August 26, 2009

I’ve been thinking about this for a couple of days, and the concept gelled this morning as I shed some tears over my friend Lee’s blog (last cruising entry for a while).  Her final lines are “We recommend to everyone that they take time now to fulfill that dream or vision.  There is no other time, only the present.”  Lee and her husband, Chris, took off a year ago and went to the Exumas and back, up to Martha’s Vineyard and back to Deltaville.  Reading their blog is a lesson in being PRESENT – a lesson I know I would do well to heed.

And that’s where I am struggling right now.  I have the hardest time being present to all that is happening.  Part of is the feeling that I have feet in a couple of different worlds, part of it is wanting time to hurry up and go by.  Part of it is, quite probably, a mourning for the stability and comfort of the routine we have shed already – with more to come in the next week, even, as I put in my final day at work on Monday.  And with that mourning is a frustration with myself – I am choosing this (we are choosing this) – why be sad about the choice?

Our transition began in the summer, really, when we moved out of our newly-renovated, much beloved house so the renters could come in with their boxes and different chaos.  We are now living in a one-bedroom apartment, all four of us, which I joke (semi-seriously) about being bigger than the boat. (It is, square footage-wise.)  The kids had to pack up their toys and books, and all they could bring with them (other than clothes) had to fit in a small plastic box.  They are being remarkably resilient and accepting, except that Julian cannot kick a cold and Maddie is now grinding her teeth at night.  Hard, hard, hard to share with them (convince them? help them understand?) WHY it is so imperative that we

5th and 3rd grades . . .  oh no!

5th and 3rd grades . . . oh no!

do this cruising thing NOW.

School started for the kids yesterday.  They are in new classrooms, with new teachers and new friends.  But they know (as do their teachers and classmates) that they will only be there for 5 weeks.  Strange situation.  Possibly for them the hardest part (or the hardest part they can verbalize) is not riding the school bus.

I am frantically finishing up things at work (I have been the Admissions Director at a local private school for the past 5 years, and my job culminates on Monday with the orientation of the new kids the day before school starts), feeling like a bit of a ghost (thanks, Nura!).  My colleagues are wonderful and supportive, but they (obviously) are caught up in the excitement of a new year while I am not involved at all with those details.

Jeremy’s replacement starts on Monday, for close to a month of overlap.  He is working hard as ever at work, trying to leave procedures and lists in place for his team – and then coming home to work on boat projects or research boat parts.

And through it all I am wondering how the reentry will be.  Lee’s blog has reminded me of my one real regret from last time – that I was too busy looking at what was coming next to appreciate where we were. (In reading the old journal from that trip, I can read 4 separate, distinct times when I wrote, “Now the cruising can really begin.”  What cruising did I miss while waiting for it to “start?”)

Stop, Nica.  Concentrate on the NOW.  Even as chaotic as it seems, it is what is going on.  If I look too far in the future I may well miss the present.

So bring it back to the present.  Yesterday was the first day of school for the kids, and they looked great (and all too

Grilled pizza is delicious

Grilled pizza is delicious

tall) as I scrambled them into the car for the drive to school.  Today we made pizza on the grill for dinner – not all that exciting (for us) except that we did it on the boat grill and it WORKED!!! (We had been worried that it would burn before cooking properly)  Kids are in bed now, reading, and Jeremy and I are playing dueling computers working on different boat projects.  (This blog must count as a boat project, yes?)

There you go.  Rantings and philosophical wanderings and perhaps some self-centered whining from me.  Ah well.  At least I ate well tonight.

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2 Responses to Transitions

  1. Paul Erb says:

    “kalyps” in Greek means “veil, covering,” from which we get also “apo-calypse,” or “away-veil”–the moment when the veil is lifted and we no longer see as through a glass, darkly. So “Aweigh, Calypso!” must mean that many revelations lie ahead ahead for you all. More language: “Voile” is French for “sail” as well as for “veil.” So, perfect name for this boat, this time, this NOW.

    I can see you are starting to breathe OUT. Breathing IN is for people who are stuck in the past, who want to hold that breath. So (think about it) that hydraulic effect that draws Calypso’s mainsail forward is the breath-out that sucks the vessel, and all of you with it, into the future.

    OK, almost enough poetry. Monday will come and go like sleeps in the nought, and then…There lies the port; the vessel puffs her sail:
    There gloom the dark, broad seas. The lights begin to twinkle from the rocks:
    The long day wanes: the slow moon climbs: the deep
    Moans round with many voices. Come, my friends,
    ’Tis not too late to seek a newer world.
    Push off…to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

  2. Calypso:

    Living in two worlds and being tore between the land and the water world is difficult but you will endure and flourish when the trades fill your sails and the routine of sea life becomes part of Calypso.

    I wish IDUNA were sailing with you. We will be sad when Calypso turns south and Iduna turns north. We shall watch as our vessels diverge on different “paths” and always wonder if we plotted the wrong course that day. It will be a brief moment when Calypso’s sails vanish behind the horizon and disappear into your future but that memory will be with us forever.

    I sent our entry for the Turkey Shoot two days ago, hence Karen of Yankee Point Marine should receive the letter by Monday. IDUNA is looking forward to rendezvousing with her sister-ship Calypso. We had such a grand time with you last year – thank you.

    Fair Winds,


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