Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Elizabeth City, NC

0 nm
Wind: N 10-15 knots, sunny

Our stay in Elizabeth City continues. I have a feeling this town may trap us a while, despite our lack of privacy. Every day we get a lot accomplished, but it’s still frustrating not to be moving. I think the seventy-degree weather and sun is lulling us into a false sense of security. That, and being south of Norfolk.

It’s great to feel like we’re really, truly in the south, the Deep South, where seventy-degree days, even in December, are the norm, and frost the exception. I keep having to remind myself it’s six days until Christmas.

I also keep trying to remind myself that I don’t have a deadline. I don’t have to BE anywhere. I’m impatient to get to Florida, to the Bahamas, to warmth, but I know as soon as I reach one milestone (like Norfolk) I’ll be impatient for the next one. I don’t know why I can’t just enjoy where I am, now, in the moment, something else Karl seems to do effortlessly. Where I see laziness, he sees accomplishment. Why can I never see the glass as half-full?

Lise and I had a long talk about it last night. I fear hanging out with the Canadians every night may also not be good for our daily mileage, as they keep trying to ply us with steaks and wine, and, lately, DVDs until all hours.

She feels the same way I do: impatient. Even though they have an airtight, well-insulated steel boat with a drip-diesel heater, she feels the cold more than I do. She nearly collapsed in horror when she found out Marcel had taken a fifty-mile detour to Elizabeth City to check on Fred Fearing for his sister, or so I gathered from the stream of furious French. (They took the alternate ICW route, the Virginia Cut, and detoured to the end of the Dismal Swamp.) But Marcel gets it—there’s no reason to go if the weather’s not right, and there’s no reason to not explore. Why are we doing this, after all? There’s no reason to not stop and smell the roses, as it were. We are in Elizabeth City, even if the roses are all dead.

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