Joining Oceans of Hope – as I flew to join the crew!
Here I am, in the plane coming over the Atlantic Ocean heading to John F. Kennedy Airport and on to Charleston in South Carolina. I can’t help to think about how it was for my sailing companions crossing the ocean down there. They went right into the rough weathers of the Atlantic and had almost six days with ferocious weather and huge waves. Still Mikkel, who was onboard for the whole month, with whom I spoke on the phone just as he arrived home, was ecstatic – it was the best thing he had ever done, the experience of his life and so on! It calms me a bit, while I wonder how it has come to be that I am also joining the crew.
My husband Karsten and I both thought it sounded really cool when we first heard of Sailing Sclerosis – and when Lasse, my son, and I were at a meeting in Brøndby a year ago, we both agreed that I had to go! So as the idea progressed, and I participated in arranging sailing days with other people living with sclerosis here in Aarhus, I applied to join the crew. Time went by – months passed and the boat, Oceans of Hope, took off from Copenhagen – and the offshore sailing legs I had applied to join toward Portugal and The Canary Islands were being covered. So we started giving up that I would maybe not join the crew. I was probably too old, the others have more sailing experience, and thoughts like that. But still a pity because I had sort of made up my mind, that this was exactly the kind of experience I needed, matching with my feelings that you are the instructor of your own life. I wanted to show myself that it’s me and not this disease who is in charge. That you can’t be your own limit, but need to believe the new options here and now, and hope for the future instead of fearing it – so a real shame not to hear a thing!
But one day I’m walking around Aarhus and my cell phone rings. Trine, who work with Sailing Sclerosis but I did not know, asks if I want to go on a trip down the American east coast – wow! To think that I was going to go – out meeting new people with the courage to go to sea! Out finding inner peace with the wave and the winds eternal rhythms. Out to experience the excitement of new challenges – and maybe even finding new ways , to overcome them. Out to expand the palette of options – yeah, out getting sea spray in my hair and the sea breeze down the lungs!
Once I arrived Charleston
And sea pray I’m sure we will have plenty of – I have just heard of our sailing colleagues’ trip from New York to Charleston – 650 nautical miles or 1200 kilometers and a lot of nasty storming. Almost everyone came down with seasickness – still the atmosphere was great when we first visited the beautiful and super cool ship Oceans of Hope, here in the harbor of Charleston. She is an amazingly spectacular yacht – a challenge 67 – that can really sail. I am going to stay with someone who has just been sick for four days, but at the same time everyone is so excited about the trip – so I put my worries aside. The water is filled with dolphins that jump and play around the boat. Pelicans flying low, but proud around the marina, I fantasize what they might bring around in their beak.
Report from Bosun Bertram:
As with the last couple of crew rotations we are letting the crew start off by getting to know the boat with a daysail in the area around where they join. Today we are sailing Oceans of Hope just outside the breakwaters of Charleston taking a peek at the Atlantic waves coming in before we head back in to sheltered waters. We have just been up the river enjoying a nice lunch and tonight we are having dinner onboard courtesy of the crew on Oceans of Hope!
Tomorrow we are having an interior maintenance day as the forecast shows it to be raining cats and dogs. Beginning of next week the boat is out of the water for some scheduled check-ups before we turn the bow south on wednesday to cover the final 400 nautical miles to Fort Lauderdale!
Local time is 1400 and our current position is 32.788269 N, 79.925167W