Now That I Have Another Quarter Century

Never have been a fan of New Year’s resolutions. A little too trite for my taste. The intent is certainly honorable since most involve striving to improve yourself in some way. However, I have always much favored BHAG’s, or Big Hairy-Ass Goals, as a better objective. It is something you really want to do instead of something you should do. The way to know if you have a real BHAG is if you tell others about it, they look at you and say “You’re going to do WHAT?!?” And it should carry with it some concern about just exactly how you intend to accomplish it. And maybe wake you up in the middle of the night wondering “What in heck did I get myself into?” That’s a BHAG.

In 2004 I decided to do an Ironman. I thought at 53 years old that the opportunity had passed me by. A great group of friends in the FAST triathlon club convinced me otherwise and I went for it. That’s a BHAG.

In 2015 I was told that I had scleroderma and the best they could do was slow the progression. I elected to have a stem cell transplant despite my rheumatologist recommending against it. He thought I would not survive because my lungs were so damaged. That’s a BHAG. (Whew!…)

So here it is January 1, 2019. And a Happy New Year to everyone! I wish you nothing but health, happiness, and success in the coming year! As for me, well, I’m going sailing. Bluewater sailing. Across the Atlantic and on to parts as yet unknown sailing. Sometimes my toes curl to think about it, so it’s definitely a BHAG. And so much to learn! I’ve sailed off and on all my life, but I need to go through some formal classwork training to obtain my bareboat certification. And I need advanced first aid training. Cannot run to the Urgent Care clinic when you’re a thousand miles from land. And I need to learn how to shoot with accuracy. At sea, you are your first, and only, line of defense. It’s rare, but it happens. My father and brother had to use a rifle in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico to scare off drug smugglers bent on high-jacking their boat. And I need to learn celestial navigation! Electronics and GPS are great. Until they fail. You think Nebraska’s flat and featureless? Try the middle of an ocean. And not to be forgotten is that I need to continue to regain my health. I have a great training partner in Leo Burns who says he has the solution! Let’s go ride 250 to 750 mile timed cycling events. Might take three days and we kind of skip sleeping, but what’s not to like?!? Randonneuring might be a BHAG in itself. The primary question to be answered is whether I can regain the lung capacity to climb hills. As in Rocky Mountain size hills. And can I still breathe when I get up there? I intend to find out!

So this BHAG of mine comes with an invitation to my friends and family. I figure this is probably a two year program before I head out on any offshore voyaging. And as yet I am not able to convince my wife to join me. I’m not planning on any year long, around the globe voyages. More like four to six week passages across an ocean and into the Mediterranean or North Sea. Dock the boat for a few months and then return for another voyage. I’m looking to recruit a crew(s) for these voyages. Over the next few months I’m going to try this on for size with some charters, etc. If this seems interesting, or even if you think it might be interesting, feel free to catch up with me sometime this year. At this stage I can orient this towards a crew of anywhere from one to six depending on what might work best.

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5 Responses to Now That I Have Another Quarter Century

  1. Leo Burns says:

    I’m in! May 2001 or later. Sheesh, when you first took me out for open water swims at Trout Lake I thought that was a long swim… Now we’re going to the middle of the Atlantic??? “BHAG”… love it! Pleased to help with the training leading up to departure… exciting times… keep going buddy! 🤓

  2. Thuy says:

    Go Dave! I look forward to meeting you and Leo at your docking destination. Maybe I can talk Jill into coming with me, too.

  3. Lawrence Kurtz says:

    Sounds great!

  4. Lawrence Kurtz says:

    Looks like a great adventure.

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