We Have Arrived
We Have Arrived
We have arrived. Right now I am typing this post in the cockpit of our boat with Wilco playing quietly in the background. Scott is sleeping at my side, AJ is on the stern talking to his girlfriend, Brian is catching up on email down below and Isla is taking her morning nap. The sky is a perfect periwinkle blue and puffy white clouds float lazily over head. We are surrounded by walls of lush, green hills and shores lined with gently swaying palm trees. It is a quintessentially Caribbean scene.
It actually feels quite surreal to be here right now. For so long this trip was a source of stress for me: would we have a good weather window? Would Isla and I join or not? And if we did join how would she do at sea? More importantly, how the heck would I keep her entertained at sea? Would the crew come through or back out last minute? Would everyone get along? Would the boat feel too crowded? Would we be too late in the season? Would I provision well? Would our boat be up for it?....There were so many questions, so many unknowns that I just wanted to fast forward this part and be on the other side of it. It wasn't an experience that I wanted to savor, as we were all expecting the worst, but something I wanted to just hurry up and get over with.
Boy was I wrong.
This trip was absolutely something to savor and enjoy. As it turns out, all my worries were for naught. We were very well prepared and we had a healthy dose of luck on our side as well. This passage will forever be etched in the log of our minds as a milestone for us. Sure, it was only five days...but it's successful completion has given us a huge boost of confidence in our abilities, our boat and each other. Everything went more or less as planned which, for those of you who cruise, know this a rarity on the high seas. We were all pleasantly surprised by the ease of this trip and to tell you the truth, I am actually a little sad it's over. It was a charmed journey and we couldn't have asked for a better crew. As we were sailing towards the twinkling lights of Tortola Thursday night, part of me wanted to keep the boat going and sail a little farther, extend the trip a few more days. Bang a left and head for St. Maarten maybe. "Let's keep going!" I exclaimed only partly in jest. I think we all could have continued on. I finally understand how Bernard Moitessier, after being alone at sea for seven months could head back out to the expanse of the ocean just as he was about to finish (and win) the first around the world yacht race. "I'm continuing on to save my mortal soul," he had said. Of course our trip was nothing like the legendary Moitessier's, but I kind of get it now. Something happens when you stay at sea for days on end, surrounded only by wind and waves...it's like a little switch is flipped and suddenly your world is your boat. All the outside chatter goes away. Everything becomes so much more...simple.
Anyway, that's enough waxing poetic for today. I have so many posts to write about our journey; how we prepared, how I kept Isla entertained, what we did right, what we did wrong...but they will have to wait. We all had one too many Painkiller's last night and the fresh water pool is calling.
When two people, with the same life long dream of sailing around the world find each other, there's only one thing to do... make it happen!
Scott and Brittany departed in 2010 with big plans to "see the world" from the deck of their sailboat. After sailing from Chicago to Trinidad via the "thorny path", they are now back at it with their first baby and second boat. Check out all the juice at http://windtraveler.net.