I finally managed to clean up my pile of tissues that had accumulated from the two hours of torture I inflicted on Drew that was “the Notebook”. Not really, he took it like a champ. Wish I could say that we’ve been diving in the wreck or snorkeling amongst massive schools of fish but some higher power is set on keeping us inside Dosia for days on end. At night, once the sun has set and hopefully the moon is providing an illuminated view of the reef we hear forcefully pounding out our windows, I find myself quickly donning a pair of long pajama pants, a long sleeve shirt, and wrapping myself from head to toe in a blanket. It’s cold. Okay, okay…my “idea” of cold has changed somewhat since having lived in French Poly for three months. For here, it’s cold. So to be honest, should a day finally produce some sunshine around here I’m not so sure the water temps are going to be anything I’m prepared to handle. I’ve actually been perfectly content holed up with Drew for a few days. Days which we have filled with movies, eating, books, drinking wine, more movies, and yesterday we taught ourselves to play rummy. While he says it’s about “expanding our horizons and learning something,” I really think Drew was just tired of having his keester handed to him time and time again by yours truly in Uno! He successfully kicked my ass yesterday in rummy and today’s attempts to get even will no doubt be intense.
So in living on Dosia my “idea” of things changes on an almost daily basis. I’ve learned to live without some things and some things I’ve just had to learn to live with in a different way of that which I’ve always been accustomed, all the while realizing that I’m lucky to have any of this AT ALL. For instance, the head, a.k.a. the toilet. On Dosia, you do your business, close the lid, and to your left is a handle. You proceed to pump the handle up and down, up and down, up and down about fifteen to twenty times. In doing so, the vacuum formed in pumping is sucking water into the bowl, cleaning, and taking your business out as it goes. Too much? Nah. You can handle it. The other day Drew pulls out a spare toilet bowl lid. He says to me that while many might laugh at him for carrying a spare, should our existing one crack or anything happen to it, we wouldn’t be able to flush the toilet and we’d be up shit creek. Literally!
Second example, the water. Dosia has two tanks that hold 90 gallons of water. That water gets into those tanks in one of three ways. It either 1)comes through the hose when we are docked, 2)we jerry jug it, or 3)we make it. Once the tanks are full our mission is to make that water last as long as possible. We never know if there will be a hose at the next dock we pull into or if the water on that particular island is even considered drinkable because sometimes it is unsanitary. Back home, I was not one of those people who was conscious of how much water I used in the shower, shaving, washing dishes, cooking…how quickly that has changed! When showering in our 2ft x2 1/2ft shower, you get in and turn on the water just long enough to get wet. In running the engine we can flip on the water heater and have a hot shower so from time to time we indulge as a treat to ourselves. After drenching myself I shampoo, shave, clean, and rinse before I turn the water on again and then it’s left on just long enough to wash away the suds. Showers over. It’s a quick process and depending on temps outside it can either be really refreshing or really chilly!
If it sounds at all like I’m feeling sorry for myself or trying to gain sympathy points this is not the case at all. Believe me, we have it G-O-O-D out here and I am by no means roughing it. Some people we’ve come across don’t have a shower. Some people’s shower is over their toilet. Some people don’t have a toilet but a bucket instead. A BUCKET!!! Some people don’t have a fridge. A lot of people don’t have freezers which for them means that 95% of the time their meals consists of something from a can. Some people don’t have technological communications. Some people don’t have water makers so if they leave land with 90 gallons then they have to make that last until whenever they pull up to a water supply again. Our water maker, god bless it, makes one and a half gallons an hour. But you know what, that’s one and a half gallons more than we’d have if it wasn’t a luxury of ours.
I think sometimes I write about these things not only for you but almost more for myself. As a reminder to me that anytime I get down or wish that something was “better” that there is always someone out there with less. Always. And who am I kidding, look at my tradeoff. There’s no 20 minute, hot shower in the world I’d swap for another chance to witness a whale putting on a show 50 yards from the boat. Nah, I’d definitely have to say I’m getting the better end of the deal…