|They are everywhere, these little bursts |
of yellow fluttering about
I’m a book nut. And I certainly know my way around a bookstore.
I’ve noticed that the bargain tables always seem to have a copy of an appropriately pocket-sized book called Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. While I have not actually read this book, the title alone seems to be good advice. For my part, I like putting a positive spin on that concept. Instead of not sweating trivial frustrations, I look for the surprisingly blissful little bits and pieces scattered throughout any given day: The more ordinary and mundane, the better. It’s the appreciation of these that can change a lousy day into a pleasant day.
In our life as voyagers, little pleasures come in many shades: It can be that first sip of coffee in the morning, while listening to a favourable forecast on the SSB radio, or when the wind is just so, and we quietly sail off the hook; it might be rediscovering the smell of freshly baked bread after months of intense heat, or that moment when my body breaks through the cool water’s surface after diving off a sizzling deck. It’s the joys of impromptu gatherings that bring merriment to our cockpit or when we have reached across cultures and laughed at our differences.
|A quiet morning in Las Rocas|
Yes, there are days when it’s harder to find those highpoints. It’s easy to feel dejected when a boat project drags us down with obstacle after obstacle. Gritting our teeth when the wind shoots up to 40 knots at 2 a.m. is the accepted response. Be that as it may, I still try to focus on something that will make us feel better: It may be as simple as a visiting friend who might not do much to help with a project, but whose fresh perspective allows us to step back from our frustration, or the awe-inspiring sights and sounds of the remnants of a storm by moonlight, once we know we’re safe.
Gratitude can go a long way. There have been times when merely laying my head on the pillow at the end of a long, hard day was pure bliss. And for that, I was, and am, grateful.