Before I begin, I want to wish everyone a belated happy Thanksgiving, and I hope that you all are content with much to be thankful for!

This year was my first opportunity to host a holiday dinner for my family. My sister joined me from Massachusetts, my mother from Maine, and another solo sailor, Kevin, from Virginia.

The celebration was a combined effort. Kevin provided comic relief, my mother financed the meal, my sister (who happens to be an excellent vegan chef) cooked the meal, and I supplied the venue and cleaned. Many aspects of the meal were traditional. We had a roasted bird, carefully picked out from the selection of one rotisserie chicken at the local grocery store. We obtained an apple pie in a similar manner.

The main course was a pasta dish filled with roasted vegetables and beans. The challenge was preparing it on a single propane burner. I have two pots and a pan, but Elin the Chef had a vision and a plan. I don’t really know how she managed it, but the meal was delectable and hot. We laughed and talked about what we were grateful for. Kevin avoided calls from his family as some do on the holidays, and we called ours.

I had just enough plates and not enough glasses, but no one complained. Although our meal was much simpler than a many-course dinner with a large turkey and sides, I think it was almost as challenging to prepare.

That’s something I have learned about living on a boat. There are countless tasks that are difficult in such different ways. I don’t worry about traffic when I go to the store but rather if it’s too windy to row to shore. When the power goes out I’m not affected, but during the storm that knocks out the power lines I worry about my anchor holding. My dog definitely can’t run away but she could fall overboard.

I’m learning different skills and being granted new opportunities that come along with new and exciting challenges.

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