“You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm!” — Collette
This quote used to be on the wall of the kitchen in the house we sold to begin this crazy adventure. It is more our philosophy of cooking (as we each love to throw interesting things in a pot and see what happens) but it is also very apt for today.
What a difference a couple of hours make!
This morning we posted on Facebook that we had made an offer on a boat and that we were selling everything and moving aboard. Yes, it is April 1st. We were hoping to catch a few folks thinking it was an April Fool’s joke. But it turns out the joke was on us. A couple hours later we received a call that another offer had been accepted on the boat.
My initial, honest response was…relief.
This trip to California was supposed to be exploratory, to see one particular boat, and to see what else is out there. We have learned a lot in this time. Most of all, that one can only learn so much from afar, from other’s experiences. We need to have our own. And we have, we’ve been sailing three times out here, felt the undulating power of a relatively calm day in Monterey Bay. We’ve met a lot of folks the same kind of crazy we are.
But here’s what came to me moments after the call…
We’ve been so focused on looking at boats, that we’ve forgotten to just sit and commune with the place that is to be our home. The ocean.
I grew up in Southern California and have spent a lot of time at the beach. I’ve been rolled under a few waves in my time, gotten my fair share of salt water up my nose. I have a healthy respect for the ocean. But I feel disconnected from her. Living in Colorado for many years can do that 😉
So, tomorrow, before we pack up and head back to Colorado for a spell, we are going to the beach. We will sit on the sand and rest. We will introduce our children to the tingly, briny world that will soon surround them. We will enter the chilly spring waters and know that we will be back to her with fresh eyes soon.
We may be the fools this April day, but we are still full of enthusiasm, and that makes my heart lighter.
“Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted” is the saying. So true here. We drove to the beautiful dolphin and otter inhabited (and sea lion infested) shores of Moss Landing to see the junk rigged Cape George schooner we hoped would be our future home. But it was not to be.
She was a bit (I use the term lightly) more neglected than her owner had led us to believe. Granted he hadn’t seen her much in the last four years, which should have been our first clue.
She had rot. She had so many little projects and some larger projects, and it all added up to too-much-of-a-project-boat for us…right now. She still has a beautiful Cecil Lange hull — much less aged by neglect than the rest of her, because it was such quality to begin with. But, the rest of her…not so much.
It took a whirlwind, brutal day…a sunburn…and, that evening, a long hot shower to bring it all into perspective for me. On we go, with less rose on our glasses.
We are looking first for neglect. Has the boat been loved, taken care of? Any bit of discovered neglect probably denotes a few things neglected that we can’t see.
But, some serendipity appeared in all of this…we spent time with family. Family we hadn’t seen in quite a while (might I say “neglected”?). Our kids played with our cousins’ kids, we shared wine and stories, saw babies dancing on the table, and thought a lot more about what we wanted from this quest.
If this specific boat isn’t going to determine the beginning of our quest, we have many more options. Working on loving less from a distance and keeping the neglect at bay (no pun intended).
So, we might have (breathe!) found our boat…
It’s too early to fall in love. We haven’t even seen her in person yet. But she’s sexy, oh my is she sexy.
She’s a 36′ junk rigged Cape George schooner. She needs some work, like we all do. Hopefully all cosmetic…and that doesn’t scare either of us. We bought our little house in a similar condition and loved it dearly, cracking plaster and all.
She is a simple boat. Not much in the way of electronics. But, if she’s sound (we’ll know after inspecting her in about a month!) she may be the perfect boat for us.
But, it’s so hard not to fall in love.