It’s the first Wednesday of the month and that means Insecure Writer’s Support Group (IWSG) is enjoying its monthly blog fest invented by Alex J. Cavanaugh. IWSG is a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds.
QUESTION: What started you on your writing journey? Was it a particular book, movie, story, or series? Was it a teacher/coach/spouse/friend/parent? Did you just “know” suddenly you wanted to write?
MY ANSWER: It was 2am and shivers of adrenaline surged through my body. I was alone at the helm of our sailboat, La Vita. My first night at sea. Ever. Rick was off watch, down below.
The power to control a 33-foot vessel and the freedom to glide along without a care in the world was breathtaking. I was in the grip of freedom, control, and the dark unknown.
The wind ruffled the sails and the rhythmic throb of the diesel engine filled the air. We were in Mexican water and motor-sailing south to Ensenada, Mexico.
Fog erased the stars from the sky. The compass needle pointed south, assuring me we were on course. To the west, there was nothing between me an Hawaii. On my left, the rugged Mexican coast line.
Time passed, the fog remained. Then I saw a ghostly image moving through the hazy white mist. I stared at it in wonder. Was it getting closer to us? The blinding lights blurred the image.
With a sense of panic, I called, “Rick, can you come on deck?”
He looked around as he came up the companionway steps. “What’s going on?”
Rick studied the brilliant white form. “It’s coming towards us! Quick, turn the wheel to port.”
I did as I was told. I gripped the wheel and turned hard left. Shore lights twinkle as the La Vita headed toward shore. The sea slapped her hull.
About 100 yards behind us, a vessel emerged from the fog bank. A thick rope was dragging an enormous barge concealed in a blaze of white light.
La Vita weighs 15-tons and lethargic in the calm seas. She was in no hurry to complete 360 degree maneuver. Was the barge going to ram us?
Time stood still as we lumbered through the gentle waves and returned to our southerly passage. The vessel towing the barge was ahead and crossing our bow. They were headed for port. That was our destination, too.
We were on the inside route to Ensenada. The tow boat and barge were on the outside and intent on passing in front of us. The minute Rick saw the heavy tow line hanging off the stern he realized it was connected to a vessel blanketed in fog. Thanks to his quick thinking, we avoided a collision as sea.
This first night adventure at sea ignited my desire to write and a craving to draw the reader into my experience.