We moved on to Cortado in early November with the plan of cruising straight to the Bahamas. That was OUR plan. Mother nature had a different plan. For a safe and smooth Gulf Stream crossing, we needed two days of calm, South, South-West or East breeze. Anything from the South would do. What we got, instead was North, North-East and North Westerlys. Even on days when it might have been possible, Tony had work commitments that could not be changed, so our Bahama plan has been put on hold. We tried desperately to make a schedule but it turns out, we cannot be scheduled!
Simultaneously, after a long summer in the boatyard with many projects and new upgrades, we have had some new minor mechanical issues to take care of.
Our AC and water pump stopped working, which we fixed/replaced in St. Augustine.
We installed a new refrigerator in Ft. Lauderdale and in Miami we repaired a broken generator. *Fixing things has only given us more confidence in our lovely boat.
(Tony hard at work on the boat in Miami)
(replacing the fridge meant removing a window to get the old one out and new one in)
(our main cabin with floorboards removed for a routine “polishing” the fuel in our tanks: an arduous process, but important to do on occasion).
Next we will replace two port-light windows in the bow – an upgrade we are looking forward to, because the new windows come with screens! Yes, this is what it means to own a boat. We are a young family, so we worry about finances, and feel vulnerable if we are doing “enough” science or math in school. We are experiencing some small issues, but we are on top of the fixing. When you love a boat, I guess this is just what you do. And in the end, we will have a BETTER boat to show for it.
(dock showering in Jacksonville)
Remaining flexible and positive is imperative for us. We are reminded that we cannot pretend we are in control of EVERYTHING. We are reminded that we have to overcome disappointment if plans have to change and we need to support each other with smiles and good attitudes. The kids are aware of how important their role is in this as well. We know we are a TEAM, in good weather and bad. So we act as a team and work together.
(Sharing a favorite snack of pipas – sunflower seeds – on the flybridge)
On that note, we have had days in between the repairs that have been nothing short of pure family joy.
We have watched rain squalls approach, drench and move past us while a double rainbow forms in front of our eyes.
We have heard the exhales and blowing of schools of dolphin feeding around us at anchor in the night and seen large tarpon chase little fish scuttling across the night-water’s surface.
We’ve had dinners with old friends and made new friends along the way…
We have had school days unrivaled in excitement about our study of world history, breakthroughs in math and are loving reading Don Quixote together.
Shelling on a tiny island near Miami would have been impossible without the addition of our new dinghy, Pipa (whom we LOVE).
So when it has been good, it has been very good.
It is not our style to complain, most importantly because we are fully aware that we have chosen this lifestyle. Though the impression can be that we are floating around on our cruise-y yacht, eating grapes and chocolate bon-bons… I guarantee you we work our (parental, captain, crew, spouse, sailor and teacher) pants off. Sometimes we are rewarded with an un-wanted boat-repair bill – though most times it’s a stellar school day or a double rainbow. We never know what we will get!
Without a doubt, the promise outweighs the pain every time.