There are certain situations in life when an end is not clear. Times when you are gifted with multiple roads to take and all the road signs are labeled “Lofty, but within reach.” There’s no one who knows the details like you do, knows the intricacies of the problems, the victories of the solutions, the nuances of the memories. There’s no one to say stop, no one else to make the decision. It’s in these moments that one finds a sense of complete freedom, a real time understanding that we indeed write our own story. One also feels a sense of overwhelming and at times debilitating fear and can easily get caught in a web of “what if’s”.
Today was not our first experience of this type of life situation on our SoulTide adventure, this kind of crossroads, but it felt the most significant. And once we had made our decision, elements began to fall into place like so many keys fitting into locks.
After finding irreparable damages inside of our engine block, we decided to haul our girl SoulTide out in Charleston and give her a well deserved break. After all, she wasn’t even favored to make it out of Virginia and look at how far she took us.
It was heartbreaking to leave her, to leave our home and our boat life. We will miss the quiet hours spent sailing, the incredibly kind (and often very silly and gregarious) souls we met along the way, the dolphins. I will miss cooking for Clay, making coffee and orange juice in the morning for us while SoulTide is on a major tilt. I will missing reading our guidebooks to Clay, learning about the water and her landmarks as we passed through them. I will miss the sound of rain inside the boat, the sound of Clay singing or calling a bridge for an opening. I will miss watching Clay fish for dinner with an incredible sunset developing around him.
I know Clay will miss our SoulTide terribly until we can get her home again. He will miss sailing. He will miss navigating, watching wind and weather patterns and searching tirelessly for the best anchorages. He will miss running aground, I’m sure, and I think he’ll really missing getting us off a grounding. He will miss the freedoms, the solitude, the quiet.
We are incredibly lucky to have had these experiences and incredibly grateful that the one thing we won’t have to miss from this trip is each other. We are heading home together, with memories and stories we can cherish forever. Until the next adventure…