One Blue - Refit, live aboard, and fall in love all over again!

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We are Deb & Nick O’Rourke. We met in 1988 and it was truly love at first sight. Nick proposed some 6 weeks later, and we were married the following year. By 2008, we, seemingly, had it all: a 19-year marriage, two beautiful daughters, loving families, good health, good (but demanding) jobs, a lovely house, 2 nice cars, a cat and even a boat that we’d sailed as a family. Then it all went wrong. We ended up divorcing and experiencing our own adventures for the following 9 years. Fast forward to 2017 and an agreement to meet up after not even speaking to each other for about 8 years! Incredibly, it was like going back 29 years. In 2018 we sold the boat (Heavenly Twins 26ft) and in 2019 we bought a 38ft Broadblue sailing catamaran. We have been slowly refitting her ready to sail to the Med. By 2020, our daughters had flown the nest. We gave up our jobs and sold the house and almost everything we own to start new adventures – very much together. We’ve lived onboard for 10 months and in that time have worked and worked tirelessly to bring this boat up to spec. OnBlue is a sailing boat and that involves ropes (lines/sheets), sails, winches, shackles, cleats, decks, portholes, hulls, props, engines, electronics, electrics, plumbing and the like. Everything has to be maintained and kept in good working order so it works when we need it and we won’t be let down when we’re underway. We have maintained, upgraded and repaired a lot! It has been a full-time job for Nick since we bought her. He knows so much and has learned so much about all the systems on this boat. I don’t think there’s an inch of her that he isn’t familiar with. There remains one non-boat challenge if the cruising years ahead are to succeed. That is, how to navigate with Brexit, particularly the really restrictive 90 in 180 day rule for Schengen countries. This makes long distance/time sailing difficult for us, but we are nonetheless working on a strategy that will enable us to get south to the sun, away from England.

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