The Cast of Characters & Quick Guide to the Story

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Who Are You People?

On Sunday we fly a flag called the Sunday Jack. 
Just why is a mystery to me.
Sometime yesterday Sea Cookery ticked past it's ten-thousandth hit. Who are you people? Who is that person in Singapore? Do I know you?

Sometimes I think I'll throw in the towel and stop writing, just because it takes so much time and energy. Last night, a few posts behind because of our transit from Duluth, I sat down after making dessert and was up until 2:30 am uploading photos and jotting down menus.

But then I remember when Harrison came back from his hiatus and said he was bringing me a message from his friends and family to blog more regularly. But surely 100 of Harrison's friends aren't checking this each day...?
A view of the Argo firing on the Marlin, from onboard the Coaster II.

"You know why you don't stop," the Nomad said on the phone today. And he's partly right - writers, they say, can't not write. But I have gone through long periods of my life without it. And perhaps they are deserts. As my favorite writer says, if she could do life over again, she'd capture it all like a giant plankton net. She also wisely said that if you're a writer, your job is "to keep cranking the flywheel that turns the gears that spin the belt in the engine of belief that keeps you and your desk in midair."

So, number 10,095, join me as I struggle another day to keep this desk flying, this ship afloat.

Day Off
I am sprawled out on a lawn across from the boat engaged in my favorite day-of pastime, falling asleep in the sun. I went privisiong this morning - it's almost like time off. And today my ride was patient, amused. So I stopped to peruse the local meats and cheeses. I bought strange odds and ends like chow mien noodles and rice paper wrappers. I bought sweets for the crew like Oreos and peanut m&m's for the transit. Tonigt two guests will join us for the passage to Frankfort, MI.

This old elevated rail line for dumping ore 
into boats looms over Marquette's harbor. 
Did I mention that from here on, I've been to every port on our calendar? No more foreign lands to explore. Though that's not quite true, since I will be seeing it all with different eyes. Having gone to college in west Michigan, I know the area pretty well. I've slept in the dunes along the lakeshore, jumped naked in Lake Michigan's waves at midnight, walked miles of her beaches, and eaten at restaurants along the promenades and piers at almost every seaside town from here to Chicago. I even wrote an essay in college about my love for Lake Michigan, about her history, the droves of shipwrecks beneath the surface, the changing fish populations, and the power of water. Did you know that when the first settlers were guided into the lakes by Native Americans, they told of how they could not put their hands in the water without touching fish? Records show the continual and dramatic drop in fish populations with the arrival of the refrigerated train car.

I could go on with small facts. But there are those who know much more than I - Cap and Seth #2 are virtual treasure troves of information on the subject. All I really know is that I have loved that lake fiercely since I first saw her in the early nineties. After my divorce in 1998, I felt the first signs of healing when my sister and I, after driving a 24-foot truck across the country, arrived on her shores south of Saugatuck. For some reason, the lake reminded me that I would feel whole again one day. And so now... Now I'm going home.

Sunday's Menu
An americano at the doughnut shop
And a peanut bar at the market when I suddenly ran out of energy
A doughnut from that box

Niko, captain of the Coaster II, a schooner that
does daysails and charters in Marquette. They invited me
to come along.


  1. Kip says: keep writing i really enjoy hearing of the further travels of the Marlin and heaqring a cooks view is very interesting. ill definetly keep it in mind next time im comanding. you can have a breake at the end of contract;) and yes lake michigan is nice. e mail me some time so i have your address.

  2. I'm a friend of "**issy" (can't remember her screen name - Nissy?). I like reading your blog because I like to cook, and frequently think about starting over somewhere - were it not for my two furballs.