Bob runs a handful of sailing-related blogs, one of which is Volkscruiser. Earlier in February he posted a short article about some cruising philosophy titled: Volkscruiser: the question you need to ask yourself…
In general, and at this time, I don’t intend to go into a lot of the philosophy one might have going into a liveaboard situation. There are plenty of places you can find that for yourself. Various cruiser forums abound with people’s thoughts on the matter, both the high level “for or against” and the very detailed “I’m thinking about this specific situation and want some opinions” variety. There is a mindset among those who chose to make a floating hunk of fiberglass (or other material) their dwelling place. The world will also have opinions about that choice, ranging from “Oh my goodness I wish I could do that” to “Oh my goodness your a full-time bum”.
I especially appreciated those who said (or implied) that I was obviously too poor to afford a different living arrangement. Regardless of income or anything else, how do you explain to someone that you “chose” to follow a path less traveled?
As I read Bob’s words above, I reflected on the importance of understanding why I chose to live aboard. My personal belief is that intention matters in everything we do. I’m less likely to feel critical about someone’s stupid decisions (or the outcome of stupid decisions) as long as they are intentional in nature. Who do you feel worse for: the gal who invests it all trying to prove a hypothesis about cancer research, or the guy who foolishly loses all his money at a casino? Both are risks. One is calculated.
For myself, getting into sailing and living aboard while I was young (22) was intentional. I wanted to learn new skills, challenge myself, and live an interesting life. It paid off in spades down the line. During all of my subsequent job interviews, I never once heard “Oh my goodness, you took time off of the rat race to go sailing? We don’t want folks like that.” Instead, it was almost always “Holy cow, you did that? That’s amazing.”
The family that purposefully trades the 9-5 for a two year sailing excursion to spend time with their kids, exposing them to new adventures, is doing something intentional.
The couple who retire and then take their sailboat, lovingly maintained over the years, on an excursion to points south, are doing something intentional.
Just like we’re seeing in the tiny house movement, these kind of intentional stories abound. Even so-called circumstances, if approached in the right manner, can be decisions of intention. So what if your life situation changed due to events out of your control? What are you going to do about it?
Live a life of intention. You’ll be happier for it.
Photo: Credit of rjones0856