For the last week or so I’ve been in a terminal velocity free fall of stress. Yes it’s cruising related but probably not what you would think. The stress derives from the notion that I don’t want to own anything (after we drop the dock lines) that we can’t fit in the ManVan or on our boat. I don’t want a storage unit, or a bunch of stuff squirreled away in friends/family’s houses and I don’t want to save anything that I don’t love and expect to dream about regularly while we’re cruising. In fact I want the few possessions that we hold on to to be so significant that I actually consider swallowing the hook in order to be able to use them again. I don’t want to hold on to any sh…tuff.
What’s particularly strange about this stress is that I’ve always been the hyper-sentimental one. I’m the guy that saved every note that a girl passed me in Jr High School, or a token from a theme park I went to in High School. I was never a pack-rat per se but, well you get the drift. Over the last 17 years Victoria has slowly eroded some of that sentimentality. It’s been replaced with a sensible pragmatism. Our boathold is host to phrases such as “This toy is like a balloon, enjoy it while it’s here” or “we haven’t used that [xyz] in months, let’s get rid of it.”
Lately it’s been taken to a whole new level. For example. Tonight, Vick ran into a dock-mate at the laundry. Naturally, she invited him right over for drinks, and informed me about it after the fact. My reaction… “Do I have to wear pants?” No, I’m not a naturalist or anything, she had BOTH of my pants in the wash.
So back to the sh…tuff that’s stressing me out. We have this storage unit. When we moved there were a bunch of question mark items, or valuable things that we couldn’t sell in time (high end home theater, guitar amp, etc) . Also in storage are some really large things that we think make the pragmatic cut (my bike, our teak dinner table, blown glass, kitchen aid mixer…). The later can probably be Tetris stacked into the ManVan at the last minute; the former, well, they have to go. The problem is that every time I think about them, I start to space out, then realize I’m spacing out, then lock up, then get stressed. My stress response is to shut down. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Until last month our milestones were separated by years (or at least many months). This last month+ has seen several all on top of one another. This acceleration of perceived progress has really brought home how much we have to do and how little time we have to get it all done. So over the next few months stay tuned for more articles on “Minimalism as a Form of Torture,” “Sh…tuff for Sale,” “How I Fit All the Sails On Board and Could Still Sit Down.”