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Even though we have decided to take a vacation from boating, I don’t wan’t to let the commercial endorsement on my Yachtmaster license lapse. Not being one to leave things until the last minute, I’ve noted that I’ll need to submit the paperwork for this before the middle of December. No problem.

As it turns out, everything that I need to do for the renewal is pretty straightforward and easy to accomplish, except obtaining the required medical exam. Just as it was the first time around, getting the proper ENG1 seafarers medical exam is a PITA for those not residing in the UK.

But I don’t want to fly!

We initially had our exams completed in Trinidad, and traveling there to do it again is still an option. I could also fly (or sail!) to Barbados, Tortola, or Ft. Lauderdale. Outside of those 4 options, I’d have to visit the UK, or some other spot even further away. While a trip like that sounds fun, it’s a pretty big hoop to have to jump through just to have my blood pressure checked, and to have a vision and hearing test completed.

A new boat for you?

In unrelated news, our friends Denis and Ladonna just listed their Lagoon 380 catamaran for sale. Rebecca and I have been on the boat several times, and have watched each improvement and upgrade that they have made to it. They’ve actually been running a very successful charter business on the boat, offering crewed charters for up to four guests at a time. Could this be your new cruising boat, or perhaps your new business???

8 Comments

  1. Just picked up on your vacation from sailing from this post. I was sailing in the windwards, charter, when original post came out on the subject and missed the post. We will miss your adventures.

    I have a question about security that I’m not sure you will be comfortable answering in a public forum. I’m a few years off from retiring and plan to buy a boat and sail the Caribbean for a year to test the waters. When sailing from St Lucia To Grenada, my Moorings boat briefer instructed me to when leaving the boat to take our money and valuables with us. This implies the boat has a good chance of being boarded while you are out. Removing money and valuables is fine for a group of 9 people for a weeks vacation but concerning for a couple in the area for an extended stay. Any advice on dealing with leaving the boat unattended for hiking, scuba trips and the like while you are off enjoying yourself. I would not want to become a prisoner of the boat for security concerns. Any thoughts on the subject would be welcome. If you have already discussed please point me to the right spot. Thanks Jon

    • I can virtually assure you that cruisers do not remove their money and/or valuables from their boats every time they go to shore. While many may not, we do ALWAYS lock the boat when we leave it though, and that includes even for very short trips to see a neighbor. Don’t be the low-hanging fruit.

  2. (Hijacking post for a moment)

    Jon, we do boat/chart briefings for Sunsail and Moorings here in Grenada. Charter boats are ripe targets for sneak tiefs – not familiar with the waters, excited to be in the sunshine, may have had a little too many rum punches etc. We usually advise our clients to take their cash with them when they leave the boat because that is what the tiefs are looking for a quick, easy profit. Mike is exactly right when he says “Don’t be the low hanging fruit.” Don’t anchor close to shore, leave lights on when you leave the boat at night (also helps you find the boat again), and lock the boat. You should also lock the dingy when you go ashore. Not so much that it will get stolen but more because someone will untie it to tie up their dingy and won’t secure it properly after. The cruising life is so different than the bareboat charter life. I hope you find out someday!

  3. We plan to find out. They one thing we noticed on our trip was how friendly everybody was. We experienced great service from everybody, the grocery store folks were helpful, the Morrings folks were extremely helpful, the drivers on the street would stop and let us in traffic while in St Lucia, the customs folks we good to deal with at 4 different spots. I screwed up more than one thing on a customs form and they either fixed it for me or showed me what to do. Even the boat boys presented themselves well and a nice no thank you was well received with no hassle. So we play an to go back, just need to make sure we have the correct amount being careful to where it does not become overpowering and distract from all the great things in the area. Thanks For the feedback. Jon

  4. I have a FAA medical exam due this month and I’ve been grunching about having to drive across town. You better make your trip into something fun.

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