Ah the things that no one told us about becoming livaboards. I was musing on this while driving back from our storage locker the other day. Don't get me wrong, we love our life aboard. It's just that there are a few things it might've been nice if someone had mentioned, like, for example:
1) No, you're never getting rid of all the stuff you put in storage. A lot of that is going to wind up being memorabilia, family stuff with no one to give it to, and things that are "too nice to get rid of" even though you have absolutely no way to use them right now. That's why you got the storage locker, right?
2) Your car is a closet. It's an accessory wing on your boat, home to stuff you use occasionally but not often enough to be willing to trip over on a daily basis. For this reason, the cars of most liveaboards look like homeless people are living in them, or that you just got kicked out of your apartment.
3) If you can't find something, it's generally because of one of two reasons. A. It's such a large space that it could be anywhere or, B. Its under/over/behind something else. Virtually everything on your boat falls into the "B" category. All of the storage lockers on any boat are weirdly shaped. Absolutely nothing is square. The thing you're looking for is the thing that's behind those other two things that are currently wedged into that trapezoidal storage space.
4) Yes, it's going to get damp. Wrap it in plastic. Then you will have a damp thing wrapped in damp plastic. It's just the way of things.
5) Anything with "marine" in the name will cost 200% more than the same thing without "marine" in the name. Hence: brass bolt $.50, brass marine bolt $1.50. This becomes more pronounced the more expensive items become.
6) Yeah, that's damp too.
7) You have plenty of room in the freezer/fridge/cooler for all the foods that you just don't feel like eating tonight, guaranteeing that they'll go bad by the time you do feel like eating them.
8) There is, however, no room for the roast that you got on a bargain that you wanted to cook this weekend.
9) Yes, it's damp in the cooler too. Sensing a trend here?
10) The night you desperately needed to sleep, the wind will kick up and slam you into the dock every six seconds for the next five hours.
11) The boat will leak. Not from the bottom. Boats almost never leak from the bottom. No, it will leak from the top. Every rainstorm, the hatches, the deadlights, the place where the grabrail is bolted in. . .all of them will suddenly decide to leak. You will never find where the water is actually coming from. Slathering it with caulk is ugly and will work until it decides not to, usually on the hatch that's directly over where you're trying to sleep.
12). . . .which is now damp.
13) The outside of boats get dirty, especially if near highways or cities. They get dirty for no damn reason at all. They get dirty just sitting there. They get dirty and then they get algae growing on them. That's because they're . . .well. . .damp.
14) There is no way to avoid having to get up an move every time anyone else needs to get up and move. It's a kind of weird ballet everytime anyone needs to get up in the galley to use the head. The only one who won't get up on a bet to get out of the way is the cat. We like to refer to him as "ballast".
15) Look under the mattress. For some reason, it's damp down there too.
All that being said, there is no place else we'd rather be living. At least I don't have to cut the grass.