Dearest land people,
We have been observing you. We too have lived on land, for most of our lives actually, but after just three short years living full-time aboard our 32 ft sailboat, land living seems different...land people seem a little different too. We notice and think about these little (and big) differences because we're also, like many liveaboards, the go-to house-sitters among our land living friends. Living in someone's house a week or two every couple of months is refreshing - a moment to spread out, cook intricate stuff, shower, & do endless laundry - but it also highlights a few land/boat differences.
1. The weather.
Do land people notice the weather? When we're on land we quickly forget about what's going on outside. Wind storm? What wind storm? It's sprinkling? Who knew? On the boat we feel it. Our entire house moves with the wind and water like a giant hammock. We hear every rain drop, every sprinkle...especially on the long walk down the dock to our car.
Land people have a lot of forks...and way too many pens/writing utensils of all types. To be honest, they have way too many duplicates of a lot of things.
3. Ice cream.
Ahhhh, ice cream. It's tricky to keep ice cream frozen in our small boat fridge, it even has a freezer! It's cold enough to make ice, but ice cream turns to ooze. Enjoy your ice cream land people!
We've never felt so welcome and gotten so many friendly "hellos" then when we moved aboard. Over the last few years we've given sailors we barely know rides back to the marina from town, attended our next door neighbor's wedding, and we always make eye contact and say hello when passing fellow sailors on the docks - that's what you do. We've lived in multiple land neighborhoods across Seattle that weren't like this. Do they exist? We hope so!
I kinda forgot about the giant brown spiders that scurry across the basement floors of Northwest land houses. While house-sitting last month, I was working on a project in the basement...in my bare feet...and then I was reminded of these little (giant) guys as one ran across the floor. We don't seem to have spiders on the (inside) of the boat. The family is pretty happy about this.
6. Quiet…or, rather, not quiet.
We have grown accustomed to the ambient noises of the marina and our boat. The creak of the lines that tie us to the dock, the birds (sometimes even swimming under our boat!), the water hitting the stern. Land dwellings have their own sounds but a lot of them are super quiet...too quiet.
7. Where do the drains go?
When you live aboard you quickly realize where the kitchen sink drains. It drains into the Puget Sound. The storm drains in the parking lot? The Puget Sound. Wash your car? Wash your boat? Puget Sound. It makes you think...and watch what you let roll of the boat or run down the drain. I wonder who else is dumping things into the Puget Sound...
No contest. Land power rocks. Make toast while leaving the heater on - no problem. Charge every electronic device all at once - easy. Long, hot showers - easy. Problems with land power? Oh yeah, when it goes out. When Kingsley's shore power goes out we can still run quite a bit off of the batteries. Like the lights…lights are good.
Observations complete…for now. It's maybe not so much that there's land people and boat people, it's more about how we tend to live on land vs. living on the sailboat. Even with the back and forth between land and sea, I know one thing: ice cream never tasted so good:)
~Paul, Amber, Kali (the cat…who prefers boat living for sure)
P.S. Surely we missed something? Let us know in the comment section!