Thursday, August 20, 2015

Profiles in Third Thirds: Rick

Rick was an IT guy. Upon retirement, he became a sailor. No, a Sailor with a capital S. Rick took three different sailing classes. He bought a boat and a slip in the Seward marina.

Rick has a big list of things to do to fix up the boat. He has made selected panels on his boat gorgeous by varnishing the teak. To do this, he has to apply twelve thin coats of varnish. He only does this on small sections that he can bring home and work on in his garage in the winter.

Rick wants to install some shelves and take out others the former owner had installed. Turns out, there are two versions of the glue that attaches them to the walls: 5200 is permanent, you need a crowbar to remove it. That’s what he’s removing. But he’s using 4200 which is strong but not a killer.

He’s created repositionable curtains for the windows. He coils up his lines just so. He got a terrific deal on a $500 bumper which he is incredibly proud of, and he is involved with the local yacht club.

Are you getting the drift here? Rick is passionate about this boat and sailing. He has taken a new direction in his Third Third. He’s not ho-hum about it at all. I am so jealous of his finding this Thing. He is doing the Third Third so right!

We went out on his boat. The first day was sunny and gorgeous, and it was just Rick and me, and he said, “Hey, let’s take her out.” We motored slowly out of the harbor. This is how Rick looks when he is at the wheel. See the confidence, the smile, the beaming happiness. He is in the place he has picked in all the universe.

Then Rick said, “Take the wheel” because he had to mess around with the sails. No, Rick’s boat does not have this many sails. That is how many sails it felt like the boat had because I was at the wheel and the wind was blowing and sails were flapping and the boat was tipping.
I learned how to watch whether the sails were luffing and steer so the wind came in the right direction, how to watch my speed. But this is how I looked when I was at the wheel and too many things were happening at once. “Rick,” I said, “I am millimeters from hysteria.”
Once I went on a roller coaster (by mistake). At the end of the ride, the attendant had to pry open my hand on the iron bar to get the ticket out. That’s how my hands felt on the steering wheel of Rick’s boat.

Ultimately, we came back in, and the wind was behind us, and things got calm, and I fell asleep on the deck in the harbor and this is a pretty cool way to go into your Third Third if sailing is your thing. And this was a New Thing for me so I felt brave and … enriched.

The next day, Tim and Patti, Rick’s wife, arrived, and we went out again for a longer trip. Now we could spread the labor around so it was a lot more relaxing. Patti or Rick was at the wheel or they were both flailing and flaking with the sails or tying things down or readjusting things. Periodically, Rick would beam and happily say, “Patti and I are a real team” (and they are). A few times, Patti would say, “This really isn’t one of my favorite things.”

Uh, oh. What if your Third Third requires a buddy but your buddy isn’t really into your Third Third? What if that buddy is essential but that buddy doesn’t want that life? What if your buddy wants to volunteer in Africa and you want to take cooking classes in Paris? What if buddies arrive at their Third Thirds at different times? What if you don’t have a buddy at all?

What if your sailboat requires a crew?

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