Brian Pucella, Captain, and Jeannette Pucella, Admiral, commenced their cruise in 2001 in Puff, a Bayfield 32C hailing from Ocracoke, NC. So far, they've cruised the US Southeast coast, the Bahamas, and the Eastern Caribbean. More information about them can be found on their cruising website or their Bahamas travel site.
What do you enjoy about cruising that you didn't expect to enjoy
When we first started cruising, we expected to enjoy everything! We were idealists. We eventually discovered a few things we didn't enjoy, like seasickness, gear failure, and having to take breaks from cruising to go to work, so we can do it again.
Do you have any specific advice for couples cruising
Be very forgiving of each other, grudges just don't work on a boat. Just let it go! Also, give each other space. A day of from each other can work wonders.
What piece(s) of gear would you leave on the dock next time
We can't think of anything we would leave behind. We didn't have a lot of money for our first year cruising, so our boat wasn't heavily outfitted. It was just the basics. Over the years, we've put a lot of thought into every piece of equipment we decide to bring on board. We're still minimalists.
When you are offshore, what keeps you awake at night (that is, what worries you most)?
When we're offshore, the only that worries us at all is the danger of colliding with a freighter. However, we keep a vigilant watch and are comfortable with sighting ships at sea, so it doesn't worry us that much.
Do friends visit and how often?
We never have visitors. Our boat is just too small to accommodate them. If we know we will be in one spot for awhile, then family or friends can stay in a hotel and visit us.
Share a piece of cruising etiquette
Do not anchor too close to your neighbor, it's intrusive and unsettling! Please give other boats in the anchorage as much space as possible. We don't all like to travel in packs. Speaking for ourselves, we enjoy our privacy. We don't want to be in shouting distance of another boat, that's what the VHF radio is for!
What do you miss about living on land?
We would love to live on land part time, so we can have a garden and a place for visitors to stay. We've been living on the boat for ten years, so we are ready for a house at least for part of the year.
Why did you decide to cruise?
It was an irresistible adventure for us, and it still is.
Describe a negative experience you have had with local people somewhere you have visited.
We have had very few negative experiences with local people. The only one that comes to mind is when we were visiting a remote shore on the island of Martinique. We were not only completely ignored, they stared through us and kept walking, people gathered their children and ran away from us. Surely it was some sort of cultural barrier or misunderstanding. Maybe we were just having a really bad hair day!
What question do you wish I would have asked you besides the ones I've asked you and how would you answer it?
What about pets aboard?
We have a dog and a cat. When we sailed through the Caribbean islands, we chose to leave our dog with family members because the British and French islands do not allow dogs on land. We would have been very limited. We sail with our animals in the Bahamas and they love it