Until this week I couldn’t take off enough clothes to stay cool. From the Caribbean climate to the intense summer humidity of the South, I was dripping in sweat morning, noon, and night. And nights always seem to be the worse-lying in bed encapsulated in the hull below where the air is like a sauna, desperately waiting for my body temperature to fall so I can sleep. Any contact with another human or even a bed sheet sent my temperature soaring again.

Cara and Matt–all cleaned up:)

If you’ve never experienced this very uncomfortable state and the extreme sensitivity of any bodily contact, consider this story from Matt, Cara’s boyfriend, who expressed the sensation perfectly.

On one of those hot tropical nights in the Caribbean, Cara and Matt crawled into the little sailboat bed in their berth. 6’4″ Matt decried to his lovely partner, “I am SO incredibly hot, don’t even think of touching me.” Such a romantic. Cara dutifully settled in for the night careful to keep all body parts on her side of the bed to avoid creating a conflagration. Just as her head hit the pillow, a strand of her long, beautiful blonde mane gently swept across Matt’s arm. Matt bolted up in astonishment. “Are you freakin’ kidding me?!” he exclaimed in complete disbelief that Cara would so bluntly torment him. So remember, in those unbearably hot conditions, body parts include strands of hair.

Now, on this 2nd day of September in the Chesapeake Bay just following Hurricane Harvey, I cannot steal enough body heat to stay warm at night. The change in weather has caught me by surprise as we still have no blankets on the bed and I’m searching my drawer for warm clothes. I’m wishing we would have purchased and not just admired the array of “foul-weather” gear on one of our many trips to our new favorite store, West Marine. Certainly that purchase will come soon enough as we continue to sail this fall.

But for today, I have dug up my favorite warm leggings (favorite because they have pockets which are essential for my Leatherman or pliers), a base layer and vest, a windbreaker, and a wool hat. I’m ready for this blustery day and feel proud and stylish in my makeshift foul-weather gear. But then there’s the feet. Following good sailboat protocol of going barefoot was no problem on those hot humid days. But now my little feet are cold. What to do? Yup, warm clothes from head to toe, er ankle, and barefooted. That’s the sailing way.


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