October 5-8, 2017
The long anticipated Annapolis Boat Show came and went leaving mixed feelings. There were large aspects of it that were 100% schmooze and sell, with an unhealthy dose of: if you’ve got money and safety is important to you, then YOU NEED THIS! Certainly a focus on getting the attention of those with a very hefty, disposable income. And a whole lotta people! After our rather secluded and quiet previous couple of weeks, sensory overload definitely began to kick in.
However, the truth is… as first time boat owners, everything is already so new that just wandering around from booth to booth, attempting to take in everything we were seeing, was largely reminiscent of kids at a toy store!
The seminars ranged from very informative and inspiring to rather bland.
But it was great to attend seminars featuring Pete McGongle (our broker from Swiftsure Yachts), Dave Skolnik (delivery skipper, electronics expert, teacher & sorcerer sailor), as well as John & Amanda Neal (of Mahina Expeditions – who we consulted with while in Borneo regarding potential yachts).
In addition, we were available to offer our volunteer services to assist with a seminar focused on sailing south on the ICW (something we’ll be undertaking within the next month).
It was quite strange to able to see, and even meet, some of the most iconic and recognized names in the sailing world; people who had been the subject, or more likely the author, of so many of the books and articles we had read over the last ten years – Jimmy Cornell, Lin Pardy, Nigel Caulder…
Maybe its just adding a human element to printed words you’re reading, or a more ambitious networking with invaluable potential future resources; regardless, hearing from, and talking to, likeminded people (many who have already been liveaboard cruisers for decades) simply solidifies our commitment to carrying on this legacy of adventure.
Then again, this legacy of adventure is about self-sufficient and self-sustaining sailing, not squandering your cruising kitty at a boat show!
Having just purchased our first boat with so much to learn, I’m gonna give an overall thumbs up to the 2017 Annapolis Boat Show experience; but I’d also quickly add that I think one boat show is plenty… next year we’ll probably opt to buy more solar panels or upgrade our lines instead!