It means new sails, new winches, new electronics, a new engine, new everything you can imagine to make your boat happy and love you back.
Love is Nature’s way of separating a yachtsman from his money. Love is Nature’s way of making a sailor go bankrupt. By my reckoning, too many of you are going to end up in debtor’s prison where no boats are allowed.
But I can help you here. I can tell you how to fall out of love with your boat. It’s all to do with remembering.
— Remember the time she wouldn’t tack, got into stays and embarrassed you in front of the yacht club that wouldn’t accept you as a member?
— Remember when the engine quit just as you were about to pick up the mooring buoy and the cover was still on the mainsail and you hit three boats sideways-on before you could get the anchor overboard?
— Remember when you got seasick and your mother-in-law didn’t? Remember how she laughed?
— Remember when you came last in the Wednesday evening race because your boat ran into a big submerged plastic bag and deliberately wrapped it around the keel?
— Remember when the oil pipe split and spewed hot oil all over the engine compartment?
— Remember when the alcohol stove flared up, removed your eyebrows, and burned the galley curtains?
— Remember when your cousin with diarrhea blocked the head with wodges of toilet paper?
Think on these things, my friend. Remember the bad times. Ask yourself why you’re in love. Ask yourself if you really should be. And stop buying presents. Enough already. It’s only a boat.
But he who stems a stream with sand,
And fetters flame with flaxen band,
Has yet a harder task to prove —
By firm resolve to conquer love!
— Scott, The Lady of the Lake
I believe it was Kierkegaard who once remarked that the trouble with life is that it can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.
Nevertheless, some people do live in the past and they tell me it has one great advantage — it’s a lot cheaper.