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It’s funny the things that you can remember vividly. One of the memories which is still fairly fresh in my mind is my first flight on a jet airplane. It occurred when I was a teen and then, as now, I was not too impressed with heights. As such, I was fairly apprehensive about the whole plane-taking-off thing.

It would have been funny to have someone video tape me because I’m sure that as the plane taxied into position on the runway my grip on my seat’s armrests continued to tighten. I can only imagine my fearful expression when the pilot gave the engines full throttle and we started rocketing down the runway. Anyone who has been in a plane knows how loud the jets are at this time. It’s pretty scary for a first-time flyer. And as the plane goes faster and faster it’s scarier and scarier. When the plane left the ground and began the sharp-angled ascent into the sky I’m sure I had a look of shear panic on my face!

Of course, because I am sitting here writing this, we all know that the plane didn’t crash. Once airborne and nearing it’s cruising altitude, the plane leveled off and the pilot cut back on the engines, decreasing their roar to a mildly-loud hum. Ultimately that scary experience ended with me in a happy vacation spot.

Why share this? Becuase that experience so resembles how I feel right now! Yes, right now I feel like we’re on the runway and the pilot has just shoved the throttle handle forward (I assume it works like that. It does in the movies anyway). The other day our lights from Fiji arrived and we picked up the line for our drogue. Yesterday we took the tarp off our boat and our chartplotter arrived. Each day more things get added to the infamous TO DO list, and I know that just as the plane’s takeoff gets scarier before it settles down, so will our preparation to go cruising.

Is this anything new? Of course not. I’m sure that every single reader who has gone through a similar process will be nodding their heads now thinking “yup, been there!” Does that knowledge help? I guess a bit. Even though the stress is increasing daily, I’m confident that we are on the right path and the decisions we are making are the right ones. And if they’re not the right ones, they certainly won’t be deal-breakers.

Although my experiences with flying have improved over the years I still can’t say that I enjoy the process. I do enjoy vacations though, or traveling to visit my friends. It is for that reason that I put myself through it. Well, we’ll try to keep our eyes on the departure objective, and not get too scared by all the “noise and turmoil” around us the next few months!


  1. I had a moment like that the first time I sailed out or Road Town,Tortola,on a nice big boat I didn’t own.
    In my mind I’m thinking”do you have any idea what you’re doing??!!”
    Then the wind kicked in,the boat heeled to 20o and that feeling,”the rush” hit me-and it was all good…

    I visualize heading across the Gulf Stream,and it will probably feel the same. Only this time I know the answer “why,yes I do know what I’m doing.”
    It’s all a learning experience,and every new lesson comes with it’s moments…
    Someday soon you will be able to look back…..

  2. We’re starting the check in process right now I think.

  3. Mike,

    You guys seem to be doing a great job getting prepared, so “keep on keepin’ on”

    Give some thought as you get down the path to doing additional “living the life” tests. Take a couple days off from the internet, TV, music, etc and bake some bread, do laundry in the Wonder Wash, go for a hike or a bike ride and play some games (cards, dominoes, er, um, whatever… 😉 ) with just you and Rebecca.

    Fair Winds,

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