Whilst keeping watch on board I have time to reflect on the contrast, and transition of the way of life before the voyage and now. From my vantage point in the cockpit, all I can see is the ocean in every direction.

We’ve been at sea for 2 weeks, and we’ve settled into a new normal, the core value of which is conserving. We are watchful of what we’re using, from taking showers every third day, so we don’t have to keep running the water maker, which would mean using fuel, to recharging our electronics only when the engine or generator is running. Our meal planning is given careful thought to ensure we use ingredients before they go bad to limit waste. Food waste is a major issue in the western world where all we have to do is go to the store and buy some more to replace it. Out in the ocean we are reminded that resources are limited. Since all we have are the provisions that we have loaded on board, we rely on our creativity and resourcefulness. I find myself grateful for what we have.

Photo Credit: Rachel Lucas and eXXpedition

As the minutes of my watch turn into hours, my mind wanders to modern day life—one of overwhelming consumer choice that makes life more complicated, where we succumb to marketing ploys to buy new products. For any discomfort, we can reach for a material good. This instant reward society provides a temporary solution until we think we need the next fix. The cycle continues. The more we have, the more we want.

Out here we haven’t seen another boat since we left Rapa Nui. There are no traffic sounds or ambient noise. There is no connection to WiFi or cell phone service. Being at sea makes it easy to connect to what’s important – the natural world and our new community.

As I compare the way of living aboard to the modern life I left behind, I appreciate that replicating this simplicity at home requires some discomfort and intention. That might be in the form of slowing down and being more mindful of purchases. To ask if a new purchase is really a need or merely another well-disguised whim. Or if there is an alternative that is more environmentally friendly. I hope to be more willing to wait to buy something new, being aware of the packaging and the impact that has on the planet. Instead, I can turn to creative solutions like we do on the boat.

Photo Credit: Rachel Lucas and eXXpedition

It is time for the hourly log that records our position and details about fuel levels and course heading. Everything we need right now, we have here on this boat. I think if only I can live like I am at sea when I am on land, then I can attain better conservation practices to benefit the planet and the environment in which I live.