I’ve woken up this morning not knowing what to do. We had some ridiculous offers on Papageno last night. And I mean ridiculous. 4000 euros being one of them. Then adjusted to 6000 euros.
When we refused he said:
“Goodbye and especially good luck.”
Good luck? How about I shove your good luck right up your-
I’m getting to the point where I’m thinking- will anyone actually love Papageno as much as me? Will anyone appreciate her as much as me?
I’m not saying I’m having doubts.
Ok, I’m lying.
I’m having doubts.
Life on Papageno was hard. It sucked sometimes. Going through all of that at the same time worrying if my relationship was going to last or not. The cracks started too show in August. We were both having a hard time and Edouard was realising some important things about himself and the direction he wanted to go in.
So what do I do?
Do I sell my boat, go home and start again? Do I keep Papageno for the next few months, think about it and then sell her? Do I think about it for a few months and save as much money as I can in the UK? Do up her rig and sail? I could sail her three months at a time, return home three months, and go back. I can be free. I can travel where I want. Stick to the anchorages and avoid marina fees.
I’ve been feeling like I need to sell Papageno quickly because the marina can’t keep us further than Nov 1st. The marina nearest to us can’t have us either.
I’ve been worried about anchorages because I need to fix an automatic bilge pump in Papageno in case she takes on any water. I’m also scared of someone breaking in- which is probably ridiculous because I have nothing to steal. I’m scared of her getting damaged by a storm, even though hurricane season is over very soon. I’m worried about her drifting even though I have four anchors and can spider her. I’m scared about doing all of this alone. I’m scared of not being good enough to fix her. I’m scared of taking that first step solo. I’m scared of changing my mind.
But then I think about getting her masts up. Her rig in place. Her sails. I think of sailing her wherever I want. I think of FINALLY getting her new mattresses installed. Getting the inside painted. A beautiful bathroom installed. I think of waking up in the morning somewhere maybe slightly cooler than the burning Caribbean winds. Of having a crew.
My dream is to get her back to Europe.
I can feel my own disappointment in myself.
I know I have come far.
But for me, it wasn’t far enough.
And I don’t know why I’m talking like this right now. But I think it’s because I’m thinking of how I will feel about myself if I sold Papageno. And a life if I kept her.
I think it’s about balance.
I have no idea what I should do. But I’m going to see where the next couple of weeks take me. If someone will love her as much as I do. If someone will take her to the lengths she deserves to go. Or whether I’m just going to be accosted with ridiculous offers.
I got so far.
I know what my spirit is like. I get restless. I’m imaging my life in England. What’s to say that the same feeling that has crept up on me every year of my life won’t creep on me again? The restlessness, the unquenchable feeling I should be doing something, the dissatisfaction, the feeling that I should be somewhere else.
What is my reason for getting rid of Papageno? The fear. The intense fear of sitting within her and remembering all of my failures. Of my loss. The loneliness.
Of remembering how much I loved someone and lost them.
It was my foolishness that decided to sell Papageno because of Edouard. My heartbreak. My need to run away and escape.
Because everything was just too hard.
How could I ever fix the engine? How could I ever do the electricity? How could I ever afford the rig?
How could I do any of this alone?
So, it’s fear.
And I don’t want to be afraid.
I want to have that experience that I’ve been chasing for all of my life. I want to have that freedom that I’ve been hunting.
And I want to write. I want to paint.
But that’s the balance again. Taking the time out for myself. So how about I live on my boat and do what the fuck I want to do? Go where I want to go? Go home when I need to? I can come and go from Papageno as freely as I wish. There is nothing stopping me. The only limitations I have are the ones that I have put on myself.
I could change my mind tomorrow. I could decide that indeed everything is too hard. I could decide that I would rather go home and start again. But I think I will always be ashamed of myself.
Because that’s the reality. That is my honesty.
I want to run because it’s hard.
I want to run because I’m afraid.
I want to run because I’m heartbroken.
But I do not want to be ashamed of myself.
I don’t want to think I am a failure.
That I’m weak.
And I know my friends and family and even you will tell me I’m not.
But I will feel it. I will feel it every time I say,
“I used to have a boat.”
“Oh yeah? Why not now?”
I can already feel my hesitation to answer. Because it was hard. I was afraid. And heartbroken.
I sold the one thing I had worked so hard and so long for because I became alone.
For the first time, I don’t know what my Granddad would tell me. I don’t know what he would tell me.
But on Papageno, I would dream of him. And he was always proud of me and smiling. And I knew I was doing the right thing.
I can’t bear to imagine the disappointment on my family’s faces at Christmas when they hear I gave up on my dream. Seeing that look in their eyes that they’re not surprised. That I’ve always been a bit of a failure. I never bought that house, got married, had a stable job or had children. I never was present. I was always dreaming, far away, drifting in the clouds and fog in the distance. Because what could a dreamer expect? If you weave your reality from the elements such as fairy dust and smoke?
Maybe I’m a coward.
Laura would get me up in the mornings, full of energy and intent on making Papageno better. I would just want to lie in my bed reading my book, my insides twisting with pain as I would constantly check my phone to see if Edouard had called me or sent a message.
I just wanted to mourn. To heal. To do nothing and simply be until the sun went down and the night would hide me in her darkness again.
I wanted to drift until the pain went away.
Edouard and I are very afraid for tomorrow. The day we say, maybe not goodbye, but “see you later.”
I held him so tight last night, trying to imagine casually saying goodbye to him.
“I thought I would be ok on Tuesday,” I said to him in the dark. “Because we’ve been getting along so well. We’ve talked. We know our paths. But every time I think about it, I feel sick.”
“I know, Lizzie,” he replied quietly. “I’m not looking forward to it either.”
“I hope in the future we come back together.”
“That is why we are doing this.”
I woke this morning to find that eBay had taken down my boat listing for the second time in a row and suspended my account, because of “Suspicious activity”. Of course, it looked suspicious. An English girl attempting to sell a French boat in the Caribbean.
Even eBay was like, “Watcha doing, gurll?”
Edouard was speaking to me about accepting the offer of 6000 euros as a joke if I couldn’t sell Papageno.
“No. No way.”
I started talking about anchoring her up over Christmas instead around the corner. About waiting. Then I started thinking maybe I would be ok by February. Maybe I would have saved enough money for the rig then. But I was still scared. How would I take the boat to the boat yard on my own? Maybe I would get a crew?
But I was scared of that too.
To invite people to live with you. In case I’m a disappointment. In case I’m too tired to be on top of my game. In case I just want to be alone for a while. To heal. Regenerate.
These things may sound small to other people. But for some reason everything is amplified. The simplest of things I knew I could do with Edouard has suddenly reduced to ash and dust in my mouth as my heart begins to beat faster.
Can I do it? Can I do it?
I don’t know.
I don’t know what to do.