Babies, super yachts, and cruising rock stars

After a long day at FLIBS (Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show) we return up the New River via water taxi.

After a long day at FLIBS (Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show) we return up the New River via water taxi.

by Christine Kling

How many people get to use those terms in one headline? More and more I have come to understand that I am one of the most fortunate people in the world.

Wayne and I flew from Fiji back to South Florida in order to be here for the birth of baby Liam, our first grandson. He is perfect in every way, not the least of which the little tyke had the good sense to be born during the month that hosts BOTH the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show and the Seven Seas Cruising Association Gam.


I’m loving being a grandma!


So last weekend we spent two long days walking through the tents at FLIBS. Usually, this show has not so much to offer for the the average cruising sailor. It is primarily a powerboat show and a super yacht show at that. However, this brings out all the big manufacturer with their top tech guys in attendance. All the engine, refrigeration, electronics, water maker, etc. top folks are there. We talked to them all!

And Wayne had some wild ideas for a new dinghy!

And Wayne had some wild ideas for a new dinghy!

Now we have just returned from the SSCA Gam where we got to rub shoulders with the likes of Nigel Calder and Pam Wall and they are the rockstars of the cruising sailors’ world.

So, I just have one thing to say – thank you Liam and keep up the good work, kiddo!

Fair winds!


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About Christine Kling

I have spent more than thirty years living on and around boats and cruising the waters of the North and South Pacific, the Atlantic, and the Caribbean. I’ve written articles and stories for many boating publications including Sailing, Cruising World, Motor Boating & Sailing, and The Tiller and the Pen. When I was married, I helped my husband build a 55-foot custom sailing yacht. After launching her, we sailed through the Panama Canal to St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands where we chartered for over two years. While in the islands, I received my 100-ton Auxiliary Sail Captains license. It was that sailing experience that led me to set my first nautical suspense novel, SURFACE TENSION (2002), on the waterfront in Fort Lauderdale. Featuring Florida female tug and salvage captain, Seychelle Sullivan, the first book was followed by CROSS CURRENT (2004) and BITTER END (2005). The fourth book in the series, WRECKERS’ KEY was released in February 2007. At the end of the 2010-11 academic year, I took the motto of this blog to heart. I quit my day job as an English professor at Broward College in Fort Lauderdale (just when they offered me tenure, I said no thanks and took early retirement). I was living the dream of full-time cruising on board my 33-foot Caliber Talespinner on my very tiny pension and whatever I made from my books having parted ways with the big publishing establishment. I self-published two books on my own: a small collection of four short stories entitled SEA BITCH: Four Tales of Nautical Noir and my first stand-alone sailing thriller set in the Caribbean, CIRCLE OF BONES. In 2012 I was offered a publishing deal with Amazon's mystery/thriller imprint Thomas&Mercer and they reissued CIRCLE OF BONES. The sequel to that book, DRAGON'S TRIANGLE came out in June 2014. And as for me, I'm no longer a singlehander on my little boat. I met Wayne Hodgins in 2013 and after a whirlwind Skype courtship, I flew to meet him in Fiji and we sailed a nearly 2000 mile passage to the Marshall Islands for our "first date." We now sail together aboard LEARNATIVITY, a 52-foot motor sailor with our family including Barney, the Yorkshire Terror and Ruby, the Wonder Dog.
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