Last night, Somewhere between, 11pm and 2 am...I  finally figured it out.

Pura Vida was slinking through yet another dark alley of night,
brutish, squally thunderheads hung around the horizon, like sullen bullies.
Once in awhile, one would pounce down and beat the snot out of us with rain and wind, for 45 minutes before it took off again-
I swear, I could hear them laughing as they went.

Pura Vida weathered the assaults like a champ. Her sails and decks streamed rivers of water after the torrents but there were no damages.

The Moon peeked out from behind the clouds to apologize for the rough neighborhood and guided us on to the next, little square of latitude and longitude on our charts.

I stood facing the pitching darkness, alone on deck, drenched to the bone, wearing only a pair of soaking wet boxers and bare feet.
My precious family was asleep below, my good and strong captain somewhat beleaguered by an injury, our water maker had quit working again, we were still a long way from anywhere and I felt tired and old and scared and unsure...
and I asked the Universe,
What am I here to learn?

Of course, one hopes, when setting out on an adventure like this, that they will "discover" something unique,
gain some previously hidden insight into themselves and the world around them. That the time spent in commune, with the great and rolling Ocean and the wise Stars above, will shed some light on the mysteries that puzzle us humans so.

Well, last night...I found it.

The answer to ALL,
to everything,
the actual "key" to happiness in this material world.

I asked,
and the Universe said...

"Suck it up".

Most. Valuable. Lesson. Ever.

Your Therapist will  never tell you this is the answer to all your troubles, because it takes one second to say,
and you couldn't really charge more than 10 dollars, for saying it.

But it is...
The Answer to Everything.

Invoking this phrase and acting on it has mystical and magical properties,
I swear.
it took me, 2,637 miles of Ocean to figure it out.
But I did.

This has always been the Key, although back in the day, the phrase-ology was different...
"Carry on!"
"Chin up!"
"Put your best foot forward"
Was the cry of the enlightened...
SUCK IT UP, is what it is now.

It is the Key to everything because it offers no room for whingeing, whining, blame, copping out, quitting or being a pussy.
It requires youth be brave, independent, be your best self, forgive, forget, and most importantly... succeed.

It is the ultimate mantra because it teaches us to forget our injustices,
It gets us off our butts,
it makes us do the uncomfortable for the greater good,
It even forces us to recycle more.
It is HOW you learn to 'Love thy brother and they neighbor"-even when your brother and your neighbor are really pissing you off.

(It was actually the FIRST commandment God gave to Moses- but he accidentally dropped that tablet on the way down).

activates your will, reorganizes your synapses, cleanses your mind, cleans your blood and fires up your Chi.
Saying these magical words will crystallize your intentions,
and once that happens,
whatever steps YOU need to take to accomplish YOUR goal, will become clear.
And this is why it is holy.

It's what Budda learned under the Bohdi tree.
What Jesus did out there in that desert,
and what Snoopy would tell Charlie Brown -if only he could talk.

I tell myself this and pull on my Helly's and look at the wind and set my sails and adjust the course.
I make the boat sail properly, not too fast but not too slow, make the heel more comfortable and check for chafe,
I reset the traveller and go below to tuck in the kids and find Hunter's teddy and make sure the water pressure is off.
I am not an overtired 45 year old in the middle of nowhere, worrying about the squalls or the night or the miles between our boat and the rest of the world,
I am sailor-girl, adventure-mom, I am activist and poet and lover of all...
There is no room for doubt or fear, no self-destructive thoughts...
I am sailing the boat, I am loving the moment and I am
as close to the Jewel in the Lotus Crown or Made in Her Image, as I will ever be.

So there it is.

Today, we still have a broken water maker and a sling on an arm,
Our batteries still are low because of the clouds and we don't have any more apples.
But we are happy and whole,
And facing the day (which is sunny and windy and perfect)
and there are only 185 miles to go!

Kai's fact for the day
The High Seas -- areas of the ocean beyond national jurisdiction -- cover almost 50 per cent of the Earth's surface. They are the least protected part of the world.
Although there are some treaties that protect ocean-going species such as whales, as well as some fisheries agreements, there are no protected areas in the High Seas.

We have passed a few ships on this trip that were all lit up, steering side by side. These are ocean trawlers, working outside of protected zones.
They are trawling with giant nets between them scooping everything they can from the sea. Most of whatever they catch will be unusable and will be by catch-this included whales, turtles, dolphin and many many species of fish that are killed for absolutely no reason.

Make sure to ask how the seafood you are eating has been caught. If you don't know... don't eat it.
Bags of frozen shrimp are usually caught using large drag nets that kill everything in the sea.
Buy fresh shrimp when possible from local fisherman.
Going to the docks if you live near the ocean is a good way to learn about fishing and fisherman will sometimes sell you stuff right off their boats.

Captain's Corner:
A note on Suki and 'sucking it up'. For those of you who don't know...Suki is a gorgeous, sassy redhead with a big personality who can talk a great game. She has travelled all over the world, had all kinds of adventures, and given birth to two kids at home. It's easy to forget sometimes that she is also tiny (currently weighing in at about 11 pounds), a teeeeny bit high strung, has a HUGE imagination and is completely blind in the dark. Oh yeah, she also HATES to be cold. So for her to have been out there the last three weeks taking night watches, sailing this big fat boat through all kinds of rough and lumpy seas, enduring terrifying lightning storms, freezing cold deluges, a fairly constant string of gales and all with no moon to see by is amazing. The fact that she has done all that while cooking, cleaning, parenting, doctoring, all the while maintaining this steady stream of blog entries AND doing all my jobs for the last two days while I sit around with my arm in a sling AND having a smile on her face and looking like a million bucks is beyond words. This goes beyond sucking it up... This is BEING the goddess!!! She's my hero.


  1. After that ... what can one say. Hope the shoulder doesn't impede the flow too much. Love to all.

  2. Always said it ... sucking is way better than snorting or shooting.

  3. Inspiring words, Suki.
    get well soon, Jon but don't push it.

    Godspeed those 185 miles.


  4. Suki I am so incredibly proud to know you and love you so my fearless friend! Soldier are a goddess of the wind and waves!

  5. We are rooting for you, Pura Vita. The whole lot of you. May you be blessed and rewarded with better seas from here on out!! Tip, Val, Josh on s/v GRACE

  6. speechless....but so in awe, and so in love with everything y'all are

  7. Today Keith turned 61. In the last 12 months he has endured and survived atrial fibrillation and then liposarcoma and he too has learned life's BIG truth, SUCK IT UP. Me, I am still working on it...... Tomorrow at 5 am he leaves for the British Virgins with three other intrepid sailors to bring our new (to us) sailboat ANGEL up to her new home berth in the Abacos. A 7 day straight shot, "mice nuts" compared to your crossing but the start of our new adventures. I will be in White Sound Elbow Cay to welcome them home. Suki you are incredible, Hunter I adore your joyous mind and I haven't even met you yet, and Kai what a life you are leading since we last met when you were oh....4?! Jonathan you are truly incredible, all you have learned and achieved in your young years. I am so proud and in awe of all of you taking this chunk of life by the balls and sailing it!!!!!! Thank you so much for sharing. Can't wait for the pictures.