Unexpected stresses and pressures...

Post date: May 28, 2015 2:18:14 PM

You know what? This is the most stressful period of my venture so far. And I'm not even sailing!

I expected pressures on the sailing front and, as you will have seen, there have been plenty of those. But I was prepared to deal with them and as I worked through each issue I have felt a sense of achievement and satisfaction.

But waiting here in Scrabster is sucking me dry.

First, and most worryingly, I am learning to hate that damn wind. Every time I get on the bike and have to cycle against that horrible cold westerly wind I curse and curse again. Let me tell you, I'll  endure any amount of upwind sailing rather than the utter frustration of pedalling hard at 5mph downhill into that wind. I don't want to hate the wind but right now I do. And I'm worried this will affect my attitude to the sailing.

Waiting is the next stress. I'm getting out of the groove. The longer I wait the more unaccustomed I am to the rhythm of my passages. My mental state is deteriorating and I have to fight to keep myself on track.

Today something bad happened. I was cycling back from Thurso at 2mph with some large plastic containers that I needed to store stuff on my boat in a way that kept the stuff dry. In order to stop the wind from blowing them out of my hand I perched them in front of me half on the handlebars. This pushed the contents of my coat pocket out (which I had forgotten to zip up). I had not realised this, but a car passed and said I'd dropped my wallet on the road. Thanks, I thought and stopped and rolled back with the wind to retrieve it. I could not not see it. I went up and down a few times and really could not find it. I retraced my complete trip from Thurso and asked people if they'd seen it. Not a dicky bird. I think it dropped out opposite Lidl and I asked them if someone had turned it in. I stopped at the police station and asked them. I went up and down some more in that damn wind and it was nowhere to be seen. I went back to the boat and dumped the plastic containers off and headed back again to look further and gave all my details to the police.

No wallet. No Id. No cards. No cash. Back to boat, into my office (the smelly laundry room at the fish market), got on line and made all the calls to cancel all the cards. My bank had no suggestion as to how I might get access to cash! So now I'm definitely living off my boat stores (which are enough) but no more little luxuries like a cappuccino or something.

Because of the recent sailing mishaps I feel another pressure and stress. My actions are now being scrutinised. Am I taking into account properly my age? Is my boat really up to this? Am I really making sensible decisions? I now have to fight hard to keep myself focussed on what is right for ME and not what appears right for OTHERS.

I always intended to blog with my heart on my sleeve and I will continue to do so. But blogging is open to interpretation and misinterpretation and I feel the additional strain that my blogs may cause people to form negative appraisals of me. I feel a new pressure to be more careful about the way I express myself.

But on the whole, I think I'll end up in a place where I will have learned a lot more about myself and perhaps my family and friends will have learned a bit more about me as well - I can only hope that these learnings will be more positive than negative!

At the end of the day, this is all coming about because I have to WAIT and not SAIL. And these are strains that really had not occurred to me as I prepared for this venture.

This is definitely a lesson learnt!