Everyone has that list of things they always wanted to do, the places they want to visit but somehow life gets in the way. Call it what you will; dreams, ambitions, the ‘bucket list’, the thinking behind it is always the same. They’re things for the future. Not for now. For some un-named date, when things are different. Maybe when you’ve got more money, maybe when the kids have grown up, maybe when you’ve lost weight, maybe….in the future. Sometime.
No-one knows what’s going to happen in the future and no-one knows how long their allotted future is going to be. So maybe “sometime” really ought to be “now”, just incase something happens that takes away the future and rubs away all your dreams with it.
There have been several events in my life which have brought home to me how precious life is & how opportunities should be grasped with both hands. Events such as the tragic death’s of family members at young ages, breaking my back, the tragic loss of my husband’s best friend and then recently, I got severe pneumonia just after the election. It brought it home to me quite how easy it is to go from having a future mapped out, to not knowing whether you’re going to make next week.
At the same time that I was feeling very sorry for myself, I came across an advert in a sailing magazine. I was struggling to breathe, taking lots of medication and barely functioning at all and I saw an advert for the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race. No experience required. Sail a 70ft racing yacht round the world. Yes, right. That’s utterly insane. Isn’t it?
So insane, I spent the next few evenings trawling through the Clipper website and watching Youtube clips. I’d heard of the Clipper before, it was on my “list of things to look at when the kids are older”. Right now, the boys are 5 & 8. If I waited until they are both 18, we’re looking at 13 years time. By then I would be <insert unmentionable age> and right now, I feel about 85 already. 13 years is a long time when you can’t breathe and have to go to bed mid morning as taking the kids to school is just so exhausting!
I waited a couple of weeks until I started feeling better. Then I was back looking at the Clipper Race website in more detail, not least as I knew my cousin is taking part this year. But there I was finding out that you could sign up to do single legs, how much they cost and the training that is involved. The 10th edition of the race starts in London on 30th August, so it was too late to sign up….oh wait, look: There’s a bit about applying for the 2017-2018 race…….
So after umming and ahhing for what felt like weeks, but was probably all of about 30 seconds, 😉 I filled in the online application and paid the £100 registration fee.
Then I spent the rest of the weekend wondering what on earth I had done! This was a whole new level of impulsive stupidness! Until first thing on Monday morning, when an email arrived inviting me to interview in Gosport.
Then the panic really set in…..