Miami International Boat Show: Feb 16-20, 2012
Five days of nothing but boats, boating, parts for boats, gadgets for boats, and boating customers. There were a lot of people who were “just looking”, and there was, in fact, a lot to see. The Miami Beach Convention Center is fairly large, and every hall, room, hallway, walkway, nook,, and proverbial cranny was stuffed with vendors offering various boating-related paraphernalia. Then of course there were also the actual boats…
I was fortunate enough to work at one of the boating booths. I ended up working with the Bayliners. I am pretty darn new at this business of selling boats, this being my first time doing it. And you know what? I loved it. 12+ hours of being around boats and boaters for five days straight. I learned about all the different kinds of engines on these affordable vessels, the various lengths and what their individual pros/cons are, memorized all the different available options. Spending all day climbing in and out of boats may sound exhausting – and it was – but to someone like me who just loves the way boats are built, this was bliss. Yes, even being out of the water.
But my favorite part? The actual boaters. They came from all the corners of the Earth. There were people there who traveled from other continents JUST to come to the boat show. That’s a serious boater right there. People from Asia, Europe, South America, Australia. All speaking the universal language of boaters. Inboard or Outboard? Gas or diesel? 28 foot or 33 foot? What’s the beam? I have to check my dockage…
There were single men bringing their buddies along for the ride, single women wanting to brave the high seas, married couples just starting life out, married couple with small kids, married couples with big kids. Every spectrum of human being was there- mostly nice people. Really…. mostly only nice people. Bringing them all together was that silent yet palpable bond of those who know boats, love them, love being on the water, and understand what this lifestyle is all about.
What does the boating lifestyle mean to YOU?