Whenever someone, usually standing on a jetty in the pleasant morning sunshine, looks down into my cockpit, and, after greetings and gossip about this and that, says that he envies me because I don’t have any cares or worries and can just take off into the setting sun without a problem in the world, I always smile to myself. What does this person know of the intricate preparation, the minute attention to the smallest details that goes into getting a small craft ready for the ocean? Overlooking even one significant point could very well result in disaster or even death. What does that person know of that careful, cautious attention paid to storing the boat with every possible item for any foreseeable accident or occurrence? What does he know of studying how to take out one’s own teeth, or, if necessary, one’s own appendix? The long-distance sailor is his own lawyer, doctor, engineer, plumber, carpenter, dentist and diplomat. – Chay Blyth who celebrates his 78th birthday today.