...return to gender

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Ive been away for just under a month.
I had joined a yacht delivery flotilla , only a reletively short trip from Archea Epidavros in the Saronic , through the Corinth canal , the gulf , into the south Ionian,  up through the Lefkas Canal & into the Adriatic sea to Corfu.  Slow paced for most of the time . I could probably have walked it quicker many days .

What the trip afforded me was time.  Time to realise just how wound up & stressed I had become, time to think. Time to switch off.

I've done a few of these trips before. Each one simular in it's structure , each one unique in its execution.
So many external influences determine how the day will go. Location , weather, harbour space available, distance, & people.  These are the things that have always appealed. The not really knowing 100% where you'll end up the next day or what you'll find.

Sailing, walking, swimming, exploring with my camera & sketchpad.
Not many folks idea of fun , but a small snatch of heaven for me.

So what was the differnces for me this time around ?

Well I was on my own this time. Pot lucking on a boat with another lady & a chap .None of us knew each other.
I found I really couldn't communicate with 'monosylabic' Bob & spending a lot of time chatting with Gill.
Not that I didn't get on with Bob , but more of a case we were totally chalk & cheese, with little common ground between us.  I like to pride myself on being easy going enough to mix with any one.  In a confined space such as the boat I think others of less forgiving nature may have struggled.
Gill on the other hand was lovely , a brief moment of shared lives where you end up knowing someone pretty well.  Their family , work, hobbies, preferences, wishes & dislikes all shared.
To this day I still know practically nothing about Bob.  Hey ho.

However back to differences. The last one of these trips I did was with friends. Which was comfortable. No pretense on my part. Just got on & enjoyed it.
This one, on my own, felt like enforced blokedom. (probably no such word , but I'm sure the english language is flexible enough to get the point across)
Other than spending a lot of time with the girls in the group walking & talking, the whole experience felt as if I was expected to be overly blokish.  I know that may sound odd, but I guess it's just the environment & the expectation of me from the male side of the group. Expectation that I should maybe be little louder, more sarcastic, have the extra drink, etc.
I should be used to it.  Many years of rugby clubs & tours should make me aware of the mindset. (not quite so intense) , but to be honest I really can't deal the whole overtly male thing any more.
The ladies mainly had their groups & cliques which I was on the edge of , but not truely a part of .
Which left me stangely out of place & unsettled in the group for a long time.
My open encarseration,  after being judged & taken at face value.

Not sure wether Gill had figured me out by the time she had to jump ship. I may never know that.

I think I found my place & acceptance socially when the crews discovered I had been sketching and cartooning their antics.  Silly little things that suddenly endear you to a whole group.

I think things became a little easier after that.

In all not a bad trip, I did make some new friends, had some sailing invites down to the south coast, had a much needed rest, saw some amazing places, had some slighly uncormfortable storm experiences & some amazing sails, got frog marched & escorted away from the Albanian border , a proper mixture.

Calm Moments


The calm before

Cool sky


Delphi ...the oracle was out though.

Little Vathi

Out running the Storm

Front 1


Party boat

Among the Flowers

Day breaks through


I missed the girl deeply though.
It was a great relief to take off the pretense of the previous month upon my return.


sophie h said...

Good to know that youre back safe Lara. :o)