"Little Gidding" is a Bayfield 36, designed by Hayden Gozzard and built in Ontario in 1987. She's fairly traditional looking with a clipper bow, bowsprit and cutter rig. The hull is solid fibreglass and the deck is cored. She has a full keel with attached rudder. Her specs look like this:
More information about Bayfield sailboats and the history of the builder can be found at the Bayfield owners website.
We sleep in the forward double berth. The double in the quarterberth has long since become the garage, stuffed with (among other things) 2 mountain bikes, 2 sets of scuba gear and numerous boat parts. Guests sleep on a double berth made up in the main salon and are encouraged to pack lightly. The single head compartment has a midget bathtub, which never gets used because Eileen's music equipment is stored there. We've outfitted the galley with a two burner propane stove (with oven & broiler) and a 12 volt DC refrigerator/freezer. No watermaker. We don't have many electronics beyond the basic GPS, depth sounder and knotmeter. On board communications are via VHF radio and HF (ham) radio, through which we can send and receive e-mail.
Any nice lines the boat may have once had have been pretty well obscured by a lot of cruising paraphernalia: a combination dodger/bimini cockpit enclosure; wind powered generator; solar panels (seven); 4 person offshore liferaft; 2 speed manual anchor windlass; wind vane self steering; and a bunch of plastic deck containers for extra fuel and water. Our tender is a 9' inflatable with rollaway floor and 4 hp outboard, stored on deck when we're underway.
We're often asked what is a gidding and how small is a little gidding. We don't know. "Little Gidding" is the title of a poem written by the American poet TS Eliot in 1942. It speaks of exploring, both in a figurative and literal sense. The lines we particularly like are:
We shall not cease from exploration
We feel that way as we weave our way around the ocean, experiencing new places and revisiting old ones. Eliot was inspired to write the poem while visiting the ruins of the English 17th century monastic community of the same name. That still doesn't tell you what a gidding is. Let us know if you find out.