Living life is like owning a boat

There’s always some basic maintenance that needs doing. Boats get dinged, spring leaks and need repair. So do people.

Unless we live our lives in drydock.

I don’t know many people who enjoy scraping paint, trimming toenails or washing dishes. Some can afford to pay others to do the job. The rest of us do the best we can, hopefully taking some pride in how well we do it.

There’s a better way. It’s called sharing. Sharing friendships, sharing skills, sharing respect.

Some people love to plan – making checklists, comparing options and the rest. It’s great as long as they don’t fall into the trap of paralysis by analysis. Others can’t be bothered and take joy in plunging into the unknown. Both are right. Both choose the best way. For themselves. Even the full-speed-ahead people need to stop for food and find a place to stay for the night, just like the planners.

Give me a map and a guidebook. I might scan them before getting bored – unless you get me interested in the map makers’ agendas and writers’ real experiences. For me, they’re better tools to use once I get somewhere and know what my questions are. I have wonderful friends who memorize their guidebooks and are surprised – and sometimes disappointed – when today’s reality doesn’t match yesterday’s story.

Where am I going with this piece? Damned if I know. What I’ve learned through life is that we can’t do everything on our own. We’re all in this together and we need to find people with the skills we need – and to develop skills to share with others. And the most important skills are the ones we can’t measure with numbers: respect, sympathy and empathy.

Once we learn these, everything else falls into place.

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5 Comments on “Living life is like owning a boat

  1. Amen: great comparison about life being like owning a boat.

  2. Well said and true enough.

    So happy to have seen you! I was hoping we’d run into you again. Never enough time to share stories and events though. Air signs are such a delight to me. (I see you more as a plane… ) Be well and blessings for this new year. -Sherrie

    • Thank you! It was great seeing you again – and the conversation, like most good ones, wasn’t long enough. Hope that you have a wonderful year – and that we can trade stories again, same time/next year.

  3. Great insights as usual. I’m sensing a lot of delayed “maintenance” in my life these days. At least my discipline to run frequently helps keep me somewhat sane.

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