The first question, though I have come to expect it, always catches me off guard. Have you ever walked into someone's house and said, "Wow! Beautiful home!! How much did this cost and how EVER do you afford your mortgage?!" or when you first meet someone do you ask, "Really? An investment banker? Interesting. What are investment bankers bringing in these days?" I realize the question is innocent and I understand that people are curious about our lifestyle. The fact that we live a pretty publicly documented existence (thanks to this blog) outside of what is "normal" seems to trump social mores and give people a free pass to ask personal questions that most would never dream of asking in everyday situations. Even knowing this I am still caught off guard when someone asks us about our finances. I've touched on it before, but without getting too specific, the reason we are able to afford our roving lifestyle really boils down to five things:
- We had/have zero debt
- We had a nice little nest egg to start off with (thanks to our wedding)
- We owned nothing of any real value on land (like a house)
- Scott is a working captain on a steady rotation so we have a reliable income stream
- We live a relatively "simple" life and spend significantly less on day to day life than our land-lubbing counterparts
The other question we field all the time is "How long will you do this?" It's another one we never really have a concrete answer for because, honestly, we don't know. People jump right in and ask us about homeschooling Isla inquiring whether she'll go to a public high school or not. High school!? She's not even out of diapers yet. Truth is, we haven't really thought that far ahead. I've never been much of a "planner" and instead tend to live my life by putting one foot in front of the other, ceasing opportunities as they present themselves. If we are still cruising when it's time for Isla to go to school (which I think is age 5?), we will absolutely homeschool (to be honest, I believe very strongly that Scott and I would provide a far superior education for our children than any conventional school would). As far as high school is concerned, well, if she's anything like her mama we will most likely be shipping her off to military school (I kid...sort of). We'll just have to cross that bridge when we come to it. So, back to the main question... how long will we do this? The bottom line is that we plan to live like this as long as we enjoy it. When we bought this new boat (being that it was a significant investment) we committed to five more years. That said, we might sail for five more years, ten more years, or we might cut that short if need be - we have no idea. We definitely plan to have more children (see, I do plan!) and we'll be making trips back home to have those. Or maybe we won't. Maybe we'll have them in Australia or Panama or somewhere else. We don't really know. But as long as we all enjoy what we're doing out here, we'll keep on keeping on.
What other questions do people have out there? Feel free to ask us on our Facebook Page where I post and interact daily!