Editor’s Note: We all have our own definition of what freedom is. In Part 2 of the Nautical series, Capt. Mike gives us a first hand account of why he has chosen his boat as a means to bug out and what his plans are until the veritable “S” hits the fan.
What makes us boaters the people we are? Why do people go to the expense of owning a boat? US country singer/songwriter Kenny Chesney has a song titled Boats on his CD Lucky Old Sun. In the song he sings:
“Boats…. vessels of freedom, harbors of healing…boats, twenty years of a landlocked job was all that Tom could take….. sitting at his desk all alone and depressed (he) says this just can’t be my fate, ….went home that night and told his wife (that) you can tell all of your friends it’s been real but it ain’t been fun (so we are) gonna get us one of them…boats… vessels of freedom, harbors of healing…boats”.
I’ve listened to that song a hundred times and it gets better each time. He found the words I’ve always known were there but never could quite find them. Good for him!
As a boater I find it sometimes becomes hard to explain to non-boaters what the love affair is all about. Perhaps it’s a sickness; at least it’s a bug. Some of us use our boats as a home, treating her like a member of the family. I do have a habit of talking to our boat; she speaks back but in ways only I can hear. She has become a refuge of sorts, a protected port. Sleeping in a motel room when I’m on the road just isn’t the same; I can’t wait to get back to my baby.
I have friends that use their boats for an escape from life’s uncertain path, relying on their boats to unwind from everyday stress. They take their sailboats, trawlers or motoryachts out to feel the wind on their faces, the sun on their backs; their boats bring them peace. Other friends, have their boats equipped to make a living from the sea, as do the many shrimpers and charter boat Captains that ply the waters of our Florida coast.
Our boat has become a life ring of sorts, protecting us from the “stormy weather” that waits at the cabin door. She offers us a mobile platform to escape the coming collapse and likely civil unrest that will surely follow. She provides the warmth from the cold and protection from the rains. My lady is a small city afloat offering luxurious accommodations, water making and power generation capabilities as well as having a complete waste treatment system.
But as a full-time waterman, I can say it’s more than what it seems. Yes, it’s a state of mind. Leaving the world behind, knowing you have everything you need to sustain yourself and your crew for weeks on end. If I want to stay in one place, I do; if I want to leave, I can do that too. Oh boats can be trouble and they take tons of work to maintain but we boaters consider it a labor of love.
You just can’t place a price tag on the feeling when you are at the helm, everything works as designed, the air is crisp and the sea is calm. It takes only one good sunset to make it all worthwhile. And as far as escaping from the coming collapse of our culture, you could not do it any better way.
Until the SHTF I am going to enjoy one of life’s simple pleasures; there is little use worrying over when it will happen. But when the time to bug out is upon us, I’m going to do it in style.
Mark Twain, an American author eloquently said “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
Spanish philosopher Jose’ Ortegay Gasset once said, “Tell me the landscape in which you live, and I’ll tell you who you are.”
That pretty much sums it up. Fair winds.