Tag Archives: liveaboard

Book Review; ‘Leap of Faith, Quit Your Job And Live On A Boat’

I don’t recall when I first came to hear of the book ‘Leap of Faith, Quit Your Job And Live On A Boat’ (Leap), by Ed Robinson, but I’m sure it was during one of those times when I was dreamily pondering our own upcoming move to the boat. I was most likely searching for stories of folks who took their own ship’s south to escape the increasingly unpleasant winters we are forced to endure. . .

Cover of ‘Leap of Faith – Quit Your Job & Live on a Boat’

Liveaboard State of Mind

Whatever my state of mind, it must have been that ‘live on a boat’ part of the title that caught my eye. Now, before we dive into Ed Robinson’s tale, I should let you all in on a little something; ‘Leap’ represents only the fourth book I’ve read in my 50 years on this planet. Don’t get me wrong, I actually read quite a bit, but my attention span is for more of the bite size chunks, something that I can get through in one sitting. So, to say that I actually read this book from cover to cover really speaks to the strength of the author to keep a reader like me engaged, entertained and ultimately, inspired.

Photo: Ed Robinson.

‘Luckiest Man in The World’

Ed refers to himself in the book as ‘the luckiest man in the world’. Quite a statement and reason enough to read on to find out why he can say that . . .

Like many of us, he began to feel trapped in a never ending rut of going to work, coming home to bitch at the wife about the day’s stresses, go to bed and start it all over again. And again. And again. As he says, it was sucking at his soul. It wasn’t as if he was struggling with a lower paying job that was stressing him out, but rather that he had a management position, bouncing between babysitting staff and kissing ass with clients.

Sounds all to familiar with my own experiences.

Beyond  the work related stress, he found himself increasingly frustrated with the endless BS he was bombarded with in the news. Crap that seemed to be piling directly on top of him; political fighting, financial crises, American Idol and all the rest of it. There is an entire chapter on the madness of the world that we live in that is more akin to an extended rant. I found myself reading this chapter in a hyper fast way, not missing a beat – I could have wrote it myself!

You can now see how I was drawn further into his tale . . .

Photo: Ed Robinson.

Don’t worry, it’s not all bad news. In fact, apart from those two segments, you’ll find it increasingly uplifting as the story moves us past the virtual despair and frustration and into hatching a plan to move Ed’s life forward and away from the madness. Initially, escape came in the form of the musical storytelling from the likes of Jimmy Buffet and all those great Trop-Rock singers. Songs of passing the days in hot tropical climes, palm trees and boats. I mean really, who wouldn’t find escapism in a song that spoke of ice cold Corona beer and sunsets on the beach?

Did I mention I was really getting drawn into the book?

Photo: Ed Robinson.

Selling EVERYTHING

Now that these visions of a new life in flip flops and Hawaiian shirts had planted themselves in his mind, the next thought was how he would make it become a reality. Naturally, any sane person would come to the conclusion that selling everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) and moving to a boat full time would be a logical course of action. . . Or not. Apart from his wife, Kim, pretty much everyone around him thought he was crazy. Perhaps not only because he didn’t have a boat, but that he also had a big debt load to overcome before saying adios to his job.

How would he move the plans for his wife and himself from a fantasy of tropical escapes to the reality of living feet up on a boat in the middle of south-west Florida? It was very simple, actually; make a firm plan, and work it with disciplined resolution to see it through. The carrot on the end of the stick would ultimately become a goal of not running Away from a world that was crushing his spirit, but rather running To a new life of utter contentment.

Photo: Ed Robinson.

Freedom

Even if chucking it all and living in the shade of palm trees isn’t your speed, this book offers compelling and practical insights as to how any one of us can better our current financial standing and enjoy the freedom that being debt free allows. That said, I might offer a word of warning before you read the book yourself. You may end up being so moved by the enticing world they have discovered that you could find yourself perusing online ads for boats that could one day become your own piece of paradise :-)

Photo: Ed Robinson.
The book is available at Amazon.com – both in print and Kindle e-reader versions.
  A big thanks to Ed for being good enough to allow me to share some his beautiful photos in this review, all of which have been taken during his enjoyment as ‘happiest guy in the world’.

Writing a Boating Adventure Book, One Brick at a Time

For those of you who have been following my YouTube Channel for the past few years, you will have already seen the posts from our grand adventure when we purchased ‘Boogaboo IV’, back in 2010. Well, after retelling many highlights of that experience over the ensuing years, I have been inspired to put it all together in the form of a book. Yup, you heard right – I’m writing a book.

(Actually, I’m in the midst of writing two books, but the other one has a much deeper, personal resonance to it which I’ll delve into more in a future post.)

A Grand Adventure

Referring to that boat buying event as a grand adventure isn’t mere hype. It was truly a milestones that would mark a turning point in our lives – not only in terms of our boating travels, but in our whole outlook on life and what we CAN do as a couple – and survive it intact!!

In Michigan with our soon-to-be ‘Boogaboo IV’.

Survival was the key to the whole story. And the whole story is a whole lot more than can be properly conveyed through mere Blog posts, hence the book. Survival, as you will learn, has many connotations and will be used in the context of this story to relate to not only surviving a voyage of nearly 700 miles, but also that of mental, emotional and yes, marriage survival! Perhaps ‘ordeal’ might have been a more descriptive term ;-)

Applying the name on the transom before leaving Michigan, making it ‘Ours’ :-)

So, what the heck do bricks have to do with it all, you surely must be asking yourself? Read on . . .

Time to Think

As I am going on about my day, especially when I am involved in physical labour (which is most work days, in my contracting businesses) I feel that my mind is somehow released and that more far reaching thoughts and inspirations come to me, most especially when I am working alone. Take this weekend, for example. As part of our preparations to move onto the boat full time, we had to make some changes to the house and I was basically pushing a paint brush and roller for hours at a time. Put on some good music & it gives me time to think.

And think, I do. Lots of it! As I continually point out to my lovely Anchor Girl, I could fill five more lifetimes with all the thoughts, aspirations and inspirations that come to me. But that’s OK, because I firmly know that when this current plane of existence ends, I (we) will continue on with a much higher propose, so ultimately, I got lots of time :-)

But I digress. Back to the bricks!

I find it amazing how thoughts seem to come to me out of the blue, then only to be reinforced, or revisited a short time later by that same ‘spark’ being presented to me in another context. Almost like it’s trying to show me something. . .

Case in point (and finally getting to the darned bricks!); As part of my free thinking moments yesterday, I was reflecting on one of the 14,286.419 pieces of seemingly useless information floating around my head, that being a fact I recalled that Winston Churchill (former Prime Minister of England & 20th Century icon) would spend a great deal of time working at his estate, Chartwell, doing – you guessed it – bricklaying!

Mental Escape

From many accounts, Sir Winston derived a similar mental escape through building walls, fences and other brick structures that seemed to clear the way for inspirations to flow freely. His bricks, my paint brush. Or drywall trowel, or whatever the tool du jour happens to be. Perhaps it was through this release that Mr. Churchill found the abundant inspiration to write more than 50 volumes in his time.

Do I have 50 books in me? Dunno. Two years ago, I would have scoffed at the idea of me writing ONE book, let alone two! But here I am, knee deep into it and finding that writing and me seem to have a long suppressed destiny.  I hope that you will look forward to reading about our boating adventure – and more. I will promise you that I’m going to do my best to keep you entertained, and more importantly – inspired!

Quickly getting back to the connections between these thoughts that seem to come out of nowhere. Yesterday I was thinking and jotting my notes to share with you about our Mr. Churchill and his bricklaying release. Today, I was looking at a web site (boating related, no less) published by someone we know but haven’t haven’t talked to in too many years and what pops up? A photo of a boat with the name ‘Chartwell’, along with a caricature of Winston Churchill on the transom, produced by this very person!

Was this a coincidence? No sir. Just one more sign that our new path, book, rekindled relationships and so much more yet to be discovered destinies are meant all to be. And I’m grateful for that & the forces that are moving us along this path :-)

Boating to Florida From Canada?

A question came to me the other day about whether we have ever considered taking our current boat – or any boat for that matter – south to Florida for the winters. Given the fact that live aboard our boat for the summer months, it seemed logical to this person that we just fired up the engines when it got cold and pointed it south towards the palm trees and sandy beaches. . . Here is my reply.

Summertime Boating

Yes, we currently call ‘Boogaboo IV’ home from May to October and love the lifestyle. It’s a bit of effort to make happen, as I still work full time in my own business and have to commute daily to and from the boat. The good part of that is I get to travel mostly through country roads, so it’s quite scenic. As for taking her to Florida, we have discussed that possibility, but not any time soon. Again, I have a business to run for now and being away toooooooo long, or having to commute back and forth to Ontario throughout the process is not something I would entertain at this point.

That said, we are unsure as to which way the fickle winds of fate may send us as we travel through this plane of existence. Ultimately, we would love to be able to step off the boat at the end of the season and head south for the ensuing six months until the boating season resumes the following spring and that is something I am working towards. To that end, I have just released my first, feature length travel video ‘Cruising The Trent Severn Waterway’. If you visit my web site at BoatsBeachesAndBars.com you can see the two minute long intro/teaser clip to get an idea of what it is all about. One can purchase the DVD/Blu-ray combo pack or even a digital download version right from my site.

A Second Boat?

One other option we toyed with was to buy a second boat to keep in Florida, but the overall costs currently make that prohibitive, but something we may revisit down the road. Despite the life of Riley that many folks may perceive from my endless postings, we are like most of the rest of the working world; car and credit card payments, a mortgage and all the rest that comes with every day living. The one major difference is that we have made a solid decision to live more on our own terms and take advantage of the good days as much as we can. With my MS diagnosis a few years ago, we learned quickly that good health is precious and not to be taken for granted. We have worked contentiously to reverse my condition and a huge part of that has been stress reduction and, like I said, living life on our terms – even if it does mean maxing out the old credit card once in awhile ;-)

Lighten Up
Laughing at ones’ self is also paramount to a healthy life, so thanks you for recognizing that. I stopped taking myself too seriously awhile back and that helps to lighten the load, so to speak. As for the lovely deck hands you may have spotted some of in my videos, I’m not sure on their availability, apart from my own Anchor Girl. She’s got her hands full with taking care of me and the MAJOR reason I am working at making our lives more fun. And that, is the funnest part for me . . .