We have spent much of the last twenty years voyaging in the northern North Atlantic and adjacent Arctic waters where the sailing season is short and the penalties for being late are unpleasant. Even when we have voyaged to more benign waters, like the Bahamas or south eastern USA, we are usually way early northbound and way late southbound. The result is that our schedule has always been driven by the weather—a fair wind and we go, no matter how wonderful the place we are in is. This year, we are working on that compulsive behaviour.
But it’s not easy. Just as soon as we arrive somewhere I’m programmed to start looking for a window to leave. So before we even get to know a place or meet anybody, the clock is ticking. Not exactly a prescription for living in the moment.
So this year, for the first time in our voyaging lives, we are not setting a goal that must be reached. Sure, we would like to get to Newfoundland to spend time in one of our favourite places that was just a fleeting blur during last year’s Arctic voyage. But if other places and wonderful experiences intervene between us and that goal, we will let them.
This year when we arrive at a place, we will start by planning how we can enjoy our stay, not how we can leave. And when we are ready to leave, then, and only then, we will look for a fair wind. The change may sound subtle to you, but for us, it’s huge.
Will this be a permanent change? I doubt it. My guess is that sooner or later we will hatch a plan for a goal driven voyage. But for now and this season, we are already enjoying the new way. That is in-between staving off fair wind guilt.
How do you voyage? Driven by the goal, or in the moment? Please leave a comment.