Friday, January 18, 2013

Sailors aren't


We just don't believe in tempting fate.

This is my purse…

It's real small.  About 3 inches square when it's drawstring is not pulled tight - which it always is.  Inside live my two Zuni fetishes:

They live snuggled deep within my pouch, safely in my left back pocket.  They have done so for many years and many trips upon the sea.

This one has lived with me so long, that it has gathered a grainy mottled look.  And somewhere along the way something hit it (me too) and snapped it in two.  It is a Bear, which symbolizes strength, and the inner power to perceive one's present circumstances - which is a very good thing when you're 700 miles from the nearest anything and all hell is breaking loose.

This one, although it's hard to see, is a Beaver, which symbolizes a progressive builder, one who promotes family unity - a necessary skill when one is the eldest of the entire immigrant, strong-willed, I know better than you, you don't know nothing, I'm telling!!! family that sailed into New York City.

This is the flag of Hydra

Pronounced eeeeee dra.

It commemorates the Battle for Greek independence from the Turkish Ottoman Empire, which was lead by the sailors of Hydra, and lead to Greece's independence.  It symbolizes (to me) a "can do" and "never say die" attitude.  It always flies on any ship I'm sailing.

This is the flag of Mylasia.  I've always liked the flag.  To me it has just the right blend of colors, items, symbols - you name it.  

The true story goes like this:  The guy bought a boat in Annapolis, and needed to get it to St. Thomas.  I said I'd do it.  Before we could get out, the weather turned bad and the weatherman predicted doom and gloom.  Told the owner, "sorry, can't go now." The owner liked to have died.  He needed that boat down there or else…. He begged, he pleaded, he started throwing money.  So, I named a figure that no one in their right mind would pay.  Silly me.  He wrote a check on the spot and promised a bonus if we could break the standard trip time.

So, we hoisted the flag and sailed.  And the weather got bad, and badder and more bad, until the weatherman had to confess that the storm had unexpectedly turned into a hurricane.

Five days later, we limped into Bermuda, sans our water - one of the hoses snap due to the twisting of the hull), sans our jib - the roller furling couldn't handle the wind and the sail flogged itself to death, and sans one flag of Mylasia.

Sailors aren't superstitious.  Sailors are just smart enough to realize that some things need to come aboard to both show what can happen, and what can happen if you don't have the right stuff on board.


  1. Coins under the mast and never leave port on a Friday. I'm glad you have had your talisman's with you.

  2. Wow. I think I'd be too much of a scaredy cat to sail in that kind of weather.

    Talismans are a must me thinks. I have one that has hung from the rear view mirror of every car I've ever owned and it had brought me safe accident free travels.

    1. Ah, truth of the matter is, I'm too much of a scaredy cat to sail in that weather too. That's the good news. The bad news is that, once you're out there, you're out there. But you're right about talismans: I'm still here, and I don't get on the scooter without that left rear pocket being filled.