“I live on my boat at anchor wherever the wind takes me. Currently in Daytona doing some boat maintenance before I head back to Bahamas. Probably one of the most beautiful places to anchor out and live the dream!

Ondine, Colvin 50’

Interview with the Captain – Nancy Greene

About the Boat

Why did you choose to buy a Colvin?
I wanted a steel hull blue water boat with a shallow draft that could go anywhere. I made a list of boats to see and called a broker. He showed me a rust bucket project boat that was on my list to see and in my price range, a Bruce Roberts. Too much of a project, he said I needed to up my game. I met a couple that built their boat in a barn. It was beautiful and had everything I wanted sans steel hull. Too much over my budget. Looked at a Hallberg Rassy that was a lower price, again not a steel hull. When it came right down to it, I could not afford it and went home, back to the drawing board. Time to look at what I originally wanted…steel hull junk rig! Went to junk rig association website and found my boat! Called owner and set up a meet…back in the car on a holiday weekend. When I got out of the car at the marina, Pat, the owner stood up at the picnic table and gave me a look that was later needing an explanation. I threw my shoes off and jumped on the boat…it was instant love. She’s a classic beauty. We sat, he told stories. Later, after I bought the boat and stayed at his house painting it and getting an engine (longer story), I asked him about that first telling look he gave me. He said he took one look at me and determined I was just a romantic dreamer and he was not going to sell me his boat! So that then begged the question…”what changed your mind?” He replied “when you kicked off your shoes and jumped on the boat like it was already yours!”

I’ve never doubted and never regretted.

How did you come to find/locate her before purchasing (and what’s the boat’s history if you know it)?
I believe this boat was built in Ontario in 1979 and named Wawartok I. The original owner was tall and had the aft cabin designed and built taller with Tom Colvin’s blessings. Makes it nice for me, as I am tall!

Pat bought her sailed her down to New Smyrna, FL, renamed her Ondine, and had a business dazzling locals and tourists with sunset cruises and the like. 

What features/improvements have you added or do you plan to add?
I’ve added an anchor roller(2), dingy davit with solar, new B&G electronics, radar, and auto pilot, watermaker, removed oven, and put in a real sink and plumbing. And a 38hp Beta Marine diesel engine!

What are the features you like most about your boat?
Ondine is only 4’5” draft and only 43 foot mast height, lightly stayed. When a main stay rusted out, I could easily replace with dyneema, no rigger needed!

Who first introduced you to boating/sailing?
I was an oceanographer, spending many hours on just about every kind of boat except a sailboat. So, it was a persistent dream. Got tired of waiting for someone to do it with and decided I was going to have to do it by myself.

I took 2 ASA weekend classes and set out to by a boat…go big or go home!

Do you belong to a yacht club or other boating/sailing organizations?
I do belong to Women Who Sail and Women Who sail Tampa Bay.

What boats have you previously owned?
A kayak and a canoe!

How do you typically use your boat over the summer, and where do you go?
I live on my boat at anchor wherever the wind takes me. Currently in Daytona doing some boat maintenance before I head back to Bahamas. Probably one of the most beautiful places to anchor out and live the dream!

What is the biggest challenge you have in servicing your boat?
I have unfortunately found some very shady workers and shipyards! I do my best to now do everything I possibly can by myself.

Do you have any notable boating resources you use?
I met other gazelle owners by joining the Facebook group Thomas Colvin Designs and the Great Chesapeake Schooner Race. Great people! Great race!

The folks a Beta Marine, North Carolina are an invaluable wealth of info, parts, and cheer!

Do you have any advice for those looking to buy a Colvin like yours?
There are not a lot for sale! We love our boats! But a few notices come out in the fb groups.

What’s the story behind the boat’s name?
The name Ondine is a great story. I just had to keep the name. From an ancient myth, if you love her, she will bring you luck and good fortune. If you don’t…well, look up Ondine’s curse. It’s real! She takes care of me…and that’s another good story!

Click the gallery below for more photos and information about Ondine!