Open Water: In search of the freedom to be

I enjoy sailing. I’m not an adrenaline junkie; I don’t need to be clipping across the waves in a catamaran with 1/2 of the boat in the air and my body leaning back away from it as ballast – I’m more of a “tiller in one hand, glass of wine in the other” kinda guy.

There are as many forms of recreation as there are personalities on the planet, and there are many ways to be on the water: kayak, canoe, stand-up paddle board, rowboat, cruise ship, runabout, pontoon, houseboat, wakeboat, fishing boats, dingies and more, but I have come to enjoy sailing the most.


Well I’m lookin’, lookin’ for open water
I’m lookin’ – lookin’ for open water
The air is just too crowded
It’s got no empty space
Tryin’ to find some grace

When I sail, I’m not really interested in racing. Some are competitive and can’t resist pulling up alongside my boat to see if they can provoke a race, but I’m not interested; I will deliberately let the sails go slack in response. The way I figure it, if I can’t relax sailing, then I’m going to stay at the campfire and watch from a distance.

Well I’m lookin’, lookin’ for open water
I’m lookin’ – lookin’ for open water
My mind is getting clouded
We’re coming undone
I’m not the only one

My boat is a bit of a tub, so there is no point in racing anyway. I sometimes contemplate upgrading, but not for speed — just comfort, aesthetic, and utility. Maybe some day, but for now, I am content. I’ve contemplated ocean sailing, but I’d have a bit of learning to do related to storms, tide charts and wildlife…so for now, I’m content to stick to our lake.

Gunna set my sail – heading for the Son
Gunna set my sail – heading for the Son
Too many people talking
The world’s come to an end
Just around the bend

While I sail, doing my thing, others are doing their thing as well — and I enjoy a freedom to be uniquely me, while letting them be. Sometimes the freedom others have looks like it will collide with mine. I’ve wondered (more than once) if the family pulling a tube behind their boat sees our sailboat, and/or understands the right of way rules – but so far we’ve had no collisions. Truthfully, I am glad they are having fun making great memories as a family.

Sail – sail into the son
Hmmmm…. sail – sail into the Son
I’m lookin’ for open water

It’s not always easy to live with the grace that enables our self and others to be free to be. We seem to be more comfortable with homogenization, and are frightened and/or frustrated by differences. No matter how close we get to being likeminded with others, we will always and forever be distinctly “other” – and therefore we will always need grace to enable the freedom for all to be.