I remember clearly what was going thru my head as I, for the first time, pointed the bow outward toward the open ocean, I watched the mainland disappear, as I broke with the security of shore and started reaching for ports unknown. I remember the mixed feelings, one of freedom and self reliance, another of curiosity what lies behind the horizon, and yet another of fear of the unknown. Having sailed all my life and educating myself in the subject of sea cruising, I considered my self experienced and well prepared. Very slowly I became aware of not how much I know but how much I still need to learn. The idea is to learn, but not the hard way. I always had utmost respect for any large body of water, especially now for the endless ocean. One has to believe in his boat, her worthiness and strength, one has to believe his own instincts of self preservation. After all, thousand of boats plow the seas, and yes, stuff happens. It happens on land too. It’s the fear of the unknown...that is slowly being replaced by the euphoria of being free, all alone away from the rat race and ill side effects of civilization. Days at sea might sound monotonous to some, but they are anything like it. One quickly develops a routine and while there is enough to do and to occupy one’s mind, monotony or boredom are not an issue. Time seems to fly at different speed. It’s only once I reached the first landfall my mind went back and there was a profound feeling of accomplishment and joy. That, supplemented with all the comforts of terra firma, such as a full night of sleep on a bed that does not lurch...is a welcome change. But only for a while. Knowing that there are all the unknown ports and that time is not an issue, drives the desire to get out there and do it again. And so we do, we go back to endure the lack of luxury of a small craft and we breathe in the freedom and enjoy all the new experiences vagabond life style offers.