IMG_0362 (Large)Exactly one year ago Brian and I flew to La Paz, Mexico. Brian had a small sailboat stored at Marina De La Paz, which he had sailed from California to Mexico solo.

I had never been on a sailboat before. When we arrived at the dark marina that evening, I had no idea that all around me people were sleeping and living on the boats there. When I saw Brian’s 28′ boat for the first time, Leanne was in the boat next to us, quietly listening. I don’t remember what I said, but it must have been obvious I knew nothing about sailboats, marinas, or boating in general.

Leanne peeked out at me and began texting her friend Allyson, who also lives on a sailboat at the marina. They texted about whether I was wearing high heels (I wasn’t), my lack of sailing experience and the potentially rough winter weather in the Sea of Cortez. They placed bets on how long it would take for me to book the next flight back to the US.

1781518_10203273492656960_1013127472_oThese ladies are now some of my dearest friends. Also, I can now proudly call myself a sailor. In just one year I’ve been through the process of surveying and buying a sailboat, have weathered a serious storm, taken a three day sailing course, and learned how to happily live aboard a boat. I’ve also helped with the decommissioning and re-commissioning of our boat and braved a record setting hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific Basin while living aboard.

IMG_1619 (Large)Wow, what a year!

Through it all, my faithful, skilled and caring partner has helped me fall in love with sailing. I fell in love with him, too, and we got married. Now we live on our 39’ Catamaran a few months per year in Mexico and plan to cross the Pacific ocean next year.

My life has been changed so much by this new activity. I faced my fears of the ocean and learned to trust my boat and my partner. I got back into scuba diving when we installed a compressor on the boat. I even did my first night dive! I discovered a new way to live home-free, and made many new sailing friends.

IMG_7128 (Large)I have always enjoyed travelling abroad, and now my vision for world travel has shifted. Now I dream of scuba diving and kiteboarding while living on our boat in the South Pacific.

As I look out the door at the deep blue Sea of Cortez, it’s amazing to reflect on all that has happened during the last year. Sailing was always a vague interest of mine. It was an intriguing thought, a “someday I will” dream, and now it’s in every breath and every plan I make. I love the sailing life.

This morning I re-lived my early sailing days by reading my earlier blog posts about sailing in Mexico. I got a chuckle out of how easily frightened I would get on the little boat. I was such a boating virgin and those waves were big!


Lisa Hackett

About the Author

Hi, I’m Lisa. I’m a tall, blonde superhero and I live in a van. I do it all. I rappel big waterfalls, drive from Idaho to Alaska solo, live and work in a van in the wilderness and dodge encounters with wolves and bears. Seriously. More

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Lisa. I’m a tall, blonde superhero and I live in a van and on a sailboat with my superhero husband, Brian. I do it all. I rappel big waterfalls, scuba dive with sharks, dodge encounters with bears and wolves, and work remotely as a full time computer programmer.
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About the Van

Hi, I’m Vanifest. I’m a big, 4x4, off-the-grid van complete with solar panel for power. I'm a 2000 Dodge Ram Van and Lisa has had me since 2009. Read more about me here.


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