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The vantage point of boat to land is a rare glimpse into progress. Making land fall in say the Las Perlas Islands, a chain of mostly under developed jungle is like stumbling into a film set Jurassic park like in authentic land before time. A moonscape of Lanzarote something at the other end of that. My lush middle ground at the moment is seeing the change of it with earth movers, bulldozer style excavation from my floating zip code of Antigua in the leeward islands. Without a doubt landscape changes. The visit you may be enjoying now will certainly morph into something else ( the road into Sayulita mexico) my memory of cobblestones such poetic charm sharply contrasting the influence of tourist dollars friendly paving and curbs.
The last two magazines I’ve picked up were both found on coffee tables from events hosted at Nelsons Dock yard. Glossy tourism megaphones for the real estate market. I’m not begrudgingly against growth, it’s just the steady clip of it that is a current reminder each morning I poke my head above the companion way and see the flattened reality of the once green slopes. Currently the option to buy into the golden passport program here in Antigua sits at $250k us dollars. Tax free and loop hole laden promises crowd out the locals. Two years into the Pandemic with the basic tourism infrastructure coming back it’s a grim reminder of the delta between the haves and locally grown Island life. Although the political system rides the charge, I’m here with a digital nomad visa so I too by association am a part of all of these glitzy measures sadly.
I’ve turned to bird watching again. An easy way to only see the good in the world. This is a well worn rut in my personality, an easy fall back position with lots to learn and observe and if lucky capture with a camera. The reality check of real life seems too painful to fully embrace, feels too full form loss of something vs path of progress. In the way back machine of my life I rode my bike through what is now SF research and medical labs, thinking what might have been a place to live aboard a floating boat/home just at the creek was morphing into something very exciting. I drive now and only recognize my old Bay View Boat Club hang where a buck would land a sweating glass of Anchor Steam on the elbow heavy bar.
Nostalgia with a salty splash. Most of my best memories involve salt water based adventures. The linger of smile only to be dashed by the memory of far away it seems from now.
I’ve added to the adventure list with major boat centric seasonally sail centric. Mexico to meet a crew and sail to the South Pacific but bowed out just before the boat sailed, Panama Canal Atlantic side of the locks to the Galapagos then on to the Mindo Cloud forest for bird watching and coffee roasting adventures. New Zealand for a crew position then wwoofing with various project-art centric farms on the north island. This season sailing from New York to the Windward Islands, then back aboard my own sailboat in Antigua.
I’m back into my first true love of photography, with a decent camera that captures what I see as I sail, or liveaboard while awaiting boat parts so,I can plan and plot and hopefully soon sail off again.
Travel is a big part of my persona it’s my arm wrestle with fate, and to be out of America during the last two years a big gift. Island life is a lot like living in tiny town America. Everyone knows everyone and the chatter of gossip a funny drama to behold. I don’t know many locals but I can see the trend of attitudinal behavior and read between the lines mostly. The local Yacht Club here on the island is home to the veteran barstool crowd, if you seek the Rigger who didn’t perhaps get back to you a walk through the bar will find you in front of him if that’s the angle of conversation you may seek. I gave up on what’s app and a spin through the bar was the correct call. News of anything else one needs can be tracked down from the other local hang of Skullduggery, a decent stash of dog eared books reside here to, so it’s a two-fer..Two projects checked off the to do list, there’s half my week island time centric.
My go to app for weather this season is Windy. Last year it was predict wind. Maybe next year another contender will step up with more to lure me away. I’m sure where there’s weather and sailors there’s talk of what’s best when. A far cry from packet radio delivered weather fax deciphered like tea leaves before making another leg of a journey. So lucky to have so much for really so little- yachting isn’t a bargain hunters sport but sometimes in the light of shiny new technology it feels like I’ve scored.