Friday, May 30, 2008

Boat Quest, Part 10

Little Walk, a 1980 Valiant 40, in Callao, VirginiaLast week I was out in Washington, DC for the Web Maniacs Conference, a two-day event put on by Fig Leaf Software, Adobe and other technology sponsors to showcase advances in Internet development. It was held close enough to my friend Curt Haensel's house in Falls Church that I was able to stay with him and his family for the conference and the weekend before it started. We hadn't seen each other in twelve years, not since his and his wife Meg's kids were born, so it was good to spend time with them and to meet Ada and Peter.

The cockpit of Little Walk, a 1980 Valiant 40My flight out on the day after the conference ended wasn't until 5:00 PM, so I drove down to Callao, Virginia to check out a Valiant 40 sailboat that I had seen advertised on both and Aside from Sea Hawk, the Valiant 40 I wrote about in previous Boat Quest posts, this was the only other Valiant 40 I had ever seen in person, and this time I was able to actually go onboard and take a close look. Little Walk was a little smaller than I expected, but the cockpit and cabin layouts were about perfect for two people, with occasional guests. Nothing I saw changed my mind about the Valiant 40 being the ideal sailboat for us to sail around the world.

The cabin of Little Walk, a 1980 Valiant 40If the salesperson had been available and there had been more time, I would have requested a quick sail and a demonstration of the boat's many systems, but that will have to wait for another time. When I got home, I emailed the salesperson a list of questions that came up as I examined the boat, including whether or not the slip it was in would transfer to the new owner and if a survey had already been done. I'll let you know what I hear back.

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