If there is a movie that can both explain the tragic and the beauty of sailing, it is the one I watched this evening. It is the true story of a sailor who meets a girl in Tahiti, and they cross an ocean together. During a hurricane, one of its kind, the boat breaks its masts and they are left adrift. It shows the tragic of being at sea, of being in this world that is no ours. Just watch dolphins jumping in big waves, and you will see who really feels at home.
But there is the beauty. The beauty that this type of life brings, despite the risks. The endless sunrises and sunsets over an infinite horizon, like shards of purple glass that we can only witness a few times, over the millions and millions of sunrises and sunsets that ever took place on this earth.
There is the freedom, the freedom of living a life outdoor, under the stars, with nothing as a shield against the wind, nothing at all but a smile and a laugh. There exist, even nowadays, places untouched by the hand of men. Places that are authentic. These places are meant to be observed and admire. They exist to remember us that we are not above nature, but that nature is all around us, and that we are part of it.
Sailing is one of the last universes in which we can throw ourselves in the unknown. The one thing that dominates you, despite all the technology you may have, is weather. And the weather does not react to you nor judge you. This unknown has given thirst to the biggest expeditions of the human race. We have discovered continents. Civilizations. Landscapes beyond beauty. We have explored, understood, destroyed. But the beauty always stood there, within our reach.
I am trying to picture myself, in the middle of this unknown. The sky, with its carpet of starts, reflecting on the dark amethyst of the waves. The plankton, glowing in the dark in the wake of the boat, millions and millions of lifeforms that seem to call the Milky Way, or reflect it, on this planet of life. The deep and reassuring sound of the bow gently smashing the endless water, incarnation of a peaceful soul. Sometimes, maybe a splash, because of a tuna or a swordfish, curious to see this surprising floating beast making its way through the night. Perhaps a flap, the flap of a sail in a small gust. The gentle, slow rock of the hull nursed by the ocean. And on deck, tucked under a warm blanked but senses wide open, with maybe a glass of wine, admiring the silence of the everything and the nothing that this world out there is, someone. Maybe one, two people, free to head east, west, south, north, or wherever they want.
The next morning, a new island, breaking the curve of the horizon, like lit ablaze in the yellow, orange and red that bleeds the sky. An anchorage. The most beautiful bay, full of fish, of colorful coral. A new place to explore, alone or together. Maybe a dense jungle with a wide and large summit that allows to see far, far away. Maybe a silent rock covered in birds, playing at hide-and-seek with unconfident clouds. Maybe just a beach covered in grass, like a tiny, fragile breast through an immense and beautiful bath.
A fire. Music. Good, simple, fresh food.
The pleasant, warm feeling of sand through my toes.
A laugh. A kiss. Maybe love, with nothing but nature, but this world and the millions of years it has lived, as judges and witnesses.