All the financial planning tools said that we were crazy to retire at 55, but we did it anyway! We operate under the mantra that life is an escapade and it’s meant to be lived fully – on whatever budget one has. Our level of adventure isn’t over the top; no base-jumping into subterranean caves or dog-sledding across Antarctica, but we love to sail and that will take us to some pretty exciting spots. Traveling is our favorite hobby and our preferred mode of transportation is via our 43′ Jeanneau sailboat called Happy Dance.
Marty and I met in 2007 and were married in 2010. We’re now in our mid 60’s and we’ve both retired from 20-plus years in the corporate world; Marty was a manufacturing engineer with Boeing, and I was an Operations Systems Analyst with American Airlines. We retired a second time when we sold our Victorian B&B, The Blue Goose Inn, in Coupeville, Washington. Our fledglings have flown (or been pushed) from the nest, so we’re now in that carefree mode of doing whatever strikes our fancy!
Our sailing backgrounds are quite a bit different. Marty grew up in Southern California and his sailing experience was limited to a few memorable weekends in Catalina on a Thunderbird 27. I grew up in Seattle, surrounded by a family who loved the water and boats. My Grandmother grew up in one of the first houses built on the beach at Three Tree Point on Puget Sound and used to chase freighters in her canoe when she was a girl. My Mom and her two sisters had a “flattie” called “Peganbubs” on Lake Washington when they were young. Mom introduced me to sailing when I was 12 or so by sending me to sailing camp at the Seattle Yacht Club, where I began a life long love affair with sailing.
Before owning our Jeanneau 43′, we had a Cal 39′ named Escapade for two years and we had great adventures while exploring the San Juan Islands, Gulf Islands and Desolation Sound. We loved Escapade, but when we started talking about living aboard we decided we’d like a few more creature comforts. We sold Escapade, and bought our Jeanneau 43′ Sun Odyssey Deck Salon, and soon named her Happy Dance for the crazy happy dances we did when we finally made her ours! We sold all our land based stuff, except for a few treasures that would fit in an 8′ x 10′ shed, moved aboard and the rest as they say is history!
Happy Dance is our home now and we are extremely comfortable. She’s 43′ long and 13.8′ wide, has two beds (berths), two baths (heads) with a full sized shower, a nice size living room (salon) and kitchen (galley) with all the necessary amenities. We even have two decks (foredeck and cockpit), and a heated swimming pool. We’ve added solar panels, a water-maker, extra sails, and lots of other important stuff. She sails like a dream and takes very good care of us!
We hope you’ll chuckle along with us as we share our escapades on land and sea in this wonderful world!
Marty and Sue
s/v Happy Dance