Dare we try this again? Dare we seek joy in the freedom of wide open horizons, the challenges of the cruising life, the banter at docktails? It’s been quite a journey in Indiana, seeing my lovely Dad through his final weeks, celebrating his life, saying goodbye to those dear old friends who accompanied us. As we closed up the condo for what seemed like the “dozenth” time, I felt a tug at my heart, sort of a feeling that I was leaving sacred ground. Perhaps that’s what “home” is— the place where one processes the sacred stuff that one encounters, often, elsewhere. We’ll see new coastline, make new friends, and we’ll celebrate life, OUR life, Steve’s and mine together. Dad carried a big photo—2 rumpled papers taped together—of Red Pearl in the seat of his rollater, which he would whip out whenever his friends asked where his roving daughter and son-in-law were. He was, if not proud of, at least amused by, our journey; and he encouraged our adventure. So. Here we go, finding our sea legs again, and open to an epiphany.
We usually rent a car one-way and drive to the boat, because we often have too much kitch to take on a plane. Our aim to tail the storms as they blew through the south was almost successful; as we walked into Unclaimed Baggage in Scotsboro, AL, once again seeking treasure too good to pass up, we were immediately ushered into their basement employee break room, as a tornado had been sited. A short time later we were released, and 2 hours later, we did, in fact, tail those storms.
Red Pearl is now in Brunswick, GA. She didn’t magically fly there from Murrell’s Inlet; we sneaked in a quick and hard week of cruising in December to get her to a destination that would definitely NOT be icy in January. The 300-mile cruise reminded us of all the things we love about the journey: elegant dolphins, nosey pelicans, gorgeous sunsets—and sunrises by any description, which we do not see at home. We anchored at night, opting for pristine and solitary scenery and quicker morning starts.
So. Here we sit awaiting departure. It feels WAY too familiar. We’ve discovered that when you say to a boat yard manager, “Here are the things that we need done on our boat. We’ll be back in a month,” he looks at your list in about 27 days. He does not call with questions about specs or history, or even in time to let you decide whether you want to pay the extra $60 to overnight a part. Everything around the water is just slow. That said, one could be in a worse place—and we have been! Marina-wide docktails at which beer and and wine are provided are every MWF. Last evening we enjoyed a lovely time with friends who we met at Ft. Pierce, Cal and Cheryl Freeburg on No Snow, and friends who we met in Savannah, Sue and Bud Hansen on Odyssey.
We are loaded with fleece, down, and wool socks. Also, swim suits, sandals, and a big bag of limes. Destination: (fingers crossed) Key West.