Got off my watch, alongside the beautiful coastline of Isle of Wight, just when dinner was ready; the mackerel Maria had caught this morning, I had gutted and Erik had fried in butter and lemon. We’ve had no wind yet, but hot summer weather which has made me want to swim, but the others just shake their heads at me.
Now my face is sunburned (some would say red), I am more relaxed than I’ve been for a while and it’s great to be back on Cantare. We have known each other since I was around 17, Cantare and I, and sailed together for years now, little adventures here and there. On Cantare I have discovered an interest in sailing that our High School couldn’t create, met new friends, she has cured heartbreak and watched new relationships form, short and long, and now I have introduced her to Erik. They like each other.
Seeing Maria after she completed our long-time dream journey was exciting, I was proud and eager and curious, champagne in hand waiting in Falmouth, and when we met after one and a half years again it was like no time had passed. I guess that’s what happens with really good friends. Or boats. Cantare was the same, too, smelled a little worse, looked a little worn, but we fell into old patterns instantly. Except, perhaps, the fact that I haven’t been seasick at all (yet). Instead, it’s all been lazy days in the sun, reading and writing, cooking and steering, meeting Marias sailing friends and simply enjoying life as crew. Night watches have been calm and quiet, just me and the sea, something I have always appreciated with sailing. Lessing and Austen have kept me company under the stars, and as soon as my watch has ended and I have crawled to bed, cold and tired, Maria has called me back from sleep wanting me to take a fish off the hook, or help out with something. I obey, grumpy but grateful to be part of the last part of this journey. Today, Brighton awaits. Beers, bars and football. I could do this for a long time.
Love, Sailor Sandy

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