This in an interesting time for most people on this planet. I feel extremely lucky that this really does not affect me too much other than limiting where I can go. I’ve spent the last 6 years sailing around the world alone. Being in the U.S. Virgin islands with unlimited cellular internet and nice grocery stores is way easier than a majority of my trip around the world. My heart truly goes out to everyone that is struggling with their bills, lost their job, are in an area that does not sell alcohol, or have unruly kids.
Something sailing around the world has taught me is the value of community. When I left Uraparapara quite a few villagers were crying which made me tear up also. I remember thinking my family does not even cry when I leave. I think a major difference is these villagers don’t need to work much to sustain themselves. They farm, fish, and harvest coconuts for copra. If someone needs a new house or something big the whole community helps. Every member of their community has value and something they do such as fishing, making tools, farming or whatever. Their only contact with the outside world is visiting yachts and a supply ship that shows up every 3-6 months. They sell the copra to the ship and buy supplies like cooking oil and rice. Its likely the people on Uraparapara don’t know the world is shut down because of a virus. This isolation makes losing a member of the community difficult and for a short time I was a member of their community.
In the last year I’ve spend 2 weeks with my mom and nephew, 3 weeks on yacht deliveries, and months with friends. This is quality time spending breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks, and activities. Before sailing I spent my most of my time either in school or working and visited friends and family in my spare time. Even after only 2 months in USVI I know a lot of my neighbors and have made good friends. The sailing community and Pacific islanders taught me how I want to live and prioritize my life. I hope that others can appreciate this time at home with loved ones.
Since arriving in the Caribbean in June I could smell the finish line for my solo trip in Hawaii. Currently I’m about 6 years and 25,000+ miles into my solo circumnavigation. If the panama canal is open I’m only about 5000 miles and 3 months from Hawaii. This pandemic has closed every boarder between where I am now and Hawaii and the Hurricane season will be here soon. I really don’t want to get stuck in a country where I could have visa issues or even worse am forced to leave my boat. After months of deciding on where to go I think it will be best to sail up to NE USA for the summer.
Hopefully by fall the world will start opening up again. If Panama is not an option I’ll need to consider the NW Passage or Cape horn. Both sound pretty exciting to me but my boat is not really outfitted for cold places and it is not something I want to do solo. Stay safe everyone and Aloha from the Virgin Islands.