Apr 03

Joining the boat for a spell

Tag: tripsJonathon Haradon @ 11:39 am

(post dated–this post generally refers to events on 3/26 and 3/27)

Shuttle bus to Denver airport. Wait two hours. Flight to Dallas. Wait five hours. Flight to Gaudalajara. Taxi to bus station. Wait two hours. Bus to Puerto Vallarta. Taxi to La Cruz de Juanacaxtle. 1 mile walk with 125 pounds of luggage to marina office. Wait three hours. Dinghy ride to anchorage. 30 hours of traveling later: home. On my sailboat.

I met Matt and Karen in Mexico for my spring break. After a tumultuous year with many unexpected turns, I got to join the trip for a short week. It was an emotional reunion for me to get back on the boat. Two months ago, I watched on a computer Syzygy’s AIS track as it sailed out underneath the Golden Gate Bridge without me. While I don’t regret the life choices I made and the experiences I’ve been through over the past year, it was certainly tough to watch the trip begin without me.

Before arriving, there was some trepidation on my part of what it would be like. Would I not mind bobbing around and rocking back and forth in an anchorage? Would I crave the convenience of living on land with its easy access to a multitude of things like: showers, restaurants, home depots. In contrast to living on land, many things about living on a sailboat are simply hard to do. It requires a ten-fold increase in time to accomplish the simplest of tasks, such as if I wanted to make a quick trip to the store to get more orange juice. Would I fit into the systems and dynamic that Karen and Matt have created aboard the sailboat? Would I like long distance sailing? Finally, would I get seasick? I’ve never been out on an ocean in a sailboat. And with the oceans bigger, longer swells, it was distinctly possible that my body would not be fond of me messing with its balance and equilibrium.

As it turned out, I didn’t mind the rolling. Though I did nearly fall off the dinghy the first time I stepped aboard from the dinghy to the Syzygy. I also bumped my head a number of times the first day. I also had a pot of boiling coffee go flying onto the floor after the boat rocked back and forth a bit. I later stepped through an open hatch, landing on my butt on deck and my right leg dangling into the kitchen. So it takes some getting used to.

Part of the 125 pounds worth of luggage I was carrying included many of my things for when I join in June. It also included a bunch of games for Matt and Karen to pass the time on passage. It also included what I hope will soon be one of the most used pieces of gear on the boat: a bunch of scuba gear. My friends Dave and Pat Martin generously loaned me their scuba gear. By generously I mean that five days before I was to leave, I called them up (they live in Tennessee) and inquired about having them send me some of the gear. You could say I am a procrastinator. At any rate, both were prolific divers back in the day. They lent me so much gear I wasn’t able to pack it all down there….I was already at 125 pounds. But I did manage to bring down what I think is the most important part, which is the regulators and the dive computers. I say ‘I think’ because Karen, Matt and I all don’t know how to scuba dive. I was certified once 15 years ago and haven’t dove since. However, we’re planning on going to some of the best scuba diving in the world. How could we not have some scuba gear aboard? Matt has some learn-to-dive CD’s and I’m going to buy a couple of books. We’ll learn a bunch and figure out the rest. Pretty much just like everything else in this adventure.

I’m glad to be back at the sailboat. I already wish I could stay longer. We’re planning on sailing overnight down south to Tenacatita. There’s a jungle river trip we can take in the dinghy. There’s tacos to be eaten. There’s relaxing to be done. A little work on the boat here and there. Fun everywhere!

2 Responses to “Joining the boat for a spell”

  1. Jodi Solem says:

    I only know you Jon from the different blogs, and I’m connected through Karen, but boy! am I glad you are there to help out! Blessings on your voyage!

  2. Vicki (MOM) says:

    Hi Jon!! Thanks for the update! I’m sure the 3 of you had a great time. I know M & K appreciated everything you brought to them. I’m looking forward to talking to Karen & reading their blogs about the trip. Take care & I will see you this summer in Tahiti, God willing. Vicki

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