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Friday, February 10, 2012

2/10/2010 - Livin' the life

Whenever I try laying off writing anything until I have something to say, invariably I eventually start getting comments urging me to write something. Then, even though I don't really have anything new to say, I write something anyway. And it's usually about food. Now I like food and I like writing about food and I know that there are even readers out there who like reading about food, but since I don't really want this blog to turn into a meal-by-meal diary of what we ate in Mexico or anywhere else, I occasionally have to think of something else to write about.

I was sitting here pondering that very question a few minutes ago. Then I got a comment from new readers Mike and Melissa of Little Cunning Plan. Melissa mentioned that they are still dreaming and are happy that we are living our dream and allow them and others to follow along and live the dream vicariously. That's good stuff to hear. It wasn't that long ago that we were doing the same thing. Reading cruisers' blogs and dreaming about when we'd be doing instead of reading about.

And then Lulu came back aboard after taking a shower and said, "We live in paradise."

Having just walked past the hot tub on my way back to the boat after my shower, I had to agree. So today I thought I'd just write a little bit about the idyllic life we're leading. This is not meant as a boast, but rather just as a prod to those who dream of one day following in our footsteps or the footsteps of others like us. Keep the dream alive. It's worth it.

As I've written before, Lulu and I have different sleeping habits. I tend to rise somewhere between 6:30 and 7:00 while she likes to sleep in until 8:30 or 9:00. And that's OK. We can get up whenever the heck we feel like it. Except on days that we plan to get underway or have some sort of pressing errand to run, there is absolutely no pressure to get up at any time other than when we feel like it. That's one of the first mental adjustments we had to make. And, it goes hand-in-hand with the fact that it matters not at all when we go to bed. Can't fall asleep? So what? It's not like we're going to perish tomorrow from lack of sleep. If we get sleepy, we can take a nap. It's weird after so many years of working and raising kids when it actually mattered a lot when you went to bed and when you got up. And it mattered if you didn't get enough sleep one night because you'd feel like crap at work all the next day. It just doesn't matter now.

So, what do we do all day? Well, occasionally we'll have some chore or another to do. Certainly this summer when we haul the boat out of the water we'll be putting in more hours working on her than we do now. But, she's basically in pretty darn good shape. Oh, there are always things to do but not so many that we need to work long hours every day to get them done like we had to while we were still in Newport, OR and trying to get the boat ready to go. Lulu's generally more ambitious than I am. She usually has at least one small project to do. Today it was cleaning the inside of the dinghy, which didn't take long since it was already pretty clean. I occasionally have times when I try to get at least one thing done a day. The last few days, however, I've been on a "I don't feel like doing anything but read a book" regime. And the thing is, that's OK. I still have a little bit of lingering guilt when I do nothing at all, but I'm working on getting over the last vestiges of that guilt. I do have plans for a couple of bigger jobs while Lulu's in Iowa the next couple weeks. Jobs that are easier when there's only one person aboard as I'll have tools and stuff strewn all over.

So I've read several books over the last couple weeks. I'm currently reading the second in the Joe Pitt series. Vampyres and zombies, what's not to like? Lulu doesn't spend as much time reading as I do. Most of her "downtime" is spent working on her micromacrame. She's getting pretty fast and fancy with her bracelets.

Some days, like yesterday, that's pretty much all we did. Oh wait, I take that back. We took the hand cart over to the Weber BBQ store to retrieve our filled propane bottles and picked up our laundry, all clean and folded, from the lavandería at Marina Mazatlán. Also stopped at the store to get some tomatoes to make salsa for dinner. So I guess we did do something.

Some folks just can't handle this kind of schedule. They have to be moving and doing stuff all the time. Some of them chide us for staying in one place for such a long time. But, to each their own or, in nautical parlance, "different ships, different long splices". We know folks who just got to Mexico and are already planning for a trip across the Pacific to the fabled south seas this spring (that's in, like, 2 months). We wish them fair winds and flat seas but I believe we'll take the slower route. In some cases these folks either have a finite amount of time for their trip, a finite amount of money for their trip, or are just young enough that sitting around doing nothing has no appeal for them yet. No worries. The world is big enough for all of us.

Lest you think that we're going to waste yet another day, let me tell you that we do have plans for today. About 2:00 we're going to walk down to the zona dorada to a restaurant/bar on the beach called Diego's. A couple of gringos we've run into occasionally here at the marina have a blues band that plays at Diego's on Friday afternoons. We feel it's our duty to help support them. Afterwards we plan to stop for fish and chips at El Fish Market. We've heard good things about El Fish Market but have never been. Then, we'll walk back to the marina and settle in for the evening.

So, get up when we want, go to bed when (if) we want, do nothing or do something, eat out or cook at home, sail off to La Paz or spend another month in Mazatlán, we can do pretty much anything we want to do. And, no matter what we're doing, knowing that makes everything perfect. Well, that and the beautiful weather.

And, as far as we're concerned, that's paradise.


Anonymous said...

Yes, in your eyes you are in paradise and that is what is important. I agree that if you don't want to do something today, what the heck. There is always tomorrow. Dad and I do pretty much the same except we have this little sideline business of quilting so have to have some type of schedule. Love, Mom

Anonymous said...

Good morning, Steve & Lulu: I totally agree with you - when someone ask me what do I do all day, I reply "Whatever I want to".
I really enjoy your blogs - I am really vacationing/traveling with you. Take care and my love to both of you always - Nancy

Anonymous said...

Steve, we the readers, are only wanting more fun! You write well and entertaining. While it is not just the food, it is about getting the food,ordering the food, how it is made and the surprises you encounter along the way. Granted the food does sound good as you tell of the tastes. Here in the cold of Germany we also appreciate the telling of warm fun. Thank you for taking the time to entertain us all. If we demand more, it is your own doing with the stories you weave. Thank you Dieter

Steve and Lulu said...

Thanks Dieter. Good to hear. February in Germany. Geez! I've never been but for some reason the very thought gives me goose bumps, and not from excitement. Brrrrrrrr...... I'll try to keep those tales of warm places coming. Thanks for following along.


Tate said...

It keeps making the blog posts or it gets the hose.

Dani said...

haha..I was telling Tate the other day that you must have some Cajun in you to like food so much! We love food. Down here in Southeast Louisiana it's usually what our days revolve around. It's either..humm what to cook tonight, or where are we going..all the other things are merely activities to work up an appetite.

It's interesting you mention Guilt from doing nothing. I have often worried I might suffer the same guilt, although more so.

I am a busy body in my own life. We don't have kids, but the moments are rare when I just don't do anything. Why is this? I have heard that society had sped up in my generation and a little before. That more is better, faster is better, and if you aren't doing anything it's "bad".

I have discussed this with Tate and feel like out boat is helping with those feelings of mine. Since being on the boat I have taken 5 hours while sailing to simply listen to music, while Tate read a book. It was wonderful, all the thinking or not thinking for so long. I started to feel like a kid without any responsibility or requirement for work.

Other times I've sat on Sundowner and read a book for 6 hours straight. I was truly able to immerse myself in the book..It was great.

So I am glad you are able to combat this guilt that society seems to have ingrained in us. I mean when you look at other countries and how much downtime and vacation they have, you've got to wonderful if they started poisoning the cereal when we were kids with the notion of this rat race.


Keith and Kay Schardein said...

I think we have "ESP"...I have been reflecting about writing exactly this post, but you have done it and superbly!

So, my next post is just a LINK to this one! It says it all, and ain't this life grand?

Yes, overcoming the pressure to DO SOMETHING was a bit difficult but so worth it. ;)