By Bill Yeargin
It seems unnecessarily obvious to state this but, so far, 2020 has been challenging.
First, dealing with COVID-19 and now experiencing the unrest over inequalities in our country. To many, it seems like we should hit a “reset” button on the year.
Despite the chaos, people are looking for ways to reconnect with those most important to them and boating is proving to be a solution. Across the country I have heard reports of lakes, rivers, and the ocean full of people enjoying the outdoors with friends and family in their boats.
Folks tired of being indoors, cooped up in quarantine or looking for relief from ZOOM calls, are flocking to the water to spend time on their boat and enjoy the outdoors. Being on the water is a great way to clear your head with fresh air, cool water and the fun only a boat can provide.
Many are also grasping the wonderful opportunity boats provide to take a vacation without the risk of flying during the pandemic. Discovering and enjoying lakes in their own state, people are being re-awakened to how much fun boating is and how it re-connects us back to nature. I have heard people say they are discovering new areas in their state to enjoy the water, places that they did not know about or previously appreciate. And, they are loving it!
There is plenty of evidence that being in nature, including on the water, helps us reduce stress. This happens when we embrace the “Blue Mind” author Wallace J. Nichols researched and wrote about in his excellent book. For anyone who wants to relax, destress and develop peace of mind, there are few better places to do it than in a boat on the water.
We are now entering the peak of the outdoor season and the nation is thankful for, and enjoying, the respite boating provides.
I have been a boater for a long time and have always loved being on the water. My two daughters were raised on the water and it has created some of our family’s best memories.
But, honestly, this year I am enjoying being on the water even more than normal. To see boats full of happy people, with their kids and dogs along for the ride, is exciting and brings me much joy.
It just might be that 2020 may be the best year yet to be on the water – I am thankful to be a boater!