Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Samana Cay, Bahamas

0 nm
Wind: E 10-15 knots

I’m sitting in my usual position, stationed in front of the computer on the table. Over the last few anchored days, the boat’s grown progressively filthy around me, as usual. I don’t know what it is about not going anywhere, but it really makes me not want to clean. It’s exactly when I should be cleaning, sewing new sails, sanding down wood, doing all that industrious Pardey crap. It’s when I feel the least like it. I’m playing a lot of solitaire and trying to convince Karl to play cribbage. At the very least, I should be writing, if not fiction, then trying to drum up the motivation to write some scintillating how-to-fiberglass articles for Lats & Atts. As usual, my motivation is nowhere to be found.

Karl’s out diving. I went for a long dive today in the exquisite coral gardens, swimming from one end of the cay to the other, but I didn’t even bring the spear, a decision at which Karl looked with much skepticism. Evidently it’s no longer cool to just go enjoy the coral and fish. I feel a little of that pressure, too--to not be a tourist, one must take every opportunity among the fish to hunt. Oh well. Karl’s out with dinghy and spear right now. Maybe he’ll bring something home.

Home. What a bizarre concept. I do think of Secret as home, maybe my first real home ever. She’s the first home I’ve ever owned myself. Is it any wonder I’m falling into depression at the prospect of throwing her out, like so much garbage? I can’t think of Maine or Massachusetts as home, the way they are to Karl. I don’t belong in New England any more than a sea anemone does. I call Massachusetts home here, because that’s what’s stuck on the transom, but people who really know know it’s not. Sea Hunter, for instance. They dropped their Rs. Mine stick around persistently, like the good midwest consonants they are.

So where is home? I find my thoughts drifting more and more to Thailand, my real and only home, and the home that will never really be mine, if I can ever even get back there. Maybe that’s what’s bothering me about our lost ambition. My real ambition was to get to Thailand on Secret--it seemed the best of all possible worlds. Carrying my own house with me, slowly taking her home, like a snail gliding back to its warm and cozy hole. Now I know Karl can’t deal with the climate. Can I deal with his climate? I don’t know.

He’s just come back, proud hunter, bearing a parrotfish on his spear. He’s been obsessed with parrotfish for the last week, whether or not we can eat them, how big they are, their fishing habits. They’ve never looked very appetizing to me, with their brilliant parrot-colored skin and human-like herbivore teeth for chomping algae off rocks. Karl claims he’s heard from numerous Bahamians that they’re delicious and safe, but then why don’t they shoot them? This one’s vermillion-colored scaled skin is really making me wonder. Still, we’ll eat it for dinner and I’m sure it will be delicious, and it’s almost certain it won’t kill us. I’m very proud of Karl for having caught our first eating fish. I’m sure it bodes well for long fish-eating days to come.

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