Friday, March 30, 2007

Sunday at St. Herman's

So this is last Sunday in St. Herman harbor. Days like this, and there have been a lot of them this winter, convince me that though we might sail the world over we’ll never find a place that compares with Alaska.

Which isn’t to say that I’m not excited at the idea of looking. We’re about two, two and a half months out from departure and I can already feel some part of me taking on the form of a cruising sailor. My concerns are changing. I can already feel the routine satisfactions and occasional cold sweats of a life that is lived in communion with, for instance, the daily practice of anchoring. As I fix items on the boat I feel myself withdrawing from the concerns of my recent life in Kodiak. Who cares if Science rejects my manuscript? We’re going to Bora Bora!

Here’s our friend Paul, who has a great way with the practicalities of boats. He and Kim came down from Anchorage last week to help us knock off a few jobs from the list. Doesn’t this look like a boat that’s about to head out for Australia? Yes, it does.

Paul’s help really built my momentum, and I’m getting optimistic at my chances of having the barky ready to go, no more than a week or two after our target date.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The tropics are so far away. And June is so close.

I always dreamed of traveling the world under sail. But I never dreamed of doing it with a toddler as crew.

Acting on a dream changes the dream. Turning the dream into your day-to-day life immerses you in the necessary details that were never part of the dream per se. Right now we’re concentrating really hard on the details that no one ever dreamed about. Languid days under sail and deserted anchorages will come soon enough, inshallah.

We’re holding weekly meetings and managing lists of tasks. More items are added than are crossed off. Every material aspect of our lives is changing in a few months. When I take a deep breath and relax my eyes spin in opposite directions.

The house is under contract. We have Ft. Abercrombie state park booked for our goodbye party (May 19, 2 PM, you’re invited). And we have a putative departure date – June 2nd, as June 1st is a Friday, and therefore unsuitable for departure.

Now we just have to finish up at work (we’re trying to finish seven scientific papers between us), sell or store everything we own that isn’t going on the boat, figure out our systems for sailing with Eli, fix up the boat, provision…and leave!

The barky in project mode.