Can you start loving a boat?

Salsa af Stavsnas
Ellinor Ristoff Staffan Ehde
Fri 3 Aug 2012 14:00
It is with warm affection our children use the name Salsa, and they are giving her a personality. Salsa is dancing around the anchor, Salsa is fighting the waves.
Salsa made it all the way. Salsa does not like this and that...
There is something about a ship that carries you on the ocean, across big nasty waves, and when you make it to harbour five a clock in the morning, you get the ropes ashore and tie her, you look at this big body and think, yes we can trust her, she is fine.
Why is that? As I was trying to sleep one night when the weather was good but hard, Ellinor was on watch and the kids where sleeping, I could hear the water bubbling and rushing on the outside of the hull. It struck me, that there was about 3-4 cm between me and the cold water outside. A thin shell of glassfiber.
When we are out there we have to trust her, she is like a planet in a cold universe, or a spaceship. We are truly dependent on Salsas ability to keep the water out and the air inside. Affection can also grow on dependability, and maybe the children understands this even if we haven't talked about it.
Salsa is not just a home or a house, she is all the infrastructure we need to survive. Fresh water, energy from solar panels or windmill, stove to cook on, but we need to make sure we have gas for it. We have our own toilets and tanks. If something goes wrong there is no plumber or electrician to call out there.
So Salsa is full of redundancy, we have to make sure there is backup and alternatives to almost everything that we are dependent upon.
When you are inside her for a while, you start to feel like you are in the belly of a great organism, a whale maybe. In the organism there are different functions to keep it alive, and still it needs to be feed from the outside. Being a human in this manmade organism we have to make sure everything works, checking, service and repair almost always, that is the challenge of the long trip sailor. To keep control on all details on board, to keep up with maintenance. As soon as something does not work alright I feel a stress, an urgency to fix it. I would hate a situation where there was five malfunctions at the same time. Probably there will be and I have to learn to loosen up control.
Back to affection and the children. Another way you can make a boat something to desire is to get away for a whole day. Go on a trip and at night when everybody is tired that boat at anchor out there, with her glowing anchor light on, looks like home, something to long for...