Fri 03 June 2016 Brighton, UK.
So. This is it then. I’m leaving. Right now.
Er, well, here I go then.
I’d like to describe it as a momentous occasion but really it wasn’t. Quite literally years of planning, preparation, research, learning, practicing, lots and lots of commuting and slogging away behind a desk, plenty of angst and loads of dreaming lead to that moment. But at that moment I was actually just sailing along the Sussex coast I know so well, under a grey sky, on a grey sea, feeling, well, grey. Nothing remarkable. Just a day.
Sailing happens slowly so it seems fitting that the excitement should be spread out over a period of months and years and thus be diluted and experienced as a slow burn. Besides, what they say is true: the hardest bits are the decision to leave and then getting to the start line. My adventure began in my armchair, by a crackling log fire, an unlikely setting for derring-do. It was a process rather than an event. After years of dreaming I didn’t one day decide that I was going to jack it all in and go. Night after night, as the logs subsided into the grate, I came to the gradual realisation that I had long ago decided that I was going.
It took time because, like everyone else I know, I’d striven for years to acquire a house, a job, a car and all the stuff you’re supposed to have. To give it up once everything’s finally falling into place is surely madness. It’s certainly transgressive. Thou shalt acquire. Thou shalt work, buy and save. Not to do so is heresy.
But I’m going anyway. The reasons why I’m going will have to wait for another day. Where I’m going will have to wait, too. But how I’m going is easier: I’ve sold the car, shut down the company, disposed of most of my possessions, stored the rest, rented out my house, moved onto my boat and sailed away. I’m not planning to come back anytime soon. Hopefully the rental income from my house will be enough to keep me in rice and beans if not exactly in the manner to which I have become accustomed.
So, as I say, here I go then.