“You’re either making excuses or you’re making it happen”
“Why” is just about my favourite word in the whole English language. My mom doesn’t think this is so great… but I think it’s a pretty grand way to get to the real heart of the matter, and quickly too.
So, why are we going sailing?
Well, why not? I know that’s not the most satisfying answer, but in a lot of ways that is the answer. We are young, we are healthy, we love the ocean, and we have a boat.
A few other reasons:
We’ve both grown up in sailing, ocean-loving families.
I lived on a 41′ sailboat with my sister and parents from 1995 to 2002; we spent 4 of those years cruising around the world: 37 countries, 4 years of home-schooling, and 37,000 miles travelled
Jonathan grew up in Maine, and he loves the ocean as much as I do (if not more, actually). He’s run his own business for 6 years and continues to find ways to make our dreams possible.
I am Canadian. Jonathan is American. We’re in love with each other, with sailing, and with the idea of a life that does not have to revolve around a 9-5 job. Sailing enables us to be together, to be on the water, and to enjoy life the way we really want to.
We sailed around Vancouver Island in June 2010 as a “test” of everything: would we be okay spending 6 weeks together 24/7? Would J like offshore sailing? Would I remember how to rig up a preventer? Should we start looking at RVs instead???
Winters suck. Winter in Vancouver = Grey & Rain. And Winter in Maine = More snow than a Vancouver girl knows how to deal with! So we’re boycotting winter, throwing caution and career to the wind, and embracing as much adventure as we two thirty-somethings can find on a Nor’West 33.
By working some of the time and cruising some of the time we hope to keep the best bits of both worlds and finance the whole dang thing. As much as I’d love to cruise full-time, I’ve also seen first-hand how hard it can be to “re-transition” to normal life once you’ve accomplished your goals. By doing it this way, we hope to avoid the ‘what next’ questions for at least a while and enjoy all that life has to offer in the meantime!!
Finally, life is too short and fragile to say later. It’s been said before, and it’s cliche, and it’s overworked… but you only get one shot at this. No one makes it out alive, and you just cannot know when you’ll get a curveball. So while we have our youth, our health, our spirits, and our little bit of cash, we’re going to make the most of life while we can…
I think you are forgetting one very important answer to your question of why!
Because you WANT TO!
I think we tend to shy away from saying we are doing something because we want to, for all sorts of social and cultural reasons, especially when what we want is not conventional. Instead we rationalize and justify. Or at least that is my experience… So own it! We’re doing this because WE WANT TO!
Why not? I completely get it! I don’t have my youth and my health isn’t what it used to be, but it is never too late to follow your heart and trust you can make it happen. And you can! And you are!
Leah, I am completely overcome by your wisdom and insight at such a young age. You are making life happen. You are absolutely courageous to go after what you want and believe it can happen. It sounds like you have met the perfect match in Jon. Congratulations on making your dreams are reality!
My heart is with you both! Thank you for allowing me to share in your joy!
Thank you Cleo, that is such a nice comment!! Sometimes we get wrapped up in the minutiae of ‘living the dream’ (working on broken boat parts, navigating foreign countries, striving to finance it all) so comments like this help me keep perspective and remember why we’re doing it all! And we’re always happy to share it with someone new!!
I originally saw this in Latitude 38 before heading out cruising. For me, it pretty much says it all …
“What if the spell of a place falls upon a youthful heart, and the bright horizon calls!
Many a thing will keep till the world’s work is done, and youth is only a memory.
When the old enchanter came to my door, laden with dreams, I reached out with both hands.
For I knew he would not be lured with the gold that I might later offer, when age had come upon me.”
Richard J. MacCullaugh, Viking’s Wake