Whew! What a weekend. The “Great Seattle Boat Show” weekend is always a fun one for us – something we look forward to much as others likely look forward to Christmas morning. We love wandering the aisles of the show, looking for things on our “list,” walking aboard vessels on Lake Union and seeing friends who come out for the show. It’s the gathering of the tribe of boat nuts.
Last year we were shopping for nav system “stuff” with the help of Larry from Emerald Harbor. We weren’t planning to do the giant project for a few years, but alas, we did as evidenced by the gleaming Furuno screens now residing in the pilothouse. This year we are looking for new auto pilots (again with Larry’s help), an updated Waggoner Guide (our smallest purchase for sure), a new sea kayak that is meant for NW waters vs. our existing warm water sit-on-top-kayak, and we are considering trading out our dinghy. Hours of fun!
The weekend started with a fun gathering on Red Rover of friends Dale and Glenda (of N43 Serenity) down from Alaska for the show, and some local peeps with extensive Alaskan knowledge – Sam, Laura and Kevin of Slow Boat fame.
On Saturday morning, we hosted our first Nordhavn Dreamer open house. What fun! I think we might have to do that again. We decided to have a little dreamer open house after a lot of banter on the Nordhavn Dreamer Groups (a message board of sorts) about the Seattle Boat Show, people traveling to see Nordhavns (only one in the show) and a long story about wife “eye rolling” around this Nordhavn thing. Well that eye rolling commentary got me going. If you’ve read this blog you know that I have no intention of being “the Admiral” (I call myself the Deck Boss) and that I was actually the one who said, “hey let’s live on this boat.” Enough with husbands saying their wives are rolling their eyes already. So….we had an open house. With mimosas of course. It’s Boat Show time of year – celebrate! We had 11 guests all of whom were so delightful to chat with. Some of them even left exchanging contact information with one another. Completely consistent with the Nordhavn community that is a big part of owning this boat. We love our boat to distraction and talking about her with other Nordhavn enthusiasts? Nothing more fun than that!
Saturday afternoon was spent wandering the indoor show. We went to one Boat Show University class but found that perhaps we were more graduate student level boaters. More wandering. And a new kayak purchase – an Eddyline Skylark that will be perfect for exploring the bays and inlets that Red Rover brings us to. Surprisingly I opted for the blue hull (not red? Gasp) and will pick up my new boat and Werner “Puget Sound” patterned paddle at the end of the show. So excited!
On Saturday evening we went to the Nordhavn owner’s event at the Seattle Yacht Club Elliott Bay outstation, hosted by PAE. Now Kevin and I are extroverted introverts. We don’t traditionally do well in large parties and tend to run and hide. But our friends Tom and Linda (N57 Meridian) and Dale and Glenda (N43 Serenity) were going to be there as well as Scott and Brad from Emerald Harbor who we think are the bees knees. So we figured we’d be ok. We walked up to a building with almost 100 Nordhavn owners in it. Amazing.
The event was fun! In fact, Kevin was probably one of the last owners there. I dragged him out as Dan Streech (President of PAE, which is the parent company of Nordhavn) was plugging in a vacuum cleaner. (Hello, he is behind the vacuum? I love that – a president title and not above helping with clean up.) I have to say, we have wanted to meet Dan for many years, ever since we became Dreamers. We first watched the Nordhavn North Atlantic Rally (NAR) video back in 2008(ish) and learned about Dan and his partner in PAE, Jim Leishman. And we were hooked. Big time. I think we’ve watched that video over 50 times since then. Most recently last week sitting on Red Rover. Seriously. So meeting Dan was just fantastic. He is as honest, down-to-earth, interesting, kind and knowledgeable in person as he comes across in the video and his interactions on the Dreamers and owner’s sites. What a pleasure. He probably thought I was a little silly as I told him all of this but he did give me a hug, so apparently I wasn’t too nutty.
Anyways, we talked to other owners, the ever- incredible-Lugger Bob (who had previously spent a day on our boat, in our engine room), our friends at Emerald Harbor and some of their spouses for the evening. It went too quickly. What incredible, smart, interesting and down-to-earth people. It felt like talking with people we’d known our entire lives. It’s all about a shared passion – these amazing world-traveling trawlers. But I think it is also about a personality type that lives behind the boat owners – people who are curious, thoughtful, kind and not hung up on themselves. I mean these are people that own boats that are valued from over $500K to many millions of dollars. But that doesn’t matter. These are real people who are open and wonderful. It was amazing. We can’t wait to go to the PAE 40th anniversary party in Dana Point in April.