In 2016 a group of sailors who came to know each other in Mexico’s bays and bars reunited in an event called The Pig Roast. It was later named the Non-Pig Roast when other entrees were served. The first Roast was held in Comox, the second in Victoria and, this year, it was held in Spruce Grove (Edmonton). Sandi and I joined the festivities, reuniting with friends Debbie and Lynn Greentree (hosts of the 2017 Roast) and circumnavigators, Ann and Barry Lange. I was delighted to catch up with Cyndie Koning, a former graduate student of mine who, unbeknownst to me, lives just a few blocks away in downtown Edmonton.
Hosts Leif and Jackie Watson introduced us to the rest of the group, some of whose names and voices we recognized from morning radio nets. The Watson’s hosted a great party. The food was delicious, the reception was friendly, and the company was lovely. Leif divided us into groups for a Spanish language translation challenge. We were very engaged but I must admit we were a bit rusty as the best our group could do was fourth place. The winners received a box of Smarties to acknowledge their linguist skill.
Even though some of us had not seen each other for a decade or more, we conversed as if it were yesterday. While people’s plans had gone in different directions – with some planning a passage, others retiring from sailing, and others still thinking about what’s next – shared experiences created the foundation of a camaraderie that will last a lifetime. To give the BCA its due, we credit ‘Fleet’ for our success as cruisers.