Harbour Cay Club, Florida Keys, Marathon FL
Posted by Bill
We meet so many different kinds of people in this lifestyle, and it is one of the really cool things about cruising. You meet people from all walks of life and varying degrees of investment in the cruising lifestyle. One of the things that I like best is that most people don’t talk about their life before cruising unless you ask, and there is not a lot of how much do you have or not have, how big your house is, or how expensive of a car do you drive. Most people just kind of meld together as a community in a level playing field, helping each other out with what ever they can offer when someone is in need. I wish society and the world in general was more like this. I think a part of it is that living as close to nature and the sea as we do tends to humble you, and help you see beyond the societal facade that has been created in the more economically advanced countries. It is very liberating and puts life in true perspective.
A great example of the diversity of people that we meet came most recently. We met a young couple, Tom and Vanessa, that was staying in our marina on their 27 foot sailboat. It didn’t have a lot of the amenities of most of the other boats you see, like running water, refrigerator, stove, but it allowed them to travel through the keys and conduct business (he is a professional photographer…and a very good one…let me know if you need someone and I’ll hook you up). We got to be good friends with them and really enjoyed their company. They were finishing up some work here and heading north to the next job, so they put the boat up for sale. They must have good Karma because it sold just before they had to leave. They sold it to a group of 3 street performers from Key West who have never owned a boat or sailed one. They were taking it to Key West and planned to live on it with their 2 dogs. Tom took them out for some lessons and they had a friend of theirs who knows how to sail, help them take the boat to Key West. They were very young and fit the image of a typical Key West street performer, and lived a very different life than most people, so they stood out in our marina. We talked to them a few times and they were very nice, respectful people.
They left the other day with seven people, three dogs, three kayaks and a bunch of personal affects, all in a 27 foot sailboat. Our friends Hayden and Radeen helped them get out of the marina using their dinghy to tow their bow, and a bunch of us wished them luck, and saw them off. Many were worried about them making it to Key West, us included, and they agreed to let us know that they made it. At first you might think …. these guys are crazy! I know that it is not something that I would be comfortable doing, but hey, that is the beauty of it all…to each his own. They are out there experiencing life, leveraging the resources at their disposal, and I respect them for it! The coolest thing about the whole event was that, despite the fact that they are at opposite ends of a spectrum, people were not judgmental and were genuinely concerned for their well being. I point this out not because I was surprised by it…the people here, like most cruisers are wonderful; but because this is very different than what happens in society at large. I just wish we could make this mentality as contagious as the flu and spread it around the world.
We later heard that they made it without incident and are looking forward to checking out their performance the next time we go to Key West.