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Sassea Sails

SAILING, METAPHORS, ADVENTURE,

Month

July 2018

WTF — A New Meaning

Photo taken by Ron Ouellette of Hiking Friends Polly n Chris on  4/27/18  West Spanish Peak Mountain

I stand corrected regarding my three previous blogs on WTF. Rather than continue to curse the injustice I felt when Ron did not wake from his sleep, my focus has shifted to a more tenable response. Last Thursday at high noon I was standing above the tree line on West Spanish Peak. Instinctively I shouted What the Fuck while remembering this was Ron’s last stand on our beloved mountain. With tears rushing from my eyes, down my cheeks and soaking my shirt I was enlightened by fellow hiker Debbie Gregory’s wry sense of humor. “WTF, you are right! We are in the middle of it,” she prophesied.

Awakened from my outburst by her raucous statement, I stared at her in disbelief.  Debbie explained. “You experienced a tragedy. That was yesterday. Tomorrow things will be better. Today, you are in the middle. Today is also Thursday, sandwiched between Wednesday and Friday. So, just think of WTF as being Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.”

As dimwitted as the explanation sounds, it reminds me to find humor and a more positive spin on life’s bitterness.  It is time I stopped cursing what I cannot change. I therefore declare that from this moment forward I will take the gifts I received from my past to build a preferred future.

 

Dawn’s Early Light

A new day has begun. If I were leaving a harbor I would be walking about the deck preparing to weigh anchor. All lines leading to the cockpit would be tangle-free, the diesel would be warming up, hot coffee would be simmering. A slow 360 degree turn would substantiate the wind’s strength and direction. The drifting distance astern would be ascertained. A decision to raise the mainsail would be made. A deep breath would be taken; maybe two deep breaths or even three before pushing that magic button on the windlass to free us from mother earth.

Because I am not leaving a harbor my day will be different. In fact today will be like no other before it. Needing to be cautious while overcoming my fear of the dark, wooded terrain on my Southern Colorado four acre homesite, I shall embark outside. For the first time in my life I shall overcome my fear of seeing a bear, chasing a rat, or steering clear of a snake. Yipe, it is time to step outside onto my deck and hang up the load of laundry that I put in the washing machine two hours ago when I woke up.

Keeping my promise to change my physiology when negative thoughts swarmed in my head, I got out of bed about 2:30 am. My subconscious mind had me dreaming about a situation that made me feel badly, insecure, and angry. Despite these ideas, my curiosity yearned for details. Thankfully I had the presence of mind to get out of bed and formally begin my first formal draft of my memoir. Now, at 5:13 am, my mind is devoid of choosing the right words. Time, to get those clothes out of the washer and hung on the line. There is few joys in this world then clean clothes dried in the clean Colorado air (now that the smoke from the devastating fires has subsided)….

WTF #3

I get it; many, many, too many people have been dealt a handful of cards much worst than I can ever imagine. Yet, here I am after a peaceful day of sailing in Maine saying, WTF for the 3rd time.

Today’s welcomed sail was a gift, the kind of gift I treasure most. My friend Julie arranged with her friend Kathy to take us out for a sail. Kathy rowed us out to her moored Cape Dory 22 in an 8 foot rowing Puffin. A Puffin will make the perfect dinghy for my next cruising tri. Within a few minutes of readying ourselves for the afternoon sail we released the mooring line. It took 3 or 4 tacks to get out of Lowell Harbor. Then, for the next 3 hours we reached along Casco Bay.

Casco Bay has special meeting which brought a wave of sadness. The Friends of Casco Bay is the preferred charity for those who wish to make a donation in Ron’s honor. Lowering my head on the cabin sole I day dreamed of the stories Ron shared of his days sailing these waters.

Before leaving for the day’s sail I had learned of the growing fires in Southern Colorado, southwest of our comfortable cabin. Transitioning from Ron’s burial at sea to the tranquility of a long overdue sail was a welcome respite only to be interrupted by the notice of the evacuation order in my neighborhood.

Thankfully, Polly and Chris, our hiking friends took the initiative to take our van to a safer area earlier in the day. With the news of evacuation our neighbor, Carla called to ask if there was anything in the house I might want her to get. Suddenly without provocation I cried. The most sentimental of all my possessions ran to my frontal lobe. Before leaving for Maine to attend Ron’s memorial I  carefully placed a picture of Ron on the left side facing right. On the right side of the mantle was Danny’s picture facing left. The strategic placement of these two pictures resulted in their facing a treasure I placed in the middle of them. The exquisitely carved jewelry and token box Ron had our friend Richard make. was presented to me at my birthday party by Richard’s wife Phyllis. Inside the box I put the diamond ring Danny had given me so many years ago.

Now, long after day turned into night, I am calming myself, by writing this blog entry. All I can think is What the Fuck! I put Danny to sea in 2010. I put Ron to sea the other day. Today, the combination of everything thing these men provided me is wrapped in and around our comfy cabin home. A quiet salt box style house surrounded by desert terrain, juniper and cedar trees may go up in flames before dawn’s early light. WTF #3.

 

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