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When I first moved to Bellingham I thought people who lived aboard year round were absolutely nuts.  The truth is they are a bit touched in the head.  There is a learned hardness that it takes to choose the wrath of Pacific Northwest winters, the damp cold, condensation, icy docks, Brutal winds, isolation…I was amazed that I survived my first winter and loved it.  The transition was short and easy, it suited me well.  The worst was creeping down the icy docks late at night, one slip and I would have been a popsicle.  Every night that I safely made it back after Chloe’s evening walk I would breathe sigh of relief.  I reveled in the storms and found that I had plenty of visitors even on the coldest darkest days.

Fish Bay_

Sookie is starting to look respectable and I’m back on the schedule to launch.  The tides are wonky for this tiny boatyard so i don’t know if I’ll be floating by opening day but it doesn’t matter we’ll go in when we go in.  Spring is here and I have my first sun burn, the sun is shining bright and all the kids have come out to play.

I’ve taken my last hot shower for the forceable future and am cleaning up the old beach house for its next guests.  Its been a fun ride and I’ve been very reluctant to move back aboard after such a wonderful winter curled up in front of the wood stove.  After 5 years living aboard I knew a house would make me soft but I had no Idea how hard it would be to transition back aboard.  I’ve been fortunate and little bits of money have been rolling in but rolling out just as fast.  Its time to find some work and get lifelines on the boat.  I’ve happily sailed for three years without them but I’m not the same person I was just a few short months ago.  I’m afraid this softness I’ve acquired may be here to stay.  I find myself seeking the small things that never really mattered.  I also find myself thinking about the future and wanting more than this drift about life.  I actually have real insurance on the boat, plans to add a heater and that real oven I keep dreaming about is waiting for me in Port Townsend.

I’m also learning that I’m the worlds worst film maker and now a bit lost as my whole direction in life has been to make a sailing film.  The absolute beauty of being debt free is that I’m free.  Free to take on new challenges and fail miserably, free to watch the grass grow and contemplate and free to do what I want when I want.  I don’t have all the answers, actually right now I don’t have any of them.  What I do have is time and space to figure it all out.  The brainless methodical task of varnishing the boat will give me lots of time for slow pure thought and thats what this boy needs right now, a little bit of peace.  Everything else will come to me when the universe deems me worthy.  I’m not afraid of what lies ahead.  Perhaps thats my biggest problem, I’ve never been afraid to live.

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.  

~Theodore Roosevelt

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