Sunday, January 29, 2012

Strictly Sail Chicago Trip

Our hotel near Navy Pier
So, what is wrong with sailors?  We travel long distances, pay admission fees, stay in over-priced hotels, pay waaaaaay too much for food and drink just to look at sailboats that we will never (and I mean never) be able to afford.  Well, it may be that sailors love to interact with other sailors, argue over the best brands, look for ideas to improve our own boats, or simply spend time dreaming about sailing.

It's 5 o'clock somewhere.  (Mike and Jim got their Drambuie later)

Brenda and I, along with our sailing buddies Jim and Joni, traveled down to Chicago for the Strictly Sail Show where we checked out all the beautiful sailboats and equipment.  Catalina, Hunter, Island Packet, Seaward, Jeanneau, Beneteau, Com-Pac, and others all had their latest and greatest offerings.  We spent all of Saturday looking them over as well as checking out all the supplier's booths.

Checking out the "purdy" boats

It is fun to look at all the whiz bang gadgets and fortunately we didn't find anything that we couldn't live without. Lots of stuff we wanted and maybe even lusted after, but nothing followed us home.  One highlight of the show was meeting Bob Bitchin of Lats and Atts fame.  We have always enjoyed his magazine and the DVD's of his TV show episodes.  He is a big man in frame and personality, so getting our picture taken with him was pretty cool.

Bob Bitchin

Another highlight was meeting the builder of our Com-Pac 19, Rich Hutchins.  It was fun to talk shop with him and look over the three CP's he brought to the show.

CP-23 Pilothouse
Com-Pac display

So, now that we know we can't afford a shiny new whiz bang special sailboat, we can happily go about our search for a used sailboat knowing that what we end up with will be much more suitable for blue water adventuring.
The view from our hotel was worth it!

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