|Anacapa Island off the coast of Ventura, CA|
The past four years; how we prepared
Cruising the Channel Islands has been an amazing experience for us. We love the Channel Islands' wild side and natural beauty. They have also proven to be great training ground for our sailing skills. As new sailors we wanted to learn as much as possible about the art of sailing so not long after we sailed the Buena Vida home we took sailing classes, a navigation class, the Power Squadron safe boating class and joined the Ventura Yacht Club. We have been fortunate to have great friends that have mentored us and helped us prepare for this voyage.
We did not set a three year timeline to prepare but that is about what it took to get our personal, financial and professional lives ready. The summer of 2010 was a cold and foggy summer in Ventura and boating was not great so we took advantage of that time to work hard on the Buena Vida. We thought that we would be so far ahead of our timeline. Ha! We are still tweeking systems with only a few weeks left to departure.
We also hoped to wind down our careers in a meaningful and effective way. We both retired from long term careers in the medical field in the spring of 2011. It took about a year to transition Jeff’s practice to a new physician and about 6 months for me to extricate myself for Community Memorial Hospital. We both loved our careers and the people that we worked with, leaving was harder then we ever expected. We retired about 6 months before our departure as we wanted time to travel abroad, visit family and finish transitioning from our home to our new life afloat.