By Earl Heath, Contributing Writer

COVID has been a unique experience for all of us. But after a few moments on the phone with Captain Joy Sherman there has been the person that has lifted spirits of so many and excited them when things look dim.  Sherman also has been a strong leader, sailing the worlds waterways for more than 20 years. The whitey Sherman has led charters in Europe, Thailand and the Caribbean. Her leadership once led an all-female sailing crew on an historic venture from the US. to Cuba.

With her heart and inner strength she has the following message for all of us during post COVID: For certain, 2020 was the year to remember. When in your life did you have such opportunities of isolation, thought and ponder, forcing you to slow down? We humans thrive on social connections, routine and consistency. Covid pulled those foundations out from under us in pretty much the blink of an eye. There was fear and horror of all those who struggled with the thought of getting the virus or actually getting it. We all know of the struggles for those who got sick and sadly of those who didn’t make it. The virus was out of control and we couldn’t make it stop.

We’ve emerged on the other side. No more taking time for granted. The isolation period gave us time to pause, reflect and from what I heard people saying, plan for the future, make good on those lost opportunities. Travel is high on our list. We’ve remained hopeful. We are survivors. We have the strength. We are seeing a faint light on the horizon. The streets are busier, flowers are blooming, the sun will shine more brightly. The aromas are fragrant.

Some of us emerged from this crisis unscathed and for this we are grateful. There is a collective fierce longing to reconnect with the wider world, to travel and explore again. There is a newfound urgency to do it now. Borders are starting to open, travel bans are slowly lifting. Soon, we’ll be free to head back outside, abroad, over oceans and borders to enjoy the staggering beauty and limitless freedom that only travel can deliver.

So now is the time to make good on those “if only” thoughts. Those dreams that kept your wanderlust sparked. It’s your choice to turn those dreams and plans into reality.