Smooth Sailing Is Hard to Write


We just recently saw ourselves in a distorted mirror. I (James) was talking to my friend and woodworking client, Don, who expressed his understanding, based on our blog posts, that we were miserable. From pulling the engine cabling into the transmission, to running out of fuel, to the toerail breaking, to boats bumping us in the night, he thought we were “living in hell”.


No, Don. Not at all. It dawned on me that what we write in the blog are the mishaps because they bring contrast to the beauty of what we do. They provide the spice in what otherwise would be a fairly monotonous tale. Not boring to live, but with enough repetition that it’s hard to find new ways of expressing the beauty.

We found out a long time ago that photos are faster, easier, and more effective at communicating the experiences of watching the sun set, of staring at our dinghy as it wags behind us like a tail, of sitting and watching the world of other boats come and go around us. Words are powerful tools, but bringing them to bear on largely non-verbal, maybe even pre-verbal, experiences of the senses is hard work.


When you’re living your dreams, even in very moments of the mishaps, it’s absolutely beautiful.




  1. You live in a magical way. Your story is dreamy because you choose to experience it that way.

    This blog can be read as a mundane account of working out the bugs of fairly ancient technology, maintaining a house with atypical materials. One could locate this travelogue as the story of ports and transits, peoples and places, work and play. A collection of words and very pretty pictures.

    Or one could enter this story as the fairytale of an impossible utopia. Impossible only until it has been accomplished, after wild hope and daring have popped you through the edge of that imagination. A tale about the leap of faith it takes to set out into the grandest wilderness in a structured air bubble, perfecting the skin that allows you to thrive in a habitat unsuitable for humans as you go. The quests of explorers ever searching for the richness of what it is to be a person, a partner, a citizen, a being of light pulsing at the other end of the cursor. A diorama of a dream.

    It’s all in how you tell it.

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