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Date: 15 August 2014. Cherish the Memories of the Night.
Guest author Colin Day aboard M/V Lily Maria.

This piece is for The Writer's Block. It's written by a fellow cruiser and speaks to a short voyage he and his Jean took recently. It's why we should, as Colin says in an email, cherish the memories of the night. This life can be yours too.  It's not fancy, but it surely is filled with simple pleasures.

Since saying goodbye to our friends in Carrabelle we have leisurely traveled the waterways westward towards Mobile, AL. Anchoring out each night in quiet deserted backwaters home only to fish, animals and birds. We are privileged to share their habitat and always try to be the guest who will be invited back. We enjoy life at anchor as it heightens the sense of freedom and independence it gives to our little 44 foot world.

Lily Maria, a Thompson44, docked at C-Quarters Marina in Carrabelle:

Just as long as it is not raining we elect to sleep topsides while at anchor to enjoy the fresh air, the breeze, the sights and sounds of the night world. Each night spent afloat is a privilege but last night was exceptionally memorable.

[Cushions with the addition of fresh sheets, and some fluffy pillows make a comfy outdoor sleeping area aboard Lily Maria. Partially covered by a bimini (see first picture) Jean and Colin are protected from the elements and in touch with the beauty of the outdoors. Life truly does not get much better. J.]

Laying down, looking skywards watching the full moon play hide and seek with the clouds, spotting the planets makes us totally aware of the vastness of the heavens and our own minute role in the universe. But like the actor we must assume the role and play it to the hilt, hopefully being able to make some small positive contribution before the final curtain drops.

The clap of thunder in the distance, the flash of lightening beyond the clouds, the sights and sounds of a gigantic battle between the weather gods. Will we be spared the onslaught of wind and rain? Thoughts that could provoke the feelings of a past generation hunkering down in mud of Flanders fields praying only to live and fight another day.

As the thunderstorm passes the ensuing steady hum of the bugs in nearby woods is broken by the blowing and snorting sounds of a family of dolphins who have come by to visit. They pay particular attention to the anchor rode and dive down where we dropped the anchor earlier in the day. Behavior totally understandable as I have been told by a sage and salty friend that dolphins are drowned sailors reincarnated. Who am I to doubt the word of a fellow seaman and can only express my gratitude to our visitors for standing such a diligent anchor watch.

Finally as the grey dawn breaks our peaceful dream world is shattered by the mighty blast of the shipyard horn and bugle calls from the nearby U.S. Air Force base calling us all to our duties and to the opportunities presented by a sparkling new day.

Colin Day aboard Lily Maria.

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2014, 2023

Categories:  Boats, Characters, Locations, The Writer's Block

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