Wow, leaving Bimini was hard. Harder than I had imagined.
Yes, I suppose leaving any version of paradise is difficult in the head and heart. But this was most definitely different. It wasn’t the crystal clear green/blue water I’ll miss. It wasn’t the the delicious food and drink abound. Or even the endless blue sky and cool breezes we experienced most every night. It was not the place but rather the people and pace.
There were two things we really didn’t want to sail away from. The first was the incredible friendships we have made with Brett and Kim aboard S/V Kitty Hawk. Kim said it very well to me one day while we swam the Bimini road.
“Swim the Bimini road?” WTF!?!?
She said that cruiser friendships formed in a week while landlubbers took a year. It is absolutely true. There is something about the swapping of food, tools, and helping each other out daily that accelerates everything. You sort of get to know the good and the bad very, very quickly since your usually in such close proximity. You really get to choose who you want to spend time with. And let’s face it, if you don’t like your neighbors just pick your shit up and leave.
But we DID like our neighbors. The girls cooked together almost daily and we enjoyed group meals at the marina tiki hut. Brett and I did our fair share of brotherly bonding as well. We may have bikini watched just a tad at the local beach bar. I am pretty sure we scarfed down way too many steamed hot dogs and washed them down with one or two cold Kalik beers Fine dammit, three or so beers. NOT the point.
I must confess that for a few weeks Brett and I were the new biker terrors of the tiny island. We would don our black leathers, chaps, and proudly sport our newly formed gang colors. We had the wind in our hair and the loud pipes roaring while we rode our choppers from beach bar to bar. All the locals knew us and stepped back in fear! Step back says I!! The CSY SCANG is in town and we aimed to raise some sailor/biker hell!!!!
Now, it is Bimini so our leathers and chaps were really colorful bathing suits and faded tank tops, our colors might have been straw hats to protect us from the cancer, and our roaring choppers may have been Segway electric scooters with a cute jiggly bell.
Ok, we were not exactily Fonda and Hopper but we were still a couple of Breezy Riders. (see what I did there)
Brett of course had to be lead character Wyatt, which is pretty ironic for a guy who looks like a cop.
The second part that make leaving so tough is reentering the American society. Once you start living a very simple life the American way gets a bit…ok, a LOT overwhelming. Not having much and simply enjoying what you have is an amazing feeling. Humbling even. Believe it or not you don’t need 27 types of breakfast cereals or 30 types of juice on your Kroger shelf. The local grocery store is about the size of a one car garage and it’s hit or miss as to what may be on the half empty shelf. And that’s ok. Paradise truly is a state of mind surrounded by white sands and turquoise water. But mostly its simply learning to be unplugged.
But, the time had come. We have some minor repairs on Marionette’s Revenge to make and Jana has grandnuggets to go visit. So we packed up, cinched down, sails up, and off we go into the big blue yonder. 180 miles and 30 plus hours northwest to Cape Canaveral.
Isn’t that where they launch rockets?
If you really know me then you then know how much I value a true friendship, and for a few weeks we all had a great time together. As Red (played by Morgan Freeman) said at the very end of The Shawshank Redemption referring to Andy Dufresne… “I miss my friend.”