Back when we were still on land and I had NO idea what this adventure was truly going to look like, I made two lists. 10 Things I Will Miss and 10 Things I Won’t Miss. I was really curious to see how things changed once we were actually out and about on the ocean. Well, here we are, nearly 5 months into this cruising thing, 2 months in the Bahamas… and I’m revisiting the 10 Things I Will/Won’t Miss idea.
As I’ve said before, this is MY list, specific to me. I know that a lot of cruisers will hold very different ideas than I/we do, because this is definitely a very individual experience. That being said, here are the things I do NOT miss:
1. Driving. OMG, I really really REALLY love the fact that I don’t have to drive or even ride in a car much, if ever. In Florida I had to drive a handful of times and it was nerve wracking and awful. Even just being a passenger felt so… wrong. I didn’t like anything about it, other than the part of, you know, actually getting places faster . We are currently in the process of trying to sell my car back on land and I don’t even have a twinge of sadness about it. Just relief. Whenever we get back on land, having a safe reliable car is all I’m interested in. Until then, I’d rather forget about cars altogether!
2. Schedules/alarm clocks… hell, calendars. I don’t miss having to be places at a certain time. I don’t miss having to get up and go take anyone anywhere (especially myself). As Jaedin said the other day when I asked him what he liked best about living on the boat, “I don’t know what time it is. I don’t even know what DAY it is. And it absolutely doesn’t matter at all.”
3. Patrick being gone at work all the time. I don’t miss that at ALL. He worked so freaking much on land… and granted, there is often/always something to be done on the boat, but its not a constant, 80 hours a week type of thing where he’s GONE. I love being able to spend a lot of time together. We are together enough now that I feel like I can finally just relax and enjoy being in the same room… just… sitting and doing our own things. I no longer feel that panic to fill every moment catching up for all the time we were apart. Its nice.
4. The money suck. You know, that thing where there are stores and gas stations and places to drop a few bucks here and there? I don’t miss that at all. I’m sure we’ve saved a ton of money just from not stopping by for drinks at QuikTrip or the even occasional eating out (Mmmm… Chipotle…now I’m torn). Or stopping by WalMart a couple of times a week for this or that and finding this other thing that we surely need… and pretty soon you’ve frittered away an extra $10-$20-$100 or more. It all adds up and I don’t miss the convenience of spending money everywhere we go. (don’t get me wrong, there are definitely places to spend money here as well, we just haven’t had a problem avoiding those yet!)
5. Healthy Things, or lack thereof. Speaking of which, I don’t miss all of the super convenient unhealthy stuff. Patrick used to drink TONS of soda every single day. Since we left the U.S. we’ve all been drinking a LOT of water. Since there isn’t a store right down the street, the kids aren’t eating candy/smoothies all the time and although we do make desserts here at times, its nothing compared to on land. Oh, and Patrick was able to finally quit smoking completely. THANK GOODNESS. That is the absolute best thing thus far. Not that you CAN’T have any of these things whilst cruising, but its certainly a LOT easier to give them up if you want to when they aren’t at the tips of your fingers every moment of every day.
6. Mowing the lawn/raking leaves. I don’t miss yard work at ALL. We had a huge yard full of trees, which I loved, but it was a lot of work to maintain. I didn’t really *mind* it when we lived there, it was just part of having a cool, awesome yard. Since we now have a gorgeous ocean and beaches as our ‘backyard’, I can definitely say I don’t MISS doing the yardwork!
7. Laundry. Laundry on the boat still needs to get done, obviously, BUT everyone has to keep their clothes (clean and dirty) in their own rooms. That means I don’t have a huge pile of dirty clothes growing in the laundry room. I have taken to washing my clothes whenever I change clothes every couple of days and just getting it out of the way. I wash and hang them to dry and have ended up pretty much solely wearing the same 2-3 outfits for the last month or so. Its much easier for me to just wash one outfit at a time, rather than wait until I have no clean clothes and then spending hours on laundry. The kids & Patrick seem to be happy leaving it to be a day long chore… and that’s fine, as long as I don’t have to do it, I really don’t care. I don’t even mind having to hand wash, since I’m just doing a few articles of clothing at a time.
8. Feeling… stagnant. I don’t miss feeling ‘stuck’. I love having the option to move on or stay longer. I love being able to see new places and to know that if I DON’T particularly care for one place, we have the option to move soon. LOVE THIS. I also find that I’m more inspired to write/sing/create than I was on land. There are just so many different things to see than I’m used to and I love it!
9. Bath Time. I thought I would miss having a nice long soak in the tub, but I don’t. I used to love soaking in the tub with a book and just having my rare alone/uninterrupted time. Now that we’re on the boat, though, I get plenty of uninterrupted time to read, I just do it on my bed. Plus, there is that nice warm ocean and beaches for when I want to get in the water and have my water fix! I love the nice warm water and just floating around the boat or soaking up some water just off the beach. LOVE I don’t even mind the lack of hot water for showers, since our Solar Shower Bag is more than sufficient for my needs.
10. Cost of Living. It is SO much cheaper for us to live on the boat. Granted, we’re getting by with a lot of things we didn’t have on land, but in exchange, we get to travel and see so many things we’d never be able to see otherwise. Plus, we lived without a lot of things on land, too, since we really couldn’t afford to spend a lot on entertainment/fancy things while we were there, either. Plus, we only have to maintain the boat and dinghy out here. Back on land we had the house, yard and three vehicles between the three of us who could drive. I don’t miss it at all!