Rent a Shantyboat!

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Alex Pino ( posted an article awhile back on Phil Thiel’s “Escargot”.  That article referred me to Bryan Lowe’s site ( and I was hooked.  Somehow, someway, I just HAD to have something that would take me on the adventures and simple life descibed by Twain, Thoreau, Hubbard and others.  The only access available on the St. John’s River in Florida (310+ miles of pristine Florida the way it  used to be) was to charter a 38′-62′ houseboat (not knocking them if you have the $1400-3200/wk + 100 gal of fule at $5.38/gal)  That was NOT an option for me and I really didn’t want to ‘be at home’ on the river, but just be on the river!
After many hours of drawing, revisions, scale models and enough graph paper to build the thing, I had what I wanted.  Thanks to Bryan’s encouragement, I started building the bulheads well before I had any idea where the money for the rest of the boat would come from.  Somehow, when it’s right, life just happens.
“Talisa,” a Creek Indian word meaning “beautiful waters,”and will be available beginning in October for rent to people who long to experiance the quiet beauty and solitude we all dream of but realistically just don’t have the time or interest in maintaining a boat. (somehow I did and now I want to share!)  ‘Talisa’ a ‘simple girl’ with a double cabin forward, port-a-potty, galley with gas stove and sink, two-seat booth with large opening windows in the main cabin.  She also has a sunning deck forward.  She is propelled by a very economical 9.8hp Tohatsu 4-stroke with a very shallow draft capable of taking adventurers to places on and off the historic St. John’s River where natural wildlife and scenic beauty is abundant!  1 wk charters are $650.  Bring some food and drinks and this world is yours!  She’ll be launched and retrieved at a public boat ramp.
Talisa will not be for everyone.  Some prefer all the “creature comforts.”  I like them, too!  That’s why I live in a house.  To find the “real Florida” however, to find what Twain, Thoreau, Hubbard and others still speak to us of, some of the “stuff” is worth letting go of – for a little while….
If interested, please contact Michael @

Originally posted 2014-07-22 07:11:31.

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