The Short Humour Site

Home : Writers' Showcase : Submission Guidelines : A Man of a Few More Words : Links

Writers' Showcase

Four Weeks
by Ian Curtress

This is a particularly nasty squall, unpredictable and never ending.
Why do we put ourselves through this for pleasure.
Of course I know the answer. When on shore we are impatient to put to sea again.
There is no simple answer, it’s the challenge, the freedom, the exhilaration, the smell of the sea.
To see the sails fill, the boat surge. Say no more.
It had been a longish trip of four weeks and time to make for UK shores to see family and replenish stores.
Wind change, fickle weather
The sea is a little too calm now making only a couple of knots but sunshine warm and sky a poetic blue. A glimpse of heaven.

I messed around with boats when young, having the joy of living on the coast and then in mid teens took up sailing seriously. How to sail in all conditions, how to remain safe and how to survive.
Before I knew it I was hooked.
I crewed whenever and wherever . Saved every penny I could, sold my car, could walk to moorings, not far, and finally bought this lovely thirty two foot very seaworthy boat.
Have been exceptionally lucky in having a sailing mad partner who if I’m honest has skills beyond mine.(don’t tell her I said that).
We have used up all our holiday entitlements on this trip but have enjoyed endless pleasure and happiness together with some remarkable memories.
Have weathered some stormy seas as in the last squall but built our confidence in our capabilities and on the home stretch.

Have just noticed a small blue fishing boat about a mile off. Looked through glasses and can’t tell whether they are pulling their nets in or bailing.
Can’t get them on radio but can pick out three fishermen working on deck so all seems ok.
They can see us easily, bright white mainsail but just in case sounded our very loud fog horn. They continued to be very active so all was obviously fine.

One more night has passed and we are now near our destination, not home moorings but where we will meet up with family.
They were pleased to see our return and to hear details of the trip and conditions encountered.
After a pleasant evening we have returned to our boat for the night with a view to walking around the town in the morning.

Have done some shopping, mainly essentials and do what we always do when there is one. Visit the Lifeboat Station.
Never cease to marvel at the dedication and risk these volunteers are prepared to accept twenty four seven.
Chatting to the Station manager and he said they were all suffering from their inability to find a fishing boat four weeks ago. It had not returned when it was due and a full search was mounted.
They spent three days daylight hours without success, no wreckage or lifebelts.
Not a sign and it was finally called off. Sunk without trace.
He showed us their log
An awful shiver went down our backs
There it was.
A small blue fishing boat. Janet. Three souls on board.