30 January 2011

Seattle Boat Show - Take 3

Seattle Boat Show 2011This was my 3rd Seattle Boat Show and all I can think is "we've come a long way baby".

This visit, I was struck by the contrast between how I felt and approached the boat show on my first visit as a completely novice sailor and new boat owner and this year's visit, as a slightly less novice sailor/cruiser/boat systems tech.

The first Seattle Boat Show we attended was in 2007 and we had flown into Seattle to close on the boat and spent one dizzy, overwhelming afternoon and evening running around the boat show. We watched a few cruising seminars and were giddy with excitement at the plan we were forming. Carol kept asking me if we should buy things and I knew so very little about sailboats that I felt paralyzed with indecision. Despite having just purchased a fantastic boat, I had yet to raise a mainsail at that point.

Seattle Boat Show 2011Fastforward a few years and we were again at the Seattle Boat Show. This time we were making major purchases like life rafts and windvanes, researching future major purchases and attending DC system seminars. We were in preparation for our first multi-day trip out into the ocean (for practice) and we had a fair amount of weekend sailing under our belt. We learned so much that trip because we had enough background knowledge to ask the right questions and understand the responses.

What stood out for me this third time was how many booths were selling stuff we no longer needed. We have all of the gear we had been researching and purchasing. Also, instead of the seminars being filled with revelation (although there were still quite a few learning moments), mostly the seminars were filled with information I already knew. Rather than being boring, this was quite reassuring.

We've come a long way baby.

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