Woman does not live by work alone, at least not this woman. After several years of research (you’re surprised?), and a major setback to new boat plan A when the “great recession” hit, we contracted late last summer for a brand new American Tug 34, hull #136. Think custom software project using a proven object model and agreed preferred architectural behaviors (why would you do otherwise?).
I know I drove the very knowledgeable dealer, Greg Clark of Traditional Yachts, crazy with my attention to detail and process, but the results were well worth the effort. Tomco Marine, the boat’s builder, in LaConner Washington, did a great job, according to both Ron and the marine surveyor we hired to do QA reviews along the way. There were no significant change orders, no unpleasant surprises, and no cost overruns even though there were changes in subsystems and components along the way. Nothing in our world, or the world of boatbuilding, stays the same for more than a minute, but a great workplan, architecture and team allow needed changes to be accommodated without undue disruption of the timeline or budget.
We’re beyond excited as we await SmartyPants’ arrival, perhaps on my sister’s 70th birthday March 29th (a propitious day if ever there was one), at Gulf Marine on San Carlos Island, where she’ll be offloaded. Dealer and commissioning/electronics expert will be here to greet her, see her safely offloaded and reassembled (some disassembly is needed to allow such a big boat to meet trucking requirements as well as to ensure that nothing gets broken along the way), do some final installation of electronics and Naomi-related “configurations” (like putting the handhold exactly where I need it when I come up the swim ladder out of the water and onto the swim platform), and get her launched. After that, there’s the simple matter of learning how to sail her (drive her?) and how everything works. There are about 8 linear inches of manuals, not to mention all the online stuff, so Ron will be VERY busy digging into the detailed operation of every onboard system, appliance, and gizmo. I’ll concentrate initially on learning how to man the helm and use all the navigational gear, but eventually I’ll have to master everything too — quite a challenge with my day job.
Many of you have asked for pictures, so I’m including a few here — Naomi’s industrial strength swim ladder, her last week in the factory, and the main salon/Naomi’s office — with more to come in later posts. So now you can take your pick: follow the Yellow Brick Road to drive your own organization’s business outcomes or follow the adventures of M/V SmartyPants.