Friday, September 9, 2016

Essay: The Magic of The Moment

My entry for Skip Novak's Pelagic Expeditions in Tierra del Fuego for an expedition through the Beagle Channel and hopefully around Cape Horn!

The Magic of The Moment

 You may have spent time on sailboats.

You may enjoy getting out on the water.

But until you have experienced The Moment, you will not have entered into the magical realm of the trans-formative and healing power that can be found in discovering your own personal connection to the sea.

It could happen on an afternoon day sail – or an overnight passage. Length of time at sea has little to do with whether your moment will find you. It is about tuning your heart to the wind and wave – and being willing to be taught something that you know – but have forgotten.

You have to be completely alive in The Moment – every sense of your being open to hearing what the song of the sea is telling you.

For me, The Moment came in February 2004 when I was on the 2nd month of a 5 month sabbatical aboard my 1971 32 ft. Wayfarer Yachts built Islander sloop. Having left at twilight from Bahia de Muertos - on the inside of the Sea of Cortez – I was planning a leisurely overnight sail to La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico.

The sea was calm, the moon was full. Jimmy Buffett tunes were playing on my stereo. As I entered the channel, Between the Baja and the shores of Isla Ceralvo, the sea exploded into a magical light display of bio-luminescence. Standing at the mast, I was able to see the incredible amounts of “traffic” moving just below the water. Soon, a massive shape was moving on a T-bone collision course with my boat – and from the size – it could only have been a whale. In a silent ballet beneath the gently lapping waves, the beast passed silently below my keel. Rapidly accelerating torpedoes of dolphin swarms repeatedly strafed my boat. I watched in stunned silence – with a sense of wonder and revery for nature filling my heart.

Within an hour, a deep layer of fog blanketed the sea – and the show was over.

The Moment was a defining gateway for my deep and abiding love for the sea.

There is magic in the sea. I have seen it.

Mother Ocean is there – and has much yet to teach us – if we will but put down our electronic toys, head to the beach, and listen with our hearts.

We are of the sea – and the stars. Connected in a cosmic web to the earth & sea – to each other – to all the life that lives on this fragile blue marble.

If once you have experienced The Moment – you will forever be changed – you will wear an invisible mantle – knowing your place as a steward of our oceans – and embracing the Servant Spirit.

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