Saturday, February 28, 2009

at the corner of Need and Want...

Well in reference to that last post I find the biggest obstacle to doing things simpler, cheaper and more green seems to be a collective bit of selective amnesia in many people who sail and cruise. Symptoms of this affliction is the overuse of words like "Need" and "Impossible" as well as the phrase "It might work for you but in my case..."

Back when we were sailing around the Med on Loose Moose 2 we were right in the middle in terms of size at thirty seven feet and a fifty foot boat was such a rarity as it brought on oohs and aahs wherever they went. Hardly anyone trusted or had roller furling, Engines were not used more than the bare minimum and some boats did not even have engines at all! All the various sailing magazines were running stories and editorials about multihulls being death traps because in those bygone days the sailing magazines had not yet discovered Multihull companies as a cash cow who would buy advertising. Time marches on...

Oh yeah, back then the biggest hazard to an ocean crossing was not the 10,000 containers that go walkabout but the odd Pliosaur looking for a tasty morsel...Yeah right.

But seriously folks we find ourselves in hard times and a lot of us have forgotten the difference between the words need and want...We all want bigger, and better but we don't always need bigger and better. No matter how deep you do the Ostrich thing bigger and better these days have costs that go far deeper than actual dollars and cents.

Someone who makes the case a lot better than I can by their example is Lin and Larry Pardey who a long time ago built a small boat without an engine and proceeded to go off to sea and have a good life in the process... and they are still doing it.

By a lot of folks standards just about all of the accomplishments of Lin and Larry Pardey over the years are impossible. All those thousands and thousands of miles on Seraffyn without an engine or electricity but the difference between those folks and the Pardeys is that Lin and Larry know the difference between "Need" and "Want".

Everyone should read "Cruising in Seraffyn". If you have not it will be a pleasure and a learning experience. If you have read it way back when it wouldn't be a bad idea to pick it up again and reread it just to remember what sailing used to be and still could be with the right mindset.