I bring this up because I suspect that many of us out here are operating according to our own versions of personal myths, and the commonality they share is this sailing life, this yearning for freedom and something out of the ordinary. The more I talk with cruising sailors, the more I see that many of us are struggling, at least to some extent, with how the decision is working out. Most of us believe that the lifestyle is more than worth it, but there are still times when we're anything but fearless or confident; on those occasions, we're a mess. Sometimes these moments are blessedly brief, like when you jam the keel into the bottom and are well and truly stuck, and oh, by the way, the tide is still falling. You add "capable" and "intelligent" to the list of things you aren't, but eventually you get out of the jam and have a good story to tell.