55 and Feeling Alive: Retirement, and (Literally) Sailing into the Sunset

The Log’s Kevin Davis is days away from retirement. He and his wife are heading out to sea. Are they ready for the next chapter of their lives?

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA—It’s time to say goodbye – to this column, and to The Log’s Kevin Davis. Yes, you read that right: this is the final installment of Nautical Banter. We started this column in June 2019, with the intent of having fun and insightful conversations about boating. Davis, who is a liveaboard boater and sales director for The Log, enthusiastically agreed to partner up with me on this column – and we had many great talks. We talked about the life of a liveaboard, enjoying food aboard your boat, vessel maintenance, pet health and boater bars, amongst other topics.

You also read it right, when I mentioned we’re bidding adieu to Mr. Davis. Our sales director is retiring. We decided to do one more Nautical Banter before he leaves us for good – and by leaving us for good, we don’t just mean the office and company. Davis and his wife are boarding their boat – Indy Sent Lady – and heading south of the border, where the hope to soak up some sun, enjoy a steady dose of adult beverages, and (when not drinking) navigate the world.

I threw a few questions toward Davis, hoping to get inside his head and figure out how he’s feeling about his impending retirement. What follows is our conversation. Hopefully we’ll find a way to reunite at a later date. But, for now, this is our last Nautical Banter together.

Parimal M. Rohit: Kevin, first, congratulations on reaching retirement! Has reality set in yet, or does retirement still feel like some far-flung goal that’s still a long way away? 

Kevin Davis: Thank you. My wife and I are both excited. Reality has yet to sink in. I don’t know when it will. We have lots to do before setting sail next March. We’re pretty busy.

 

PMR: You served as the sales director of The Log for nearly a year. What did you enjoy during your time with us? 

KD: I’ve known The Log for years. I actually worked with The Log before Duncan owned it. As a boater I’ve always appreciated the content and information that The Log provides. It’s been a pleasure working with you and everyone at The Log.

 

PMR: It’s common knowledge amongst our readers that you live aboard your boat with your wife in Long Beach. You’re living the dream – retiring on your boat and moving to Mexico. What sort of preparations do you have to go through to make this a reality? 

KD: It’s been a long haul. Making the decision to retire and sail to Mexico was not a tough one, but keeping our focus to this point has been. We’ve had multiple things get in our way, everything from jobs out of state, economic times, to just staying the course. However, the end game is now upon us. We feel the anticipation and excitement mounting. Over the last year and a half, we’ve done a lot of retrofitting our boat – from a new mainsail, new instruments, adding a few creature comforts – too many things to list. Let’s just say we’ve become quite intimate with our boat over the past year. We’ve also been honing our sailing skills, reading lots about the sail down, watching lots of videos about sailing, etc. Then there is the documentation and paperwork needed for Mexico, not to mention getting things in States set up as well. Lots of things left to do still.

 

PMR: What challenges did you have to overcome to make retiring on your boat a reality? 

KD: The biggest challenge was making the decision and sticking with it. I believe it’s tough for most of us to figure out an exit strategy from normal working life. Not to mention the enormous amounts of roadblocks that are either in our way or will get in our way. Sometimes it’s just pure luck and the way things go, other times it’s a struggle. Most of the struggle comes from believing in what you want, not giving up, or getting distracted.  We’ve had many days that we’ve said, ‘What the hell are we doing?’ However, we remind ourselves to ‘adapt and overcome.’

 

PMR: Why Mexico? 

KD: What was the appeal of retiring south of the border? We’ve been going to Mexico for years. We love its culture and its people. The Sea of Cortez is our first stop. We look forward to enjoying its beauty for at least a few years.

 

PMR: What do you anticipate retired life to be like? 

KD: I have no idea at this point. I look forward to finding out. I’ve told my wife, it’s not a new chapter for us, it’s a whole new book!

 

PMR: Do you think there might come a time where you have the itch to un-retire and work again? 

KD: I do see that happening. However, never say never.

 

PMR: Finally, what are your plans in retirement? Any bucket list items you’d like to mark off? 

KD: Plans are one day at a time. I’ve never kept a bucket list, don’t plan to start now. My/our course in life has taken us to so many places and allowed us to do so many things without having a bucket list. It’s been a lot like sailing. We’ve relied on the wind to kind if carry us. Adios amigos!

 

Thank you, Kevin, for your words and your work. On behalf of everyone at The Log, we wish you and your wife well in retirement. To our readers – we hope you enjoyed Nautical Banter, and we look forward to evolving our news reporting and boating coverage.

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