I collected these names along our Loop but forgot to post this. It was fun to see all the clever names people come up with for their boats. Hope you enjoy!
Our boat came with her name and we loved it and never wanted to change it (other than maybe adding an apostrophe or a “g” to make it grammatically correct!). We are Makin Memories this year, as we believe them to be the best things in which to invest money.
Memories require no maintenance, dusting, sanding, painting, feeding, walking, fueling or upkeep. They are easy to share and help forge connections between us and new people we encounter. Memories are wonderful bridges to the pasts we have traveled with people we love in our family and in our group of friends. The fact that we embarked on a year-long cruise to raise awareness about Rotary’s CART (Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust) program is a fitting irony to our boat’s name! www.cartfund.org
As we have cruised, we have seen all kinds of boat names. Some make immediate sense and others need to be explained. Here are some of the ones we have come across so far that are worth noting.
COULD’VE HAD PEARLS
Enough said, right!?!?! Each of us could have chosen to spend our money differently but our point of intersection is that we didn’t! Living minimally aboard a boat reinforces what is important in life: experiences and people.
Short story: The boat is never allowed to go faster than one can hold a glass of wine without spilling it.
Long story: The owners live and have an outboard on Lake of the Ozarks which is long and narrow. They say that during nice weather people zoom up and down this narrow lake and the wakes all bounce off the shore creating a washtub effect. He says his wife hates the beating she takes under these conditions. She termed the speed that she likes to travel as “wine-speed,” which she says is a misnomer anyway because, like all good captains, they don’t drink while boating but wait until they return to shore. Again, this is the speed at which one can comfortably hold a glass of wine without spilling it.
When they bought their 50+ foot trawler (after they had had go-fast boats), he said it took a while to get used to how SLOW it went. So, when they were trying to think of names for it, they were thinking “Turtle” or “Tortuga” or something that moved slowly but then they thought, “Hey, Wine Speed is perfect!” and so the boat got her name.
Our new friends Jim and Allie Cantonis are on the Loop, starting a month behind us, from Tarpon Springs. They overtook us south of St. Augustine in the ICW, hailing us by name as they passed us – it sure made Jerry do a double take to hear his name rather than Makin Memories coming over the VHF radio!
They have a beautiful trawler named Meràki. When we asked what the name means, Jim explained that it is a Greek word that is usually used in a phrase about how one does something and it is actually me-meràki or “with Meràki.” Meràki literally translates from the Greek as doing something with love, passion, a lot of soul, in short with everything you have. What a great name for a boat that is embarked on the Great Loop adventure!
Jim Cantonis aboard Meràki, Allie at the helm.
Courteous captains will radio a boat they want to pass and ask them which side they prefer to be passed on. This gives the other captain a chance to slow or stop his boat, allowing the overtaking boat to make a slow pass and avoid rolling the overtakee. Not all captains are courteous however and some will just blow by you, in spite of Coast Guard regs that state that you are responsible for any and all damage caused by your wake.
Such was the case with Sarah-dippity (stupid name anyway). Her captain sped by us in a narrow channel, throwing a huge wake which tossed us all over the place and then he proceeded to scream by the sailboat ahead of us. I swear I thought it was going to roll far enough over for its mast to touch the water on both sides. I re-christened that sport fisherman Sarah-Dip-Shit! Pardon the language but as Jerry says, “Dicks come in all shapes and sizes!” This captain should have heeded this message we saw painted on a bridge just south of Troy, NY.
In the first couple of months of our trip, we have met several youngish men who are doing the Loop solo, by choice. Not wanting to pry, my curiosity is unsatisfied as to whether the Loop is a space between significant chapters of their lives, a bucket-list kind of thing, a conscious seeking of a minimalist lifestyle or something entirely different.
We sit in the Cape Fear River navigation and weather briefing classroom in Southport, NC with a young man who has just bought his boat in Charleston and started on the Loop four days prior to our meeting, with no real boating experience. He was to have had some training before his departure but an emergency root canal laid him out for the 10 days that he was supposed to have trained and so he is figuring it out as he goes.
His boat’s name is Tyro (Tie-roh). When I ask about it, he explains that the word comes from the Latin tiro, which means “young soldier,” “new recruit,” or more generally, “novice.” He goes on to explain that Herman Melville used “tyro” to describe men new to whaling and life at sea. He says if he fails in this endeavor, the guys who tow him back in will shake their heads and say, “Eh, it’s to be expected, he’s a tyro.” BUT if he finishes the Loop and crosses his wake in Charleston next year, people will be impressed that he did it and say “Wow, he’s a tyro and he made it!” Gotta love a guy who is prepared for the worst but who is expecting the best!
THE COAST STARLIGHT
In Mystic, CT we are docked at the Mystic Seaport Museum and have been befriended by Lyn and Bob aboard the Albin 36 trawler named Coast Starlight. We enjoy a cool but sunny afternoon sitting on their flying bridge, snacking on excellent peanut butter cookies and sharing boat tales. They are not doing the Loop but bring their boat to Mystic from Rhode Island on a regular basis to visit with friends, always accompanied by their napkin-munching dog named Harry.
When I ask about the boat’s name, Lyn explains that they were not fond of the name the boat came with and that this was the last chance Bob was going to have to name anything the Coast Starlight. They go on to explain that the Coast Starlight was the train trip (now run by Amtrack) that was the luxurious and romantic way to see the West Coast back when Bob was young. It is the longest continually running train route in the U.S. and is widely regarded as one of the most spectacular of all U.S. rail trips, linking the greatest cities of the West Coast. It runs from Seattle to Los Angeles, via Portland, Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay area and Santa Barbara with numerous other stops as well.
Bob claims that the scenery is unsurpassed, allowing excellent views of the snow-covered Cascade Range, Mount Shasta, lush and dense forests, fertile valleys filled with farms that grow much of our country’s produce and then there are the breath-taking stretches along the Pacific Ocean shoreline.
It sounds like the trip of a lifetime and when I do further research, I find that this 36 hour train ride still exists, is not unreasonably priced and that perhaps it is something that should go on our life-list of things to experience!
SLOOP DU JOUR
Just a clever name
I have only seen this boat in a blog about two young women who delayed starting grad school for the life experience provided by doing the Loop. I really enjoy reading their insights and impressions of the journey but I LOVE the name of their boat.
From her co-captains, Emily and Grace; “Elpis, from Greek mythology, is the spirit of hope- specifically the spirit that stayed behind to help mankind when all the contents of Pandora’s Box were released. Hope is one of the most powerful forces in the world, and when there is nothing else left, there is still hope.” (https://emandgracegosailing.wixsite.com/greatloop)
Louise and Dick have a hard time understanding why people ask them why their boat is named Nine Lives (she’s a 44’ Endeavor Power-Cat or Power-Catamaran for those unfamiliar with that term). If you still don’t get it, email me!
SAIL LA VIE
Another Clever Sailboat Name
When I ask Nick to tell me about his boat’s name, he explains that Kailani is a Hawaiian term that combines the words for sea and sky. “We are almost always on the sea and we’re always under the sky,” he said, “but there is another twist to it and that is that if you take our last name’s initial it is “C” and my wife owns a virtual store named Sky. She designs Victorian dresses for avatars in an online virtual world. So, that’s another C+Sky!
Man, you hear some interesting origins for people’s boat names!
No photo but when asked, “It relaxes and takes our layers of stress away,” say Art and Sue! I suspect there is more to this name!
FRIENDS IN L’EAU PLACES
Saw this and thought of all our friends who are Jimmy Buffet fans!
This is really the name for all of our boats at one time or another!
We met Wayne (a fellow Rotarian from the Ingersoll Ontario Club) and Lori in Campbellford, Ontario. We leap-frogged with them up to Orillia on Lake Simcoe. I asked Lori about their boat’s name and she said that Wayne used to be a frozen meat broker and then when he retired he became an icemaker for the local curling club where he competes. He has been curling since he was 10 and apparently curling ice is different than hockey ice. Who knew!?!?!
I also love the fact that during the summer Iceman’s fenders are always deployed for lock navigation and the fender holders double as flower boxes once they hit Ottawa and are done with customs so they can buy flowers!
No photo of this 50+ foot cabin cruiser that blew by us too quickly to get a shot. Her name definitely reflects her captain’s taste for speed though!
We met First Forty in the Keys and then again in Alton, Illinois where we traveled together off and on down the river system. They put an offer in on their boat and went out to dinner to celebrate their anniversary, hoping their offer would be accepted. At dinner, Bill toasted Bobbie, “Here’s to the first forty!” She replied, “If we get the boat, I think we just named her!” They got the boat!
FOLIE A DEUX
Our friends Mark and Meridee inherited the name when they bought their boat and decided it was suitable enough to keep. The term is in the DSM-V and is defined as two people having an identical delusion – believing something to be true which clearly could not be. This is called a folie a deux, or sometimes a “shared psychotic disorder.” This unusual disorder is more likely to occur in a closely related pair, like twins, or a married couple, who are isolated from other people. Folie à deux means “shared madness,” or “madness for two” in French. We decided that all Loopers might be termed folie à plusieurs (“madness of several”)!
I put this one in for Paul Donovan!!! Thought it was a pretty clever play on words!
And here’s the last one! Hope you enjoyed the cleverness of our fellow boaters!
Just to add , we just named our new boat with our wedding song, SO HAPPY TOGETHER, we b
ought a small turtle decal also.
Great post, captain. I did the West Coast run on the Starlight (1976). It was great. Enjoy the blogs. Happy belated birthday to the “other” captain.
These are so funny! “DIESELICIOUS!” is my favourite!!! I own a lot of boats and considering to change some of names after reading this article. LOL.