January 29

I should mention the amount of mail we receive from readers of our website. It is amazing to think of the variety of people across the world who check in on our website. Many people are envious of our life. On bad days, I feel like writing back and tell them that my husband is in a horrible mood, I have PMS and want to sell my kid and Jonah is screaming "NO I will do want I want to do.". On good days, it makes me feel guilty for having a wonderful life. I think back on the stress and competition of working at Microsoft and I am amazed that I was that into it. I was lucky to work in a very cool group making smart and cool simulations (Flight Sim, etc). Other people write who are planning their own adventures on sailboats - to them, good luck, have fun and keep a good watch. 

It's just that nothing is paradise all the time. There have been many people who have gone looking for paradise as a salve to their own existence and find unfortunately life has followed them, or rather a change of physical location changes little about one's own self - a modern parable would be "The Mosquito Coast". There are no paradises out there - there beautiful places inhabited by usually very poor but dignified people trying to do the best they can and dreaming of electricity, water and education for their kids. If there is a paradise most poor people in the world see it as the US which comparatively even it poorest population is sometimes materially better then your average Pacific Islander lives. I suppose the important difference is that most Island people live in tight social groups comprised of extended family and/or villages. It appears to me that these social structures provide support and solace even while they struggle to put food on the table. I think poverty can be harsher in the US if the individual is alone or struggling with children alone. From a woman's perspective with a child, village life offers constant daycare and watchful eyes. In the urban US experience, childcare is expensive and difficult to locate or in the worst situations only the TV watches the children. The harsh side of village life is no medical care or minimal. People probably live shorter lives and children probably die at a greater frequency or suffer with the consequences of illnesses.
Malaria is the most dangerous threat to most children in the area although there is much public education about it, people suffer. We will be traveling thru malaria areas again and we will be following our usual precautions with netting and repellent. We do not take prophylactics as we spend so much time there, it is difficult to take medicine like that for months without side effects. 

Anyway, back to the grim reality of our lives. Ok we do tend to have the appropriate amount of lazing time that humans were designed to have interrupted by moments of hard work and terror. This is all biologically and evolutionally appropriate for humans. I think the most boring part is sitting at marinas fixing the boat. For me, the worst thing is the lack of girlfriends with which to bitch about whatever. 

We are back in the swing of boat work. Mooloolaba is back to being a bit sleepy after the summer/Christmas rush being over and the kids are back in school.