A Capstan Tale

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Since we’ve boarded the EcoMaris 2 weeks ago as 12 stowaways following their path to freedom and responsibility, 5 scouts have taught us how to navigate and live with others, bringing us back to our “human-ity”. Since the start of the expedition, we’ve developped relationships, gained knowledge, discovered affinities and aknowledged who we are in a deeper way, freeing ourselves from subconscious barriers and sadness. It appears we sometimes ignore our self-destructive tendencies, so simple to see yet so deeply ingrained in ourselves.

We are all reading a book called The Little Prince.

We are reaching the end of the expedition. For some, going back home is sad but for others, it’s happy. For me, it’s a bit of both. But I leave with so much “positive baggage”. I see this trip as one that will never end. Physically, it will. But in my heart and soul, it sort of crystallized, for I gained so much and mostly gave so much of myself, bringing harmony and acceptance for our imperfections all around me. Release the backstay to go further, then hold the other side to go even further. Be in the present moment, watch the horizon without blinding myself, never looking back to never hang on to the past. Live for today and realize the chance we have to of have friends, responsibilities and rainy days reminding us why we love the sun. Sometimes, we need the motor to defy winds and currents and, while we rest, we reflect on the past. Sometimes, we deploy our sails in the wind, cradled by the waves, manoeuvring together to surf the flow. Nausea reminds us to take care of ourselves, and to let go.

To come back to The Little Prince, a chapter that touched me to the heart was when the prince meets the fox.

It talks about gaining the trust of a friend.

Sometimes, it’s instantaneous.

Other times, it must be achieved slowly as guards are gradually let down.

One has to “tame” the other.

The fox, so fearful at first, finally let the prince approach him.

They built a relationship.

And when the prince had to leave, he felt guilty for it.

The fox reminded him that without his departure, he could never truly feel the preciousness of their friendship. That deep inside, he would see the prince’s hair in the wheat field of the same colour, filled with love and never taking friendship for granted.

The fox tells the prince a secret:

One can only see with the heart:

what is essential is invisible to the eyes.

Today, my Capstan friends helped me realize how true this is.

Thank you, ECOMARIS, for lighting the fire in me.

Allison Villiers, #capstanprogram participant, May 2019

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