Saturday, May 18, 2013

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'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.
We were happy to have arrived!
Our amazing crew.  Brian, Scott, AJ, Isla and I.  Couldn't have asked for a better bunch!


Chris on S/V Radio Waves said...

Sounds like a wonderful passage, and I'm so glad that all went well for you guys! Looking forward to my chance to do this in a couple of years and in the meantime I live vicariously through blog posts such as this one! :) Oh yeah...and I'm also working hard to get my body bikini ready so I'm not embarrassed to post pictures! You and Scott both look so great! :)

S/V Radio Waves

Gretchen s/v Alchemy said...


Happy to hear that the passage was a great one and that the boat performed and that Isla is a little passage maker!

Had you all in my thoughts this last week wishing you the best.

Good luck with the painkiller hangover...we drink our morning coffee out of our 'painkiller' mugs and find it is safer than that alluring elixir...but they are SO good!

s/v Alchemy

Tasha hacker said...

Woo hoo! I don't blame you for guzzling those delicious painkillers upon arrival...I'll bet that passage made them taste even better!

Mid-Life Cruising! said...

So glad this was a passage full of good memories! Sounds amazing!

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