Sojourn From The Sea
Glen Cove, New York

It was an emotional moment. Dream Time was hauled today for dry storage, she'll spend the next eight months on the hard - her longest sojourn from the sea since we purchased her over two decades ago. It will be a well deserved rest for a boat that sailed harder, and further, than we ever expected her to. The same crew that launched her fourteen years ago to begin the voyage, gathered again to carefully prepare her for stands. Mark, the yard manager, gently operated the travel lift and slings; Moses in the dory to position the tie-back and blocks; and Keith finally to clean the bottom - antifouling paint that was, remarkably, last applied in Australia over three years and 15,657 nautical miles ago. A testament, perhaps, to the product, our application and bottom cleaning regiment.

While most boats in the yard were busy preparing for, or already enjoying, a New York summer on the water, we were removing and folding sails, coiling lines, and winterizing systems for a freeze that, while still months away, will be her first since 2007. I was the only customer in the hardware store buying a shopping cart of antifreeze in the middle of a New York heat wave. Puzzled and quizzical looks followed me down the aisles.

Our sails are the original suit we purchased before the voyage. They don't owe us anything. Our patchwork of repairs and restitching saw us all the way around. Dropping them onto the decks, I thanked them for their loyal service. I thanked the blocks, too. The lines for not parting, the anchors and chain for holding us safe, the autopilot for steering us true, and Dream Time for sheltering us on our journey around the world. These were not just thoughts but spoken words of gratitude that, to a neighbor or passing marina member, may have raised an eyebrow, or concern, for "the guy talking to his boat on D dock". But I did not care. The thanks, the profound appreciation, the pride, and the deep relief of a voyage complete, of a safe return, well, it was just too great, too big of an emotion to be left unspoken.

We decided to store Dream Time not because of any doubts about continuing a lifestyle that we love so much, or even a desire for change (Catherine did not want to leave the boat - a notable reversal considering that she was most uncertain of her desire to live aboard when we first began). But rather, Dream Time's sojourn from the sea will allow us to travel abroad, to hug family we have not seen for years, to meet a new nephew we have yet to hold. And with Dream Time safely ashore, it will allow us time to focus on our next chapter, to explore new ideas, to perhaps share this story in more detail, while carefully planning and preparing for our next adventure together.

Rest easy Dream Time, and, thank you.