The One Where I Open Up About Canada Not Opening Up

7 months ago if you told me we’d still be talking about Canada not opening up, I would have laughed (and then maybe cried.)

Last summer, there were tons of boats asking the million dollar question: “Will Canada open their border to pleasure crafts this summer?”

We were one of those boats.

While many opted to wait, our family chose to forge ahead. The only way to do this was to hire a captain for our boat, thus making it a commercial transaction. The captain transitioned our boat through the Welland Canal without us on board.

At the time, I wrote a detailed post about our experience. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can read it here: The One Where We Got Our Boat Through Canada.

There’s no arguing: it wasn’t ideal.

But who knew Canada not opening their borders would be such a hot topic 7 months later as we approach the 2021 boating season?

I surely didn’t!

In fact, I know it’s caught a lot of other boaters off guard who postponed their Loop for a year. However, as I write this (March 1st, 2021) all signs are pointing to a repeat of last summer.

Last week Kim Russo, the Director of the AGLCA, asked me to help her record a Podcast to address the probable likelihood of Canada not opening their waters to boaters this summer. We covered all the details from rules, to hiring a captain, to the practical logistics of it all.

If you haven’t gotten a chance to view it yet, here’s the link to our chat about Canada not opening this summer:

For what it’s worth, I’m glad this wasn’t the Podcast Brent and I did about connectivity. Yikes.

There are a few times when there is a delay on my end. Kim and I recorded this very early one morning. Without my full cup of coffee, I forgot to check my wifi. Turns out, my computer defaulted to the marina’s signal which wasn’t great.

Kim provided a ton of great information that she’s getting from sources in the area and her contacts at the Welland Canal. And I filled in with some “real life” experience details from last summer.

One thing we touched on at the end that I wanted to go into more detail about is the really personal side…

How did we make the decision to proceed with our Loop despite Canada not opening its waters. And do we regret it?

For starters I will say that we typically take the “no regrets” approach to life. Even when things don’t go as planned, we try to make the most of it. I can’t even count the number of times our family has used the expression “making lemonade out of lemons.”

So the quick answer is obviously that we don’t regret hiring a captain to take our boat through Canadian waters last summer.

Here’s why…

Life is short. Dreams die. Circumstances change. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.

We made the decision to go ALL IN on our 2020 Great Loop adventure. And for us, that meant continuing on the journey even when it didn’t look the same way we thought it would when we started.

Do we wish we’d gotten to boat in Canada last summer? Absolutely!

But guess what? We’ve added it to our future “dreams” list while we fulfill our current dream. Another year, we will either take our own boat or rent a boat (which is a very popular thing to do in Canada.)

In the coming months many boaters will face the same decision we did. If I can be so bold as to offer one piece of advice…

Commit to your Loop. Hire the Captain. Cross your wake.

If this post was a bit more “boat-y” for your liking…don’t worry. Next week I’m back to posting about my kiddos crazy adventures! As always, thanks for following along.

You may also enjoy reading:

The One About Day To Day Life On A Boat

The One With Our Gulf Crossing

The One Where We Decided To Live On A Boat

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