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Date: 16 Apr 2011 21:57:00
Title: Back at White Hill

White Hill, Finchdean, Saturday night

Well, that's it. We're back home at White Hill. When we arrived yesterday lunchtime, the birds were singing away so loudly that we both just stood there and listened in astonishment. Since then, we've seen the Buzzards and heard the Tawny Owls, watched the Rabbits and investigated where the Badgers walk through the wood. The Bluebells are out and spring is happening all around. We even heard a Cuckoo this afternoon. Some animal, Badger perhaps, has been digging away at the Meadow Ant's nests in the bottom field but I'm sure the ants will be OK.

All in all, then, life is continuing here much as it has forever. It's a funny feeling coming back and finding that things are just going on as they were before. It's hard to believe that we've actually been away and I had a strange moment when I felt that I'd missed a year. Like the fairy stories where a person disappears into the otherworld for a few moments and returns to find that years have passed. Like those travellers, it's hard to reconcile this regular existence with the one of moving through the world on a boat. There seems to be little in common between the two and it remains to be seen whether I can take the lessons learned out there and use the knowledge here. In the old tales, it was dangerous to take anything from one world into the other - you can't bring anything home from the land of the Fairies. Perhaps the danger is that the traveller would never be able to fit back into the normal, everyday world if there was a tangible reminder of their other existence. Seeing as I don't have to fit back into an everyday world, though, maybe I can afford to take the risk. I hope so.

Saxon Blue is still in Antigua so we're intending to go back out to join her and do some more exploring next winter. If that happens, I'll have to do some more blogging but, for the moment at least, that's it. If you've followed some or all of our adventures then I hope you've enjoyed hearing our tales and having some insight into the day-to-day reality of seafaring. When we started, we didn't know where we would end up or how it would work out. We've had a better time than we imagined that we would and the world is stranger, more varied than we thought. I'm not sure what it all means and, as a wise person said, "you won't find out the answer to life but you will learn a lot about your boat".

So, thanks to everyone who helped us prepare for and then go on our voyage. Thanks, also, to everyone who's taken an interest in it. If reading this has made you want to go off exploring then I urge you to follow that impulse. It really is amazing out there and the people are wonderful.

Harvey

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