Subject: A thousand-words
Some how I just can’t seem to write a story without taking a picture or two for the motivation, or should I now call it – the inspiration. Looking at a picture saves me a thousand words, don’t you think. So,……… . I propose to you.
“Is a picture really worth a thousand words? What thousand words? A thousand words from a lunatic, or a thousand words from Nietzsche? Actually, Nietzsche was a lunatic, but you see my point. What about a thousand words from a rambler vs. 500 words from Mark Twain?
He could say the same thing quicker and with more force than almost any other writer. One thousand words from Ginsberg are not even worth one from Wilde. It’s wild to declare the equivalency of any picture with any army of 1,000 words. Words from a writer like Wordsworth make you appreciate what words are worth.”
― Jarod Kintz, This is the best book I’ve ever written, and it still sucks.
Now take a look at the picture above. My friend Petr took it just before we bugged out of our forced beach landing and later encountering three days of battling what they call williwaws. Williwaws are these sudden violent squalls that come blowing from atop a mountain towards the sea, shaking everything in its path to the core, then suddenly, as if by their own devise, they stop. With that said, at this point, anyone of us felt land – was the safer place to be.
Now back to the picture: What more do you either need to or care to know about it? How about interrogatives like the who, what, where, when how and why. Obvious from the picture that the guy is an adventurer! The basic premise of the picture; to lay out a 2,000 mile course from the port of Alaska, down the Kenai peninsula, over towards Kodiak island, across to the Aleutian chain, head towards Japan, take a right turn at False Pass and now enter the Bering Sea; then start back to the start point – the port of Anchorage.
How cold was it? How did you get there? Perhaps the Seadoos in the background and the dry suit hood and gloves can quickly answer that additional question. Was it dangerous or were you merely having what we can call an adventure.
Approximately 10 years after that picture was taken I find that my life has changed quite a bit. My thirst for adventure continues but, I am a decade older and wiser. My thirst for adventure may in all probability have sated some, but, at this point in my life I am only looking towards the next big adventure – Baja bound on the Western Flyer o/a October 2015.
It almost feels like if it’s someone else in that picture. Were we five that set out on these small little boats that rash that we thought we could complete not one but two thousand miles, while still managing full-time careers? We truly did learn some things, like for example, a decade later I am taking the time now to reflect on that one lone picture. The picture that to me culminates the entire adventure.
And as my now departed fellow club member John Goddard was quoted as saying, I have no regrets, for a life well lived.
This blog provides me an opportunity to share some short present and past stories. Better share them now before they are truly out of mind and forgotten for eternity.
In the picture above, we fell short of having a perfect plan but, my life with the sea today was forged on that one adventure, even if it was only a decade ago.
So what is a perfect plan? Is it to go in and come out the other end unscathed, without risking anything such as even life or limb? Similar to what we can refer to as a credit card adventure.
Today I seem to now have the luxury of both time; and as Captain Ron would say a little coin. If I left today for the same adventure; will it diminish it in any way? Nothing much has changed in the way of safety. Back then we carried transponders, sat phones, gps, water and land survival gear and wore dry suits.
“Your purpose is to make your audience see what you saw, hear what you heard, feel what you felt. Relevant detail, couched in concrete, colorful language, is the best way to recreate the incident as it happened and to picture it for the audience.”
– Dale Carnegie
Wet Dog crew checks in at Kodiak
KODIAK – The five people blazing the trail for a 2,000-mile personal watercraft race have reached Kodiak.
The expedition crew for the Alaskan Wet Dog race had been sidelined last week by mechanical problems and weather in Anchor Point.
But they were able to leave on Sunday, arriving in Kodiak on Monday night.
But team Leader John Lang says even this wasn’t without its own glitches. He said one of the machines developed an electrical problem and had to be towed into Port Williams on Sunday. It broke down again on Monday and was towed into Kodiak.
The crew is working on that machine. If all goes as planned, Lang said they plan to leave Kodiak Wednesday.
From Kodiak Island, the Wet Dogs will head for Alitak Bay. The final destination is Iliamna.
To be truly challenging, a voyage, like a life, must rest on a firm foundation of financial unrest. Otherwise, you are doomed to a routine traverse, the kind known to yachtsmen who play with their boats at sea… “cruising” it is called. Voyaging belongs to seamen, and to the wanderers of the world who cannot, or will not, fit in. If you are contemplating a voyage and you have the means, abandon the venture until your fortunes change. Only then will you know what the sea is all about.
– from Wanderer book by Sterling Hayden
Exactly one thousand words! Happy Holidays!