When I first purchased Daphne, I moved to Gloucester, Mass to settle in, work, and save. When I arrived to Gloucester by boat, I went to East Gloucester Marina to speak to Raymond about a dock space for the winter. My plan was simple and affordable. I would live on the anchor in the fall, when the warm season dock prices were off the charts and move to a dock for the winter, a more affordable but less pleasant season for boaters. There, I would be able to have electricity and kerosene for heat (until I was fully off the grid and equipped with solar panels) and a nearby shower house. Then, in the spring, I would leave the dock again and begin voyaging.
“Manuel,” Raymond hollered, “this gal plans to live here on her boat all winter.” Manuel was a Spanish man with dark curly hair and a large round belly. He walked over to me with a big grin on his face and put the back of his hand on my forehead. “She seems healthy,” he said. We all laughed and I wondered what I had done wrong.
“I am Manuel from Espania,” he said. “But my real name is pronounced Hey-seus. In English it is spelled Jesus.” His speech was slow and deliberate. “People say to me, ‘Hey Jesus, you can walk on water?’ His grin was growing wider and wider. “When the winter comes I go out on the water and take picture. I say ‘yes, I can walk on water…see!’ But really I am standing on the ice.” Manuel laughed at his story. I’m now beginning to learn what his laughter was about. Shifting from living in an apartment to living on a boat, but changing nothing else isn’t living simply. It just makes things more difficult.