Who are Scott and Abby? By Abby, then Scott
Scott and Abby are partners on Epoch. We worked together at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, retiring in the fall of 2017 after purchasing Epoch (nee Tonka, Dance and Dance II) in April.
Scott is the gregarious, adventurous, multi-talented and boisterous half of Scott and Abby. Scott is an “all in” Nordhavn owner whose current goal (his goals are fluid) is to jump off the flybridge in Mexico on New Year’s Day! Abby, called out second in the partnership and often unnamed in association with Epoch is unassuming, quiet but friendly and family oriented. Somehow, the partnership seems to work!
Scott has been boating most of his life on the Washington State Columbia, Snake and Yakima Rivers, western region area lakes as a competitive water skier, and finally on the Puget Sound for the purpose of diving and spear fishing and beer drinking and…. Well, the hook was set! He ‘needed’ to explore the San Juan Islands, Vancouver Island, Queen Charlottes, BC Sunshine Coast and more! Much more, so much to experience!
I am originally from Ohio, that is Cleveland O-HI-o, the friendly state! I did some boating on Lake Erie. After moving to Washington State in 1990, I visited the Washington and Oregon coasts, far different than the Atlantic shores. I started thinking bigger and had always thought about that state of Alaska? The last frontier? So far from Ohio but so close to Washington, (I thought!) And 6,640 miles of coastline!
We have two awesome grand kids. Mayzee Ann is 12 years old and Hadley Danger is 7.
They are the adventure kids! Snow skiers, hikers, campers, water tubers, paddle boarders, dirt bikers, BMX racers, long boarders, all fun stuffers, plus they go to school and participate in sports, gymnastics, plays and girl scouts.
Russell (our son) and Billie make these wonderful adventures happen for Mayzee and Hadley, working around full-time jobs in the Tri-Cities, WA and Bozeman, MT. Russ provides safety and health support on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Richland, WA and Billie works in the medical field.
Our daughter Eileen and Jon are making the world a better place! Eileen works at the Thurston County Food Bank, SNAP-Ed program. Jon has a position at the Washington State Department of Health, Radiation Health Physics program. They are adventurers as well. Climbing Mt. St. Helens, France GR5 trail back packing, Galapagos Islands…
We maintain our “land shelter” in West Richland, WA. Included is a 40 x 60 shop with lots of “toys” including a Newmar Country Star which we lived in in the parking lot at Elliott Bay Marina during Epoch’s refit. That’s another blog!
Our family is huge and hilarious. Two sisters, one brother and his super wife, fourteen nieces and nephews, about 14 niece and nephew significant others and two great nephews (one still on the way, expected in time for Thanksgiving dinner)! We are spread out all over the country. If there is a cold beer and a kickball, we have a banner time. And Mom, 93 years young seems to keep up as well!!
Scott’s greatest challenge in life: How can he do it all before he can’t no more.
Abby’s greatest challenge (now) in life: Maintaining some level of exercise living on the boat!
This is Abby’s blog, however, I sometimes get an opportunity to contribute such as this. Abby and I first met a “couple of years ago” in 1995. By summer of 1998 we bought our first home together and had a combined family of five. We were both well into our professional careers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory with a senior in high school (Jeremy) and two children in elementary school (Russell & Eileen).
So, as you can imagine we were a very busy household from the start of our relationship. We worked hard but also prescribed to play hard in our free time enjoying things such as camping, freshwater boating, white water kayaking, snow skiing and all things outdoors we could enjoy as a family. I had also been boating in Puget Sound for a few years primarily scuba diving in the San Juan Islands and the BC Sunshine Coast. Abby and I had some very special cruising experiences early in our relationship and at the same time I was also maturing my passion for more serious nautical experiences that could be combined with my scuba diving adventures. Abby shared in this saltwater boating passion and achieved her open water scuba diving qualification at the same time she was completing a Masters degree program from Tulane University in Public Health, Industrial Hygiene.
Life however tends to get in the way of doing everything and as careers, school and college for the kids got traction, we decided our long-distance relationship with a hole in the water 300 miles from our home had to be put on hold and we sold our boat in Anacortes, WA. I, however was not able to just give up on my developing cruising dream and with the dawn of home internet I spent countless hours studying and educating myself on everything from boats, navigation and the blue water cruising lifestyle. With the kids busy schedules and Abby and I becoming senior in our professions, it allowed very little time for us to do more than dream about cruising. We did make short trips back to Anacortes when we could which always involved visiting the “Drool Dock” and igniting our interest in “another boat” for at least a few days. Without any control nearly 20 years passed, kids graduated college and got married and we were grandparents/ empty-nesters (kind of).
Abby comes from a large close-knit family where all her siblings and their families live close enough to get together with her mom (and dad) regularly except for her. She was and still is challenged to compensate for being the only sibling living hundreds of miles away from “home”. Abby makes regular visits home as time allows and as her mother gets older, currently 93. Russell and Eileen visited “home” every summer to spend time with her family and their large number of cousins until they started college. I very much enjoy spending time with her family and feel a part of their family whenever we get together. Abby being very analytical keeps a lot of her thoughts and opinions to herself until she has enough information to make a conclusion but that seldom happens (not enough data😊) so to others she seems quiet and rarely lets “her hair down”. But for me, I know her differently and enjoy the life we share together. Abby will bend over backwards to do things to help others in need or reduce their burden. Abby is the same way with me and I sometimes don’t give her enough credit for all she does but hope she knows I do appreciate that about her.
Back to the dream and empty nesters! You look at each other and say what now and how about that retirement thing. We made an effort to start visiting boat shows again as well as walking the docks and looking at boats. My interest rekindled as a major part of my newfound free time and being a little analytical myself, started to conclude that maybe we could get another boat and this one could be more focused on cruising, safety and comfort verses transportation to dive sites. I will never forget when Abby and I were discussing this dream and how many years we had left to actually do something like this (a little depressing). While we both enjoy good health and mobility, working until 65 or later and maximizing our retirement benefits didn’t allow enough time. I think this really made an impact on us and before I knew it, we purchased a 53’ performance trawler and were back in the salt on a vessel with capabilities far exceeding our previous experiences. This was still a long-distance boat relationship and we continued to work. We used the boat in the islands and inside passage and I became more familiar and intrigued in the complexity of cruising yachts.
About me, called a little on the wild side, an adrenaline junky and speed freak on land and water. In my working career, a fire protection engineer that ended up as a Director of Facility Operations and Engineering working with over 300 staff. Nicknamed “ Ambassador Allen” I like to achieve the best outcome for all involved and like working on, optimizing and completing projects, anything from major Research and Development Laboratories to custom cars, boats and motorcycles and really just anything “bright and shiny”.
Being back in the salt really ignited this idea of cruising cool places on a boat. At some point I realized that we might be able to actually do something like that as a retirement plan. Abby was all in with the idea and I became somewhat obsessed with it studying and learning everything I could about it. I had always promised Abby that I would take her to Alaska (a dream of hers) but only on our own boat. Clearly a slow speed trawler rose to the top for us in terms of comfort, safety and “coolness”. After countless hours and taking every chance we had to look at various boats of different makes/models we felt something special for the Nordhavn brand but affording one was a different matter. Considerable discussions with financial types kept coming up with “Go for it”. “Going for it” is the potential subject of another Blog post, so I will wait and see if Abby wants any input with that one 😊!