It is hard to believe that I have been living in the Caribbean for 15 years and with David for 10. Wow! Where does it all go? Wouldn't it be great to have a magic ball that caught time and just stored it away for future use? What a concept - just bounce the ball - like I used to do on Romper Room - and take some hours on this bounce, some days on the next bounce and a couple of centuries on down the line.
I don't know though. I think life might be okay just the way it is - I'm getting pretty tired! Dave says that once we hit the waterways all will be okay as I can just spend the rest of my life navigating - I tell him that is exactly what I have been doing for the past six decades. Not to be undone, he is just sure that a retirement of cruising is just what the seer ordered. I look at the ropes and lines on Swan Song and wonder if I can even begin to carry that weight around when docking.
We have moved onto our retirement home - Swan Song. Our dinghy is naturally named Leda. SS is really quite lovely, a classic yacht if there ever was one. She is a Roughwater 58' (65' LOA) that was built in 1968. Lots of teak and plenty of upkeep, just to make sure ole Nancy doesn't get too comfortable. At 32 years old she weighs 100,000 pounds. Pulling into a foreign dock with just the two of us is going to be a challenge to say the least. Leda is not so difficult - she carries an outboard with a cute steering wheel, horn, windshield and ice chest for groceries. I can dock her blindfolded with one hand - the only encouraging docking episode I know. Quite obviously, she is our water vehicle. We will be selling our 10 year old land coup when we actually depart from the British Virgin Islands later this year. Believe it or not we actually have a waiting line for the coup - in our islands no one has a new car as the roads are still mid 18th century.
We are still constructing the galley (kitchen) and heads (bathrooms). I am on intimate terms with the housekeepers at the marina, where we are staying, as they have observed me in every personal act from brushing my teeth to going to the loo. Such are the joys of old age.
Alas, the future holds serious doubts for me as to wind shifts, raging seas, pirates, tsunamis, and once again docking. After learning to store all of my clothing in a closet the size of a school locker and stashing pictures, silver, precious memories etc. below the floorboards - I guess I am ready. At least my children and grandchildren are ready - to come and visit.
Hawaii is great and it is wonderful to see sons Michael and Gregory working together (they have a large parasail operation on Waikiki Beach). This summer I enjoyed many hours up in the air flying behind their boats - mostly with various grandchildren in my lap - but - Egads - they can come and visit us for awhile. I just can't keep up this transcontinental pace any more. As, in my frugality, I fly space available in the animal compartment of the plane's belly, I arrive tired, irritable and looking like a 100 year old accordion, to say the least.
Computer minded Dave is researching the latest data for e-mail at sea. Talk about complex. Terra Firma is definitely the preferable way of sending greetings. But we have never thrown away our old laptops so we will most probably have one in the pilot house for charts, one in the galley for recipes and one in the stateroom for what used to be - "The Joy of Sex!"
By this time you have probably fallen asleep and are asking yourself. "Where in the world are they going?" Quite honestly - we don't know. It will be such a relief not to raise sails any longer and to just turn the key and head out into the vast waterlands that cover our planet. I am heavy into genealogy right now so Virginia is an option (where I was born and spent the early years) or the Mediterranean (where many generations roamed years ago). I don't know that it matters much. In fact, after this recent move I really don't care. Just let me sleep past 8! And tea in bed please! So what if we are in a rolling anchorage!