What an adventure it has been. There is something invigorating about embarking on a adventure that is unlike anything you've ever done before. I had alway envied Bilbo and his chance to take a quest. I like adventure when used as noun. I was even the same age as Bilbo as he had set off for the Misty mountains. Moving to a boat, living in Hawaii, knowing no one and loving every minute of it. It made us feel alive! I was about to have my own adventure.
And the people! What wonderful people we have met since we moved here. Living in the marina has introduced us to a community of it's own. Fascinating people from all walks of life who have chosen to call their boats their home. And they all have tales of distant shores and wonderful journeys. Not the week or two trips I had become accustomed to, but of years beneath their sails. Raising families as they migrated from island to island. Staying for as long as they wanted before they decided where they'd like to go to next.
When we bought our boat, I can't begin to tell you how little we knew on the subject. My wife Vicky and I had come to Hawaii for 3 weeks to decide where we wanted to live. We left our 11 year old at home in Kansas and the two of us decided to take that honeymoon we'd never really managed to fit into our schedule. 28 years after the fact, but a honeymoon nevertheless. We went to Kauai and had our breath taken away. We went to Molokai and immersed ourselves in the peace of that Island. We returned to Maui and this time stayed at bed and breakfasts and seriously considered one as a place to call our own. We had already been to the Big Island and were thinking it was probably going to be our home, but wanted to go to Oahu for a few days first. We came to Oahu and found our home.
It was accidental, aren't the great things in life all accidental? We looked at boats for sale with Vicky (who is a Minnesota farm girl) all the while asserting her power of veto. I think the phrase, "Are you crazy?" may have come up once or twice, but we were in the mood for something so different that every possibility was on the table. So, we meandered to Kapolei and found ourselves at the Ko Olina marina. We found a boat that we felt at home on the minute we stepped aboard. We fell in love with the warmth of the teak and the shimmer of the soles. She had a galley I could make myself at home in and a bridge I could imagine myself at the controls of (if I only knew how).
After we left her, we explored the area. We walked from the marina to the sea trail and followed it as one lagoon ended and another began. Grassy manicured beaches with fine sand aprons. At the end of the sea trails the coast continued with lava ledges of tide pools and coves cut into the lava. I'm sure I'd decided what I wanted to do before we even began the walk back. Turns out that Vicky had also begun to believe that maybe we had found what we were looking for.
Our broker, Robert, was a resident of the Marina. A wonderful soul, he continues to be one of our very good friends out here. He hadn't sold a boat yet, so we had the advantage of that quality of care that I believe you can only get from a first time transaction. I always tried to teach my agents to remember how attentive they were to their first clients and to try to maintain that level of caring. So we strategized with Robert and eventually came to terms with the seller. That was November of 2006. In celebration we spent our last night at the Marriott Ilihani in Ko Olina, our victory celebration! It was marvelous and I highly recommend it.
We left the next day with our home in hand and couldn't wait to tell our friends in Kansas what we'd decided to do, wondering how many more times we would both now hear, "Are you crazy?".