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“The sea has long been a
source of inspiration for
mankind. The Challenge
is within yourself rather
than a trophy at the end
of a nonexistent line at
the end of a race.”
Subtle sensory deprivation over a long wheel for four hours alone, sometimes been thinking about anything –
period of time causes one to smell land in daylight, sometimes in darkness. I was merely being. It was oneness
from miles away.” This seems to be the most challenging with my environment. Overall, the
Our sailor talks like a man very part of the job but also where he grew positive mental metamorphosis was
close to being one with nature. I get a the most. productive. I learned to live with forced
sense that during his sleepless nights “Facing solitude on four-hour meditation. Staring into the swaying
on various boats he had somehow watches is a psychological trial of compass, I would often find myself
tapped into a higher understanding enormous proportions…mostly alone, blanking out. The limited sounds, colors
of how the universe works. with nothing but the sea and sky. and scents caused sensory deprivation.
“At a basic level, the most Due to the fact that we had no autopilot The constant rush of water as the boat
challenging element of offshore sailing or wind vane, it was necessary to cut through the waves, the non-smell
is handling the instinctive fear of a guide the ‘Opus II’ Across the Atlantic of the open ocean, the blue sky and the
small land mammal upon enormous with someone constantly at the helm. blue sea… I only realized the dramatic
seas in a little boat. And it’s quite a Sometimes, being on watch was like sharpening of my senses when we
battle to transform pure terror into having a ball and chain wrapped around sighted land. I could smell and literally
exhilaration when 25 foot waves pound my ankle. I could not leave the well. taste the earth that beckoned ahead.
a boat. However, once accustomed On the other hand, time along on the The water took on a fresh hue and as
to surfing down waves, I found it a bit helm gave me a new perspective on we approached closer, the sounds of
like a never-ending roller coaster ride. existence. I was forced to think – and life were singing in my ears.”
It wasn’t only the storms that tested more importantly, not think.” Richard’s story shows how taking
the limits of my fear.” It was during these long stretches a chance can lead to an exhilarating
In one of his “Hitchhiking” articles, of solitude that Richard learned how life path and while it may not be easy
Richard tries to put into words his to meditate. Perhaps his inspiration to or comfortable, facing the challenges
struggle on the four-hour “watch.” excel as a mariner and sail the world that come up, breeds a desire to learn
Crew members spent four hours on and came from these meditations at sea. more and continue with discovery.
eight hours off. While in charge of the “Occasionally an hour would go by After his days at sea, Richard went on
lookout, he was required to stand at the before I would suddenly realize I had not to open Avante Yachts – Eco Catamaran
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