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Henry Martin cowers in a South Fl. port while Irene roars through the Abacos!

Henry Martin Underway

Henry Martin on the ICW at Deerfield Beach, FL

Our First Home Port

South Florida on the ICW and 3 blocks from the beach!

What’s in a name?

My father’s name was Henry Martin. He taught me swimming and boat handling at such a young age that I can’t even remember. I will have to ask my mother. He was an extraordinary man both kind and brilliant. A hard act to follow, in fact, I may never measure up. But, life is about growth so it is enough that I work at it. Anyway, this is supposed to be about boating so I will get back on topic. Dad shared his love of the ocean and of boats with me and inspired a life long passion. He planned to one day move onto a boat and sail around the world with his family. Sadly, that was not to be. However, his name will sail the seas with us. – Jim

So you want to know how we found the Henry Martin………. It was Kismet!


Kismet: “Fate or Destiny in Turkish and, a predetermined course of events, from Persian qesmat, from Arabic qisma, lot, from qasama, to divide, allot. Also used in Bulgarian and in some dialects of Serbo-Croatian as luck.” – Wikipedia

After we sold the house, we were spending a few days decompressing from the crazy, pre-closing schedule. I was spending a lot of time doing boat searches and research on the Internet, preparing a list of boats to look at. Some were in Annapolis and although we wanted to visit them soon we were not quite ready to take the step and call a broker. Frankly, we were worried that, should we encounter the wrong broker, we could be taken advantage of. So we were taking it slow, trying to decide about whether to get a buyer’s agent (broker) and if so how to find an honest one! Then my email went ding. I checked only to find spam… “But wait, that’s not spam, that’s about boats!”, I exclaimed. It was an add for a boat show in Annapolis that was happening that very day. What luck! We rushed out of the apartment and drove to Annapolis only to discover that my enthusiasm had overwhelmed my eyes. The boat show wasn’t until next month! Bummer man! “Oh well,” I exclaimed sheepishly. Desperate to salvage the trip, I said to Monique, “the brokerage for the Vagabond 47 we want to see was on the list let’s see if they are open.” Alas, Rogue Wave Yacht Sales was not open, bad luck or was it? “But look, their number is on the door!” So we called the number and I spoke to a nice lady named Kate.

Kate apologized but could not show us the Vagabond with zero notice. However, rather than putting us off for another day (something she could easily have done) she suggested that we contact a competitor who could show us her listing and a couple of other Vagabonds that he had listed. What luck! She was very nice and gave us the straight scoop on the various boats. During our conversation she had several opportunities to lead us in a direction that would benefit her more and us less, never once did she head in that direction! We liked the Vagabonds a little and liked Kate a lot. We checked out the Rogue Wave website and were very impressed with Kate & Bernie’s, full service, business model. This excerpt from their website pretty much says it all:

“Our promise is to continue providing service and support for the entire ownership process. Throughout the purchase and sales process, we support you every step of the way. …And we don’ t just sell a boat and wave goodbye. There is no one else in this business today that can provide you with the service level you deserve. This consists of technical support, planning of and overseeing installation of systems, helping find repair services in foreign ports, navigating passages, providing weather forecasts, finding crew, obtaining dockage, and even delivering your vessel to your dock or home port. We often support proud new owners aboard the maiden voyage to teach them the systems and show them the ropes. We where even line handlers for our friends going through the Panama Canal! Fun. Our promise is to provide you continuous service and support. Wherever your sailing adventures take you, we are a phone call away! … So we invite you to join the party. We would love to represent you. We will be YOUR Buyer’s Agent at no cost to you. We will help you find the right boat no matter where she is. We will help with everything before, during, and after your purchase. We do NOT just sell the boat to you and wave good bye. If fact, you are stuck with us.”

Well Kate and Bernie, guess what, you are stuck with us! Yes indeed, we asked them to be our buyer’s agent and have never regretted it! They encouraged us to go smaller even though that would have been less money for them. They showed us some beautiful boats  around 38′ and when we decided that was just too small with the dogs, we started looking for 44′ boats. They helped us eliminate boats from our list, a huge help, invaluable!

Kate told us that she had a listing coming onto the market in Florida that would work for us. What luck, coincedentally we needed to be in Deerfield Beach later that week for a meeting with a potential business client. Before leaving Maryland, we completed our internet search for other boats in the 44′ range that would meet our criteria. The pickings were slim but we sent a list of several boats to Kate for her opinion. We ruled out all but two; a Cheoy Lee Pilothouse Motorsailor ,and a Hans Christian Pilothouse sailboat. Kate really liked the Cheoy Lee for us. But, could we see it? Where was it? Florida is a big state. What luck, she was in Ft. Lauderdale thirty minutes from Deerfield Beach! Guess what? Bernie was already scheduled for a trip to Florida, what luck! Kate suggested that we check out the boat and if we liked it Bernie could extend his stay and inspect the boat. No more mention was made about Kate’s listing even though she would get twice the commission (they call that integrity). We were thrilled because, given our budget, on paper and in theory this was a perfect boat for us. What Luck!

But, would our luck hold out? Would the boat really be as nice as the listing made it seem? Only one way to find out! Kate made our appointment for the day before Bernie would be able to visit the boat. That way if we didn’t like her Bernie wouldn’t be wasting his time. We awaited the boat visit with eager anticipation. The boat’s name was “Kismet” and we had to wonder if that was an auspicious omen? Would Kismet be the one? Many years of planning had lead us her and she really was the only one on the market that met all of our criteria. Kismet even satisfied criteria we had given up on as unrealistic for our budget and for the size we want! So, did she live up to her listing?

WHAT LUCK!!! We loved her! Bernie loved her! The surveyor loved her! And we bought her for a great price!

In our five year search for the ideal floating home, we have come full circle; from motorsailor, to trawler, to catamaran, to sailboat, and back to motorsailor. This thrills us since it was what we both really wanted all along. It seems that our hearts already knew that we were destined to live on a motorsailor. We just had to go through the motions and when the time was right it all fell into place, it was Kismet!

She Passed the Survey!

Our future home is in fantastic condition! The surveyor was only able to find a few minor things to complain about. He was very impressed with the excellent maintenance work that the current owner has performed. The boat’s condition is fairly incredible given that she is thirty years old and has sailed from Hong Kong to the USA, plus up and down both American coasts. This is an excerpt from the surveyor’s report:

The vessel has recently been completely refinished and extensively refitted. The work has been carried out to an unusually high standard. The refit included replacement of most pumps, the batteries, through hull fittings and seacocks.”

We signed a whole bunch of papers and tomorrow we wire the rest of the money into the Rogue Wave Escrow Account! After that, more paperwork and an undetermined, but short, amount of waiting while the current owners move off. Then, she’s all ours!

They took our offer!!!

Wow, we have no words to describe our excitement. After years and years of dreaming and planning, it is finally happening! The next step is the haul-out, survey, and sea trial. Soon we will be moving aboard!!!

Stepped off the Edge

On the hard

Well we have made an offer on a beautiful motorsailor!

“With the pure cruising sailor as well as the power boater in mind, the Cheoy Lee 43′ Pilothouse Motor Sailor addresses the comfort, safety and bluewater aspirations of the serious yachtsman. For the sailor who values a warm and dry refuge while underway, the pilothouse provides a perfect environment in poor weather conditions. The extraordinary fuel capacity combined with the large diesel engine turns windless days into 200 mile/day passages. [She] will provide excellent sailing performance and offers the comfort of a huge live-aboard vessel that is ready to sail away in style. Her sail area to displacement ratio is in line with other performance cruisers. With a beam to waterline length ratio of 0.35 she is stiff, yet not so stiff that the concept of a sailboat is lost. Equally important is that the 43 is graceful under sail, easy to handle and quick to respond – a characteristic not known in the vast majority of motorsailors. Come preview this world cruiser and see for yourself how you can cruise in comfort and style without compromise.” – Broker’s Comments

The Game is Afoot

After years of preparation we have finally sold our house and jettisoned almost all of our stuff! Wow, thirty years of accumulation is a lot! We stored a few things, kept the trucks and dogs, and are now on the road in search of a boat that we can call home. We decided to go with a sailboat but not a racing/cruising boat, a long range bluewater boat preferably a motorsailer with a 80 – 140 hp diesel engine and large fuel and water tanks. Some people consider motorsailers the worst of both worlds but, for our needs, we see it as the best of both!