Well, it’s been a week of ups and downs. Which is typical of anyone’s week, I suppose, but when you’re living aboard a boat in a foreign country, occasionally feeling somewhat isolated, things just seem more intense. You can be up one moment -- intensely, happily up, and then the next moment -- abruptly, brutally down. (And no, I’m not manic-depressive, either!) As life is to be lived to the fullest, we just try to go with the moment! I know that we are lucky enough to simply be here!
Ups: Many and plentiful, and we are appreciative! First off, we’re here in Antigua, living on our own boat, with beautiful skies and we're happy to revel in good weather -- light winds, long, easy swells! We’re exploring in the dinghy and enjoying the vibrant reef during scuba dives, we’re walking barefoot on warm sand along sun-drenched beaches, we’re enjoying cool, refreshing dips in the freshwater pool at Jolly Harbour. And, we’re enjoying a little quiet time together, just the two of us. We are so lucky!
But there are some downs. Downs include: Ally left earlier this week. We had such a great visit with her --- it was hard to say goodbye and see her go. (There were tears, I admit!) The boat is very quiet without her! But, as much as a bilge rat as she was growing up, she is now off to college far from the sea and having her own adventures. Currently, she is back in Colorado, skiing with Aunt Lisa, so we know she’s having fun. Still…we miss her!!
|Ally and I before dinner one evening in western Antigua|
Other downs (and unfortunately there are a few more): there's nothing worse than routine maintenance gone wrong!! Yep, the oil fill cap to the 12kw genset went missing after its oil, oil filter, fuel filter and impeller change --- we think it ended up in the boatyard recycling area when we took the used oil and old filters ashore. Then, one of the gauges on the scuba tank air fill whips decided to lose its plug and drain glycerin oil all over the aft cockpit, which was a mess and a half to clean up. Ugh! Then ... it gets worse: the very next day, the dive compressor hiccupped during a tank fill and shut down. When we turned it on, there was no compression -- compressor out of action!
We got on the sat phone to one of the techs (gotta love good customer service!) who helped us diagnose the issue. It should be pretty easy to repair, (of course, should is the operative word!) so we are awaiting the right replacement part – and in the mean time, we can get fills at the local dive shop here. It turns out not to be all that bad, yet believing we were without diving sent Ron into a funk…a major down. Diving is something he loves to do!
As for me? My epitome of unhappiness came this afternoon. After relaxing and reading a book on my iPhone in the shade on the pilot house sun pads, I paused to tighten one of the straps to the aft deck sun shade, which was flapping annoyingly. I set my iPhone down behind me as I did so, and when I finished, I turned around and …. accidentally punted my iPhone off the fly-bridge!! Yep, directly… into… the… water!! (My first thought: “NO!! That did NOT just happen!!) Well…yes, it did. Argh!! While we don't use our cell phones to make calls when overseas (way too expensive!), now I can’t finish my book! Bummer.
So…ups and downs, in the here and now. Just like everyone else on the planet! So, as momentarily joyful and saddening as the events are, we’re just dealing with it. It's not the end of the world! We are still here, healthy and active, the boat is on a mooring in a beautiful country, and...we have family coming in less than 5 days!! Yes!! So how lucky are we?? Lucky indeed! As Scott Kirby sings, in “Lucky Enough”:
”If you're living to love by the ocean,
And loving to live by the sea,
Just lucky enough to live on blue water...
You're lucky enough by me.”
And we are. I hope you are, too!