Our next adventure will be five weeks of cruising in Brian’s sailboat in Mexico on the Sea of Cortez! I have never sailed and have no idea what I’m getting myself into but that is usually how most of my adventures begin.

I hadn’t even seen a good picture of the boat I’d be living in, just an exterior photo from a distance and some of Brian’s vague descriptions of the features of the interior. It has a “composting toilet”, a “v-berth”, and a “marine stove” which hangs in mid-air on two strings. Fascinating. I don’t even know what these things are.

Off we went to Mexico. We arrived at the boat around 6 pm after a long day of flying. We took a cab from the airport to the La Paz Marina, where Brian’s boat has been waiting patiently for over a year. From the outside the boat looked great. It’s much bigger than the van we live in and seemed to have plenty of windows. Both of these discoveries delighted me.

20140105_164022 (Large)When Brian opened the door to the interior, it was hard to feel excited about making this our home for the next 5 weeks. Everything was pretty dirty but at least when I scanned the interior with my headlamp I found only one old spider web and no insects. The cushions on the sleeping area (the “v-berth”) were dirty and stained, and all we had between us was one thin, stiff sleeping bag with a rusted zipper and two limp pillows. The floor of the boat was covered in huge batteries – 8 of them to be exact. Navigating around the boat required acrobatic moves from couch to doorway to avoid stepping on the batteries.

We settled into the v-berth. I left my clothes on, not wanting my skin to touch the crusty cushions. A strange crackling sound filled the cabin of the boat. We listened closely and finally decided it must be the nocturnal shrimp in the ocean below. They had come out to feed and socialize in the dark. Brian had heard this same noise while scuba diving before. I loved the shrimp’s gentle sounds as they fed and communicated below the boat in the darkness. This night was getting better already.

As I lay there on the v-berth that night, I decided this boat needed an extreme makeover. I could see it had a lot of space and potential for being comfortable, but this was one serious bachelor pad.

The next morning Brian jumped out of bed at the first light and started removing all the batteries and filling big, black garbage bags with trash. Bless him. When I emerged from bed a couple hours later I found the boat looking much better. I started to fall in love with her as I noticed all the nice wood, well designed cabinets, ample couch space and abundant storage areas. Yes, this boat could make a good home.

20140105_165622 (Large)We organized the boat and then went to Wal-Mart, where I bought some nice bedding and ten pillows. Brian was very sweet to indulge my desires for soft, fluffy things aboard. When we returned to the marina, I pushed a huge cart full of assorted pillows down the deck and joked with our very friendly neighbors that I cleaned Wal-Mart out. I bought all their pillows. They laughed and watched me unload my new pillow collection. I went to work on the bed and after covering it with a mattress pad, new sheets and a pretty comforter the boat started to feel much more like home.

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

3 Responses to Sailboat Extreme Makeover – Bedroom

  1. Soooo envious but truly love reading about all your adventures, Lisa! Always makes me wish I had a job that was amenable to working remotely. Wondering now though how you get internet access on a boat in Mexico? Or did you just earn yourself 5 weeks of “vacation” from your remote job?
    Happy New Year, my superhero! As always, this aging weekend-adventure-diva-with-a-desk-job-and-no-hope-for-retirement-soon is looking forward to your next blog post. 🙂

    • lisa lisa says:

      Hi Sharon. We purchased an unlocked smart phone with a mexican sim card. It will provide data services for working while we’re near land and works great here in La Paz, Mexico. I’ll be working reduced hours from the boat. It will be nice to keep in touch with my employer while out at sea and be able to work on some projects.

  2. More please! Love to read your stuff.

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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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