I am a happily married man and yet I have a mistress. No, not that kind. The Sea.
The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.
– Jacques Yves Cousteau, ( http://www.brainyquote.com)
The sea used to call to me as a child. I read stories about life at sea. I was fascinated by Jacques Cousteau’s shows exploring the sea. As a youth, my family would frequently make the short drive to Half Moon Bay from Belmont, California. After body surfing and boogie-boarding in the cold ocean surf we would warm up by a bonfire on the beach. Moved by my mother to to the Atlantic coast as a young teen, I would swim and take a sailboat or rowboat out in the waters off Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Though swept out to sea once by a rip current, I responded by learning to snorkel and scuba dive.
There is a witchery in the sea, its songs and stories, and in the mere sight of a ship, and the sailor’s dress, especially to a young mind, which has done more to man navies, and fill merchantmen, than all the pressgangs of Europe. -Richard Henry Dana, Two Years Before the Mast
I was a captive, not unwilling, during eight years assigned to Navy ships. Then, I spurned my love-interest. I retired from the Navy. As I dallied with camping, hiking, and cycling, the sea called me back to her. It was a recent cruise to the Caribbean that has me spellbound again. I am not too old to don a wetsuit, or rent a boat, or take another cruise, all the while listening to Jimmy Buffett on the radio.