Thursday, October 07, 2010

US Sailboat Show: Parting with money can be fun

Sometimes, like when we discover a rudder has to be replaced, parting with money is absolutely horrendous. Other times, like today, it is very much fun.

Annapolis hosted the first day of the annual US Sailboat Show, and Evan and I went with two minds about it. I wanted to go aboard all the open house yachts. I say yachts, as opposed to sailboats, because most are pretty luxurious and cost more than 100K. These are not the 20+ year-old sailboats Evan and I come across. Evan, on the other hand, wanted to talk shop and do business with trade vendors, since he'd already visited the boat show once and drooled over the boats he couldn't have.

So Evan went to do errands, and I went up and down the docks visiting boats. And I was surprised to find that I really only lusted after one boat: a 30-foot racing yacht from Turkey called Sensei.

Beautiful teak decks and very clever design!/album.php?aid=155946&id=167917876417
All the other yachts left me unimpressed. Sure, some were huge. Others had microwaves and fancy fridges. Most had big bathrooms. But the wood finishes felt surprisingly thin in a lot of the boats, and the metal hardware on cabinets and such felt flimsy. I wouldn't pay $200,000+ even if I had it. I soon left the fancy yachts and rejoined Evan, and how much more fun were the tents full of vendors! I came away with two bags--one tote and one pouch--made from recycled sails; a great polartec anorak (less than $25!); shampoo/body soap that lathers even in saltwater; and a bunch of free pens. Little (but happy) fish in the pool of big spenders (a large number of which were wearing ballooning-pelvis pants, aka pleated khakis).

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