Thursday, January 21, 2010

A Lonely Endeavor

I will break from the typical blog post here for a change, and delve into something that affects all sailors that single handedly sail anywhere, and that is how quite lonely it can get out on the water when you are by yourself. If you read any books by any sailors that have done this, especially those that have gone extreme distances, there is at least one chapter that touches on just how alone one can feel. Bernard Moitissier, Sir Francis Chichester, even Joshua Slocum, they all had made mention somewhere in their manuscripts about just how lonely an endeavor this can be. Yes, I have Spook, but she is not much of a conversationalist, and cannot spell me at the tiller, or cook when I am just too tired to think about fixing anything. She is extremely loyal and faithful, one of the smartest dogs I think I have ever had, but she does not make up for the need for human companionship. Out here alone it is easy to get trapped in your own thoughts, with no one to turn to but yourself, not only when the going gets tough, but also when the going gets monotonous, tedious and just plain boring.

I do the best I can, immersing myself in books, boat work, and trying to be a tourist, but I am not all that out going a person, so when I do hit port, I pretty much stay within whatever comfort zone I can find, be it a coffee shop, marina lounge or just on the boat, because that is just how I am and how I am wired. I try to do the tourist thing, but am only partially successful at it, I am more about taking pictures that actually sightseeing, and of course on my budget it is hard to stray too far from the waterfront.

So today, which started windy, cooler and overcast, and has progressed into extremely windy, stormy and wet (think gully washer, 30+ mph winds, zero visibility) I have remained aboard and cleaned. Not all that therapeutic, but necessary, as the soot on the walls from the stove and heater was really starting to get to me and was extremely unsightly. I got about 1/3 of the boat fully cleaned, when it began to come down in buckets and I had to make sure all was secure above, and then I just kind of hung on and tried to dry off. I have yet to be blown about at anchor like I was just a bit ago, the wind blew so hard that the boat heeled over to over 10 degrees, and stayed there until that storm cell moved on. I was a bit concerned, because I had moved to a new spot on the anchorage (needed better internet connection) and the anchor was just down for a few minutes before the storm. Luckily there was good holding here, and I didn't move an inch. The rain continues, and hopefully it will blow out sometime tonight, as I am getting a touch of cabin fever and realize that I just really need to get off the boat.

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