In 2021, a young South Dakota rancher named Dave Galdo was feeling restless so he sold his 517 acres, his herd of cattle, his house and his van so he could pursue his dream of buying a sailboat and seeing the world. .
For years, as he worked day after day, and especially those winter nights when he stayed awake all night with cows calving, he dreamed of the sea, read everything he could on the sail, saved money. every penny to turn this dream into reality.
At 36, he realized that his body was deteriorating rapidly from the stress of living on a ranch and that life was ultimately not that long. So he set off in search of his sailboat, a quest that led him – by luck, luck or fate – to a backyard in Scituate.
On a sunny day last week at an anchorage in East Boston, Galdo stood on the Restless deck, putting the finishing touches on the dream Bob Kingsland began 44 years ago.
âHe was an absolute genius,â Galdo said of Kingsland, pointing to the painstaking work that has long made Restless a marvel for sailing enthusiasts. âHe didn’t go easy on anything. He added all these little meticulous things, things that no one else would have done.
As Kingsland wrote on sv-restless.com, a website where he documented his work (which remains active after his death), “I quickly realized that I could either build a rough but working boat, or build the best boat I could find how to make – and I I chose the latter no matter how long it took. One of my main goals was to see something that made me smile in every place my eye landed.
Looking around Restless today, Galdo is constantly smiling at seeing those touches – such as the 18 inlaid stars that work to join woodworking together – and the hard-to-describe way the craftsmanship connects these two men who never come together. are never encountered in life. Because Galdo is also a man of the field, a handyman (in addition to the ranch, he ran a septic company nearby). He had found the way to Restless precisely because he was also a welder and wanted to find a steel hull boat that he could work on himself.
âBeing able to pick up what he started and continue is an honor. And the name he gave to the boat suits me perfectly, âsaid Galdo. “He was waiting to be finished by someone who was restless.”
Galdo bought the boat this summer, and since then he has been living on board while racing to prepare her to sail south – this is his only real plan – before the weather turns. Restless, which was listed for $ 349,000, still needed all of its electronics, new plumbing, some engine work, refrigeration, as well as a winding system and lazy jacks. .
âAll I know is I’m heading to Florida and dreaming of crystal clear water, palm trees, sandy beaches and fresh food,â he said. And he plans to document it all on a YouTube channel called “The restless sailor. “
But before he can make it to Margaritaville, Galdo must overcome his biggest obstacle: his lack of sailing experience.
He had sailed in smaller boats on lakes, but a 50-foot sailboat on the high seas was a different story. Fortunately, her brother is a captain who worked on the docks in East Boston, so they spent many hours training and working on the navigation. But when he sets sail – any day now, weather permitting – there will be a lot of unknowns.
âI’m really scared,â said Galdo, rubbing his dog, Jade. âI was good at what I did. Going from there to having to learn new things is scary, but also exciting.
But what already feels good, what has attracted humans to the sea for millennia, is this feeling of absolute freedom, to leave everything behind and go into the unknown.
âIt’s amazing how much stuff was in my life,â Galdo said after receiving a call about the latest papers regarding the sale of his South Dakota home. “Now that’s just that, which is a feeling of release.”
And he can’t wait to raise the sails to see where the wind takes him.
Billy Baker can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on twitter @billy_baker.