Parties and Partings

FAQ #1:  “When are you leaving?”  Answer: “I’m not telling you”  The short answer is that we are moving onto the boat at the end of February and then… we will see which way the wind is blowing before heading down to Mexico via a slow tour of the California Coast.

Family from Far and Near
Family from Far and Near


We felt so incredibly blessed to be surrounded by many many friends and family at our Bon Voyage bash.  It was an awesome get together, the food (the most important part) was amazing… Thank you Toya Huijon!  But the food was rivaled by how incredibly COOL everyone is…I know because so many people mentioned how much they enjoyed meeting so many of the other people there.  In fact I know that great friendships were forged.  We LOVE our friends and family!  Thank you to all of you who were able to come from far and near, it was an honor to have so many fabulous people attend.

Ophelia tending the bar
Ophelia tending the bar

Let me just reflect on something: I have read a good amount from people going cruising.  These people who are so generous to share their experience with the world at large have been our most frequented blogs and purchased books.  I noticed an interesting difference in the reactions of our friends, loved ones and even acquaintances vs. the experience of many others when sharing our adventurous aspirations.

Anne & Cam Going away party Jan 2015 161

When I tell someone about our plans, they are, almost without exception, excited for us.  I haven’t had anyone express dismay, try to convince us not to go, tell us we are irresponsible parents or tell us we are crazy.  In reading the experiences of others, this is quite unique, and I’m grateful.  I think it says that our community at large is not ruled by fear, and I like that.  Certainly I have had to field lots of probing questions about our experience level and the ones who care the most have plenty of concerns and no doubt are experiencing a good deal of nerves on our account, but they hide it well and offer love, prayer and encouragement all wrapped up in the hope that all will be well.   I feel very fortunate that I have never been on the receiving end of a negative comment or had to justify our plans to a naysayer.  It’s been a blessing and I’m very grateful.

Cameron with Fernando, a long time friend and work associate... and a bottle of tequila
Cameron with Fernando, a long time friend and work associate… and a bottle of tequila

We have had a few other reaction that we have found particularly fun to field:

1) From long time friends, associates and acquaintances:  “You told me about this 10 years ago but I never thought it would actually happen!”

2) From new friends at the boat yard where Banyan is sitting on the hard right now: “Leave, just leave… you better leave, get that boat in the water and sail outta here!”  A long list of boats come to the Napa Marina never to be put back in the water again.  They don’t want this fate to befall Banyan.

Leaving leads directly into letting go.

The last few weeks have been marked with lots of endings.  Cameron had his last day of work at Dana, which meant that our family dog (actually owned by the winery) is now under the care of a dear friend who has worked at Dana almost as long as Cameron.  Saying goodbye to him has been hard and I miss him at my heels when I’m power walking all over the barn.  Dana had a lovely goodbye party for Cameron and there were lots of tears and generous comments and a good dose of laughter too.

I am still working quite a bit before we leave.  My next trip home will not be until late June so there is lots to work on.  Thankfully, I am working with people I have complete confidence in (You Rock Jennifer Rue!), but the to-do list for clients is still bulging with blending decisions, client meetings and tastings and a last minute trip up north to work on the Canadian wine project.

Blending Red Mare Wines
Blending Red Mare Wines

The horse barn is still a constant responsibility and horses keep eating and pooping and the arena still needs to be dragged and the landscapers scheduled and the vet called and the bills payed and list goes on.  It’s been a strange middle earth place to be, still feeling very involved but knowing we will be gone soon.  But every now and again I run into a friend and realize that it might just be the last time I see them for… a LONG time and it’s quite a shock to the system.  Or when talking about leaving to a dear friend the eyes start glistening and suddenly it all feels very close, and a bit scary and sad.

My horse and I after a good gallop up the mountain at Jack London State Park

I sold my horse 6 months ago, perhaps because I knew I couldn’t deal with letting go of her and everything else all at the same time.  I found my peace about letting go of her but little pains and worries start seeping into my mind at this time when leaving and letting go is part of every day.

The beautiful “Little Italy” blocks at a Napa Vineyard where I sourced fruit in 2014


We are leaving one paradise for another, and at times I think I must be totally insane but then… I guess we all need to embrace a little insanity and take those leaps in life for better or worse!  It’s the journey they say and journeying requires some letting go to get to the next place.

The Girls and I sat down to sing a song that my cousin taught me just a few months ago.  This song has been particularly poignant and comes to mind quite often.  I thought we would share it with you here.

Our Goodbye Song;