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Underway Column Editorial by Editor Bill Sisson | Soundings Online Column

Why a boat?

12_mary-southYesterday — between writing a feature and closing pages of the August issue of Soundings, which you now hold in your hands — I dashed to the town hall to get paperwork notarized and sent it off to the documentation agent by FedEx. This morning I wired the closing money into an escrow account. As soon as the owner countersigns, I’ll be the happy owner of a 1988 Cape Dory 28 Flybridge.

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A perfect match

12_mary-southOne thing I’ve noticed as I age is acceleration in the passage of time — not day-to-day so much as year-to-year. 2015 is rushing by so fast that I sometimes feel captive in a speeding vehicle, watching the scenery whoooosh by: snow, snow, snow, mud, forsythia, tree buds, lilacs, leafy canopies, heat waves shimmering on the horizon … STOP!

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In this boat together

By the time you read our July issue, I will have a boat in the water. It’s a bold goal, but Parkinson’s Law — “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion” — is ricocheting around my brain, a pinball fired by budding trees, light evenings, the return of birdsong. And once spring is well and truly here, it is chased by an admittedly irrational sense that summer will soon be half over.



The heart wants what it wants

I don’t think I ever left the dock, in the many years I have owned Bossanova, when I didn’t feel a visceral thrill, a small flutter near my solar plexus. Few things have ever made me happier than clearing the jetties, locking open the port and starboard pilothouse doors and switching the VHF to 16. When the pan-pans and securities grew repetitive, I’d change to channel 2 for the strangely soothing patter of the National Weather Service’s robo-voice.



No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow

April is not, despite T.S. Eliot’s claims, the cruelest month. Not even close. (It’s January, hands down.) While it’s true that late winter’s lingering snow, sleet, slush and gray skies are particularly stinging to the winter-weary soul, April — no matter how disappointing its actual appearance — is springtime’s vestibule. The pale yellow sun has already warmed our upturned faces with its wan rays, the first purple crocuses have pushed through the snow, and we feel in our bones that we are mere weeks away from buds opening on the trees, from flitting butterflies and cheerful birdsong and — best of all — from getting our boats back in the water.



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