The headline profound in many ways. An example of one definition of the phrase: Choices that seemed difficult in the past now seem clear after the person knows what happened as a result of those choices.

In other words, it is clearly describing the study of cause and effect. What we have all experienced, some in much more difficult circumstances than others, has left an indelible change in our lives.

Depending on how you view our current challenging times, it is also an opportunity to learn. There are no expressions that can accurately describe what everyone has endured, as each has a different story and ending. Every one of those encounters is of value, offering something that can be taught or passed on to others.

I ask myself frequently, “What if things were different. COVID restrictions were non-existent, and there were no six feet of separation. But alas, in the future, there will always be the two words: social distancing.

Looking back at 2020, I was provided with a unique opportunity to witness something remarkable in the world of boating. The experience was provided to me by being affiliated with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in program visitation.

From my vantage point in the maritime industry, I could see little change in the love of the water by enthusiasts. In some cases interest actually increased. Even though there were plenty of restrictive mandates on gatherings throughout this terrible pandemic, the desire for on-the-water activities was ever-present.

So beginning a new year, replete with adjustments, is an opportunity to learn from the hindsight provided by the infamous 2020. Keeping with the boating safety theme of this column, we all know Atlanta will be without the big boat show this winter season. The huge gathering is always a great time to see the latest developments in the marine industry and the best of technology there is on the market. The show will be sorely missed. Even without the boat show, there are still plenty of outlets to search for your vessel, and it might be a great time to learn about how to operate effectively or improve on your current proficiency, especially recreational boating safety.

Some maritime education is basic in design, while other courses of instruction provide a more in-depth syllabus of learning. This style of training has many options to explore,  depending on your objectives. If you would like to discover more of what is available in the marketplace please contact me, my email address is listed below.

Welcome to a new year, especially the return to a “forever changed normal,” as it is impossible to go back in time. We can however compare and learn from those memories with – hindsight being 20/20.

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