On Saturday, I went to the Toronto Boat Show. I've never been to one, and didn't really know what to expect.
My friend Col and I arrived early in the morning, to avoid the crowds. The first thing we saw at the entrance was a huge powerboat worth around $400,000. All leather and lights, it would fly atop the waves. Electronic removable hardtop, two roomy bathrooms with showers, autopilots, barbecues… With the twin 500ph motors, it was a perfectly phallic mid-life crisis moment. The floating Porsche.
We crawled over a few of these, and they all seemed the same. Plush, comfy, and incredibly expensive to run. $500 of fuel will get you to the horizon. But boring.
Then we headed over to the sailboats, and that's where I fell in love. Not with Col (although many of the vendors assumed we were a couple), but with the boats. Balancing at the bowsprits of the 3 Beneteau yachts, we analyzed the benefits and drawbacks of each.
Then we headed over to the Hunter yachts. Similar qualities, just a little uglier. Then the Jenneau's: They were more expensive and nicer outside. But inside there were problems. Random steps with no apparent use, laid out in a claustrophobic way… not somewhere I'd want to spend a lot of time.
We checked out a 34' Tartan yacht, and it was beautiful (and expensive). Full of dark wood, it was cozy and reminded me of being in a humidor. When we climbed off, I commented to the salesman that "of all the yachts we've been on today, this is definitely the nicest." He just turned away…
We saw a few others, but nothing really struck our fancy. Unfortunately, there were no Nordhavn's, Selene's, or Kadey Krogens. Those would have been nice...
Getting thirsty, we headed over to the snack bar. $8 for two small Minute Maid OJ's. Yup.
Not long after that, we left. The crowds were starting to get thicker and we'd seen all we came to see.
The followup? I'm hooked. I want to buy a yacht, find an internet-based job or one that only requires face-to-face meetings a couple of times a year, sail to warmer climates, and live "the life."
If Toronto didn't freeze every winter, I'd be happy to live aboard here! The 37' Beneteau yacht was 1/2 the price of a basic condo in the city, and the docking fees are pretty similar to condo maintenance.
OLK is really lucky I didn't take out a mortgage on a $175,000 floating home...