The mechanic bull jerkes back and forth as Dalton tries to stay on-top. Cheers of encouragement lift from the small crowd that has gathered around the mechanical apparatus. You make your way through the crowd to watch your Mexican-American host as he tackles to keep his balance. He clutches his black Stetson hat with his outstretched arm. You are amazed how easy he makes it all look. If you were ontop of that thing you would have fallen off the first time the bull had jerked. You wonder just how long Dalton had been riding bulls. He had told you he was a college level bull rider and wanted to go professional. Was he nuts? There's a big difference between riding a mechanical bull and riding a real one. You wonder what ever motivated him to endanger his life like that.
"Dalton," Tasha yells running down the deck just as the mechanical bull stops. You watch him dismount. Dalton walks to her and you listen in on their conversation. "The Sea Witch is approaching," she tells him.
The Sea Witch!
You smile thinking of the good time you had with the Caribbean captain and can't wait to see him again. What adventures await for you today?
|Photo by Paolo Costa Baldi. License: GFDL/CC-BY-SA 3.0|
"Welcome back. Glad to see you on board with us again. The weather sure has been nice today for sailing. On the horizon though I've been seeing some clouds beginning to build that I need to keep an eye on so we don’t end up in trouble. Do you see them hanging low over there?"
"Hey Cherise, our visitor is back! Why don't you come over and say hi to our visitor?”
“She’s not coming over I guess. I don't know why but she really likes to sit in the bow most of the time we're moving. Well, it was nice that she at least waved at you."
"Would you like to see where we are exactly right now? Come with me and we'll check the Loran and the charts. Quite an amazing thing that Loran is, it tells you right where you're at. Watch your head as you come in the hatch as the opening is kind of low. Wouldn't want you to bang your head, we're kind of used to having to duck our heads by now."
"Here's the stack of charts, let's pull out the right one for where we're at. There it is, the middle of the Gulf of Mexico. See the read out on the Loran unit here; it gives you the latitude and longitude for where you are at. I guess it works on towers on the shore and the way the signal crosses. Beyond that I don't know but it’s pretty accurate."
"Now you just take those numbers and find out where they land on the chart. See, we're right here it looks like we have about 80 nauts further to go to Christiansted. I don't know exactly what that figures out to in miles."
"Oh yeah, it is a pretty small space isn't it? Guess they couldn't make the galley any larger given the size of the boat. It's only 20 feet long and 7 feet wide but it has everything we need including a stove and of course this small table."
"You're leaving us again so soon? Well, it’s nice seeing you again and I'd better get back to the wheel and check the compass to make sure we're on course. Have a great day."
Brian will be giving a copy of his book the Sea Witch to the first five people to comment on this blog posting.
About the author: Brian Bigelow is originally from Minnesota and currently lives in Colorado with his wife, a cat and a very protective Chihuahua that risks life and limb to save his "family" from running leaves, fire hydrants and the like.