Psychological effects of cruising

Not long after you begin a life on the ocean waves, cruising full time on a small boat, you will start to notice symptoms of mental disorder directly related to this new life style. Most commonly it relates to having been deprived of a plug-in electricity supply:

Ampaphobia is an obsession with hoarding battery capacity. The sufferer becomes frantic to measure accurately the amps flowing into and out of his battery banks. He becomes convinced that his alternator, solar panels and wind generator are faulty. He tests them exhaustively and joins boating forums to compare his results with other ampaphobics who think that they, too, are being cheated by their amp gathering resources.

As the condition takes hold the sufferer will accumulate different types of batteries and charging devices, more sophisticated monitoring systems, several types of hydrometer. A battery terminal cleaning brush.

Ampaphobia is often caused initially by another condition – meltaphobia, the fear of the boat fridge failing to keep its contents cold. Obsessively monitoring the fridge temperature with a range of increasingly sophisticated thermocouples is a dead give away. Help should be sought immediately before the condition can develop into full blown ampaphobia.

Another electricity related hang up is toasteritis, the compulsion to design and build a 12 volt DC toaster. This condition afflicts many long term cruisers once the novelty of burning toast on a wire rack placed over a cooker burner has worn thin. I’ve never seen a successful 12 volt toaster, but with all the cruisers out there frantically doing the R&D it’s only a matter of time.

I’m sure you get the picture. You may have your own particular physical or mental condition as a result of long term cruising but, rest assured, once ashore for a short period the symptoms disappear. To be replaced by an overwhelming desire to sell up, quit your job and run away to sea in a small boat.