Adapting (Day 101)

Maintenance of both boat and body is a constant requirement under way — and in port, too. We know this. In spite of our diligence, we’ve had a few setbacks in this port.

We eat healthfully on the boat, but that hasn’t prevented Jeff’s bout with vertigo. We give the boat TLC, but that hasn’t prevented a heater break-down or a tangle on the prop.

Sunset at NAS Pensacola

Sometimes, you can do all the right things and “stuff” still happens. In the midst of it, you resolve to notice the sunset and the kindness of strangers…to focus on what “works” rather than on what doesn’t.

And you try to adjust when darkness falls by 5 p.m. — because what other good choice is there?

We are fortunate to be staying at a secure marina, Naval Air Station Pensacola, where helpful people are near and the weather has reverted from north-wind-chilly back to the balmy 70-ish that we expect in Florida. It’s warm enough now to enjoy a jog, rent a sailboat, and take out my board. I even took a dip today, though the water is chilly, because I like to bathe that way when I can — forgetting that it’s salt water, so I had to shower anyway. 😉

Some people are hardy enough to submerge even on a frigid day, but they’re also smart enough to dress for it. The diver who cleaned the bottom of the boat and found fishing lines on the prop wore a full wet suit. It was so cold that day, the rest of us wore hats and jackets. Thank goodness for professional divers.

We’ve paid for a week here, which is the same as the monthly fee, so we have three more weeks “for free” if we need it. It’s nice to have that option. Slip fees so far add up to about $3,000, or roughly $1,000 per month, which is a pretty good deal for this lifestyle but isn’t free. Anchoring out reduces the cost, as does using a military marina. We’ve accepted the generosity of local boaters who let us use their truck for quick runs into town. I picked up a new heater today that Jeff ordered from Amazon, willingly paying the $10 “pick-up fee” at the closest UPS Store … because, when you don’t have an address, what other good choice is there?

It’s another good thing about doing The Loop. You learn to adapt. (Here’s hoping Jeff’s body does, and soon. Vertigo is scary enough for anyone — even more so for a Type-1 diabetic living on a boat.)

We miss our fellow Loopers who don’t have access to this military marina and are using commercial marinas as they pass by on their way east. But we also know that many more are still behind us, making their way to and through the Intercoastal Waterway. We don’t know how long we’ll stay here, and I still don’t know when I will return to my home and my needs there. But sometimes, it’s ok to wait until things become more clear. Sometimes, it’s ok to not know what happens next.

The Navy base has many Sunfish for rent, which thrilled me. My favorite sailboat!
This is how the Navy keeps its picnic tables from disintegrating. Create them from concrete!
Late-day sun glow on the shoreline of NAS Pensacola.
An odd “sail sculpture” – at least that’s what I call it – on the shore of NAS Pensacola.
We pulled this tangle of lines off our prop.

3 thoughts on “Adapting (Day 101)

  1. On Veterans Day or any day of the year, Thankyou to you and to all Veterans for your service!
    I want to share with Jeff a little tip that helped me through many bouts of vertigo. I have an inversion table, and when a bout comes on, I will invert to about 30 degrees beyond horizontal.
    Start by turning my head fully to the left for about a minute, and then turning fully to the right. Then upright and look straight ahead. Go back and repeat the process several times. If you don’t have a table, then get creative and find a way to put your head inverted below your torso.
    It has helped me “get my bearings” several times when all other things failed. Good Luck and enjoy your excursion!


    1. Thank you, Norm! Jeff is doing much better after diligently doing some exercises sort of similar to what you describe but called the Foster method. I will pass your suggestion along to him! And thank you for your service too. There are many ways to serve our neighborhoods and community and country — and military service is just one of them. I’m sure you do your part also! For example, sharing these ideas. 🙂


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