of your life style and hoping to start my own M/V experience as soon as I can upon being medically discharged from the Army. Keep doing what you’re doing – I love to follow you!

  35. Hello Rebecca and Mike
    I love your blog, I am also interested in sailing, my boyfriend and I bought a boat last year from ebay and we went to Florida began working and living on her for the entire winter…..It was so worth it when we finally were able to take her out on her first sail AMAZING!!!! We have both found a passion we both enjoy and dream of the day we can sail to the caribbean and from there who knows??? I do not want to be rude but i am curious of your ages? If u wish not to answer that is fine i understand. YOU BOTH look incredible and i wish you safe travels and enjoy:)


  36. Your blog has given us so much inspiration! We’re setting sail for our circumnavigation in March and as a newbie sailor myself, have used you both as an example several occasions when people tell me I’m nuts 😉


  37. Hi,

    You don’t know me but I follow your blog. I was awarded the “Liebster Award”, which I had never heard of before until last week.

    Basically it’s a blogger sharing thing and I elected you for the award as part of the award requirements!

    Here’s the link to my blog post on the award and the directions you need to follow.

    I hope you will participate. It is time consuming, but fun.

    Thank you,

  38. We came across your info watching the Distant Shores program. Came to look over your website and was amazed to see you were professional martial artists. My wife and I also own a
    MMA/self defense school and are planning to make a similar transition to the cruising life. We currently own an F27 corsair and are working on upgrading to a cruising cat. Would love to have some rum with you two if you ever make it to Florida 🙂

  39. Hi Mike & Rebecca, I have to say that your story is very inspirational! Our plans are to be part time cruisers though, trading in our rough winters for the warmth of the Carrib.

    I need to get my kids (4) through college. Fortunately, my baby should be in her senior year the same year I turn 55, which is the earliest I can retire.

    My magic year??? 2026, lol…..I know, I know, that is an eternity away. But hey, a plan has to start somewhere.

    Love the blog & the updates on Facebook, it helps keep me motivitated!

  40. Hi Mike and Rebecca,

    Love your story and what you do. I listened to the podcast and loved it. I am a former sailer on the Lake Erie-Ohio shores (brrrr). I love where you sail and have had the opportunity to visit some of the same destinations on the Arabella sail schooner a few years back. I hope to get a crew together to come and sail with you…hopefully sooner than later.

    Love the facebook updates you know how to get us northerns through the cold winter months.

    Happy New Year and have a great cruising year!

    • Hi Janette. Thanks for the nice comment and for following along! I hope you can organize some friends to come with you. We love having guests that originate from our blog and/or social media sites. Happy New Year to you too!

  41. Hi Mike and Rebecca
    Mama of 5, virtual sailer, mostly teens left in the house, so not so unrealistic anymore…. love, love, Love your blog! I am smack in the middle of it, started at beginning, but every now and then peek to the end, as in today’s bomb of an announcement, woooo-heee! Anways, Q for you: Y’all haven’t really talked about sickness so far (I am up to Feb 2013:) Wondering do you never get colds or flus anymore? Us land lubbers feeling hard this winter, so was curious how you do? And there was the Rebecca foot/toe thing, and she had a shoulder injury too, but is that it? You guys super human? Or is it all the Vit D?
    Thanks and sad the journey will be ending soon, but I guessed it sort of did after y’all became the charter One Love peeps/real job and all that.

    • Who said anything about it ending? 😉

      Do we get sick? Very seldom. Small injuries have all mended too, including Rebecca’s shoulder (which took a while). Super human? No, just living a healthy lifestyle and careful I guess.

  42. Hi Rebecca and Mike,

    My name is Rachael and I’m the English Copywriter for, the leading boat rental platform.

    We have just published a blog post that included you on our ‘Top 10 Sailing and Travel Blogs!’

    You can see it here:

    We love your blog and we were hoping you could do the same for us and feature our sailing blog on your blog at some point.

    The link to include is

    Thanks so much and happy sailing!

    Kind regards,


  43. I’m sure you guys probably hear this ALOT- but we just stumbled across your blog at what feels like exactly the moment we needed to see it the most. Truth is we’ve been feeling a bit crazy- we’re currently in the process of selling off our “security” lol, house, cars, leaving decent paying jobs to take on our own sailing adventure!

    Don’t get me wrong, we’re not incapable people, we’re about as outdoorsy as they come- we’ve been living and traveling off and on in our conversion van for almost 2 years now when we’re not at work. BUT this transition with very, very little sailing experience is a scary one! Big investments, emotionally and fiscally!

    Your site is an inspiration, and reaffirmation that we’re not totally nuts ( though I still think we might be)!
    Thanks guys for tis site. Looking forward to following you!

    Happy travels-
    Katie & DJ

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