We also learned from Matt, our affable sailing instructor, how to tie lines like a sailor (power boaters go round and round and round in knots), and how to laugh at anyone silly enough to be caught out sailing with fenders still hanging over the rails. Most importantly, Matt taught us that sailing is “all about lookin’ good!” Thanks Matt!
In 2007 the decision was made to sell the much loved Sandpiper and buy the “dream” boat. Now, looking for a dream boat has nothing to do with being practical, this is all about romance and escapism, and above all else, “lookin’ good”. Our dream boat would be special; not brand new but one that previous owners had loved and cherished. She had to be an American design but with traditional lines, be sea worthy, sail well, have a good reputation, be big enough to live on for a year or more yet small enough for two of us to handle.
Bristol Rose is a Shannon 43, hull # 51, launched in 2002. She is the second-to-last of the 43’ hulls made by Schulz Boat Company in Bristol, Rhode Island. Walter Schulz’s experience working with boats began when he was still at school. In February 1975, he began construction on his own design, Shannon 38 hull number one, in the same building that now houses the Herreshoff Museum. The boat was unveiled at the Annapolis Boat Show in October 1975. In the Fall of 1985, the first Shannon 43 was shown at the Annapolis Boat Show. Schulz named his Shannon yachts after the Shannon River in Ireland, where both his grandmothers were raised.
So what’s it like owning a Shannon? The first thing you notice is a lot of rubber necking. If we are in a slip people stop to admire her. We are often asked, “What type of boat is that”? Our favorite was when a woman walking past stopped and asked, “Is that really a Shannon?” She had never seen one up close but like us, dreamed of owning one.