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On the day after we moved onboard, we were sitting quietly inside when we heard a big clap of thunder. We all stepped into the cockpit, and witnessed a black sky to the East, over Tampa Bay, barreling in our direction. It was the rainy season and we were going to get our first big blow! WHOOP!!!

Brian quickly checked our lines and he did it just in time because, within a few minutes, we were hit with 30 mph sustained winds! No Tan Lines creaked and moaned against her constraints and the bucking bronco effect began! Mason, who was afraid of storms when we moved to Florida six years ago, was laughing and dancing on the stern, waving his arms and feeling the wind racing through his hair.

Max came out to the cockpit to enjoy the show. A few minutes after that, we all raced down the companionway when sideways rain started splattering the deck. We closed the door and listened to the beautiful symphony of the downpour above our heads, the lines creaking, the halyards clanging…and the drip drip drip of leaks that we suddenly learned we had!

Richard grabbed a yellow sticky pad and started labeling where all the leaks were so we could remember them later, after the storm subsided. The excitement didn’t last long and, I admit, it was a bit scary in the beginning. But, No Tan Lines came through it just fine.

The very next day, we got another one but this time the winds were 40 mph sustained! Whoop again!! Now that we knew No Tan Lines would be okay, it was much more enjoyable.

We had several days of back-to-back afternoon blows and each one was a cause for celebration. The first clap of thunder would have us all outside on the deck, scanning the black clouds and lightning on the horizon. And, we’d all race back inside when the torrential downpours would begin. It became a daily family ritual and we were having a blast! 🙂


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Angela Hoy is a publisher, a blogger, and the author of 19 books. She lived on dirt her entire life before her family gave away almost everything they owned, and moved onto a 52-foot Irwin Center Cockpit Ketch. They all live, work, and play on board full-time.

Angela is the publisher of, a free source of paying markets for freelance writers and photographers. If you want to write for magazines, websites, businesses, or others, check it out. It’s free! Her publishing services company,, has published more than 9,000 books over the past 18 years. If you want to publish a book, she’d love to hear from you! Abuzz Press is BookLocker’s hybrid publishing company. And, offers services to authors who are having their books published elsewhere.