Let me start from the end before I continue with the beginning. I’m writing this from the upper cockpit of a 93 foot catamaran as we’re sailing past Ibiza at 20.30. It’s our last day on sea of the most incredibly peaceful amazing Atlantic crossing. The third attempt was my lucky attempt and it was certainly worth the wait. The first time I was supposed to cross two years ago, something told me not to go. I was lucky and sadly the crew and boat were not, as they never made it to Europe and have never been found. Last year, well if you’ve been following my blog for a while, it was the story of the man with no toothbrush. This year, I was fortunate enough to score a delivery job on a mega catamaran with six epic people. I’m so glad I quickly got over my previous two attempts by believing that I will go on a crossing, but when the time is right. It certainly was this time.
It took us 21.5 beautiful days to cross, with a two day stop in the Azores for provisions. Every day was different, I never tired of the beautiful scenery. Some people may think it’s the same because it’s open sea, but it’s not. Every day the sea has a new mood, sometimes various moods in one day, the sea life comes out to welcome us to their paradise, the wind blows at a different pace and direction, and the sky is a moving slideshow. The days absolutely flew by. I was often so busy observing and contemplating the beauty around me that I didn’t have time to do all of the reading, writing, yoga and movie watching I thought I would do. The only time I watched films was when the weather was bad or my face was burned from strong winds.
I had the privilege of being on a boat with six people who I know were meant to be doing this crossing together. The Captain and Engineer have been friends for years. As two guys nearing 50, they decided that they needed a crew of five women, which is what they got! We are from various countries (three from South Africa, one from Australia, one Czech Republic, one France and me US/UK), with various stories of what we did before coming into the yachtie world. Everyone had a beautiful energy to them, even when there was some tension or bad moods on the boat. It was easy for me to enjoy my time on this boat because I could just be relaxed and not have to deal with overpowering negative energy. I started and finished each day with gratitude for life and in particular for this journey that words will never truly describe.
This trip was absolute luxury. I had my favourite watch 2-6 am and pm, which yes, did take it’s toll on me when we had rough seas and I couldn’t sleep between watches. During those days, it was usually calm during my watch meaning I missed the opportune sleep! The upside is that it’s hard for me to be in a bad mood when I’m on the sea. I’m completely in my element and get totally lost in the environment. I have so many ways of staying awake during night watches so it’s not an issue. We had a chef who cooked excellent food so I gained those few pounds that friends and family have been telling me I needed. The stewardess did my laundry for me and I was in a guest cabin with a waterfall shower to wash off all the salt at the end of my shifts. Not my usual way of sailing, but hey, it’s work 😉 It will be just as beautiful when I have to cook, can’t do my laundry and don’t have the luxury of daily showers. The sea is my happy place in no matter what form I ride her.
Today, as I laid in my cabin with ice on my face after falling flat on it getting too cocky and doing crow pose during my yoga practice (turns out catamarans aren’t THAT stable!), I couldn’t help but lie in awe of life. On this journey I made it a priority to read more of my yoga scriptures and could really absorb the material and start to incorporate it into my life. One message was how we have absolute total control over our lives because we make our own reality. Nothing exists and everything exists. That line is repeated over and over in the scriptures and makes no sense, but total sense. I am creating this reality for myself. A reality which is full of adventure, opportunity, fun, interesting people and life lessons.
I reflected on this whole journey which seems so short and long at the same time. For once in my life, words and thoughts escaped me. All I felt was a radiating energy of gratitude, humbleness, peace and pure joy. Perhaps that’s a sign that this surely was the most incredible journey life has ever presented to me.
Many people think of nothing worse than being on a boat that you can’t leave for nearly 21 days. They would feel trapped. To me, it is pure freedom. Freedom from the energy of the chaotic world we live in, freedom from the good and bad influence of other people, freedom from the norm. The journey can sometimes be way more interesting and exciting than the arrival (like my Colombia to Florida crossing). There are no rules other than the ones that the crew on the boat make up. The journey can start and end wherever we or the weather decides. To me, that’s liberation.
I have written twelve blogs about my newest story from the plane ride from London until my arrival in Palma. If you don’t want to miss out on the reasons behind the crazy person who thinks being stuck on a little boat in the vast ocean with strangers is so incredible, scroll all the way to the bottom of this blog and select follow to sign up for email notifications. As far as I know, none of my followers have ever received spam so don’t be shy! Thank you for reading.