I picked up a book over at the Cayuco Club the other day, 'Honeymoon with my brother', by Franz Wisner. On the face of it a pretty lightweight travel biography. A pair of brothers set out traveling after one is jilted, almost at the altar.
As the book has developed I am feeling more and more empathy with the thoughts of the writer and when , on page 110, he states: "What I realized on the Istanbul rooftop was that extended travel has a way of re prioritizing the past. Some of my memories expanded and became luminous, others faded away", I had a bit of a 'eureka' moment! Yes! That's how it is for me!
I suppose that we all have different ideas about what traveling will do for us. These thoughts change as we start out. What did I expect? Well, a lot of fun, a bit of fear and some stimulation along the way.
What I have found is that I have become a very different person from the one that left Britain back in 2000. Isn't it exciting to know that an old dog CAN still learn some new tricks. And those tricks come from the most unexpected sources...
Cruising is brimful of folks with one of the widest range of interests and abilities that you will ever come across. From the dog eared hippy leftover bumming the oceans in a barely disguised tincan to the multi- millionaire in the fully crewed Superyacht, they all have something to pass on!Sometimes something that you'd rather not have too...
Since being here at Mario's I could have learnt to play bridge, mahjong, Texas Holdem' poker, learnt to speak Spanish. And that's just in the afternoon's. We have met artists, neurosurgeons, military personnel, business men, musicians and a host of others.
I have watched relationships develop..and decline. Marriages break up, children born, people die. No different to life on land surely I hear you say. Well in some respects not but to me there is a difference. Everyone out here, in ways both large and small, is living, with a capital L. The one uniting force amongst us is that we all made a CHOICE and that is becoming a rare commodity in todays world. We chose to sail away from the familiar, the safe, the ordered way of life. Okay for some it was in response to a trauma, maybe health or marital, but nevertheless a step was taken along a very different path. Well I believe that calls for a round of applause guys. So go on put those hands together in a rousing show of appreciation for stepping out of the mundane, for having courage!
I love the way sailors share their expertize, help one another to overcome problems. Rarely asking for reward and often disappearing over the horizon never to be seen again.
Do you remember that movie, 'Pay it Forward'? The premise of the film was that if all in the world extended help, in many small ways, to those around them, they in return would be helped when that assistance was needed. Bit of a schlok movie but why not?
Right, back to the real world, and where I came in this morning. Travel has caused me to recognize that the triumphs and disasters of my past are all one and the same. All learning experiences. No regrets, no dissection, just moments.
In the words of TBH, "There are only winners and learners, the only mistake is not to try".
He is full of marvelous philosophy and I am learning how very fortunate I am to share my boat with him.
Reprioritzing the past is what travel has become to me, an opportunity to embrace what has been, along with what is, and what is yet to come. Bring it on !