It’s been nigh on two months since SnS became full time Capetonians again.
The past 60 days have been spent in a flurry of catching up and catching our breath. Our house has been painted and semi*-moved in. It looks beautiful. One would hardly believe it is the same home we walked into for the first time when we stepped off the ‘plane from Hong Kong. Stoffel has commenced working in the building trade and has survived the first month of being overwhelmed by employment (again). I have, after a month of admin, followed by a month of house-sorting, finally started looking at my resume and contemplated adding to the Hillratt income. We have seen almost all of our friends and caught up with most of them. We are back. We are settling.
And then one day last week I sat dreaming about the days that we spent on our boat.** I made a small google search: takalani + sail and amused myself for a while with the anecdotes that popped up on our blog and those of our sailing friends.*** On about page 3 I noticed an Australian boat advert for “Takalani”. I ignored it – thinking it was a relic from a few months ago. I scrolled down. I noticed another. This one had a date: 16 August 2012. SIXTEEN AUGUST TWENTY-TWELVE? I clicked and swooshed through cyberspace to see that Takalani was indeed for sail in Queensland. Again.
Of course I switched into detective overdrive and tracked down that broker to discover the story behind why Takalani was for sale a mere 6 months after she’d been bought. Turns out the gentleman who bought Takalani had spent a lifetime working on boats, saved some cash to do some single-handed cruising in his retirement and thought that 40 foot was about the right size for him. Obv the Laura Takalani was the best boat he could possibly purchase in that size. He took her home, loved her, made some awesome upgrades****, but discovered in the process that he wanted a BIGGER boat (go figure?). So Takalani was for sale again.
For two days before I tracked down that Aussie broker my heart froze. The fairy tale about us sailing in the warm clear Pacific waters felt tantalisingly easy to re-live. If Stof and I weren’t financially and emotionally embroiled in a family-sized house with a big garden in the burbs, we may just have held some serious serious (serious) discussions. As things are, we could only imagine the “what ifs” of going back. [Also: when I finally got hold of Jay-the-broker he informed me that Takalani already had been sold.]
The thing is that as we settle back into life it can feel a tiny bit like we have left our alter egos floating somewhere on the other side of the world. Sometimes it feels like the “other” stofnsara are literally still floating around a breath-taking coral atoll; sometimes we’re bobbing in clear water on our pool noodles cleaning muck off the hull; sometimes we’re getting tongue-tied with Russian phrases somewhere on the Siberian steppes; sometimes we’re being awed by contrasts in China.
The reality is that we’re trying to find a routine. And routines aren’t very exotic. Routines may be comforting and allow one to get the most out of daily life. But the awkward slice of life-right-now – when we’re stuck between being really tremendously adventurous and cool and that time in the future when we’ve found our swing again and living life in CT to our absolute fullest - is neither exotic nor comfortable.
I think that is why, despite my fullest of intentions to continue to express myself on this blog, I have floundered a bit since our return. There is so much to write about: both what we have seen and still want to record, and what we are doing each day to settle in. I just can’t figure out which camp I am currently in. A new month has started and I am brimming with fresh resolutions: blogging, running, getting some cash! I’ve drafted that CV, I’ve done my first joggle, I’ve written this post.
* That is to say: our neighbour-in-laws have moved in while the work on their house commences. We shall get our time in our home in December. Fairly excruciating!
** Hmmm… actually, day-dreaming about sailing in the Pacific isles was a strong recurring theme of last week.
*** There are no fewer than FOUR links to fellow cruisers there… if you’re looking for more of the exotic kind of adventures.
**** Sailors might be interested to know that he added a dingy davits, fitted a new chart plotter and GPS, and did some minor upgrades to the heads.