Matt and I change the dinghy spark plugs together. By ‘together’ I mean that I sit next to him holding an umbrella to block the sun. He does all of the work while I stare down into the crystal clear water. Right before he puts the top of the engine back on, I look at the spark plugs and say, “Is it pushed in enough?” He checks it, looks at me and exclaims “You’re brilliant! You’re really good at this stuff.” He expresses this same sentiment at least twice more during the day. I don’t have the heart to tell him that I’d been daydreaming. It was only when the project was almost done that I rejoined him and made my fabulous contribution.
After dealing with toilet problems for a week, Matt starts fake crying as he yells, “Please! I can’t take any more of this leisure! I just want to get on a subway and go to work.” We both start laughing. Yesterday, I had the realization that if leisure had been the goal, we would have been better served by staying at home, keeping the boys in school and just taking a LOA while living on savings. Matt is getting frustrated and mutters something about booking his ticket out of here. We saw a movie rental place near the grocery store and decide to get one – we could use a little escape. Matt gets Home Alone which we watch with the boys. They find the slapstick humor
hysterical. He gets The Secret Life of Walter Mitty for us. It’s excellent and exactly what we need. The movie perfectly encapsulates what I feel about this trip (and about life). It’s not always fun when you are going through it but there are fantastic moments to be treasured. When you look back, most of the things that make a life worthwhile are not necessarily easy and are not always fun. At the end of it, do you focus on the trials and tribulations or do you reflect
on the beautiful sunsets and cool adventures that you had (I think the latter). It’s the broader perspective that makes the most sense. I tell Matt that, although the trip is not easy, one day we’ll laugh about the hardships of living on a boat and be glad for the thousands of photos that reflect all of our memories during these two years. Life is easier if you can take a rearview mirror perspective while you’re actually in it.