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Underway Column Editorial by Editor Bill Sisson | Soundings Online Column

To the Stream, a crude raft, desperate dreams

We were just a few miles into a 23-mile run to the Gulf Stream for a night of swordfishing when we spotted something to starboard bobbing in the sloppy 2- to 3-foot seas. A good-size piece of flotsam, we thought. A perfect fish attractor.

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Here’s my idea of the perfect boat. What’s yours?

Someone told me a long time ago that the formula for a long, happy life in boats is to buy the smallest boat that will comfortably get the job done, rather than the biggest boat you can afford. That could mean a 15-footer — or a 50-footer.

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Beware the ‘expert’ when it comes to boats

Out of the blue, a friend recently asked me: “Do you consider yourself an expert?” I looked at him quizzically to see if I understood the question. “Do you consider yourself a boating expert?” he repeated.

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Battling big-leaguer makes each day a winning home run

Geese bark in a cove to the north, and a pale yellow light colors the east bank of the river. John Ellis is waiting at the dock in front of his home in Old Saybrook, Conn., and the live wells in his 23-foot center console are filled with freshly caught menhaden. An excellent, hard-charging fisherman, Ellis has been on the river netting bait since about 4:30.

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Passions are ties that bind — let those horses run

It’s good to have a passion for something in life, for an activity that thrusts you into the moment and, in doing so, makes you feel alive. Joseph Campbell was right: “Follow your bliss” is a good mantra for living a life.

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William Sisson, Editor

A 1981 Phi Beta Kappa journalism graduate, Bill has been writing about boats for more than two decades. His boating travels have taken him from the Persian Gulf to the Baltic Sea, and always back home to Little Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. As editor, Bill is responsible for planning and executing the publication's boating coverage each month, and his Under Way column starts each issue. Bill has been with Soundings for 20 years and in 1997 won the Moulton H. "Monk" Farnham Award for Excellence in Editorial Commentary.


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