I actually started writing this 2 Part series over a month ago (you can read Part 1 over HERE); the change from cold to warm, mountains to beach life, backpacker to temporary expat. I began as things were only beginning to unfold. But I couldn’t finish it, the change itself still didn’t feel real…
As I lay here (I swear) on the plank off the back of the Black Dragonfly, my new home, job and life as I know it…well, now it feels complete. As I lay hovering over the calm, crystalline sea of San Blas, I stare off into an expanse of palm covered islands, reef breaks and nothing short of heaven, this transition feels complete. And though this sounds like a glamorized, cheap romance novel THIS IS MY REALITY…and it feels right.
Sure, trading in the spontaneous life of a solo backpacker had me a bit nervous, but oh so excited for something new! And let me tell you, there is NOTHING routine or mundane about sailing with 11 other people between 2 countries, open seas, a shitload of tropical islands, ever changing weather, not to mention learning to cook for EVERYONE, let alone stand up on a constantly rocking ship!
So trip number one has been a huge success! From Colombia to Panama we a had a killer group of people, saw dolphins, sea turtles, mantas and more, and tho I’m well and truly bruised and battered, people seemed to enjoy the food and well, I didn’t jump overboard…. I won’t lie, I was challenged like I’ve never been challenged before. The physical exertion it takes just to stay standing while juggling hot pans in a scorching hot kitchen smaller than my bathroom was a test in itself. But after a practically sleepless night (or 3) of night watch, storms and mothering a few excessive party goers, let me tell you, new limits were pushed. Single handily battling a storm while anchored in the islands alone, was yet another challenge that got me to dig a bit deeper (and push thru unknown fears.)
Hold on, I don’t want to paint a picture of misery or pain or even throw a negative spin on things. What I’m trying to say, is for the first time in a VERY long time, I was thrown in the deep end (in a shitstorm) and forced to make my way thru, while making 11 other people happy…and would you believe, I LOVED IT! Ok, not every minute of it…But every time I questioned what I was doing here, or my ability to continue with future trips, I found comfort in knowing that each time it will get easier as I gain experience. I enjoyed being challenged again, having responsibility and something to work for, as well as the possibility of future opportunites. And at the end of the day, I’m getting paid to be in one of the most beautiful archipelagos on earth, island hopping, snorkelling and passing the days with like-minded, fun-loving people on a beautiful boat! What more can a girl ask for really??
Who knows how long this chapter will be, I’m certainly not looking for its end. Instead I am soaking up every minute of this, learning as much as I can from the people I come in contact with, and I will continue to allow the journey to piece itself together.
Now, who is going to join me on the Black DragonFly for our next sailing adventure???
Sunkissed and smiling in San Blas,