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Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: Reuniting with Our Sail Boat during a Global Crisis

A few short months after the purchase of our boat, governments shut down personal travel around the world due to COVID-19. At first it seemed very understandable, because we didn’t know how bad the problem was. In addition to a mask, I was one of those who wore gloves to the store and took them off in order while getting back into the car just in case the virus was spread through surface contamination.

After months of more information dribbling out, it seemed to Bruce and me the collective “we” of scientists and citizens were only going to know so much about the virus before it mutated and changed its effect on humanity.

Were we going remain collectively afraid and isolated forever?

Meantime, our beautiful boat was subjected to the harsh winter of the Puget Sound for months with only a canvas cover on its last legs and a dehumidifier to care for her.

By early summer, I suggested to Bruce that I make a run for the marina in our car. It was a long one-day trip to make, but gas stations were open, and I could pack sandwiches and drinks.

He was in the throes of a job with an employer that he couldn’t leave for a few days. Although he was reluctant to send me out into the zombie apocalypse alone, he too was anxious to know how Dirigo was faring.

A sailboat with a full cover tied to the dock, all covered in snow

The drive between our home and Dirigo’s home marina was thirteen-plus hours.

Once I got past my familiar travel zone, the trip was odd and surreal and exciting all at the same time. There were not a lot of people out driving interstate highways, just long and short haul truckers mostly. The scenery up the I-5 corridor was mostly beautiful, at minimum interesting.

Although I was anxious for what I might find once I got to Dirigo, I was thoroughly enjoying my reclaimed quasi-freedom to move about and the adventure of experiencing new places, albeit mostly through my windshield. We’re people who just enjoy the discovery of new-to-us places and this time was not terribly different.

The old threadbare canvas cover Dirigo snuggled up in saved our bacon. She had that “old boat” smell, not in a good way, but she was no worse for wear than when we bought her. I opened up the cover and hatches for a few days, looked below the floor hatches for leaks or systems troubles.

She was steadfastly holding out the weather, but at least now we could rest easy until we could figure out how our newly squashed boat life would fare.

Hold on, Dirigo. We'll be back soon.


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