Crazy Busy - Miami International Boat Show 2014

I realize I haven't given an update in AGES!  And I miss it.  I miss the writing and the comments, etc.  It certainly has not been for lack of content/activities/goings on.  We. have. been. BUSY!

So where do I even start?
I guess I'll back up to the Miami Boat Show.  That super-fun event was in the middle of February.  We headed down with friends from Tammy Ann and spent 3 days going through all of the booths and several of the boats.  We bought some things.  We drooled over some things.  But all in all, we did not spend near what we had expected.  That's a good thing, right?  Well, it is if you haven't spent the past few months creating a list as long as your arm of things you want to buy...  (a list that was in a tragic Chlorseptic Throat Spray incident that accidentally ended with the critical list in the trash before we even got on the first shuttle.)

On Tuesday before the show I was feeling a bit drained - like I was fighting off some germs.  (I won't say which mouth breather I think it was, but I have my suspicions)  I cancelled a private yoga lesson that night and got some rest so I'd be ready for Friday's trip to Miami.  We were so stoked!  Wednesday I woke up and headed off to my 7AM! cooking class, and by the time my 16hr day was over, I was really sick. I stayed home on Thursday and made a visit to the doc.  The only other time I've missed school is when I had cancer.  CANCER.  I do not miss class.  So you know it had to be bad.  The tests came back negative for strep and the flu. But they gave me a Z-pack and sent me on my way.  The meds did finally start to kick in, but I had no voice whatsoever on the entire trip.  It made for some fun charades within our group - and fun stories about people that thought I was "mentally challenged" and kept talking louder and louder to me and flailing their arms around to make their points.  I was in tears at one point, because I was laughing so hard at a lady that was screaming at me and trying to explain how email works, etc.  She never did understand why I finally broke down and laughed/cried in her face.

Anyhow - gross germs aside, we managed to pick up an iSUP from Tower, crazy-cool binoculars that self adjust, a self-siphoning hose, nesting cookware and lots of over-priced food and bevs.  Sailrite was nowhere to be found, and I was hugely disappointed by that.  I checked their website when I couldn't find them in the show guide, and apparently they only go to 2 shows.  Miami International is not one of them.

One of my main concerns about this trip was all of the new sail boats on display. I was afraid we were going to come home with either a new boat, or boat envy. We wanted to go on them to find ideas for upgrades on our boat - surely there's new stuff on a 2014 Beneteau that could be implemented on a 2002, right?  Nope.  Turns out the boats we looked at (we stuck to a 38-41' limit - it wasn't fair to compare 50' yachts to our much smaller Luna Sea) were made out of loads of cheap looking laminate.  We didn't find a single design element to implement.  On the up side - we don't have boat envy!  As "plastic" as our fiberglass boat is, the wood below makes it warm and rich looking, and I'm happy with that.  Good to know we saved a couple hundred thousand or more.  ;)

Tower iSUP:
    This is an inflatable stand up paddle board.  If you follow this blog at all, you know we like to SUP!  I even have a rack on my teeny tiny Miata so I can tote the boards around.  (the boards are as big as my car)  We have 2 traditional fiberglass SUPs already.  I wanted to compare them all just to see what happened, so we threw them all in the water last weekend.  The Walden 10'10" is no comparison.  That beast flies across the water.  It's by far the fastest of the 3.  (its a bugger to turn, though)  So to be fair, I decided to compare the Naish 9'6" with the Tower 9'10" - and they were honestly pretty close.  To me the Naish is a hair faster and turns a wee bit easier - but I have years of play time on it and am pretty sure that I just need board time to figure out the nuances of the Tower.  Hands down - the iSUP wins in the weight/stowage/travel/throw on the ground category. (Yes, that is an official category.)  If you drop a traditional board, the gel coat just chips right off.  And heaven forbid you bang the fiberglass board into your fiberglass boat - that's a double whammy of gel coat damage.  We literally tossed the Tower onto the deck of the boat.  It's made out of a material that is similar (if not identical) to an inflatable rib.  It's pretty buoyant and very stable.  I see some serious iSUP yoga in my future on that board.  And to add to it's fabulousness - it just deflates, rolls up into a large sleeping bag size glob and gets stowed below when we need it out of the way.
The 14' version is supposed to be much faster.  It's also heavier, but I can see potentially adding it to our supply when we one (undetermined) day sail away.

Self Adjusting Binoculars:
  We bought some cheap/cheesy binoculars from West Marine before we sailed off on our 2 week trip in December. They served their purpose and gave us time to research better options.  We certainly found a better option.  I think they're Bushnell, but they're on the boat and I'm at the condo, so I can't verify that.  You just adjust them once and that's it - they self focus.  It's weird.  Like there's a little troll in there turning the knobs every time you turn your head or change your focal point.  And there's a compass in there - so if I see a potentially dangerous object in the water, I can check the compass heading and be sure to steer clear.  So far, we're really happy with the purchase.  We sat on the boat the other day just spying on people at various degrees of distance from Luna Sea...

Siphoning Hose:
  Not a lot of excitement here.  But it was $20 and when we actually need it, I'm sure it will be worth it's weight in gold.

Nesting Cookware:
  I went with Magma, with the cobalt finish.  Magma, because they are tried and true - and I wanted a quality stainless steel set.  Cobalt blue - well, because I bought them on the last day and that's all that was left.  I will say that I feel like that was one of the better price savers I found at the show.  They were marked down significantly from prices I'd seen previously, and there was no shipping.  That means I was able to clean out all the clutter of the bench where we store all of our pots and pans.  They all consolidate into one fancy schmancy little bundle.  Now I just need to cook with them.

Boat Show Tip - shop with friends!  We were able to do 2'fers on a few different items because ours friends needed the same items.  That means we got increased savings over the already slightly reduced boat show prices.  SCORE!

Well, geez louise.  This update is just going on and on.  And I'm only 1 event in to why I haven't been updating the blog lately!  I'm outta here - time to teach TRX!  I'll try to update more much sooner - maybe tomorrow?  We're heading out for St. Criox (by plane) soon - and I want to be all caught up so I can focus a post or two on that scouting mission!


  1. So glad to hear more re: life in the BIG boat circle. Glad you found bargins/bargains? AND are feeling better :) I really thought ya'll were going to St. Croix on your boat though, that is a LLLOOONNNNGGGGG way though.Have FUn, be blessed, HUGS :)

  2. Glad to hear you are doing well. We were beginning to think you sailed of the edge of the earth and were missing our RSS feed.

    Hope you have a grrrrreat time in St Croix. Scope out anchorages while you are there - you never know.


    Mark and Cindy
    s/v Cream Puff

    1. Hey guys!

      This will absolutely be a scouting mission! Even have a realtor lined up - just in case ;)


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