Our time in the Air B&B has highlighted how different our life is to what it was on land. Living in a stable, air-conditioned house the first morning after sleeping there was completely shocking. I’ve become so used to the gentle rocking of our boat that waking up and coming into the kitchen felt completely foreign. My schedule was jumbled for the rest of that day. I’d slept so well in the bed that I’d woken up an hour late and the strangeness of that ordinary lifestyle jarred me from my schoolwork.
It would be even more different if I were back in public school, but even my school schedule was different from my usual routine. Of course, part of this was because my dad had just implemented some new rules. I had to do thirty minutes of music, get 10,000 steps on my Fitbit five days a week, and have my blog readily prepared by Sunday.
If I compared what my day looks like on the boat compared to the regular teenager, it would be so vastly different that it’s funny. Unlike most boat kids, I still wake up at a reasonable time 7:30, instead of the 10:00-12:00 I see some kids have an alarm set for. The schedule is where the similarities end. Online school has given me unique opportunities that I wouldn’t have otherwise. The average ninth grader would be starting Geometry, a subject I covered two years ago when I was presented with the option to go at an accelerated pace through FLVS. I’m now in Pre-Calculus, a class usually taken in 11th grade. If I continue this pace, I will be finishing high school before I’m seventeen.
School is only one of the differences in my life before and after. The most obvious is traveling. While most teenagers will only go to a hotel here and there on vacations, I’m constantly moving from place to place (or I was, before COVID-19), always discovering and learning something new. I’ve learned about the history of the Bahamas and it may not be vast there but it is more than you would expect. Without my lifestyle on the boat, I don’t think it would have been possible for me to see and do as much as I do.
One of the things I’ve noticed after living in our house is that while I may have given up some conveniences (AC, a normal-sized kitchen, not doing constant chores), my life on the boat is infinitely more interesting. I learn more skills and meet exciting people that I would’ve never known otherwise. This includes a girl named Betty that I’d been corresponding with for weeks before finally meeting up in La Phare Bleu.