Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Sailing and hiking

After doing a hike yesterday, I find myself in quite a reflective mood. During the hike, we talked about the fact that as a child, our parents used to take us into nature. I clearly remember the Sundays with my parents, where we went for a walk in the forest. In the Netherlands there are not that many mountains. Or that we walked on the beach from one town to another, eating sandy eggs during lunch with the sand crunching for hours afterwards between your teeth... We had free travel on the train, so we normally did a walk from one station to the other. As a parent now too, I realise how important those seeds and memories are.

My parents clearly planted the seed for being in the outdoors.

This is something I'd like to pass on to my daughter too. Being in nature helps to diminish stress and realise what is important in life. And I want to give her these good memories too, where she remembers us fondly. Still hear my mother joking with my father if he urged us to greater speeds, since he wanted to watch soccer later that day on t.v.

In the absence of being able to sail, I find myself frequently now in the mountains. Ok, must admit, before I was able to do the hikes I do now, I did need a friend to help me take those first few steps. Am glad to say that I'm at a stage where I take the steps without him and have made it my own.

People will say there is a difference between sailing and hiking, but for me they are closely related. Both take you to remote areas, both rely on your performance and fitness levels, or your navigational skills and clearheadedness. Both sports make you realise who you are, you have to rely on yourself to bring you where you want to go and you can do it at any level you're comfortable with. Being in the mountains or on the ocean leaves me feeling happy and complete.

Sailed last June for a week, leaving me feel very happy and with all the regular hiking, it gives me a feeling that I can't wait to see our boat finished. Would love to take her out for a sail; it will be so rewarding to finally start those engines, cast off the lines and go! I'm convinced that we will find somebody who is as enthusiastic as us about the possibilities.

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