Back to the Future
First, back to Anacortes where we secured a nice spot for the next couple of weeks. At the end of a dock, with an open view of the marina, and right next to a beautiful park and beach.
Anacortes continues to be a great stop for us: There are plenty of shops within walking distance of the marina, many professional yachting services and the whole town is within easy walking distance. Even better, they opened a new Nordhavn office in the same building as the marina so Di, Princess and I went in to say Hi. We were welcomed with open arms, and it's great to know we have solid professional help there should we need it.
There's even a dog park so Princess can meet other dogs and socialize once again. We used to take her to a dog park every day, but it's not always easy to do when we're cruising, so it's good for her to get to meet all sorts of other dogs.
Having rented a car I drove down to Seatac (Seattle Tacoma Airport), spent a night in a hotel and boarded a Seattle to Lyon flight with a change over in Frankfurt, leaving my Princesses in a nice and safe spot.
The trip itself was uneventful, Lufthansa being germanically on time.
A day later I arranged a couple of blood tests, and the initial results were all "in range" which my Doctor confirmed by email was "perfect". I was quietly confident the news would be good, but I wouldn't know for another few days, a couple of days after my birthday.
Renting another car I drove up to visit my parents in the mountains: It had been 6 months since we'd last seen each other and it was good to see them. Steak Tartare at an outdoors restaurant topped the day off as a special birthday celebration.
I also got to visit our good friends in Thoirette, which felt like another special and additional treat.
Back in Lyon, my friends Aurore (and Damien) kindly had prepared a birthday cake for me. My birthday wish was rather simple considering only 2 days later I was sitting down for my medical checkup to confirm (fingers crossed!!) that I remain cancer free.
Finally, after hours of travel, and days waiting, my medical appointment came.
Right from the beginning my Doctor was all smiles as she was clearly hopeful the physical examination would confirm the results of the blood tests. She took her time, checking every spot where cancer had manifested itself in the past, listened carefully to my heart, my breathing and checked me thoroughly for any suspicious problem. With an even bigger smile she announced I was all in the clear.
So I've now been officially in complete remission for 6 months. My last harsh treatments were over a year ago, so that's when the clock officially starts to count remission time. I now have been in remission officially for just over a year. I am still at high risk of relapse, but every day a little less since the highest "adverse events" risks appear to be around the 10 to 14 months post treatment time frame.
My cancer is one of the few that can be completely cured, i.e. once you have been in remission for 5 years (some say 7) your risks of relapse get back to those of the general population. I'm still far away from 5 (or 7) years, but you can't get to 5 without being in remission for a first year. So we'll keep our fingers crossed that things hold and I remain in complete remission for years to come. I have to admit I believe it with all my strength.
In the meantime I will continue to monitor my health and will be checked regularly. We will have to adapt our cruising to that reality.
The next days after that were a bit a of a blur. Doing my pre US entry COVID test, flying and then driving back home to my Princesses.
Little Princess was so happy to see me!
Di and I hugged intensely and there might have been a tear or two knowing that I am still in remission. Those harsh couple of years were not in vain.
Di, very cleverly, proposed adding another day to our stay in Anacortes so I'd have a little extra time to recover from the trip. It was nice, but now is time to get back to cruising again.
As part of our present for continued good news, we decided to get Starlink for RV service, whilst we cancelled our dock in Salpare Marina in Portland that we had kept as a backup.
The kit is on its way to us, so we'll wait around locally until it gets here. Once we recover that package, we'll set sail North. We've added Alaska to our insurance coverage and will need to be out of SE Alaska before the 16th September. That should leave us plenty of time to enjoy and get a taste of Alaska.
Despite it being Memorial Day, I decided we'd go to Deception Pass State Park. It is real close to Anacortes, so a logical waiting spot. I was resigned to the place being over crowded on this major holiday weekend, and to my complete surprise we found the brand new docks completely open and almost empty of any boats.
Once there, Di and I opened our own bottle to celebrate the good news and our continued cruising.
We bought the boat almost 4 years ago, and we will be back in Anacortes for that anniversary if the Starlink package tracks correctly. So, just like 4 years ago, we'll be in Anacortes ready to go cruising.
This time we hope cancer will not interrupt our plans anymore. There definitely is a sense of "deja vu", while at the same time showing how resilient and obstinate the crew of Enfin can be.
Back to the Future!