Preface to writing
Upon leaving the port at Grand Canaria we engined a bit until it was safe to stop the engine. We then sailed smoothly until about 6:15 am when the wind dropped and Pierre decided it was a good time to start the engine. Flying monkeys if the engine did not start. He pulled apart the cover pieces and tore up the toilet room to discover that a piece of the engine was totally burned through. We had waited at the port a week making sure that all was in tip top shape to make such a long trip and in 10 minutes we fried the engine.
Well fuck a doodle doo.
Now what you may ask? We’ve decided to sail to Cap Vert and fix the engine there. My Father is going to go back to Philadelphia and Pierre and I are not quite sure of what to do next. We are planning on birthing our son in Martinique. I am currently 32 weeks pregnant and feeling the need to nest and ground myself for his birth and yet I also feel the Call of this voyage and choix du vie that our family is living… what to do? Voici the little backstory to my words.
I feel your little hands carving my insides, a place that was yours before time,
A place that will always be yours and yet one day soon you will be outside of me, yet our hearts will be ever intertwined, like the stars in the night sky…
One day you will need space from me, one day you will need to fly and be truly on your own,
But today my Beloved Son, today my inner temples, the seed of my heart will ever be connected to you.
I feel you move and I am in awe
Your strength; courage, flow; and beauty surround me
They encompass me, your tiny hands tickle my wounds, embrace my fears, and invite me in each moment to be more fully alive.
I am in awe of you…
Tonight on this most lonely of nights when your Papa is heartbroken and sick, your Poppy is confused and disappointed, your Momma feels empty and surprisingly calm; you my Son, you move, you danse in my womb and somehow I am not so afraid.
I want to do what is best for you, I want you to be safe, I want your birth to be peaceful, grounded, calm… I want to welcome you to this grand earth in style, love, and stability… does stopping our trip here and me flying to Martinique make that vision more of a reality for your life beginning?
Or does continuing with your Papa, on our sturdy yet electrically fucked little boat to reach your birth place jive with how your soul wants to come down in physical form?
My brave dancing Baby, already wind and magic breathed Boy, I ask for your help… what do you want us to do? What is best for you?
We have 6-7 days of sailing and listening ahead of us,
Please tell me clearly what you want.
I return to Mother Mary, she set off with her wild Joseph, on a donkey following a bright star at night.
No home, wandering nomads
Were they lunatics, crazed dreamers, or divinely tuned parents?
I imagine Joseph was as handsome, strong, and sometimes as broken as your Papa.
Carrying his wife, walking with her together, trying to follow their hearts, no maps, no directions, just following that damned twinkling star.
Star followers… following an oracle, birthing a new family, Mary carrying a new world in her womb
On this night of nights looking into the endless cosmos, seeing Orion on my left, feeling you tango in my womb,
I know not what to do, but I feel You
You my Son, my little Star Follower
The dolphins come
Unexpected, always invited,
fire water beings, without reason but often in rhyme.
They glow, they burn through my heart
Remind me how free, frisky, and fresh life can be
Tonight I felt trapped, you grey blue fish goddess, with your finned Aretha Franklin-ed heart, set me free
Can my goings and comings be like yours?
Fluid, always in the right moment but never announced
Each time like the first time,
You a charismatic lover one returns to in between moonlight, recipes, roses, spices, and years
Whispering wisdom and magic; then leaving when there are other worlds to sing in
You live by the rule of the moment; you regal sassy creatures,
You rule the kingdom of the sea by not ruling and you turn my heart to song
Life is a quest itself. How brave we are, how unknowing, marvelously mysterious, and mystical it all is. Human life for instance, an egg and a sperm meet inside the inner cavities of a woman, the egg chooses her sperm, the settings are right (most fertilized eggs do not make it, the quest past the inner tunnels of the Fallopian tubes and into the uterus is daunting and most zygotes do not surive), and abra cadabra if all goes more or less right we have a human being 9-10 months later, a whole Being who will have loves, desires, fears, doubts, heartbreaks, passions, depressions, dreams, the whole life bit, a human being quoi; knits in the caves of the woman. Magic I say.
Indeed life is a quest full of danger, sacrifice, love, and magic a hell of a lot of magic.
I forgot that why Pierre and I are doing this voyage is for the quest itself…
My dear/sweet/totally lovable and completely himself beef jerky and all Dad is now sailing with us until Martinique. He had a brain injury several years back and I have been worried how the whole sailing experience with its unbalance, waves, and sparse luxuries would be for him. He got very sick, it broke my heart hearing my Dad vomit and struggle to keep his balance bouncing around our tiny boat. The magic and folklore of this trip quickly vanished for us both I think.
Somehow in talking with him later about how he’s been doing while on our boat, « Now » which has these past few days felt more like « Deathtrap », I remembered the why,
Pierre and I are on a life quest.
I have been on quests before, the common thread I’ve found in all quests is in the beginning a call, an insatiable hunger pang for something different, an inner knowing that it is time to leave and an unknowing for what awaits on this quest. I’ve often realized the why of the quest after as if defining the mission before and during the quest somehow diminishes its value. How in the Jewish tradition, you do not speak the name of God, the Great I am, because just by giving a name to this Mystery you define the undefinable.
When I went to India, the quest became to learn how to really love myself. I remember a shaman healer I worked with in India had a WhatsApp group where every day we the participants wrote one thing a day that we loved about ourselves; later it was three ways that we showed love to ourselves in a day; I asked my Mom to join the group and she called me a few days later weeping, she could not do it, she did not know how to love herself. My heart broke for her and I saw myself… How could I learn to love myself from a mother who herself did not know how? I did the work of my life and through the dusty streets, long solitary walks, lassis, roadside chai, 4 am temple visits, my tantric lover, apartment meditations with my Russian sister roommates, crazy harping jobs, curries, past life regression therapy, hypnotherapy, and dirty roses and rivers I learned how to love myself. I met, « HerWhose Name we do say » inside and she danced and made love to me. India sweet Momma India, I love you forever
When I went to New Zealand, it was a quest to separate out from the heavy weight of my uncle just going to prison for raping me during my childhood and years of legal trails and recurring bouts of anorexia and bulimia for me. It was a Remembering of the Holy in me, a finding the quiet place, coming back to my Song. I lived alone in a small hut, a kuti, in the middle of the forest in a Theravada buddhist monastery and at nights would wake up, go outside and stare at all the stars, feeling held by the cosmos in all the Wonder. It was here in the silence I heard the harp again and Remembered the Song. The quest was to remember…
What does this quest mean for Pierre and I?
Now we can’t define what we will learn but some of the why’s for the desire to go questing are;
Creating a new life for our son, a life that is deeply connected to nature, to intuition, to music, to heart, to the wind, to adventure, and to world community. It may all sound rainbows and unicorns but damnit in this world of chaos and people losing hope left and right we want to be a part of the team working for Magic, believing in the power of healing and Mother Earth and that we can create a new world together… A desire for a simpler life, one that we can more easily hear our inner voices and rescind to Beauty. A need to create our own family in our own way without the pressure of doing it like so and so... perhaps a need for space. A desire to « Saccorder », the name of our project, to Tune into ourselves, others and Mother Earth.
The quest is on dear Friends
The sails and the songs sing Her Name.
Pierre is a fabulous Captain, he is thorough, likes order, keeps track of everything in a slightly obsessive compulsive ship-shape attitude I’ve learned makes captains tick-a-diy tock. He loves neat ropes, procedures, head flashlights, expensive sleek sailing gear, and svelt life jackets. He married me…
our differences are our force.
Although since becoming pregnant safety, security, and order have become new top priorities, thank you Mother Nature… who knew what good old hormones and stress could grow in a cloud bound artist.
I digress, we have this journal du bord. Pierre writes everything that happens. It’s a real page turner let me tell you. I’ve translated into English an example of one of these best selling chapters…..
04h15- wind actual 15 nds, direction of boat 255 degrees, wind unstable and frequent changes of the Jenny.
7h15- change of shift, wind 21 ads, direction of boat 240 degrees, navigating close to wind, rough waters, rolling waves
Thrilling right? I’ve created an alternative journal du bord. What I would want to read if I had to read one of these pultzers.
16h15- Leave port Carthegena direction north, 25 knots of east wind, Now traveling at 5.2 knots in the direction of what the fuck, the auto-pilot stopped working again.
I unplugged the unwilling dick and re-vamped the whole system three times. Tell wife we need a new autopilot, I will throw this broken, useless, foul cock rock into the sea. Wife laughs while taking hold of the bar and howling into the sunset. Realized another crew member unplugged autopilot connection down below. Wife again finds this funny; we kiss and feel our son move. The autopilot lives to see another day.
11-14h Jess’s watch. Jess arrived to her post with crayons and journals. Her one word response to questions oozed hints of DO NOT TALK TO ME ANYONE, I AM BuSY CREATING LIFE IN MY WOMB, today is not your day for CHITCHAT. I AM A WHALE, A HUGE ORCA I CAN FLIP THIS BOAT WITH MY BLOWHOLE. I NEED WHALE SPACE. Her pastels fell on the floor boards of the cockpit again making a blue/ green mark. Thank God she did not bring glitter on the trip.
Arrival in port 05h13, filled up on Spanish gas, 20 cents cheaper than French gas and comes with complementary tapas and sangria. Wife eats all the tapas leaving two olives for us… we men folk drink the sangria. The boat’s batteries have no charge, the engine is supposed to charge the batteries while running. This is not happening. I tell crew we are fucked and disappear angrily into the shitter, moving boxes, complaining about how much money we have poured into this aluminum creature, and mumbling obscenities in a language wife calls, Piraté, piaratay like you would say boo-tay but with French accents so it’s sexier and dignified. We move port places twice to try to find electrical outlets our power chord will enter; cannot find a place. I tell the crew we have a big problem we need to buy a new alternator immediately The crew has disappeared; Hervé in his couchette, wife walking laughing at names of big boats. We are near a gorgeous 90 foot boat called, « Sailing for Jesus ». Where did barefoot Jesus get all the money for this big assed boat, wife asks. Maybe the Jesus people will give us a new alternator or at least turn salt water into sangria.
8-11h My watch. We advance at 4 knots. Seriously boat, 4 knots, that’s all you can give me? I walk to the genois to adjust the sail and spot a hole in our plexiglass lookout spot. HOW IS THERE A HOLE IN THE PLEXIGLASSSSSS? Angry and panicked I show Jess,
« At least the birds can now enter our boat freely » she says. « Now we can have pets. Maybe I can find us a micro parrot and he can also be a third crew member. When he does watches we can train him to say, « Polly want a cracker and watch out we are colliding with a big boat ». She smiles. I married a special lady… For now duck tape and my sticky dreams insulate the hole.