Missed the Boat

 

S/V Seamore.  Boot key harbor, Florida Keys.

S/V Seamore. Boot key harbor, Florida Keys. ~1999

“I miss the smell of teak,” said Captain Chameleon.

It was 2006.  I should have known that Captain Chameleon was missing our boat from the Florida Keys when he brought home 4 teak benches, 2 teak steamer lounge chairs, 3 teak chairs, and a teak table. Our Phoenix home is just shy of 1500 Square feet.  Where were we going to fit 10 pieces of teak furniture?  Without doing the math, I knew we were headed for heeby-jeebby-vill.  Seriously, how many pieces of teak can fit into an urban desert dwelling?  Not ten.  In hindsight, Captain Chameleon was missing his boat, Seamore.

14 years earlier, I almost missed the boat, so to speak. 1992, it was a blustery February day in Missouri when I accepted a job in Homestead, Florida.  Finalizing the details went something like this…

“When can you start?

“Hmm.  Well.  When is a good time?”

“Yesterday.”

Not the answer I was counting on.  Smack dab in the middle of the semester, I had imagined the phone-hiring process for a nurse (traveler) position would take another few weeks.  Torn between a job in Florida or obtaining a degree in art/design, I opted to withdraw at mid-term and not tarry getting to Florida.  This was my chance to live by the ocean and nothing else mattered.  Certainly not a still life painting of stacked boxes placed a top a velvet cloth. The timing wasn’t great, but it was ok.  It was time to leave behind my studies of light, dark, form, function, and perspective.  Else, I’d miss the boat.

Now, the Captain and I are pretty much back into a routine of balancing work and play.  When people ask about why we took 6 months off from our jobs to go sailing, the question invariably comes up;  “Do you miss the boat?”  Certainly.

It will be several dozen weeks before we return to Seamore Pacific and sail to the eastern shore of the Baja. Until then, I don’t want to miss the boat on urban composting (new experiment), beach glass art, sewing linen halter dresses, family, friends, and work.  Regret would be to return to the boat, untie the dock lines- then realize that we had not spent our time on land wisely; instead of being mindful about the present, we were stuck thinking about the past and the future.

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Beach Glass from Sea of Cortez

 

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Pleasure Boat

 

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Work Boat

 

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Sunset/Full Moon

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A Lesson in Kite Flying

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Celebrate (life)

“For Pete’s sake, let out some line! I need your kite to be above the power line and about 30 feet to the right of that rusty TV satellite dish. Dude, I’m trying to take a meaningful picture.”

Impatience comes naturally.  Is it the world I live in?  Is it my genetic material?  Is it a cop-out strategy?. Or is it blindness?  After two weeks of mulling over the question, I have concluded that for me personally, it is both blindness and a cop-out.  Perhaps after a bit more pondering, I’ll come up with additional reasons.  But for now, I can attest to blindness and copping out.  A picture perfect day beside the ocean, a billowing kite; and yet instantly out pops a self serving agenda. It doesn’t make sense.

Years ago, we had the inkling to buy beach front property in Mexico. In just under 5 hours, we can leave work and be at the beach. Relatively simple, because once upon a time, living in the Florida Keys I drove 4.5 hours to the mainland to work back to back weekend shifts.  With Seamore Pacific sitting on the hard, twice a month we will attempt to escape to our little casa, which includes housekeeping services.  Mwah is the housekeeper.  As tempting as it sounds to arrive at our cerebral-oasis and find it dust free and sparkling clean, Captain Chameleon and I made a choice to forgo having someone come in and sweep up the sand, mop the floors, and wash the windows prior to our arrival.  For us, every little bit saved, puts us closer to cruising and free time.  Fortunately, I enjoy cleaning.  I’ve no idea how our story would go if I lead a revolution against cleaning.  I imagine we would get used to sand between our sheets?

Back to the guy flying his kite…I was on our second story patio, mopping, and cleaning the sliders when I looked up to see a kite lift up from the beach.  Not yet picture perfect, I dashed inside to get my camera.  Then, I waited, waited, squinted, cheered, coaxed, and cursed for the blasted kite to get high enough over the power line and be to the left of the obstructing beach house for me to take a “perfect” picture.  I took lots of pictures.  Deleted most of them.  Cropped the others.  Then returned to Phoenix and got busy with work.  But each day, I would think of the kite.

Tonight, running along a busy Phoenix street, my struggle with how I wanted to see the kite and the way in which the kite really existed, became clear.  The kite was beautiful because it WAS flying in midst of a power line and a rusty TV satellite.  Capturing its own whiff of wind, it was able to fly.  Above the housetops.  Unsnarled by modern day conveniences. Metaphorically it is a representation of what I wish for until we are back to our simple life of cruising.  No regrets, Seamore Pacific is dry docked; we have returned to work for a season, we miss our cruising life, and yet we are enjoying navigating life-as it is for now.

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Optimism (noon)

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Perseverance (Sunset)

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Collecting beach glass: a rewarding and relaxing ritual.

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Windows foiled, belongings removed.  Ready for a hot summer-dry docked.

Windows foiled, belongings removed. Ready for a hot summer-dry docked.

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Marina Seca: Seamore Pacific dry-docked until next season.

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