From Zero to a Hundred
They weren’t sailors, but they had spirit, and they were ready for a big change. A new catamaran and a couple of continents later, they got all that and more.
The clock was ticking, and vague notions of a winter home in Mexico weren’t quite cutting it.
Canadians Craig Acott and Laurie Bowers knew that they were right on track. They saw retirement looming after Craig’s successful career as a geological consultant and mining engineer and Laurie’s fulfilling years as a teacher and principal. Self-avowed nature lovers, they’d made trips to scope out properties south of the U.S. border. But still. They weren’t sure, and nothing was grabbing at them.
One thing was clear.
“Sitting around and taking care of a vacation home isn’t exactly what I thought we wanted to do when we finished work,” says Craig.
On a trip she took with her cousin, Laurie, a recreational ocean kayaker, found herself gliding along glasslike Cow Bay, off Prince Rupert, British Columbia. And there, she saw it, a two-hulled sailboat. But what was it?
Having never sailed, and completely unfamiliar with anything having to do with boats, much less hull design, Laurie went back home to Calgary and, with Craig, pieced together some notion of what she’d discovered.
The more they dug, the more they found. The learning curve had officially kicked in, whether or not they realized it. The next thing they knew, they were walking the docks and looking at boats at the spring 2007 Strictly Sail Boat Show in Oakland, California.
“We didn’t have the sailing language,” Laurie says. “We had nothing. We knew nothing about anything. But it was exciting. We saw that cruising on our own boat wasn’t going to be passive. It would challenge us physically and mentally. The only thing we understood was that this was for us. It’s the life we knew we wanted. We went from zero to a hundred.”