• Sage Webb

Anchors, Wet Dinghy Rides, and the Worries of Working Afloat

The sailboat got a new anchor this week, and she looks quite yar showing it off on her bow.

Me? I did not get a new anchor. I’ve nothing to show off on the human equivalent of my bow. I did get wet. There’s that. I decided to take the dinghy across the water to a coffee shop I like, only to get caught when rain blew in. While at the shop, I took a frustrating work call, so when I headed back out in the dinghy—to return home in the rain—I fumed about the call and quite inconveniently forgot to push back in the little choke button one usually pulls out to help light up the cold engine for starting. Forgetting to push that little button in means the engine floods. Means the boat dies. In the middle of the harbor that hosts the coffee shop. In the rain.

Yes, I got the boat started back up, and believe you me, I FLEW home. Because if you’re going to ride home wet in a dinghy in the rain, you might as well enjoy it and go FAST.

Part of the frustration of that work call came from the fact that it can be a bit harder to work at a “regular” job (even a remote one) when one lives on a boat. Everything takes longer and comes with added challenges:

Schlepping the laundry hundreds of yards to and from the marina washing machines,

Having to drive the boat to another dock to pump out “the tanks” (yep, there’s no city sewage on a boat),

Commuting by dinghy in the rain (obviously, that’s optional),

Having to take the dog all the way up the dock to “do his thing,”

Not having space aboard to truly spread out for projects (no good place exists on a boat for an inbox),

Lacking certain things like a printer and scanner aboard (too delicate/too big),

Having to go to the post office to send and receive packages (and yes, I’m usually that person, all spread out on the counter in the corner, at the post office—again, not much space on the boat),

Suffering through periods of very unreliable marina WIFI. . . .

*Life* just takes a lot longer/more energy on a boat.

I can’t complain. I’m really lucky to be able to work the way I do, and I would not change this life. It rocks. But it comes with unique challenges. Challenges that I, for one, do NOT try to explain to colleagues. Because that itself is another challenge: getting people to understand you’re not “on vacation.” It’s not vacation. It’s just living on a boat. And boats are work.

Anyway, our little home looks quite smart with her new hardware, and Boat Dog takes pride in having assisted the Bosun with assembly and installation.

So it’s been a good week in that department.

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