A Sea Change

December 29th, 2009

My daughter and son-in-law own a big-bottomed broad of a boat…stable, cozy (even a little gas burning “fireplace”) and curvaceous. During the holidays, we went out in Puget Sound looking for orca whales, and even though we didn’t find any, it was a spectacular experience. Freezing, but the sunset and Twin Peaks moody landscape made it magical. I hate cold weather and I’m afraid of water, but I piled on hat, gloves and lots of layers to sit outside in the bow until I finally lost feeling in my face. What I rediscovered was that when you surrender to being in the moment, the moment gradually overcomes your misery. I was without my constant companions — cell phone, books and laptop. No one to chat with because they were all wisely staying warm in the cabin. It was just me and smoky sky and deep silence, except for the sound of the boat and the waves we made. I don’t think I would ever be able to live in the Northwest (or Northeast), but winter in all its spareness and solitude is not possible to experience in the same way in the south. Just as I could never live on a boat but I can understand the relief of paring down your possessions to stow in a few cubbies, the freedom of drifting from island to island, the notion of pulling up anchor for the next best place. For a few hours, my life was unmoored … untied from Costco, CNN, the Comcast bill, dry cleaning, deadlines and the sadness of post-holiday sales (which it seems to me to be a bit like post-coital tristesse). We were messing about in boats and it was good.

2 Responses to “A Sea Change”

  1. Diane says:

    Oh, YES! I don't know how to arrange it – or even whether I'd care to arrange it – but I do believe that putting oneself out in the middle of the natural world can lift spirit, unclutter the brain, and produce answers to even unasked questions. I don't understand, if I believe this, why I don't make more moves in the direction of the natural world? Why is it such an effort? Your photo and your prose in this post were transporting. Thanks.

    Diane

  2. V-Grrrl @ Compost Studios says:

    I love winter and dream of living in the Northwest. : )

    Not a big water person but I love forests and mountains and fog. Being outdoors, whether I'm sitting on my deck, walking through my neighborhood, or taking a hike always centers and calms me. It has since childhood when upsets would send me running to the woods to get my bearings.

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