Saturday, May 16, 2009

Going Home

Going Home


The concept of going home holds for me many warm thoughts and appealing images, yet the idea of "home" has always intrigued me. It seems in most cultures home is usually associated with a dwelling or specific piece of geography. The significance of the permanency or stability of "home" as a place is not lost to me, but living on a boat taught us that home is less about place and more about people. We were home on Mima and it felt that way because we were a family. The "mobile" home that Mima provided gave us the opportunity to explore and adventure outside our own paradigms and by so doing we expanded our understanding of self and the world around us.  

In a broader context however, we are realizing that being back home in the United States is truly a delight. We are enjoying many of the luxuries of living in the U.S. that we used to take for granted. Smooth roads, abundant potable water, a really good steak and readily available goods and services have made us feel like we are being treated as royalty simply by being here. Even in these trying economic times the general ease with which life takes place in the U.S. is nothing short of exceptional.

As I write this we are in northeast Montana 65 miles from the Canadian border. Over the last few weeks we have traveled from Florida, visiting National Parks, historic landmarks, a Presidential Library and a host of other notable and interesting locations covering almost 4000 miles. Marshall still asks, "Dad how far are we driving today" and once an answer is given he quickly computes how many hours we will travel on land versus how many days it would have taken at sea. This new life at 60 miles per hour is still taking a while for us to get used to.

The hours spent driving have allowed us all to reflect on our time sailing and like happens so often the trials of the journey seem to be fading into the distance and the triumphs are becoming treasured memories. We are all missing the ocean and the amazing environment it is and the opportunities it afforded us as a family.

The lessons learned at sea would be hard, if not impossible, to replicate on land and the people and places we visited have forever shaped who we are. We are almost "home" and as we look forward to being back in familiar surroundings we find ourselves thinking about and longing for the slower and less structured life of a sailor. Whether the kids will ever "go" to sea again only time will tell, but for Susan and me we sincerely hope that life will afford us the opportunity to set sail again to explore more of this amazing world we live in.


Thanks for journeying with us over the past 16 months, the 4Wheelers      

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