Our pending journey down to the Caribbean is not a minor trip. It has taken quite a bit of research, planning and work. And, of course, we are not done. We have lots of crossing the "T"s and dotting the "I"s items to do on our checklist this summer before we hit the biggest item on the list - throwing off the dock lines and taking off.
We have realized over the years that this type of adventure isn’t just interesting to us, but is intriguing to many others. We get lots of questions about how different things will be (how will we do laundry, what about hurricanes, how does Ocean manage etc.), which we love to chat about. At the end of these conversations, one of the common comments we hear are “You are brave”. Or, “I could never do that”, “I would love to do that some day” and, the direct “You are crazy”. 😊
Are we brave? Not really. Motivation is a big driver. Our need to make this dream become reality pushes us forward, tackling things that seemed impossible only a few years ago. For Mike, it is doing big electrical projects on the boat, including designing and installing our kick-butt power system. Don’t get me wrong – Mike is really handy and any carpentry or plumbing tasks are done with ease. But electricity is different. Small mistakes can have big consequences. But he gets the jobs done. Why? It is necessary. And hiring someone else to do it not only cuts into our travel dollars, it can also take lots of patience as you wait for the tradesperson to have free time to work on your boat. Like with all the systems and maintenance on the boat, Mike does solid research, makes plans, and then, well, he gets on with the job.
When I started sailing, I had an immobilizing fear of spiders and heights. Now, I have a daily ritual of de-spidering our boat (aka spider-land). And, heights? Well, I am the one who goes up the mast to do any checks or maintenance. Like I said, motivation is key. The first spider and the first mast I had to tackle was terrifying. I wished it away, I delayed, and I tried ways to get around the task. Then I took a deep breath in and got on with it.
And for sailing to the Caribbean, well we are handling it much the same way. We do our research, make plans, create lists (so many lists!), learn, prepare and, yes, execute. Each baby step, gets us closer to our goal. So, no, we are not brave. We are busy 😉.
This journey south will take us to places we have never been, teaching us new skills and testing our mettle. For sure there will be obstacles to overcome, some small and some downright scary. But there will also be the bliss – quiet, calm moments in the perfect anchorage, being close to nature, meeting new people, cultures and ways of living. A balance of challenge and joy.
And that is really what it is all about for us.
Victoria is a hiker, dog-lover, blog writer and planner extraordinaire. Oh, yeah and she is kind of fond of living on a boat.