Can three women all Medicare eligible and life-long land lubbers enjoy sailing the West Indies in a 41’ catamaran? They had traveled in a 5th wheel RV nearly 10,000 miles, but that was several years before the arthritis diagnoses. So, sure we would try it when one of our daughters booked the week-long cruise. Off we went with no more thought than that.
Getting on the boat at the marina was (deceptively) easy.. So far, so good. We had not considered how vertical boats are. Steep steps to the cabin, steps up to the deck. Challenges all. Add to that the erratic movement and narrow walkways, and we crawled—literally—around the boat.
Next up—the dinghy. Fortunately to my knowledge, no one was filming for America’s Funniest Home Video. We were reminded that we need to return to Pilates and yoga to work on that pesky balance. One of us swam out from the boat just to realize the waves were working against her. She treads water well, but not forever. So Captain Shane calmly asked if she needed rescue. Yes.
It was the dinghy that we bonded over the most. Helping hands; encouragement; shared laughter. None of us fell in the water, but we bent limbs in positions best not imagined.
A joy of the trip was 4-year-old Carver who said Captain Shane “had an impressive boat,” and who gave us great nighttime hugs. His parents were brave to travel with a pre-schooler and even more brave to travel with us nearly geriatrics.
Captain Shane was patient in every phase. And did I mention he’s a very good cook? He is. He’s becoming famous for his homemade bread and his dinners are excellent. All in all, it was a memorable and great trip. I encourage you to book a cruise—regardless of your age. Maybe just do some Pilates before going.