Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Boat Cards!
By Michael

Two big steps this week: boat cards and a mailing address.

Hoping to get carded
I didn't get the whole boat card thing before we left on our first trip. We had cards on board the first Del Viento only because someone gave them to us as a goodbye gift (thank you Larry). We were soon glad we had them. Cruising is a very socially transient lifestyle. Boat cards were a way for us to remember the folks we ran into. I can thumb through our collection from 15 years ago and recall people and events I may have well forgotten.
Rather than a photo on our cards this time, I commisioned a nautical artist in Washington state to sketch our boat. I heard  about Jeff Orlando from a post by Andiamo III, about how he drew the picture of their boat on their cards. When I got to Jeff's site, I liked his gallery of drawings and boat cards he's done for others. Using just a few pictures of our boat and a description of the scene I wanted, he did an outstanding job. He was generous with his time and just a nice guy.

Of course, before we could get our cards, we needed a mailing address to put on them. We ended up using St.Brendan's Isle. While I like the folksy, mom-and-pop quality of their competitor, Voyagers Mail Forwarding Service, SBI's reputation is stellar and they offer a mail scanning service that may alleviate the need for most physical mail forwarding. Though, given that all of our banking and billing has been paperless and online for years, we don't get a lot of mail that will have to be forwarded. But they also offer a service whereby they will acquire a boat part for you at their discounted rate and ship it out right away.
In either case, it is going to cost us about a quarter-boat-buck per year, and both companies will take care of renewing our USCG documentation each year (why isn't that online yet?!). We considered asking family to handle our mail, but the knowledge these cruiser-oriented companies have in getting shipments to far flung places in the least time, with the least hassle, and at the least expense, is worth the expense, I hope. I've heard countless stories of cruisers waiting months for a package, never getting a package, extorted by customs officials, or all of the above.

It's pretty exciting to have a new address (though Florida doesn't feel like us, neither of us has any association with the place--and I meant to put our boat's Washington, D.C. hailing port on the cards and forgot). It is one more bit of tangible evidence that this huge thing is actually coming to pass.



  1. I'm getting excited with/for you!

  2. The cards turned out beautiful! And thank for all the very useful links!


Thank you for taking the time to comment; we look forward to reading your feedback. Don't forget that you may also contact us directly at (please type DEL VIENTO in the subject line)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...