Aloha, Boogeyman

Captain Jon suited up and ready to grind 

The past few weeks,  the Boogeyman has been sitting at the end of our bunk.

Every night, he waits for us.

We try to ignore it's shadowy form,
hissing and chortling in the strange, half-light that glows through our hatch.

It used to be moonlight or stars that shone down on us,
now its the flashy, burlesque of expensive hotels towering over our mast.

Night sounds of Waikiki drift through our open portholes...

The constant rumble of commercial airplanes overhead, 
With their cargos of very pale or very brown tourists
( depending on whether they're coming or going).

Sirens, car horns, helicopters, alarms,
mixed in with tribal drumming and ancient Hawaiian war chants...
It's "Polynesian Night" at the Hilton Hawaiian Village again.

The Boogey man doesn't care how exotic it all is.

He's picks his nose and glares at Jon,
hoping to get his attention.

Jon and I have vowed to pay no notice to this brute.

We've met him before;
outside the pass in Port Phaeton when our transmission blew,
and again in Toau, when a bad storm tore off our bowsprit and we were 1700 miles from anywhere...

Lurking mini-monsters have no place in adventure.

There are plenty of real dragons to contend with,
so the one at the end of the bed is met with callous disinterest.

We let him grumble.

Jon stares at the ceiling, ruminating on fiberglass lay -up, 
how to shuffle one over due credit account to another,
whether a line to 35* North before turning right for the coast is a good plan, if the Irish Casting director in charge of that dream project, will actually watch his audition for that role that starts shooting in a few weeks...

I listen for the sounds of metal lids popping in the dark.

Did I can enough chicken and beef to get us to the mainland?
Should I re-write the end to the script I turned in a few weeks ago? Have I worked on spelling lately with Kai, or let French slip with Hunter?

We confer with one another about if Ol' Perkie will get us up to Kehi where we are booked to haul out and do our repairs.
Ponder, every possible scenario of how the wind might mess with us, as we try to squeeze our big boat out of this tiny slip in the morning.

The Boogeyman pulls off our quilt.
We don't care... the night's are warm in Hawaii.

Jon and I talk about how great the kids were today.

Kai says he wants his own watches on the next crossing so he can skipper a big boat by the time he's 22  - then he can buy us a new boat if we have to sell Pura Vida to pay off our bills.

Hunter has been running her own smoothie stand at the Yacht Club to earn some spending money.

Tomorrow, we will leave this dock for the first time in months.
We have no idea where we will be next week or what kind of nightmare our haul-out will be, or what we will find under our boat from the damage we took in Lahina.

The ONE thing we do know is;
whatever comes up -  we will handle it together.

Jon pulls me closer,
I put my head on his chest, 
look up through our hatch and thank the one lucky star
I can still see past the bright lights of Waikiki.

I look down at the end of our bunk,
and realize, 
that while we were whispering and laughing,
(about how freaked-out and crazy stressful it can get)
the Boogeyman slunk away in the dark, 
and disappeared.

The elusive Hawaiian Easter turtles who found our boat.

A  finger full of  Wana ( Sea Urchin) spines after surfing - owwie!

Hunter joins the Hawaii Yacht Club sailing camp

The smoothie stand

Happy to be back at Sea!

Pura Vida gets hauled out - again

Showering boat kid style


From the moment we threw our dock lines over the cleats in Waikiki - it was back to the grind.

Having jumped into our cruising lives with no financial parachute to cushion the flat spin back into "Real Life"...
I'll admit, it's been a rather rough landing. 

Kind of an ankle breaker, actually...

In our absurd reality, what we do for a living has about as much security as sitting at the Roulette table in Vegas - only with slightly worse odds.

Re-entry has come with the rather ice-cold reality check that getting back in the game... 
is gonna take some serious freakin' hustle.

As our other cruising buddies make their way back home to 401K's safely tucked away or return to reliable professions like nursing or plumbing...

It's gradually becoming apparent why the ocean is not teeming with out-of-work actors and screenwriters toodling around on mid-life sabbaticals.

I'm not knocking what we've gotten ourselves into...
Well, not yet, anyway.

The incredible experiences and adventures we've shared  this past few years together are worth every moment of heart- stopping anxiety that we are now experiencing.


At least, thats what we tell ourselves when we gaze at those switched-on, bright eyed kids of ours that sparked us to take this whole mad adventure in the first place.

Kai and Hunter don't seem the least bit ruffled by the instability.

Living on a boat gives you that.
We can handle a little turbulence.
It's what you learn from being your own real-life, day-dream believer.

"The Wisdom of Insecurity" is our motto.
( intentional or not)

I'm a card carrying member of whatever club it is that

I venture this comparison:

Having a slightly broken boat, 
that Jon must wizard a way to fix - with no money,
and facing a rather daunting 2200 mile voyage back to the Mainland in the next few weeks,
all while creeping towards utter insolvency...

Is nothing we can't handle.
It's really just like any other adventure.

Sometimes  you can't believe what a lucky scoundrel you are, 
to be out there digging the whole cosmic luau...
AND then there's those times,
when the Great Blue is kicking the snot out of your puny butt,
and it feels like you're sliding headlong to certain doom and everyone you ever knew will certainly be shaking their heads at your epitaph, and muttering;

" Yup. They were always crazy."

So what.

Am I going to sit around a chew my nails and wonder if being forty-six and having no car, no house, no savings,
was the wisest choice one could make?

Some days.

But then there's this;

We went back to Mainland for a few weeks and did the LA rounds, re-connected with our business, saw some family and friends, we also went home to our Island in Canada as a surprise for Kai's 12th birthday...

And everywhere we went...

No one said, 
"what the hell, you guys?"
"What on Earth were you thinking?"

We were met with love.

Everyone told us over and over how inspiring this thing we did was.

They welcomed us with open arms,
Told us not to worry, made us feel like we would make it.
They offered to help us find jobs,
Let us sleep on their couches,
borrow a car while we ran around trying to sort our
lives out and figure out how to ready for our last push home...

We felt like rock stars.
(broke rock stars, who still have to sail a really, really long way to get back home...)

But when we laid in bed at night,
( maybe it was in a tent in my mother-in-laws backyard)

 or woke up in the morning and looked at each other...
(  while staying in my mom's guest room)

We felt pretty good about the whole shifty, 
unstable, chaos of our lives.

And seeing Kai and Hunter back home with their friends, grown and changed but still fitting in and being welcomed by their buddies and all excited about starting school again next year...

Made it seem like, maybe...
it wasn't such a crazy thing to do with our lives.

Sure, it's gonna take some hard work to redefine ourselves and start again...
Basically, from scratch,
but that's part of the deal.

When you set out on that Road less Traveled,
there's not really a shortcut back.

Fingers crossed we get lucky on that roulette wheel...

But the real trick,
is to make coming home as much of an adventure,
as sailing away in the first place :)

The amazing TENT - we spent about six weeks here while trying to hustle work in Hollywood.

Surfing the Gap

Hunter and Kai play under the Rainbow at Kailua Beach

At the risk of sounding like a New-Age Ninny, I'm gonna admit it…

We've been listening to Deepak Chopra.

Now, normally, neither Jon or myself are inclined to jump on any spiritual/self-help bandwagons…
we usually try and blaze our own paths to self-realization.

The past few years, my pathway to inner bliss was simply waking up everday as we bobbed on our anchor in a secluded cove,  or watching our kids free-dive and hunt for lobsters on the reef,  or sipping a margarita at sunset while having a laugh with Jon and of course, there was always a whole lot of staring at the ocean to bring out my inner Buddha-nature.

Bliss was in no short supply.

Coming back to the "real world", however, brought new challenges to what had become a laid back and simple life, where it didn't matter how much money we weren't making, or the fact that between the four of us, we only owned three pairs of flip-flops (Kai and I were sharing until he outgrew me a year or so  ago)…

Tying up to a dock with running water and power is super-nifty, so is buying fresh produce everyday and having hot showers at the yacht club (where they have kindly given us a "social" membership) and its so wonderful to be able to call our families whenever we want-but these things come at a price.

You gotta have da cash, bruddah.

Man, can that ONE little detail, suddenly snap you back in the world in a way that a WHOLE lot of issues start popping up again. 

Doubts that sat, snoozily dormant in the back of your sun-kissed brain while you filleted your freshly speared grouper for the beach BBQ now came springing to back to life with anxious veracity.

All the highly-tuned, "trust" in the Universe, self-sufficiency, commitment to making Life about loving and exploring… kinda starts seeming a little shaky, and like, maybe, we might have lost our minds out there just a little bit. 

It was time to get phone plans! Re-instate our health care! Deal with insurance companies about the recent mishap in Lahaina! The kids needed check-ups! All our clothes have holes in them and dammit…what kind of crazy people only have three pairs of shoes between four people???!!

We had to do something. We had to make things happen.  Get back in the game and REBUILD!

We had a two year adventure and within four weeks, we were once again stressed, doubting, wondering, worried, sleepless, anxious and seriously broke.

What were we doing wrong?
Could we maintain our happy place AND fit back into the world?

Enter Deepak.

I'd never read any of his books before, but I was familiar with some of his philosophies. We once owned a CD of his, on Transformation, that we used to listen to in our car whenever we were stuck in traffic in LA. It had been a  particularly hard year then, with many close-successes that ultimately had not panned out and both Jon and I were pretty shaken and needed a jolt of positive thinking….the CD was great, it encouraged one to meditate, if only for half a hour a day, to find the space within yourself and enter the mysterious "GAP" as Deepak calls, the realm of "pure potentiality", a place between thought and stillness…where you can let go and allow the universe to "roll in ecstasy at your feet"…

Groovy -sign me up for some of that.

( it's also really, very helpful to listen to it when you are stuck on the 405 freeway at rush hour)

Anyway,  it was only a few months after practicing hanging out in this "gap" that we began divining that maybe we should just cut out of LA for awhile and get on with this Bliss thing in a fresh direction…so, fast forward to 15,000 sea miles and several years of Joy later-we're here in Hawaii and its incredible but I'm starting to freak out a little that we have like less than 4 digits in our bank account.

Around Christmastime, one of Jon's agents forwarded us a link to
"Deepak & Oprah's free online 21 day meditation"...

"Are you kidding me?" Jon said, 
when I showed it to him one night.

"I don't mind, Deepak …" he head waggled in his spot-on imitation,
" but there's no F-ing way I'm meditating with Oprah Winfrey".

Fair enough.
( he doesn't know Oprah like I do :))

" I think its just Oprah talking for a bit  and introducing the ideas to people who might not be into meditation and then Deepak leads the actual practice so that they can expose more people to it and that's a cool thing, right?"...

I went on and on and on and on-
until I badgered Jon into agreeing to do it with me.

For 21 days…

We listened to Oprah introduce Deepak's theme for the day and then we closed our eyes and listened to Deepak lead us into the daily meditation and every day we head some version of…

"Trust, Love, make Life an expression of Joy, follow your passion, offer yourself and your unique talents to the service of the greater good,  be in harmony with your bliss and abundance will flow to you…."

Hang on.
Hit me with that last one, again?

Deepak and Oprah, inarguably, extremely successful people by pretty much any standard you want to measure by, are telling me over and over, that if you totally,  explicitly, utterly, commit, to a path of making your entire life an expression of joy, for the greater good of others…

You can count on abundance flowing to you.

Well, that's pretty much exactly what I needed to hear because that's pretty much exactly what we've been doing out here for the past few years, so… 
maybe I need to just chill and trust it.

So we did.

I swear, as soon as I stopped worrying and really put it out there to "trust" this path of doing what you love, a paying offer came in to write a screenplay, I got a letter in the mail that a dear old aunt had passed and left me a piece of art that has a bit of value, a lump of unexpected residual checks appeared for Jon, our good friend JR came out for a visit and spoiled us rotten and treated us to all kinds of fun we couldn't have afforded right now, and all this while tied to a dock in one of the most gorgeous cities on Earth, where you can surf everyday and are constantly surrounded by Aloha spirit.

It began to dawn on me, that it might actually be possible ( and even Oprah said so!) that following your Joy, utilizing your unique talents, making and spending more Love than Money and living everyday that you possibly can in complete AWE of nature and this extraordinary Universe we get to live in…
will somehow, also, end up covering the bills.

Maybe owning three pairs of flip-flops between four people IS the definition of sanity?

I haven't posted in while because I've been working on another writing project-but here's a few from xmas until now…

Xmas Pura Vida style

makin' xmas cookies...

Our tradition of new Pj's on X-mas eve

J shows up, spoils us… and rents  a pimpin' ride!
Rock and Roll hairdo's

Hawaii girl

Almost twelve...

Kai and Mom heading out for the morning session.