The Vastness

April 5, 2012

When I was a boy I would sit facing the ocean, on a beach, on a breakwater, on a boat and imagine myself surrounded by its vastness. In these youthful projections, I would never tire of its endless blue. I pictured myself a captain on a small, seaworthy vessel.

As a young man I would sit on that breakwater, that beach, that boat, and contemplate my insignificance. I imagined living a life where I was more free to live as I chose, where my priorities could be manifest in my daily life, where I was not beholden to the compromises that modern life demands. I looked to the sea and saw what I believed might be the final fastness of freedom.

Then I (arguably) “grew up”. Convention schooled me, taught me that every child dreams but those fantasies are inevitably naive, flawed. The doubt takes hold slowly; what if I get tired of it; what if I discover I would rather have my career with all its security and predictability; what if my family hates it; what if… that endless blue ocean isn’t as breathtaking, as awe inspiring, as life affirming as I had hoped; what if I become lost in my insignificance?

Tomorrow our little family will cross the equator. We will have sailed over 2000 miles in 17 days on this awesome ocean, and we still are not done. I sit here in the forward companionway, laptop on my knees, and face a seemingly endless horizon. The moon shines a silver path to the West and the Southern Cross marks our path forward. Hull and sails cut unerringly through wind and sea towards our next destination. And I reflect on that boy, on that young man that I once was. I can answer his unasked questions now. Yes the ocean will reveal your cosmic insignificance but if you live intentionally, follow your dreams and obey your personal wisdom you will rediscover your personal significance.

Dream on.


  1. Comment by Cidnie

    Cidnie April 5, 2012 at 6:07 am

    Love this post Tucker! So happy for Team Conviva and can not wait until you are able to load photos of your newly salted shellbacks. 🙂

  2. Comment by Belinda Del Pesco

    Belinda Del Pesco April 5, 2012 at 9:15 am

    Beautifully written, and so thought provoking. Fair winds to you all on your crossing tomorrow. Congratulations to each of you.

  3. Comment by cindy

    cindy April 7, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    Beautifully written Tucker!

  4. Comment by SeaGlub

    SeaGlub April 12, 2012 at 8:27 am

    to a very blessed family – i’ve enjoyed following your travels via this media. i, like many, have shared your dreams, and recently life has allowed me the luxury of finding a mate for life, and vessel for us to travel abroad together. this particular post was very moving and brought about so many memories, dreams, thoughts, and emotions i’ve been so fortunate to experience over my 39 years. congrats to you all and see you soon ‘somewhere over there….’

    • Comment by Tucker Bradford

      Tucker Bradford April 16, 2012 at 3:05 pm

      SeaGub, thanks for reaching out! I am glad that my post struck a resonant cord with you. We will keep our eyes peeled for you in the harbors of the world 🙂

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