My grandpa died recently (which is a bummer), and he had a sailboat that I've been doing all the maintenance work for the last decade and a half. Its a real beauty, this glorious teak deck and interior, and it sails like nothing. These days it's a bit small compared to the others around (33' when everywhere they're rocking 40' and 50's these days), but its built like they don't quite do anymore (unless you're paying in the millions) so its fairly roomy anyway. Its stable, designed for ocean sailing.
Anyway, while I just don't have the time to use it enough to justify keeping it, I took a 'farewell' trip, a week long sail down the coast of Norway with a friend, picking up my cousin on the way. It was just so freaking glorious. First day they promised lots of wind in our back and sunshine. Got out on the water? No wind. But we were bobbing along, and then in front of us we see this big black wall. A massive thunderstorm coming in. But we got the wind, suddenly! Even if was a headwind, but that's fine, the lady sails really well even close against it. And the storm just blew right next to us, so we got 15 minutes of downpour, then it was bright and sunny again. Off the the rainclothes, back to shorts and no t-shirts. Behind us it was this gorgeous display of awesome lightning, shooting down like an orbital bombardment. The rest of the week, all kinds of weather, all kinds of winds. When you sail along a broken coast like Norway, the wind is really unpredictable like that, but that just added to the fun of it. We had sunshine, we had downpour, but it always broke up so it didn't become a drag.
We sailed the whole week, barely using the engine when we had to get into some tricky ports. One beer for lunch (don't drink and drive, kids, even on the sea), but every evening we had a few. The food was great (friend's a great cook, even in the tiny galley he did wonders), and thankfully my cousin became the cabin boy, so he did the dishes. As captain, I could just have my beer outside and grin!
It was just a wonderful farewell with my gramps, and to the boat that I am now debating if I'm going to keep anyway. Though between it, and the dingy, and the boathouse, and helping keep grandma's house in order, my own place, I just.. bah! We'll see.
The trip took us past glaciers, inbetween fjords, and across a couple of really rough ocean stretches. The latter became our bane on the way back. The weather was nice, and we thought we'd be good.. but the massive swells and the headwind.. and then knowing 30 minutes behind us lay a safe port and all the beer we wanted, sort of killed our adventuring spirit. We took it the next day instead.
Anyway, life can be great.