One 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!
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.
Since this is my first column as editor-in-chief of Soundings, I probably ought to take this opportunity to present myself in a flattering light — tell you about my nautical background, my professional accomplishments, my high IQ and my excellent parallel-parking skills. Instead, let me tell you about one of the dorkiest things I’ve ever done.
I’m not sure of the year — probably 2009 or 2010 — and I was at a media breakfast at the Fort Lauderdale boat show sitting with colleagues from Yachting magazine, where I was senior editor at the time. As the speaker concluded and people pushed back their chairs in anticipation of hitting the docks, I saw a familiar face at a nearby table.
Was it … could it be … yes, it was! Bill Sisson, the editor-in-chief of Soundings. I approached the man like a 12-year-old girl meeting Justin Bieber. I didn’t scream or faint or try to touch him, but I did gush a little.
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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.