Just because you own a boat does not mean we get to be friends
People often make reference to a “cruising community.” Usually it will be along the lines of how great it is, about how much you can depend on members of that community in times of need. In almost every case, that is true, and it’s awesome to have that safety net. What is also true though, but not often mentioned, is that just like your community back home, there are some jerks in it too! That shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise though, right? Purchasing a boat does not instantly make you into one of the good guys.
We feel very fortunate to have crossed paths with an amazing collection of people during our travels. Some we continue to see on a regular basis, while others have sailed off to different locations, or we’ve left behind as we’ve moved on. Still others have gotten away from boating completely, and are now on to new things. I’d like to believe that those folks think fondly of us too, but that really doesn’t matter, we relish the good memories from our times together.
Flashback to several years ago with some crazy friends, at 3:00 AM!
In contrast to those wonderful people, we have crossed paths with a few members of that cruising community who we did not gel with. Again, just like in land-based cities, towns and neighborhoods, there are people, thankfully a small percentage, who exhibit less than ideal qualities. There are the grumpy and inconsiderate neighbors. There are the obnoxious drunks. There are bigots, and misogynists, and just plain old nasty people who, for one reason or another, we didn’t like. And that’s OK, becuase I have to imagine that at least some cruisers we’ve come in contact with feel the same way about us.
Something to remember!
So, as you can see, owning a boat does not by default mean that you’re a nice guy, nor does it mean that we get to be buddies. If we cross paths, I’ll always be open to the idea of us being friends. We don’t need to see eye to eye on everything for that to happen (in fact, that might be quite boring), nor do we have to enjoy all of the same things (we don’t drag all of our friends up on top of mountains). If you are traveling or living on a boat, and find yourself in need, I will go out of my way to help you. That’s not only what many would refer to as the law of the sea, in my mind, it’s the heart of what people are calling the cruising community. Beyond that though, I reserve the right to only spend time with folks that I like, and who make my day brighter.
Speaking of friends, we had a fantastic evening last night with our boat neighbors Carrie and Carl, and our buddies Chris and Chrystal from LTD Sailing who were in Martinique, just wrapping up a sailing class. We were also pleased to meet Nico and Melissa, some wonderful folks from St. Lucia who I’d be happy to call friends!