November 1, 2007
By Jeff Merrill
“Alanui” means “pathway” in Hawaiian and it is now the means of a path for Scott and Marian Bulger who left dirt dwellership a few months ago to set off on a multi-year adventure roaming the high seas. Kicking off their destinations-driven voyage is participation in the FUBAR Odyssey – a powerboat caravan that will depart this week from Southern California to La Paz, Mexico. They will be one of several Nordhavns participating including PAE’s own Nordhavn 55 Pacific Escort, which will be manned by a strong Leishman family contingent– P.AE. owners, Jim and Jeff, Nordhavn sales reps Eric and James, along with their cousin, Drew. Go to www.fubarodyssey.com to sign up for reports or visit the Nordhavn Voyages page of this website to read blog reports from Jim Kirby on board Pacific Escort
After spending the last year or so tinkering with add-ons and doing local northwest cruising, the FUBAR Rally will be the perfect venue for them to ease into their new life of exotic exploration. And you can follow along with the Bulgers via their blog www.alanui.talkspot.com.
Scott and I have become good friends since I helped him purchase Alanui as a used Nordhavn 40II and we regularly talk on the phone and exchange emails. Scott was very involved as the moderator for the PUP list (Passagemaking Under Power), an online forum that spun off of trawlerworld which is also great source of information for trawler cruisers. He has owned other power boats and is a smart boater.
Selling your home and car, marrying off your daughters and taking off in your new Nordhavn are momentous occasions that usually occur in the span of one’s lifetime. But for the Bulgers, all of these events occurred since last spring and they are enjoying their new lifestyle immensely. And this freedom does open up a lot of possibilities, especially with a Nordhavn that has been optimized to cruise in luxury and comfort.
But this little story is meant to be about planning and coordinating some of the little things and how PAE helps our owners accomplish this. Those of you true gear heads who follow car track racing may laugh at this comparison, but Alanui recently made a pit stop in Dana Point (measured in minutes, not seconds, we are still in the realm of trawler speeds here) that I think is a nice reminder of the “service first” attitude Nordhavn personnel emulate.
As Scott was coming down the coast he ordered a new laptop and asked if he could ship it to our sales office in Dana Point for retrieval once he got into town. No problem, we said. Anything else? Well, maybe a letter or two and some important paperwork that is part of the upcoming FUBAR. I got the laptop and mail, brought it to my home so that Scott could drive down in a rental car from Santa
Barbara for an early morning pick up. My wife Pam and our kids were getting ready for school when Scott pulled in to our driveway – he looked a little bleary eyed from his “watch” driving through the LA morning commute by car – but was in good spirits. Scott dangled his key ring in front of me and Pam and philosophized that one way to measure life and happiness is by counting the number of keys you need; he had one for Alanui and one for his tender (not counting the rental car key). It got me thinking…
A couple of days later Scott called to say he wanted to add to his inventory of zincs and pick up a 5 gallon container of hydraulic oil so he talked with Jeff Sandahl in our parts department and placed an order. With Alanui being in Southern California there was no need to ship these parts. How about a fly by pick up from the dock?
An early morning departure from Newport Beach saw Alanui arrive in DP around 10am. Jeff Sandahl had all of the zinc kits packed and ready. We got Scott tied up and he walked up to our parts department to see our operation and fill out some paperwork. We rolled the spares down to the boat, handed them off and within 15 minutes Alanui was leaving Dana Point. Part of the urgency for this choreography was to keep Alanui heading south with minimum delay to make sure they arrived in San Diego before dark.
Our parts department sends out boat gear to Nordhavn owners all over the world and we keep a pretty good inventory of “consumables” like zincs for just this type of request. This is the first will call stop-and-go delivery that I have been a part of and yet I can humorously foresee a drive through window in the future for Nordhavns heading up and down the coast…you want fries with that??
Around 19:00 my phone rang and it was Scott. He and Marian had safely arrived in San Diego and were tied up for the evening. I looked outside and saw a glimmer of light left in the sky. Their direct path south made it with a little time to spare, thanks in part to the quick pit stop in DP.
Jeff Merrill is a representative in the Nordhavn Yachts Southwest sales office. He can be e-mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.