Moving House

Typically, when people move, they pack up their belongings, load them into a truck and drive to the new house. They then unload their stuff, put it all away in the new location and get to know the neighbors. When we move house, we mean that our house is actually moving. “Packing up” has a different meaning for us. (Chiefly, it means packing every square inch of storage space with food and spare parts!)

One major difference between a catamaran and a monohull is basic stability. Catamarans want to be level, which is to say that they have a strong righting moment. To reach this balance, they may make shorter, jerkier movements than a monohull, but the end result is that they are a basically stable platform. My countertops don’t have fiddles, for example (the raised edges to keep things from sliding off.) That doesn’t mean things don’t slide, though. I’ve figured out through trial and error what must be put away and what I can leave out. (Cantaloupes have to be put away.) A monohull can spend hours, or days at a 30˚ angle or greater. They have things like gimbaled stoves and pot clamps. Not only do they heel, but they also roll. Their movement is often more rhythmic and predictable, though, so some people prefer them to cats for that reason.

How does this affect the house when it moves? If you live on a monohull, all the cabinets and lockers have locking mechanisms. Everything must be stowed carefully and locked away before leaving the dock or anchorage. If your boat is your house, this can be daunting. For us, although there is a place for everything, not everything is always in its place. If we want to go somewhere with our boat, though, we just make sure nothing is precariously balanced or poised to cause injury or damage. Then we go.

When we left Boot Key Harbor, the seas were a bit rowdy. I did more than one walk-through of the boat trying to make sure we had stowed anything that might become a projectile. I was pleased to see that the shelving Jay put in my pantry keeps my mason jars safe in pretty rough chop. We had neglected to completely stow everything in the cockpit and on deck, but after things calmed down a bit, we were able to do some last-minute tidying-up.

So now the house is moving. When we get to the next anchorage, we won’t have much unpacking to do, so we can skip straight to exploring and getting to know the new neighbors.