Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Somebody Loves You

I wanted to post ages ago but the internet on the ship was not letting me write or post so now that I am home I can fill you in on the past few weeks.

Our departure from Madagascar was heart wrenching for many people. The tugboats gave us a special goodbye.

The sail kicked me in the but. On the calmest, most beautiful day of the sail I was crying because I felt so sick. I have no idea what was going on but after the crew nurse gave me some drugs I felt much better and then when the sea got rough again I was fine. It doesn't make any sense. I also received the most thoughtful gift:

To you it looks like a can of ginger ale. To me it was a the sign of a sacrifice and the result of a search. You see, there hasn't been any ginger ale on board for ages and so I have no idea where this was obtained. I know that someone loves me very much. Please know that someone loves you too; see the love in the little things. 

Saying goodbye to people on the ship didn't cause any dramatic displays of emotion. However, I think it hasn't hit me yet. I will miss that community and how it changed my life. I am thankful I won't have to make such a long airplane trip for the foreseeable future. 20 hours of airplane travel is too much for someone of my advanced age.  I was in awe thinking about how a giant structure was flying at 600km/h in the sky. As amazing as it is I have resolved not to fly so far unless I can do it in first class; even then I would have to consider it for a long time.

When I got home I was greeted by lots of hugs and delicious homemade pizza. As comfortable as my bed was I still woke up at 4am. That's okay. At least the sun rises pretty early so I didn't have to be in the dark for long.

That is all for now. I am wondering whether to keep writing this blog. Maybe I am writing for my AFM family now instead. I'd be thrilled to hear what you think.

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Packing Up

It is time. This view makes it abundantly clear that the ship will soon leave the port of Toamasina, Madagascar and not return in the near future.

Cars loaded on deck 8 of the ship, strapped to the deck and ready to bear the waves and wind that may await the vessel on the short journey to South Africa. I cannot tell you exactly when we will leave because that will compromise the security of the ship.

I am still experiencing a heart of stone; one with no emotion toward anyone leaving. However, I have started to think about what I will miss by not being on board anymore. I have to remind myself that although there are wonderful things about being here it is just not my place anymore.

I watched all three of my roommates pack up and either change cabins or leave the ship this past week. It made me realize that I have way too much stuff to bring it all home with me. The difficult part is going to be figuring out what is worth bringing home and what I can rationally convince myself to leave behind. The problem is I have a hard time leaving things that are useful but not necessarily important, such as shampoo, conditioner, greeting cards, and glass food storage containers. I guess I will just have to start packing and then figure out what fits and what doesn't.

As the ship and its residents prepares for its imminent departure from this extraordinary country, I can only remember. Remember the friendly people, the amazing market, the sunny days and torrential downpours. Memories are a beautiful gift; you can take them wherever you go and you don't have to pay for extra baggage.