06 July 2013 | Did we Really do that?
This time last year we were sweating in the La Paz 100 degree heat planning our return to the United States. While waiting to leave La Paz, we were dreading the roughly 1000 mile trip north into the wind and swell known as "The Baja Bash" more than we ever feared or worried about returning to life in the States. Despite the dozens of well-intentioned emails warnings us that living aboard on a mooring in the States would be all but impossible and we would inevitably move back to land within a year, here we are still alive, not divorced and enjoying our life aboard. It would be a lie to say that dingy rides back to the boat in the rain and cold were fun, that life aboard isn’t more work than life ashore (a big lie), or that we enjoy having to make our own hot water for showers. We knew life aboard would be harder, but it was what we wanted to do and it is working for us. Not without challenges or tweaks to our original plan, but at the end of the day we are much happier living aboard than we would have been moving back to land, but (there always is a “But” right) fear is starting to creep into our minds and even memories.
At first I kept it to myself, not wanting to admit to Lori and maybe even myself, that the Captain that kept the boat together and off the rocks for the last 5 years was feeling uneasy. It’s hard to explain, but the thought of sailing nearly 1000 miles non-stop by ourselves from San Diego to Mazatlan or even crossing the Sea of Cortez on our own sounds scary and borderline crazy to me now. Perhaps it is as I joked with Lori all this “easy living” we have had in the last year. When I shared this with Lori a few days ago she seemed relieved that she wasn’t the only one to have these feelings. Not to exaggerate the fear, it isn’t enough to keep us form heading back to Mexico aboard THIRD DAY, but even moving the boat 10 miles from Morro Bay to Port San Luis brought on a little butterfly in the stomach feeling that didn’t exist during our days in Mexico ahead of a 48 or even 36 hour crossing. As the years puts more distance between us and our 11,000 mile cruise will that butterfly feeling grown into enough fear to keep us from wanting to head south again? Hopefully not because next summer we have a trip back to Mexico planned for a haul out and paint at Baja Naval Boatyard in Ensenada. I’m sure we will be nervous as we drop the mooring ball and head towards Point Conception, Santa Cruz Island, Catalina Island and then onto Ensenada, but the truth is we were afraid when we first dropped the mooring ball and headed South back in 2008 and it turns out the only thing we had to fear was fear itself.