Preparing for the Long Haul

We’ve enjoyed two months out and about aboard Leap of Faith, but now we get down to business. We’ve returned to Punta Gorda. The initial reason was to renew our dinghy registration. Today is my birthday, and that’s when registrations expire in Florida. Easy enough to remember. We never have registered our trawler in Florida. Technically we’ve been illegal all this time. We are US Coast Guard documented. I decided to get legal and register the big boat too.

I took the dinghy in early this morning while Kim was still asleep. Dinghy reg was a snap, no problems with the renewal. Big boat was a different story. Kim had to be with me as she is co-owner. Bummer. Go back to boat and pick her up. Walk back up town to the Tax Collectors Office. Wait half an hour in line. Get to counter and computers go down. Another bummer. Wait another half hour. Computers come back up but there’s a snag. The hull number was not accepted by their system. The boat has NEVER been registered in the United States. It’s 34 years old. The previous owners were Canadian. Long phone calls followed. They switched me to another operator. More phone calls. Finally a resolution was found and we got our sticker, good for two years. We registered as an antique, and the fee was a whopping $8.50. Wahoooo!!! Now we’re good to go for two full years on both boats.

That will free us up to travel wherever we wish. Which will begin soon, but first we have to haul out for a bottom job. Ugh. We are going to tackle this ourselves in order to save money. We’ll be “on the hard” for a week or so, sanding and painting in the Florida heat. Hope to begin work on Friday at Charlotte Harbor Boat Storage.


Once we get a shiny new anti-foulant coated bottom, we set off for parts unknown. First we hope to visit Long Boat Key for a week or two. Next we want to see the Dry Tortugas. After that we’ll chug slowly up the Keys and maybe even cross to the Bahamas. Whatever we decide on any particular day is our plan.

See ya on the water!

Ed and Kim

12 thoughts on “Preparing for the Long Haul

  1. Paul

    Ed, lived here all my life with many older (antique) boats, never knew, thought it was cars only!!! Our documented CSY 37 is 34 years old and we just renewed the FL registration to the tune of $124.63. Did they tell you about it or did you know ahead? Nice work…

    1. Ed Robinson Post author

      Another boater told me about it. Big savings. You have to fill out an additional form, stating the boats age, must have original propulsion, and must not be commercial in use.

  2. Dan Kelley

    That anti-fouling paint is some pretty rough stuff. Pretty sure proper application takes a fairly substantial amount of alcohol.

  3. Jodi Vail

    Happy Birthday Ed, and say hello to Kim for me! I have read your books and the book about your wife was so familiar to me and my life. I suffer from an awful and painful disease called IC or Interstitial Cystitis. It has changed my life drastically and all I want to do is be in a happier place with less stress and be able to live a normal life again. Whether or not this is possible, I don’t know. But her story was amazingly powerful and very uplifting. I sure would like to try to live on a boat and just go where ever life takes us. A dream with in a dream you put into this head of mine and is driving my boyfriend nuts, lol! He is a worker and a hard one at that, being an Engineer for over 27 years now. I have known him since kindergarten, however we have gotten to know each other all over again as grown adults in our 40’s. I don’t know if he’ll ever do this. But I’ll never give up trying. You and Kim have been an inspiration. Thank you!

  4. Matt McCombs

    I feel your pain my boat is also due for the bottom job trying to hold off for cooler weather. Do you know the cut off for the antique registration my boat is 27 years old

  5. Tina

    Speaking of bottom paint jobs, I’m told in the Bahamas there’s better anti-fouling paint that can’t be purchased in the US, less expensive, and lasts longer.

    Happy travels wherever you go … If you stop in Key West, we’d love to buy you and Kim some rum!


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