MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “ship”

Captain James’ Journal, day 134

goodridge_m_r_e-clipper_ship_in_stormy_seaI woke up to a stormy sea today. I almost fell out of bed and my back is so sore. I feel as if I’ve been carrying the weight of the entire boat on my shoulders. It’s cloudy outside and the sun can barely shine its rays past the thick cover of cotton surrounding it. As I climbed onto the dock I realized the whole crew was gone. They weren’t missing because they were still in bed. They were simply gone. They had preferred to jump overboard and be swallowed up by the raging waves, than stay onboard and fight through them.

It’s hard when you lose hope like that. When you simply surrender. It’s as if you’re giving up your entire life and everything that matters, simply because you have no more energy to fight.

I’m still struggling.

There are moments where I too wish a tidal wave would just gulp me and my ship away. But then I dream of something so much better. Of reaching a land as peaceful and as prosperous as I imagine it. And as I lay on my hammock, enjoying an exotic cocktail, a slim, elegant figure would approach. I would only be able to see her shadow as she would be standing right in front of the sun, her dark hair waving in the wind. I would be mesmerized from the first moment I laid my eyes on her. And as she came closer, I would be able to distinguish her stunning features. Her emerald green eyes, deep as the ocean itself. Her diamond smile that could bring light to even the darkest of nights. And that voice of an angel. I could stare at her for hours, days even. How fortunate I would be to have such a woman on my side. We would talk, flirt and laugh. And when night came we would salsa on the beach at the sounds of a live band. And hot as we were with excitement we would continue the interaction elsewhere. And sunrise would find us wrapped in each other’s arms, with only a white sheet for cover.

I think of this and regain some element of hope. Because without that there is nothing keeping me from walking the plank – even if I don’t see any sharks waiting for me on the other side. At least not yet.

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La Hora Gris

La Hora GrisThe first time she died it was around noon, on a stifling hot day. Her carriage had ran off-track. Something had scared the horses and they sprinted off course, almost inverting the carriage as they went, knocking it on obstacles right and left. She was already injured when the carriage fell sideways onto a giant rock off the stone-covered road. The horses were so terrified that they continued to run at full speed. So fast, that they never even realized there was no more ground left to trample on. And the carriage fell off a high cliff. And that was their end.

The second time Teresa died, it was during a tornado. It was monsoon season, and everything happened too fast. As the saying goes, ‘when it rains it pours’, and there was certainly hail that day too. She was caught in a stone-house, not built to last such natural disasters. She could see the whirlwind approaching, but there was nowhere to go, nowhere to hide. The feeling of getting caught up in this monster, was like being pulled into a roller coaster from which you can’t escape. And then it all goes black. And you remember nothing more.

The third time, death came silently. Teresa was aboard a large cruise ship with her boyfriend. They had just gotten engaged in the most romantic of ways – he had even arranged fireworks for her – and she was over the moon. They were cozy in their cabin suite, falling asleep in the early hours of the morning, when something immense, hard and bulky crashed onto the ship. They hardly felt the water filling up their room, and it was only seconds before this force of nature took their last breath.

Teresa’s fourth encounter with the Reaper was during a car chase. She was after a known-fugitive. She knew this meant a promotion, recognition and acknowledgement that she was good at what she did. And that women could be just as good police officers as men. But when she finally trapped the fugitive and there was no way out, out of seemingly nowhere, he fired a gun that hit her straight in the heart. Her consolation lay only in the fact that she managed to fire right back and get him for it.

They say if you have one encounter with the afterlife, you would always remember it. Teresa had five. And she remembered every last minute. Even the shark bite that took her fifth life, when she tore her foot in the ocean outside a reef she set to explore. She remembered how she screamed and splashed, but there was no-one around to hear her because she had drifted too far out.

But somehow, she never remembered what happened afterwards. After the light at the end of the tunnel appeared. After she had crossed over.

It always felt like waking up from a dream. She was simply starting a new life, as if that was where she left off. It was strangely natural. But she never gave it too much thought.

Until now.

Lately she had always been tormented by a thought – an obsession that penetrated her very being. It was the only thing that terrified her. La hora gris. The grey hour. When it is neither night nor day. But when it is better to fall than rise. That was how it had been imprinted in her brain. That hour of day scared her, more than anything.

It was that hour that she felt her end would come. Her final end. That hour that would take away everything from her. And that is why she rarely kept anything other than the clothes and jewelry she wore.

She spent a couple of years worrying about this fatal moment.

Until she met a man on the pier by her house. He appeared oddly familiar, and for some inexplicable reason she felt she knew him, deeper than any other person she had ever known. She felt a connection with him. A mysterious, incomprehensible feeling of trust, affection and attraction for this man.

And it was all realized when during that grey hour, he came towards her, smiled, and said: “Don’t drive yourself crazy and enjoy this moment, because you never know when life is going to hit us again.”

Instantly she knew. He had been with her all this time. He had accompanied her through all five lives. He was the carriage driver, the owner of the wooden shack, her fiancé, her police chief, her scuba instructor. He had failed to protect her all those times. But now he was right there. And everything would be all right.

Love is an island

DSC08896Every now and again everyone needs to get away for a while. From the routine, the noise, the crowds, the hectic lifestyle, the stress, the things that simply aggravate you. You need to devote some time to yourself, to things and people you love, and most of all to relax and rediscover the beauty of life.

What better place to do so than on a beautiful Greek island just an hour away from the bustling capital city, Athens?

Islands like Aegina offer you the getaway you long for since the start of each week. And it is close enough that you can decide to go for the weekend only a few hours before jumping on the ship. DSC08818Watching the waves foam as the ship skids through the ocean leaving the city behind, you can feel your shoulders lighten a little as you leave your troubles behind.

Calmly sliding through tranquil waters, you can already feel the anticipation of what awaits you on the island – sun, sea and relaxation.

Even the seagulls can sDSC08828ense it and come to escort you into port as a VIP entrance should be!

And then you reach the marina. DSC08928That awesome place with all these shiny white yachts finely lined up for you to gaze and wish you owned the one on the right, between the two smaller ones, that one with the large mast and sail.

Being on an island – aIMG_0916 small one that is, no matter for how long, makes you wish your life was as relaxed and carefree as the days you spend there.

Taking long strolls along the golden beaches and watching your feet sink into the sand.
Watching the sunset in the arms of your loved one.

DSC08970

Having a drink and a snack at wonderful, picturesque villages.

DSC08935Enjoying a carriage ride by a horse you just met and became friends with before taking you around to see amazing old manor houses that even featured in a movie.

Re-discovering the joys of life, simply by forgetting that every day needs to have a schedule and a to-do list.

Love is like an island. Endless, calm, and ready to embrace you as soon as you set foot there.DSC08838

With friendly smiles greeting you immediately and conversations that can start as easily as you take a breath, it makes you wonder why exactly it is that you live in a busy city where you are constantly pushed and shoved around and not there – there where you walk into the supermarket and the next time you go the cashier even remembers your name. Where you are given discounts simply because you engaged in an amusing conversationIMG_0913 with the proprietor. Where you make friends that are always ready to welcome you back.

We all need a sanctuary to recharge our batteries. To re-energise us, at the same time as it calms us down. To remind us that life is not as hard as we all make it out to be. It’s just that we have forgotten how to live.

 

N.B. All photos are mine taken on the island of Aegina on 03-04 May 2014

P.S. This is my 200th blog post!      

A puzzling storm

SHIP-IN-STORMY-WEATHER-AT-SEAI was on a ship in the middle of nowhere as it seemed. The wooden mast creaked in the wind, as the waves clashed and gripped the sides of the boat, rocking it side to side as if it was deliberately trying to throw something out. I was holding on as tightly as I could but the rope was wet and starting to tear bit by bit. I felt my eyesight zoom onto it, onto the very part that was ripping up slowly. With every new thread that was breaking loose I felt my pulse liven by another beat. Was this what Coyote felt like when he lost control of the rocks and bombs he was preparing for the Road Runner? The only difference was I wasn’t aiming at anyone. All I wanted to do was…wait…what did I want to do? And why on earth was I in the middle of the ocean in a storm? Was this my punishment for having fallen asleep during The Perfect Storm? It wasn’t my fault! I was tired (probably) and the movie seemed a bit boring (I think).

I crawled on all fours on the wet wooden boards as the wind was howling against my face, spitting out at me and pushing me back. My hair, all wet and loose was sticking onto my face, and at instants I could hardly see. I wanted to reach out and pull it back but all I could think of was…all the money spent in vain at the hairdresser’s the previous afternoon. Wait…what?

I reached that trap door that now seemed better known as a ‘rescue door’ instead. Opening it was a real challenge. Pulling the handle against what felt like a tonne of a blustering current pushing against my frozen hand. Clack! Oops! The handle came off and I was left staring at that in my one hand, while at the same time desperately trying to hold on to…well basically anything! I used the side of the handle to pull open the door. Hey, at least at times like this I was innovative. But where was everyone else? Shouldn’t a ship have a whole crew of sailors and cabin boys, and perhaps even that occasional dog that would be running around in everyone’s way? Where was everybody? And most importantly, who was driving?

I wanted to go and check. But under that slit of a door everything seemed so much calmer. If only I could find the light switch. Suddenly light appeared as of nowhere. Was this the “and then there was light” moment of the movie version of whatever it is that I am living?

I looked around. I was in a cheese cellar. I don’t know where that fit into anything. But I actually found myself looking for the barrel of wine to crack open to go with the small piece of cheese I had managed to cut off. Mmm. It was smoked too. French or Italian, I couldn’t quite tell yet. Either way, where was the wine?

The box next to me smelled weird. I hoped there wouldn’t be a dead rat inside, and as every strange thing that actually draws you in rather than out, I opened it with one eye half-closed. It was prosciutto. I think it was cotto too, ‘cause I’d prefer that to the crudo type. Evidently I didn’t have enough for dinner. And all this made me thirsty. I extended my hand and reached over, grabbed the small plastic bottle of mineral water that stood beside me and nearly drank it all down in one gulp. Wait. Plastic bottle of water in a cheese cellar with traces of ham, entered through a trap door on a ship found in the midst of a storm somewhere? What was going on??

I thought I was going to have a heart-attack. That damn buzzer! Why couldn’t they make alarm clocks wake you up with a soothing, subtle melody? Does it really have to be so abrupt?  It did explain more or less everything though. The subconscious really is a mystery that takes over your dreams in the most awkward of ways!

 

 Also part of Daily Prompt: Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)

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