I’ve never done anything more than daysailing, but I’ve been an armchair cruising enthusiast for many years and my older sister is an experienced live-aboard sailor. I have a secret fantasy of chucking the stress of jobs and a mortgage and selling all our belongings so my wife and I can drop out of society and bum around the Caribbean together for a couple of years. But sailboats are complicated and expensive.
Enter John Welsford’s Swaggie. At 18 feet long, it’s about the smallest sailboat designed to navigate open oceans. Not only can it handle two people and 2400 pounds of supplies, but its junk-rigged sail means that the boat can be handled entirely from inside the cabin; there’s no need to go up on deck in a nasty gale to trim the cloth. The inventiveness and efficiency of this boat makes it a central player in my island-bum fantasies.
Unfortunately, I doubt my wife would remain sane if she was cooped up with me in what amounts to a 100 sq. ft. apartment for months at a time. There’s good evidence that might be a little too much togetherness.