There is another boat out here. Only 7 NM away from me. BW Jaguar. I can’t see him but he is on my radar traveling at 13.6 Knots and heading southeast. It’s the first ship I have seen since Thursday morning.
I want to radio him, but I don’t know what I would say.
“Hey what’s for dinner?” Or “So Jaguar, What are you doing 333 NM from shore?” Or “Rough ride last night, huh?”
Last night was rough. It was rough and wild and wet. It felt more violent than the night before. Juniper was getting tossed about by 8 ft waves and the wind was in the mid-20s. White caps were hitting all along the starboard side. Waves were crashing onto her. Some would lift her stern and throw her off course, but she bounced right back ready to charge through the next one just like a true samurai queen. She averaged 6 knots throughout it all.
Down below it sounded like a haunted funhouse. Things all around me were banging, squeaking, thumping, colliding, pounding, catapulting, clanking, splashing, breaking.
Boom, boom, ba-ba bang.
Juniper was haunted when I first bought her. It’s ok if you don’t believe in ghosts. I became a believer at the age of 20 while working for the National Trust in England. One of my tasks was to interview people who had encountered ghosts on their properties for the October issue of the magazine. The interviews were all spooky, but my favorite was this plumber who was working around an archeological excavation site in the basement of an old house. He was just down there doing his thing, when out of nowhere he heard the sound of a trumpet that was so loud it made him drop his tools and back into a corner. Next he saw the ghost of a horse gallop through the basement followed by the entire Roman army. He described them in vivid detail from the rope sandals they wore on their feet to the red feathers on their helmets.
I could hear the terror through the tremble of his voice as he retold this story to me. He doesn’t believe in what he saw and to this day is under psychiatric treatment for it. One other person working on that property saw the same thing and ten years later that excavation site revealed that the house was built on top of a road that the Roman army marched up and down on everyday.
Somehow the plumbers disbelief and fear of what he saw coupled with the archeological findings made me a believer. Perhaps what he saw was a wrinkle in time, some part of yesterday folded into the realms of today.
Juniper didn’t have the whole Roman army in her, but she had something. Cabinets locked with elbow latches would fly open and shut on their own. Then there were lights flashing, tools flying, creatures of the night crawling, etc.
Several mechanics who have worked on the boat have pointed out unusual activity and one refuses to come back after what he saw. Anyway, it took a lot of prayers and a lot of sage to steal my boat back from the ghosts.
There’s a lot more I could tell you, but it’s late and I’m out here, way out here. Don’t wanna give myself the heebie jeebies before bedtime.
I didn’t sleep much last night, but I can feel my spirit getting stronger. Last night did not shake me like the nights before. I trust Juniper more and I trust myself more.
The past three nights we have ridden the Beaufort scale down from 7 to 6 to now a 5. They are named like this – moderate gale, strong breeze, fresh breeze. I am lovin’ this fresh breeze zone that I’m in right now. It feels like a swing-set on a Sunday and tastes like strawberries.
I love it so much that earlier today I took my marlin spike and a knife up to the bow and untangled all of the lines that became a victim to the tango of the wind.
Right now the sea looks like blue velvet at midnight and the waves have subsided to 4 ft. I prefer them like this, smaller than me and moving more like ballerinas than giants.
“Fire-walker, Fire-walker, do you copy,” says a woman over the VHF. It’s rare for me to hear voices on there anymore. Everyone but BW Jaguar is so far away now.
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