Monday, June 25, 2012

Five Years Out

It doesn't seem like five years, Alisa said.  It seems like a lot longer than that.

I think she meant that in a good way.

Yesterday was the fifth anniversary of our departure from Kodiak.

Us, one week into the life afloat.

Five years is a pretty significant chunk of time, but the anniversary has passed quietly - no cake, no introspective talk about "what it all means".  Living on a boat and traveling as much as we can is something that we pretty much take for granted at this point. 

The last five years have been great, but who knows - not to tempt fate or anything, but the next five years might be even better, if we end up being lucky enough to keep going that long.  The boys should be coming into the age when they can really reap the rewards of living on a traveling boat.  That counts for a lot.

For now, all that I'm thinking about is the small rewards that have come our way over the last five years.  Like, for instance, the way that tools are such a big part of my day-to-day life, and the way I've become semi-capable at any number of hands-on jobs for keeping a boat working, far from outside support.  I'm no fan of boat work, but I do love the way that sailing has saved me from the fate of being another over-educated person without practical skills.

And there have been any number of little moments at sea - the sunrises far from land, the family dinners when the sea is calm and we all gather around the cockpit table, the promise of a new speck of land appearing on the horizon.  Those moments are gold.

And there is the bigger stuff - the really good, though transient, friendships that we've made with people from all over the world.  And the chance that our family has had to live together, day in and day out, without the separation that is imposed by the workaday world.

It's taken an immense effort from Alisa and myself to pull off these five years.  But we've also been lucky as hell to be able to do it.

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