Yesterday I received a message from someone. They wrote, “Be careful carrying on conversations with other vessels out there. They could be outlaws.”
If we are on a collision course I gotta talk to the other vessel. Plus, if I befriend a pirate or an outlaw or a villain, won’t they have a harder time taking my gold?
I’d like to think so. But I don’t really know how to get inside the brain of someone so ruthless. I kinda feel like we all got a heart and even it’s been charred by the devils flames, there’s still gotta be something pure pulsing beneath the blackened bits of it. I’d like to believe that darkness can’t grab hold of the very center of us, that it only gets our edges and edges are easy to peal off. I’d also like to believe that love could always bring anybody back to a state of virtue.
I’ve seen love reverse a criminal before. I produced a series where I interviewed a lot of former gang members and ex-convicts. The story was the same across the board. “I wanted love so bad, I was willing to die for it.”
This type of love has to come from within and above, but maybe it could shine through a VHF too?
We should be careful though. We are out here, just us and the sky and the sea. It feels like the Wild Wild West. Lawless. Anything can happen. Anything goes. And we stick out like a sore thumb. Our tall mast and our tiny ship. An easy target for sure. Nowhere to run to, baby. Nowhere to hide.
Out here, there is no haven, except for heaven.
Last night, in my South Pacific cruising guide, I read about pirates. It mentioned that a lot pirates sail the waters surrounding Indonesia. The book said
don’t even bother getting your gun because they’re such sharp shooters and so callous that they’ll take your blood before you can shed any of theirs.
I guess I won’t be sailing to Bali, unless my buddy from Kyoshin Maru No. 1 wants to go. If he’s an outlaw he knows how an outlaw thinks and everybody knows that it’s hard to con a con.
All of this is reminding me of my favorite Hindu deity, Kali. Have I already told you the story? I can’t remember. I’ll tell it again with brevity. Because, this deity is favored among criminals, but I just realized if they look more closely at the myth, it’s really teaching them how to get back to the love.
It goes like this; Vishnu, one of the preservers of the cosmos, was in a battle with a demon. Each time he sliced the demon, the demons blood would spill onto the battlefield and give birth to a new demon. Until he was fighting demon upon demon upon demon. It was a war that could not be won, similar to our war out here with the current. To help him, his lover, Kali, rolled her tongue onto the battlefield and started swallowing the drops of the demons blood. She did this until there were no more drops and the demon was defeated. But drinking the drops left her mad and drunk. Half-naked. Tongue out. Big eyed. Wilder than the wind. Almost demonic herself.
To clam her down, Vishnu turned into a baby and laid at her feet. She was so crazed that she nearly stepped on him, but finally she looked down and the sight of the baby made her subside back to her true nature.
I see this as a story about what happens when we start to slay our demons and how doing so will eventually lead back to that cosmic love. We gotta look at them, fight them, and overthrow them. It’s godawful and will make even more of our demons surface. And for a brief period, during the crusade, we will endure lunacy and our world will grow dark. But when it’s all said and done and the demons are dead, we’ll be left standing in a new dawn.
Dawn came and went today and we realized that we have made very little progress since yesterday. If the current was non-existent we would be averaging 144 nautical miles a day. With the current, we can’t even make 90 NM a day.
That’s ok. Here we are. It is what it is. This is the pace. This is the flow.
The wind is blowing in the low 20s, but the white horses turned back into ponies. Little children are licking lollipops and riding the ponies around and around in circles. Every once in a while a pony gets loose from the carousel and crashes onboard, we feed it a carrot and send it back out to sea.
Josh made a new loaf of bread today. It’s almost gone. I haven’t had a slice yet, but they’ve each had four. Each time they decorate the bread with something new. Butter, jam, Nutella, cheese.
We’re almost out of fresh food. Some sad looking fruit, a couple of carrots, a zucchini, and cabbage. None of us even really like cabbage we just knew it would last a long time.
Josh is reading a sailing memoir, Sava is studying for the Yachtmaster’s exam and I’m reading about clouds and mythology and mermaids.
I like the conversations the mermen have when I’m not really listening. It’s kind of like two women speaking, but not. Same same but different. Like the same topics but a lot more brevity. They don’t go into all the details and drama of things. More cut and dry. Black and white. Like bro, you know what I mean? Yea, totally. Next topic. I want to chime in and ask a thousand questions. I want them to give me all the juice of every story so I can take a long drink of something besides myself.
Meanwhile, I’m having ridiculous OCD-style conversations inside my head. Like time will pass and I realize that my brain was overtaken by an obsessive thought for a good long hour.
Today’s obsessive thought was if the seashell that dangles above my food hammock ruined my favorite dress when I hung it on the hammock to dry. I spent 20 minutes investigating this via videos from when the dress hanging there. Another 20 minutes sitting on the settee and watching the sea shell swing above the hammock. And another 20 minutes trying to convince myself that it is next to impossible that the seashell had anything to do with the dresses demise.
Welcome to my freaking brain. My whole life. Like this. Something that is of no great concern to my existence, all of a sudden is a big damn deal.
If my mom was here, she’d say, “Oh Olivia, let it go. Nobody will even know the imperfection is there except for you.”
But that’s just it, I know it’s there! And that’s what matters… not really of course.
Imagine what my brain does every time we break something onboard. It starts spinning like a helicopter and tries to fly off my head.
I think I do so much unusual stuff- like sailing in the middle of an ocean- that it’s almost easier for my brain to obsess about the mundane. Like it needs to linger on the trivial things in order to forget where it really is and the atrocities that could actually come from being in that place.
Anyway, last night the three of us did a new moon manifestation ceremony. We’re turning into witches and warlocks and werewolves out here. Howling at the night.
Josh just called me Pirate Voodoo Mama Juju.
That sounds about right.
***Special request for anybody reading from California. I am in the July and August isssue of Latitude 38. Hoping someone can scoop me a few copies of both months issues. Forever grateful if you can. X
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4 Replies to “For The Love Of Pirates”
Lions, Tigers, Bears, and Pirates, oh my!! If you only had to worry about the wind and currents. You have definitely had some current to deal with for a several days. I keep hoping you will soon be moving with the current. Maybe tomorrow. BTW cabbage is actually good a number of different ways.
Happy sails today.
I love you ??
Olivia, This post, For The Love Of Pirates, needs to be submitted for publication somewhere! It’s one of the best “short stories” I’ve ever read. So many nuances and subplots.
I took my 5 year old gdaughter to the park recently where she met another little girl. Their conversation went like this: -Hi. What’s your name?
-Anna. What’s yours?
-Isabella. I like your shoes.
-I like your shirt.
-How old are you?
-5. How old are you?
– I’m 5 too!!! What do you like to play?
-Hide and seek.
-I like hide and seek too!
-Older sister to Isabella: who are you talking to?
-My new friend. Do you want to be friends (looking at Anna)?
At that point I had to separate them because they were less than 6 ft. apart.
Two boys would have been testing each other to see how high they could climb. Girls find points of agreement. Boys compete. That’s why we need more women in office. It’s the nature of nature.
But viva la difference! (?) Maybe.
Olivia, This post, For The Love Of Pirates, needs to be submitted for publication somewhere!Â Itâ??s one of the best â??short storiesâ? Iâ??ve ever read. Rick Richard D. Oâ??Brien, Sr.PO Box 7740Little Rock, AR email@example.com From: Wilderness of WavesSent: Tuesday, July 21, 2020 10:52 PMTo: firstname.lastname@example.orgSubject: [New post] For The Love Of Pirates wildernessofwaves posted: "Yesterday I received a message from someone. They wrote, â??Be careful carrying on conversations with other vessels out there. They could be outlaws.â? If we are on a collision course I gotta talk to the other vessel. Plus, if I befriend a pirate or an outl"